Smokestack Lightnin' - Howlin' Wolf

In this series of videos, I show you 10 riffs or songs that use notes from the E minor pentatonic scale, the easiest and most common scale for rock and blues! If you have not covered this scale, please watch this video first where I show you how to play it!

In this video, we look at a couple of ways you can play the blues classic Smokestack Lightnin' by Howlin' Wolf. This riff was written by Howlin Wolfs guitarist Hubert Sumlin and features guitar techniques such as a slide, flick off and the thumb playing the bass note. Beginner guitarists should focus on playing the melody with a pick- and without the bass note- first. I then demonstrate  the full fingerstyle version, and how you can approach getting to this level in general. Remember- all these notes come from your E minor pentatonic scale!