Friday, June 27, 2008

Wide Interval Fingerstyle Guitar Lick

This is a wide interval fingerstyle guitar lick. For a really great song using a similar yet more advanced application of this guitar technique check out Joe Satriani's "Baroque" from the Time Machine album.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A middle eastern influenced legato guitar lick

I've always loved music from the middle east. The droning E string in this lick is inspired by the sounds of middle eastern stringed instruments. I haven't really thought of this piece in terms of scales but its natural notes with the exception of the G#. To my ears is has a part harmonic minor part phrygian mode feel. I'll let the more theoretical players argue that out.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Double Picking Guitar Lick

This guitar lick demonstrates double picking applied to a chord progression in Dmin. The chords used are Dmin, F, C and Bb. The lick is demonstrated in the context of a larger lick. The lick is all alternate picked 16th notes. This lick can be challenging to get at faster tempo. The video example was frankly a bit sloppy on my part and you really should strive to practice this strictly with a metronome. Depending on your preferences a looser feel during the song might be cool but when working on your technique try to keep strict time.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

All In One Exercise

This is a cool sounding guitar exercise that helps with changing chords, the one finger per fret concept and string skipping all at once.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Drop D Twang Guitar

Here's a twangy little modern country/rock guitar lick in Drop D.

Monday, June 16, 2008

E Phrygian Mode / Scale Guitar Lick

Jesse CookImage via WikipediaI was watching a great Jesse Cook DVD from a live concert in Montreal and was inspired to try a lick with a Spanish/ Middle Eastern vibe but that still had a rock feel. This is what I came up with. It's based around the E Phrygian Mode which composed of the same the notes of the C Major scale but when played from E to E the intervallic structure is different. The tab is a rough estimate of the rhythm so listen to the video example an experiment with the same scale to come up with your own licks.

Zemanta Pixie

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Fast Bebop Style Jazz Guitar Lick

This is a faster bebop style Jazz Guitar Lick based loosely around the Eb Major Scale. I came up with this while I was looking at a transcription of a Pat Martino's version of "Just Friends" and trying to learn some phrases from that. While I was practicing that phrase this lick just kinda popped into my head. I didn't really analyze the harmony but I thought the chords in the tab sounded cool over this line. I think this lick works well in a variety of tempos so if you can't quite play it fast just work on getting a slower version in time.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Drop D Guitar Riff triplets

Here is a beginner guitar riff in Drop D ( tuned down a half step also)that is based on a repeating triplet sequence. Licks like this become more interesting on guitar when you start to get a bit more advanced rhythmically by incorporating 16th notes and rests. Some great examples of a very rhythmically interesting riffs can be found in the guitar work of Pantera by the late Dimebag Darrell. Pantera was a very rhythmically tight band. The bass, drums and guitar all embraced some complex rhythms and time changes to make their music as powerful and compelling as their songs lyrics. For more drop D riffs check out Black Label Society headed by the great Zakk Wylde. To my ears Black Label is like a modern day Black Sabbath on many of their slower riff based songs. Some great metal grooves here and some outstanding music by the whole band.

So try to get your fingers and head around this simple riff and then check out some more advanced material. One thing I find helpful is to hit a drum machine or drum backing track and try to come up with grooves that match the track. Drop D tuning is great for this because is makes it easier to turn the guitar into a simpler rhythmic instrument because of the layout the chord shapes take in the new tuning. You can play a lot with just one finger so this frees up your mind to concentrate on rhythm.

