WELCOME to Learn Blues Guitar Now!


The site is dedicated to guitar education. If you are trying to find out about Pete Madsen's shows, cds, and  musical projects go to: petemadsenguitar.com

Beginning Guitar Class

January 2023

Six Wednesdays

Starting January 11


in person at:

Timbre Folk, 801 Bancroft, Berkeley, CA

price $150

This is a class designed for adults just starting out on guitar. We will learn chords, strumming patterns, songs, a few riffs and licks, songs and of course more songs. Students will receive handouts and mp3 files to listen to and practice with.  Some of the artists we will cover: Beatles, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Bob Marley, Ventures and more! All you need to participate is a guitar and willingness to learn.

  • how to tune the guitar
  • Six strumming patterns that will work for hundreds of songs
  • How to use a pick
  • Best way to learn chords!
  • How to practice
  • Good youtube instructional videos vs. BAD youtube instructional videos; there is a difference!

Bottleneck Slide Guitar
Open G tuning
Six Wednesdays
starting January 11
on-line (zoom)
Price: $175
As of this writing I will be finishing up a class on bottleneck slide in open D tuning. Time to move to open G which will provide even more opportunities for slide fun.
Po Boy - Bukka White

Fixin’ to Die -Bukka White

I’m Going Home - Charley Patton

Banty Rooster - Charley Patton

Someday Baby - Fred McDowell



Six Thursdays

Starting January 12


on-line (zoom)

price: $175

If you got the time…to learn some classic blues rock from that little band from Texas then this class if for you. Gibbons playing is deceptively simple. Yes, it’s steeped in blues, but there are a lot of tricks he had up his sleeve. Song will include:

Jesus Just Left Chicago

I Want to Thank You

Cheap Sunglasses

Waiting for the Bus

and more


Jamming the Blues*

Six Saturdays

starting January 7


in person at

Timbre Folk, 801 Bancroft, Berkeley, CA

price: $200

For guitar players who want to learn how play a 12 bar blues in various keys. We will take a basic 12 bar blues as our background format and use ideas based on scales, riffs and chord shapes to learn both rhythm and lead playing. This will be a lot of fun for those folks who have a little background in playing blues rhythms, but want to create lead lines that are rippin! 

*Participants are required to be vaccinated and boosted and masks can be worn if desired. Participants must also be comfortable being in an enclosed room with 5-8 other people for two hours.



Pete Madsen

In addition to performing, Pete is a well-respected guitar teacher and writes regularly for Acoustic Guitar Magazine. He has been teaching for over twenty five years. He has written seven books of guitar instruction, including A Guide to Acoustic Blues Guitar, A Guide to Bottleneck Slide Guitar, Improvisation and Variations for Fingerstyle Blues Guitar, and The CAGED System for Guitar. Most of these titles are available from his educational website: http://learnbluesguitarnow.com

In addition to the above styles Pete is well-versed in rock, electric blues, surf, funk, rockabilly and early jazz.


Space is limited to seven participants. Contact Pete to sign up:

buzzyfrets@yahoo.com Ph(510)708-8874



Forty songs and exercises to get your acoustic blues a kick start! Songs from Robert Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy, Mississippi John Hurt, Reverend Gary Davis and many more. Standard tuning, open g tuning, and open D tuning.




Update: January 2023

TrueFire channel is still live and growing. The latest lesson is “John Henry,” by Mississippi Fred McDowell in open D tuning (DADF#AD).



Check out my True Fire channel: access to lots of TABS, videos and acoustic blues guitar education. The focus is on fingerstyle blues. Learn to play:

• alternating bass

• monotonic bass

• slide guitar

• open tunings

• Lots and Lots of songs!

There over 200 videos and over a 150 TABS

Pete's Fingerstyle Blues Academy


I also teach private lessons at my studio in Berkeley. E-mail or call me for rates and availability.



Order the book: Play the Blues Like...

This book shows you how to play in the style of 12 different blues and blues-inspired artists, such as: Robert Johnson, Charley Patton, Skip James, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Memphis

Minnie, and many more. The book was written in conjunction with Acoustic Guitar magazine and published by Hal Leonard.



I'm a beginning guitar player and have been Pete's student for a few months and wanted to write him up here because I couldn't imagine having found a better teacher. I tried a few other people before going to Pete and the difference is amazing. While most guitar teachers know how to play, Pete also knows how to teach.
He's great at explaining things, great at showing technique, he sends an audio recording of each lesson to your email address (a HUGE help), and teaches you songs that you want to play. In addition to all this his rates are good and he's a cool, easy-going, guitar-loving guy…
--private student

looked forward to the class every week. Even though we were at different skill levels, Pete provided each of us with personal attention which inspired us all to practice. It was fun and rewarding to see myself (and all the other students) improve over the period of the class. Highly recommended!
Bob, student from class

Pete Madsen’s blues guitar classes at the Freight are just great! You learn a lot, and it is incredible fun. I honestly cannot get enough!
– student from class

i been playing for quite a while but not correct finger picking cant sink so this is nice and clear teaching i too think this is one of the best thanks bro
– youtube comment

Thanks for the good video on_ your blues lesson. You explained clearly and broke it down just enough keep up the blues lessons friend God bless

jo bro you helped me so much understand more about_ fingerpicking and syncopation. please keep on teaching man, your one of the best around…
--youtube comment

Took Pete’s Acoustic Blues class.......it was everything I hoped for. He really helped me wrap my head around the fingerpicking that had eluded me for years....thanks again!
I'm looking forward to studying with him again in the future.
-- student from class