Watch the Rumble Train online guitar lesson by Jeff McErlain from Essentials: Blues Rock Grooves Vol. 1

This tune is all about the dynamics. We'll start off nice and soft with the guitar's volume turned down to clean up the sound for the verse, cranking it up when the chorus kicks in for a fully overdriven guitar sound. These dynamics are essential to the flow of the tune, one of the things that makes it so cool.

Make sure to borrow these ideas, and try putting them right into a blues in A with a different feel as practice. The riff also works just as well in E and D, using open strings like the original.