Best Blues Acoustic Guitar

The Best Blues Acoustic Guitar (Top 6 in Review)

The best blues acoustic guitar is not always the one with the most expensive price tag. In fact, some of the best guitars are quite affordable for those who know where and what to look for. 

Playing a guitar is not as easy as it looks. It takes years of practice to get good at it, and even then you can always improve your skills.

Most people think that they have to spend a lot of money in order to get an instrument that will provide them with great sound and playability. This simply isn’t true! There are many quality instruments available on the market today at very reasonable prices, even if you only have a small budget.

It just takes some research and careful consideration before making your purchase decision in order to find something that meets all of your needs while still being within your price range.

The best way to learn how to play the blues is by listening to other people who are great at playing them. 

Best Blues Acoustic Guitar

We’ve done all of this work for you so that you can easily find what it is that you need instead of having to go through thousands upon thousands of reviews trying to figure out which ones would be right for you personally without having ever tried them first hand yourself! 

Best Overall Acoustic Guitar For The Blues 

Martin Guitar 000-15M StreetMaster

The first on our list for best blues acoustic guitar is from Martin. The 000-15M StreetMaster acoustic guitar has a mahogany construction that delivers rich and lively sound with beautiful tonal complexity. This is perfect for those who love the blues!  

It is a popular choice for live performances because the larger body style adds volume. The entire design offers convenience through its simple dovetail neck joint, non scalloped X brace and standard taper neck, paired with an auditorium size body to offer maximum performance on stage.

Ripe, resonant tone. Elegance in simplicity. This acoustic guitar is simple elegance at its finest with a mesmerizing sound for pros and beginners alike. 

The neck is slim enough for wide stretches of chords on the treble strings or intricate runs on the bass side, but not too skinny to feel unwieldy—it feels perfectly balanced between your fingers and against your chest while you play.”

It also features an Auditorium body style, dovetail neck joint, non-scalloped X-brace and standard taper neck with 1 10/16″ nut width. This gives it the perfect blend of traditional sound and feel at home on the stage or around town.

Pros

Pros:

  • Smooth and great playability. 
  • Auditorium size body. 
  • Slim neck.
  • Handmade from the highest-quality mahogany.
  • Dovetail neck joint.
  • Nickel tuners and a distressed satin finish.

Cons

Cons: 

  • More on the expensive side.

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Best Budget Guitar For Playing The Blues 

Yamaha CSF1M VN Parlor Size Acoustic Guitar

Our best budget option is from Yamaha. The Yamaha CSF1M VN Acoustic Parlor Guitar is a smaller and lighter acoustic guitar designed to be even more comfortable than other models. 

With the shorter 600mm scale length, this reduces pressure on the fingers of those with small hands. The mahogany neck provides warmth in its tone while still giving clarity to notes, and thanks to the select mahogany back and sides it gives sustain that lasts long into playing sessions. 

This model also features an all-solid Sitka spruce top which delivers bright trebles as well as rich mids due to the weight of the body. These tones are perfect for those blues lovers out there. 

The guitar also features a solid spruce neck with rosewood ebony fingerboard.

One of the major differences between this guitar and a standard-sized acoustic is its lack of taper. And for that reason, some may find that it’s better for overall playability. 

Yamaha keeps the action low to match your fingers as you slide up and down the fingerboard with ease. It also comes with a hard gig bag which makes it even more appealing.  

Pros

Pros:

  • Affordable.
  • Available in natural, tobacco brown sunburst, translucent black, and crimson red burst. 
  • Feels and sounds like a full scale guitar. 
  • Full and rich tone. 
  • Includes a hard gig bag. 
  • Mahogany and spruce construction. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • Not a full scale guitar.

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Best Acoustic Guitar For Playing The Blues Under $600

Epiphone Hummingbird PRO Acoustic/Electric Guitar

Our choice for best option under $600 is the Hummingbird Pro by Epiphone. Epiphone is one of the world’s most trusted guitar brands.

The Hummingbird PRO Acoustic-Electric Guitar is great for Country, Rock, and Blues! With a built-in Fishman Sonitone sound hole pickup, the Hummingbird is great for both live and studio performances. 

This guitar also features such as an alder body fitted to a solid spruce top, 12″ cutaway, mahogany back and sides. It’s very pleasing to the eye! 

The “D” profile neck and 22-fret rosewood fingerboard make the Hummingbird PRO more comfortable than ever. This gives you the ability to do those blues-style licks that you have been wanting to play. 

The maple body provides underlying sustain and punchy overtones, while the spruce top helps project voice and rich harmonics. 

