WELCOME to Learn Blues Guitar Now!




2020 Addison St., Berkeley, CA

in person classes

The Beatles Guitar

Six Wednesdays

Starts March 13


In this class we will study and play the guitar parts of six Beatles songs. This is not a vocal class, but participants are welcome to sing along as we learn the guitar parts. Participants should be familiar with first position chords and barre chords. We'll work on the following songs:


Day Tripper

In My Life

Norwegian Wood

You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away

I Feel Fine

Here Comes the Sun


Fingerpicking the Blues II

Six Wednesdays

Beginning March 13


Do you love the playing of Robert Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy, Son House or Delta and Piedmont blues in general? Unlock the mystery of the right hand in blues fingerpicking. This class is designed for the beginning blues fingerpicker: you will learn about playing a constant bass with your thumb over a melody line played with your fingers. You do not need have to have taken Fingerpicking the Blues I to attend this class, but some familiarity with blues fingerpicking is helpful. Song list TBD.


To enroll in the above classes please contact the Freight and Salvage. 



Bottleneck Slide Guitar:

From Muddy Waters to Sylvester Weaver

Six Tuesdays beginning  March 19

7-8:30pm PST zoom invite required

Price: $175

The goal this class is get the novice slide player up to speed on the basics of bottleneck slide playing, and then work towards incorporating those skills into fingerpicking with an alternating bass. The class is designed for students who may have played around with slide but are still working on their technique, and want to incorporate slide into their fingerpicking. We will start with some beginning exercises and go on to play songs from Muddy Waters, Fred McDowell and others. We will end up with Sylvester Weaver’s “Guitar Rag,” which was one of the first recorded guitar instrumentals and used an alternating bass in open D tuning.


The Guitar of Freddie King

Six Thursdays beginning March 14

7-8:30pm PST zoom invite required

Price: $175

With the success of the single “Hideaway.” Freddie King went on to record 30 more instrumental guitar tunes in the early 1960s. These tunes are instrumental gold and a heck of a lot of fun to play. You will find tons of useful licks to add to your blues vocabulary. We will cover these tunes:


The Stumble

Just Pickin’

Heads Up




To sign up for on-line classes contact Pete: buzzyfrets@yahoo.com


Saturday Blues Guitar Jam Class
Six Saturdays starting March 16
Timbre Folk
801 Bancroft, Berkeley, CA 
Price: $200

This weekly class will focus on building the skills to jam with other musicians over mostly blues chord changes. In this particular session we will be drawing from material in my Freddie King on-line class. King's instrumental tunes provide a wealth of licks, phrases, and rhythms that should keep you inspired for a long time. Note: this is an electric guitar class; participants should have access to an electric guitar and a small amplifier, if possible. I can provide an amp if needed.
contact Pete: buzzyfrets@yahoo.com





Forty songs and exercises to give 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: February 2024

TrueFire channel is still live and growing. The latest lessons are Chump Man Blues by Blind Blake, and They're Red Hot by Robert Johnson.



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