Stevie Ray Vaughan defined the sound of contemporary blues guitar – here are 20 techniques you can learn from the Stratocaster master

Larry Hulst/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
(Image credit: Larry Hulst/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

40 years on from his incredible debut release, Texas Flood, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s jaw-dropping recorded works and high-octane live shows continue to inspire guitarists to play blues

Four decades may have passed, but he can still be considered the archetypal ‘modern’ blues player. Rock ’n’ roll attitude and wicked tone are part and parcel of blues in the 2020s – qualities Stevie had in spades, and at a time when blues had fallen out of fashion. Some call him a pioneer. The bottom line is if you play electric blues today you’ll likely be tracing some of SRV’s line of influence. 

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Jon Bishop

Jon Bishop is a UK-based guitarist and freelance musician, and a longtime contributor to Guitar Techniques and Total Guitar. He's a graduate of the Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford and is touring and recording guitarist for British rock 'n' roll royalty Shakin’ Stevens.