Pros

Pros:

  • Strung with D’Addario light strings. 
  • Easy on the hands. 
  • Acoustic-Electric capabilities. 
  • Bright and clean tone. 
  • Solid spruce top and mahogany neck and sides. 
  • Beautiful finish. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • Action may need to be adjusted.

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Best Acoustic Guitar for Slide Blues 

Gretsch G9200 Roundneck Boxcar

If you are interested in playing slide blues on the acoustic guitar, then you may want to check out this model from Gretsch. 

The round neck is ideal for styles such as Mississippi Delta blues, country blues, and even ragtime blues. 

Playability on a guitar like this takes some real getting used to. You will have to work for the notes in a good way. 

For slide work, you will want to lower the nut and bridge so it becomes easier to move around. Doing this will allow you to play easily and fast. 

This model features a mahogany body with traditional-style F holes, a mahogany neck and body, and rosewood fingerboard. Semi-gloss exterior finish for easy maintenance of the beauty and tone of your instrument.

You will notice that the resonator has a “wood” sound to it. That’s due to the finish so please note you will not get the “metallic” bluesy sound from this. 

It’s loud but not over-baring which has to do with the wood. It’s nice, punchy, and warm. 

Pros

Pros:

  • Affordable price. 
  • Great for all types of Blues. 
  • Beautiful satin finish.
  • Thinner body than normal dreadnought. 
  • Holds alternate tunings well 
  • Traditional-style F holes for a rich sound. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • Will need to lower the nut and bridge for easier play.
  • Only comes with one strap pin. 

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Alternate Option 1

Blueridge 4 String Acoustic Guitar

If you are really interested in trying to play Delta Style Blues, then check out this 4 string acoustic guitar. 

The Blueridge 4 String Acoustic Guitar has a simple, solid style. The Sitka spruce top with scalloped braces offers you clean articulation and a crisp tone. The mahogany back and sides give it a robust sound and resonance. 

The slender mahogany neck creates fast action, easy to play strings, which guarantees long lasting stability for your guitar! Comes with pro-level padded bag from the Blueridge Logo ProTour line 12903 Tenor Gig Bag.

This acoustic guitar is designed to not just look and sound great, but made to be played. Whether it’s in a coffeehouse, on the next stage, or even just at home, this versatile 4-string guitar will fulfill your every desire for tone and playability which is perfect for that old style blues.  

The slim mahogany neck has fast action with easy fretting throughout all 22 frets.

With its perfect mix of materials and construction, the Blueridge 4 String Acoustic Guitar produces a rich, distinctive sound without any fuss. 

With a rosewood fingerboard, and silky-smooth playability; this guitar is an astounding instrument that will make you proud to pluck it out in front of your friends.

Pros

Pros:

  • Solid Stika spruce top. 
  • Slim mahogany neck. 
  • Easy and fast action. 
  • Comes with a padded gig bag. 
  • Great for alternate tunings. 
  • Beautiful rich tones. 

Cons

Cons:

  • May need a proper set up.
  • Niche in style that can be played. 

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Alternate Option 2  

Gretsch Rancher Falcon White 12-String Acoustic-Electric Guitar

If you are really feeling daring, then another option to play some blues could be this Gretsch 12 string Acoustic-Electric.

The Gretsch 12-string acoustic guitar features the same great tone and playability that have made our six string electric guitars so popular, but with a larger tonal range. 

This unique instrument combines a tightly grained spruce top with laminated maple back and sides to create an incomparably bright sound for any style of playing. 

The working musicians among you will love this instrument’s jumbo cutaway arched laminated maple tailpiece; it is easy to get your hand around the neck for quick execution of chord changes and expressive soloing.

With the Gretsch Rancher Falcon White 12-String Acoustic-Electric Guitar, you can have all of the magical qualities that only a 12-string guitar has to offer. Standing up and playing this guitar is comfortable because it’s shorter than dreadnoughts, but it doesn’t compromise on sound. 

The Laminated Maple arches around its body for exceptional projection with no feedback and a bright tone. Whether you’re sitting down or standing up like your favorite delta bluesman, this little gem is perfect for any occasion!

Pros

Pros:

  • Comfortable fit. 
  • Stylish. 
  • Nice warm tones. 
  • Great for experimenting with various styles of music. 
  • Laminated maple body top. 
  • Fishman pickups. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • May have trouble finding an inexpensive case due to it’s size. 

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Buyers Guide/Frequently Asked Questions 

We reviewed some pretty awesome guitars. You see there are lots of options out there and even some alternative options when it comes to acoustic guitars that you can play the blues on. 

Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions to better assist you with your purchasing decision. 