Another interesting exercise is to grab a drum rhythm book and assign each note value a note of chord. Start with maybe one or two notes and play the rhythms as written on the staff. This even works well if your not great at standard notation because you only need learn the rhythmic values of the notes.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Blues Guitar Lick

A short blues guitar lick to kick off your weekend. Listen to the video to help pick out the phrasing as the tab is just a basic guide. Any questions let me know.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Blues Guitar LIck in A

A blues guitar lick in A with the addition of the major third which is F#. The first lick in the video is close to the tab. The second is a variation that involves bending the B up a full step instead of a 3/4 bend and holding it longer. The variation also incorporates a hammer on and pull off and different phrasing on the last few notes.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Funk Guitar Lick

A basic funk guitar riff for today. I wrote the lick in D but transposed it to the key of A for this example. Note that in the video the rhythm on the last bar is different from the tab in that the first note is a quarter note and the last note is a dotted half as opposed to two half notes in the tab and notation provided.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Mixing Major and Minor Pentatonic Scales

Today's guitar lick incorporates notes from both the major and minor pentatonic scale to help get away from a purely minor pentatonic feel and add a little variety to your blues guitar solos and licks. The video and tab should be pretty easy to follow but let me know if you have any questions or comments. Cheers.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Pre Bend and Release Blues Guitar Lick

Today's lick and variation involve a technique called "Pre-bend and Release". This technique involves bending a note up to the desired pitch before it is struck. Then once the note is struck and held for the intended duration it is released to another pitch. A famous example of this is the guitar solo in "Smoke on the Water" by Ritchie Blackmore of Deep Purple. In this song the guitarist employs a pre bend and release technique and picks the string on its release several times during a slow rhythmic descent in pitch.

In our example the initial bent note is held for a whole bar and then gradually released. In the second variation I pick the note once it is released. Follow the tab for the note sequence but use your ears to decipher the rhythm as with most blues transcriptions tab is only a rough outline of the final musical example.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Good news, bad news and a blues guitar solo

Bad news first. I had a really frustrating weekend battling computer issues and problems on my lessons site so no new licks for today or yesterday. Good news is I've
started getting things sorted out and have some great (imho) guitar licks and lessons forthcoming on the site. In lieu of a proper lick and to alleviate a combination of boredom and frustration on my part I recorded a little blues guitar solo improv jam I thought I'd share. Cheers.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Legato Rock Guitar Lick

A basic rock guitar lick using legato - especially slides played solely on the B string. In the video examples I use a lot of slides and hammer on and pull offs to decrease the amount I pick in this lick. This does two main things. One, the legato technique allows you to play musical passages smoother and create more flowing melodic lines. Two, it allows you to more easily play guitar licks faster than you may be able to pick them - especially at a beginner or intermediate level.

I love the tone that long flowing legato lines can produce and this is just a brief basic example. For real masters of this technique I would recommend listening and learning as much as you can from the music of Joe Satriani and Steve Vai.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Rock Guitar Lick Neo Classical

This is a rock guitar lick based on the A Minor Scale with the inclusion of the A# note. It can make a good legato exercise in your guitar practice schedule. Give it a try with a metronome for a couple minutes a day and see what you think.

For some more advanced study material check out the awesome guitar madness of Yngwie Malmsteen or Tony MacAlpine ( who is now in Steve Vai's band). Cheers.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Alternate Picking Minor Scale Guitar Lick

Today's lick is really more of a guitar exercise than a lick. It is meant to help alternate picking 16th notes on more than one string. It is based on the A Minor Scale. Start slowly with a metronome or drum machine and work up to a faster tempo gradually over several practice sessions. Try this lick a few minutes everyday and I think you will notice more stamina and speed in your playing. The last section is sextuplets which are 6 notes per beat. I played this section legato but for a challenge alternate pick that as well. Cheers.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Guitar Lick in the Style of Metallica

Today's guitar lick is in the style of early Metallica. Think "Master of Puppets" era playing by Kirk Hammett. This is an intermediate level lick. If this is too easy try tackling some of Kirk Hammett's faster licks on "Creeping Death" or "Dyer's Eve" for a real challenge.

This lick ends with an ascending unison bend sequence which is similar to many Metallica licks. The fast legato lick is based on the E Minor Pentatonic Scale.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Funk Guitar Lick

Here's a funk guitar lick to kick off June. The video demonstrates the guitar lick at regular tempo and two slower tempos. The tab is just a guide so use your ears to get the rhythm. Like all licks here play around with them and see what you can create using these ideas as a springboard for your own licks.