How To Start Red House

First things first… this is not a “How to play Red House” lesson (I don’t want the Hendrix estate beating down my door!)

However, I’ve recently heard a LOT of guitar players try to start this tune with a band… and many of them did not work out well. But the reason probably ain’t what you’re thinking…

You see, the intro to Red House isn’t really an Intro at all, it’s simply the first 4 bars of a 12 bar blues in Bb, but with no band. The band just doesn’t play most of the time, but that doesn’t change the form or the chords or anything else.

But when you add to that hiccup the fact that Hendrix plays all over the place beat-wise… this can be a tricky thing for most people. So here’s an option that is much easier to play and will work every time:


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    This is the basic form of what I played

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    The Video

    Download the video using this link.


  • 360musicng

    Reply Reply July 10, 2018

    Love this, will love to play

  • Will learn how to play the guitar

  • Charlie Durham

    Reply Reply April 17, 2018

    Fascinating! So easy but sounds yummy, Thanks again for all you do 😎

  • Tom

    Reply Reply April 17, 2018

    Great lesson Griff. One of my favorite Hendrix tunes.

  • Dave James

    Reply Reply April 16, 2018

    I have always contended that much blues and ethnic music does ‘not’ have to adhere to rigid western music conforms… I tried an experiment years ago with some band members; I challenged them to play a blues style tune with no chord change structure (i.e. 8bar, 12bar or 16bar etc). Some of the guys ‘sort’ of got the hang of it… others were totally lost once you took the structure or skeleton frame away. It is a kind of musical freedom to play without structure and go totally loose (or slippery if you want). Hooker, Hendrix and Winter could do it… John Lee would quite often play a 13bar blues… some of the pickup bands he used would throw a comeplete tantrum LOL, so, it may be worth considering this as a musical form, which it is in some avantgard music. I suppose it is safe to stay within the musical guidelines and it does enable you to ‘safely’ play with anyone who knows the ‘music rules’ But hey, should blues be safe? It can be fun (and risky)to step outside of the box sometimes! 🙂

  • tony

    Reply Reply April 13, 2018

    Hey I got this and as a great fill use Steves Hendrix inspired lic that was shown not long ago. I really lkie this tune a lot . I have worked one it but somehow got lost somewhere. This lesson clairfied what I got confussed with. Who does not like this one anywho. late !

  • ChrisGSP

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Nice interpretation Griff, kudos for making it simple. I used to have a cassette tape that I think was called “The Jimi Hendrix Red House Project” and it contained SEVEN different versions of Red House – six by Jimi and one by someone else (maybe Johnny Winter, I’m not sure). The cassette was not a major-label release, I think it came from Guitar Player magazine or someplace like that. Sadly the cassette tape died a loooong time ago and I never got the chance to copy it, so it’s just a memory. I think I’ve currently got four different versions on various CDs and maybe another (different) one on an LP. And they all “seem” to start the same, but are just a little bit different. Jimi was slippery for sure, sometimes he just played from a different place that we mere mortals can only imagine.
    Cheers from Australia. Chris G.

  • Johnny

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Another great lesson Griff Thanks for what you do!
    great guitar by the way

  • Tim

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Great lesson Griff!!!
    Thanks for sharing this!!
    Tim H.

  • Wal

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    More than fifty years old, that number- good old ephemeral pop music, eh? Griff, a blinder as usual- thanks so much for all the help!

  • Jim

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Great lesson, Griff! I think I heard this tune played a couple of times and the intro caught my ear as being “off.” I wasn’t sure what they were attempting to play, but I’m sure this is the fix! Nice!

  • Steve

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Thanks Griff,
    Nicely put together. I really enjoyed this……now it’s time to have fingers and fret board meet.

  • Richard UK

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    I think I’m right in saying that Jimi used this intro to Red House on the version featured on ‘Hendrix in the West.’
    I used it myself in the pubs around Birmingham 25 years ago!

  • mike z.

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Griff , this is a cool lesson . I have heard Hendrix many times , once in person in Atlanta Pop Festival . It was very hard to see what he was doing . You give us a very playable way to do it . Thank you , Mike Z.

  • Tom Hopsicker

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Very timely. I’m learning this intro for a potential band. This is easier than what I was attempting to do. Thanks!

  • Kevin O'Sullivan

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Really well explained – and brilliantly played too!
    Just goes to show how Hendrix was a complete one off – never be another

  • cowboy

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    sweet explanation…thanks Griff…later.


  • Mark Wales uk

    Reply Reply April 12, 2018

    Cheers Griff
    For the lesson new guitar how many do you have 😎🎶

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