Watch the Robert Johnson Style: Open A online guitar lesson by Andy Aledort from Slide Guitar Power
This excerpt begins with one of the coolest chord voicings to be found in the open A tuning, which is an A7 voicing played in fifth position on the top three strings. Addtionally, the index finger is barred across the top two strings at the fifth fret, so when I remove the middle finger, an A6 voicing is sounded, adding a melodic flavor to the rhythm part. Robert Johnson devotee Keith Richards uses this exact chord voicing to kick off the Rolling Stones classic, "All Down the line," from Exile on Main Street. I follow these chords with single-note licks on the A string, and wrap up the first four bars with A5 and A7 voicings, used to great effect also on Sleepy John Este's masterpiece, "Brownsville." In bar 5, I sail up the fifth fret and barre across all of the strings, using the slide at the eighth fret of the high E to add a melodic element to the part. The V (five) chord, E, is sounded by barring the slide across the strings at the seventh fret, after which I close out the part with more slide licks that utilize open strings.