Watch the Down the Dirt Road Blues online guitar lesson by TrueFire from Acoustic Guitar Greatest Hits Vol. 1
Lesson Source: Paul Rishell's Dirt Road Blues
The first piece we'll study is "Down the Dirt Road Blues" by Charley Patton (Paramount, Richmond 1928). Charlie Patton, better known as Charley Patton was born in 1891 or 1894. He died on the Heathman-Dedham plantation near Indianola, Mississippi, from heart disease on April 28, 1934. Compare the guitar accompaniment to Patton's "34 Blues," which is slower but virtually the same.
Just about every Charley Patton song has a really cool guitar part in it. "Down the Dirt Road Blues" is no exception - this little 2-bar turnaround riff is a great example of how much fun it can be to play the guitar this way. We're capoed up one fret and we're in the key of C. The turnaround should be played in an expressive style, snapping the bass strings (played with the thumb) against the fretboard.