What are the characteristics of blues guitar?

Rhythm and tempo mixed with repetitive chord progressions, pentatonic scales and harmonic seventh variations are all key ingredients for blues guitar. 

If you are interested in learning more about practicing and playing scales, head on over to our post on scales right here: How to Practice Guitar Scales

The blues are a type of music that have a melancholy feel to them. It’s typically about life’s hard times. They’re also known for their distinctive sound and feel.

The blues usually tell stories of struggle in people’s lives with a distinct sound that is both sad and hopeful, like a light at the end of the tunnel.

Can you play the blues on an acoustic guitar?

People often ask if you can play the blues on an acoustic guitar. Some people say that you can, but others say that it’s not preferred. 

This question has been debated for decades – and probably will continue to be debated until time is up. Some people tell stories about how they heard a man playing the blues on an acoustic guitar at a small bar in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

Others will argue that it just cannot be done because most of the notes come from stringed instruments such as electric guitars or pianos. 

They argue that those notes can’t be played with your fingers without some sort of amplification device like speakers or headphones – which acoustics can’t do by themselves since there are no speakers attached to them. 

At the end of the day you can play any style of music on any instrument as long as you have the passion and the feel for it! 

Who are the best blues acoustic guitar players?

The best blues guitar players are the ones who can take a song and make it their own. They have to be able to add something special that makes people want to listen. 

When you think of the best blues guitarists, you may think of B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Joe Bonamassa. Johnny Winter, Elmore James, Bonnie Raitt, and Robert Johnson.   

How do I learn to play the blues on a guitar?

When it comes to playing the blues, there are techniques that you will want to make the primary focus so you can then build upon it. It’s all about creating a solid foundation! 

The Major Scale 

Blues is played mostly in a major scale. Most common chord progressions in the blues is the 1st, 4th, and 5th notes of the scale your playing in. 

If you are playing in the key of E, you will want to play E, A, & B chords as they make up the 1 4 5 of that key.  

Learn Timing and Rhythm 

Timing and rhythm….timing and rhythm. It’s so important and there are so many who never truly learn to master this. They go hand in hand. You must have one for the other to occur. 

Blues is counted in 4/4 time which means 4 beats per measure. So you will count 1 2 3 4 but the blues may have a different timing which gives it that “shuffle” feel. 

12 Bar Blues 

The foundation of playing the blues is what is called the 12 bar blues. It’s the 1 4 5 played in  particular sequence so it’s best to get familiar with it. You’ll hear it over and over again as it’s the first layer of many blues tunes. 

Blues Scale 

It’s vital to learn your notes in all the keys. The most common scale to play the blues is the blues scale. There is a flat 5th note in the scale and that gives it the unique quality and tone that works with blues style of music. 

Learning to play the blues on guitar can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be challenging. 

Check out some guitar tabs or find sheet music online for a song you like, then figure out which chords are being played. You will need to memorize these chords before you start playing so that you don’t get too frustrated. 

What are the different styles of blues?

There are many different styles of blues: Delta Blues, Rhythm and Blues, Country Blues, Chicago Blues. All these different forms share some common threads – they all feature improvised lyrics about life experiences with an emphasis on moments of sorrow.

Delta Blues is a genre of blues music that originated in the Mississippi Delta, or what the locals call “the delta.” The style became known as “Delta Blues” because this area was where it first emerged. 

What many people don’t know is that there are different types of Delta Blues– one being upbeat and happy while other styles have more sorrowful lyrics. This variety gives blues such a great history by displaying how each person lives through their own experiences and can relate to someone else’s.

The Country Blues sound typically includes acoustic guitars played slide style or fingerstyle; they may also be accompanied by harmonica (often called a harp), or electric guitar and drums. It can be sung solo but it is often done as a duet between an acoustic guitar player (sometimes on 12-string) and singer.

The Chicago Blues genre has its roots in the south, with artists like Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters carrying on the tradition of Delta blues. It is characterized by deep vocals and an unbroken line of rhythm played on a guitar. 

For many people, it provides a perfect escape from their everyday lives, with its gritty sound that’s capable of making your heart soar.

The typical Chicago Blues song features lyrics about “hard times” based on rural life experiences such as farming or mining

Conclusion 

As you can see from the several different types of acoustic guitars that we discussed and reviewed, the blues does not have to be exclusively for electric guitars. 

Yes blues is a style of guitar playing, but it’s also a feeling and emotion. It’s something that when paired with the perfect guitar for you…..that magic is created. 

We hope you enjoyed our article and perhaps got a kick out of the unique alternate options available. 

Enjoy this process and remember to always HAVE FUN! 

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