50+ Legendary 12 Bar Blues Songs – The Essential List

12 bar blues songs

Written by: Cody

Updated: Jun 17, 2022

Blues music paved the way for many other genres of music we know and love. Although blues music has evolved over time, a fundamental chord progression called the 12 bar blues still lives on. 12 bar blues songs are comprised of 3 chords: the I, the IV, and the V and are played using a pattern that ultimately ends up being 12 bars long.

THE #1 WAY TO LEARN GUITAR SONGS FAST

Guitar Tricks is the perfect way to learn how to play guitar, whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player. They make it easy and fun to learn at your own pace, with step-by-step lessons and video tutorials. You’ll be playing your favorite songs in no time!

My Rating: ★★★★ ½

Get a 14-day free trial by using this link

✔ 14-day free trial
✔ 1,000+ song tutorials
✔ 11,000+ HD guitar lessons
✔ Beginner-friendly and easy to use interface

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Now, although it’s called the 12 bar blues and theoretically the pattern should be 12 bars long, there is room for variation. Like anything in music, you can use the principles of a certain concept and then alter it to your liking. You’ll see that in a few of the 12 bar blues songs below, they all more or less follow the standard 12 bar blues pattern although certain songs have variations that you might not expect.

You’ll also notice that in the list of 12 bar blues songs below, I’ve included 3 columns:

  1. Song title and Artist (linked to the song on Spotify)
  2. Chords/Tabs from Ultimate-Guitar
  3. Guitar Pro tabs / Songsterr tabs if GP was unavailable.

If you’d like to learn these songs faster I’d highly recommend checking out Guitar Pro. It is a great software that allows you to actually hear the tabs being played in real-time, thus giving you a better sense of rhythm.

I tried to incorporate songs from various artists into this list to give readers a little more selection. However, certain artists such as B.B King, Chuck Berry, and Little Richard were a few of the leaders in the creation of 12 bar blues songs. If you’re looking for more 12 bar blues songs be sure to check them out. Furthermore, if you’d rather have an officially tabbed book of blues songs, I’d recommend checking out these popular Amazon options:

Otherwise, check out the list of 50+ legendary 12 bar blues songs below and happy blues playing!

Song / ArtistUG Chords/TabsGuitar Pro Tabs
1. Pride and Joy – Stevie Ray VaughanChords / TabsGP Tabs
2. Rock and Roll – Led ZeppelinChords / TabsGP Tabs
3. Tush – ZZ TopChords / TabsGP Tabs
4. Johnny B. Goode – Chuck BerryChords / TabsGP Tabs
5. Going Up The Country – Canned HeatChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
6. Hound Dog – Elvis PresleyChords / TabsGP Tabs
7. Tutti Frutti – Little RichardChords / TabsGP Tabs
8. The Thrill is Gone – B.B. KingChords / TabsGP Tabs
9. Crossroads – Eric ClaptonChords / TabsGP Tabs
10. Ball and Biscuit – The White StripesChords / TabsGP Tabs
11. I Got You (I Feel Good) – James BrownChords / TabsGP Tabs
12. Rock Around the Clock – Bill Haley & His CometsChords / TabsGP Tabs
13.  Something Like Olivia – John MayerChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
14. Bring It On Home (Intro) – Led ZeppelinChords / TabsGP Tabs
15. Give Me One Reason – Tracy ChapmanChords / TabsGP Tabs
16. Red House – Jimi HendrixChords / TabsGP Tabs
17. I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man – Muddy WatersChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
18. Crosscut Saw – Albert KingChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
19. T-Bone Shuffle – T-Bone WalkerN/ASongsterr Tabs
20. Rock and Roll Music – The BeatlesChords / TabsGP Tabs
21. Move It On Over – George ThorogoodChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
22. Ice Cream Man – John Lee HookerChords / TabsGP Tabs
23. Sweet Home Chicago – Robert JohnsonChords / TabsGP Tabs
24. Viola Lee Blues – The Grateful DeadChords / TabsN/A
25. Still Haven’t found What I’m Lookin’ For – U2Chords / TabsGP Tabs
26. Call Me The Breeze – Lynyrd SkynyrdChords / TabsGP Tabs
27. The Jack – AC/DCChords / TabsGP Tabs
28. Rave On – Buddy HollyChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
29.Blues With a Feeling – Little WalterChords / TabsN/A
30. Dust My Broom – Elmore JamesChords / TabsN/A
31. Folsom Prison Blues – Johnny CashChords / TabsGP Tabs
32. Stuck In The Middle With You – Stealers WheelChords / TabsGP Tabs
33. Maybellene – Chuck BerryChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
34. Kansas City – Wilbert HarrisonChords / TabsN/A
35. Good Golly Miss Molly – Little RichardChords / TabsN/A
36. Boom Boom – John Lee HookerChords / TabsGP Tabs
37. Mustang Sally – Buddy GuyChords / TabsN/A
38. Going Down – Freddie KingChords / TabsN/A
39. Blue and Lonesome – The Rolling StonesChords / TabsN/A
40. Have You Ever Loved a Woman? – Derek & The DominosChords / TabsGP Tabs
41. Mary Had a Little Lamb – Stevie Ray VaughanChords / TabsGP Tabs
42. Strange Brew – CreamChords / TabsGP Tabs
43. Boogie Shoes – KC & The Sunshine BandChords / TabsN/A
44. I Can’t Quit You, Baby – Led ZeppelinChords / TabsGP Tabs
45. Baby What You Want Me To Do – Jimmy ReedChords / TabsN/A
46. Born Under A Bad Sign – Albert KingChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
47. Iceman – Albert CollinsChords / TabsN/A
48. Rock Me Baby – Johnny WinterChords / TabsSongsterr Tabs
49. All Your Love – John MayallChords / TabsN/A
50. Killing Floor – Howlin’ WolfChords / TabsGP Tabs
51. Ten Long Years – B.B. KingChords / TabsGP Tabs

12 Bar Blues Songs – In Summary

Hopefully, this list has given you a few ideas of 12 bar blues songs you can start learning. Once you play this progression a few times and get the hang of it, you’ll be able to very easily distinguish a 12 bar blues progression in a song. It’s a great chord progression that’s easy to play and has a ton of versatility options.

If you know of any other 12 bar blues songs that you think should have made the list, leave a comment below!

About Cody
Cody is the founder of Musician Tuts, a free tutorial hub for musicians. He has over 15 years of experience playing a variety of instruments and dabbling in audio engineering. He spends his days blogging, listening to Spotify, and playing music.

You May Also Like…

4 Comments

  1. Avatar

    What a great list! Thanks for putting this together.

    Reply
  2. Avatar

    The Wanderer … Dion. 12-bar blues with 8-bar bridge…

    Reply
  3. Avatar

    Move It on Over (Hank Williams), Long Gone Lonesome Blues (also Hank)

    Reply
  4. Avatar

    Herman’s Hermits “Something Tells me I’m into something good”

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.