Watch the Lightnin's Minor Pentatonic online guitar lesson by David Hamburger from Fingerstyle Blues Factory
This Lightnin’ Hopkins-esque move has us based in open position but sliding up to get the fifth and flat seventh on the top two strings. Sam Hopkins, who acquired the handle “Lightnin’” from an Aladdin records exec on a West coast trip (his then-recording partner became Wilson “Thunder” Smith - get it?), was inspired to take up the blues by seeing Blind Lemon Jefferson perform. Hopkins settled in Houston in the mid-1940s and did nearly all of his playing there until the Folk Revival hit. Mike Bloomfield later recalled the ironic collision between the presumed expectations of the Newport Folk Festival crowd and the reality of Hopkins’ Houston career: according to Bloomfield, Hopkins rolled up to the festival in a sharp mohair suit, then changed into overalls to come out onstage and play his blues on acoustic guitar for the folk cognoscenti.