Three Albert King Blues Licks Every Guitarist Should Know

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PHOTO: Cindy Moorhead

Electric blues guitarist Albert King was a giant among bluesmen (literally—he stood roughly six and a half feet tall). A lefty playing a 1958 Gibson Flying V, King scored hits with “I’m a Lonely Man” in 1959 and “Don’t Throw Your Love on Me So Strong” in 1961 before moving to Stax in 1966. There he cut such influential tracks as “Crosscut Saw,” “As the Years Go Passing By” and, the song that became his signature tune, “Born Under a Bad Sign.”

King’s guitar work inspired a number of guitarists—including Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix and Gary Moore—but his playing had a particularly strong influence on Stevie Ray Vaughan. In 1983, the two guitarists met up for a now legendary studio jam, subsequently released on album and DVD as In Session.

In the video below, Marty Schwartz of GuitarJamz demonstrates how to play three Albert King blues licks. Guitar Jamz also offers eight high-quality backing tracks that you can use to practice this lesson. You can get them right here.

For more GuitarJamz videos, visit their YouTube channel.