In this lesson we’ll be looking at a couple of quick warmup exercises that uses all 4 fingers. We’ll start with a chromatic pattern and then look at a couple of variations. 4 finger patterns are a perfect way to get warmed up as well as become more accustom to using all 4 fingers more efficiently.
The aim with this guitar warmup exercise is to warmup your picking hand and fretboard hand & fingers. Once warmed up you can start to practice more complex ideas with less risk of strain or injury. When using alternate picking make sure that both hands are really in sync with each other. If you’re used to picking in a 3nps fashion then this will really be a test of your dexterity.Continue Reading
Welcome to episode 3 of Power Up! This time we’ll be looking at a simple picking lick. The idea is to repeat this slowly over and over to develop coordination between your fretboard hand and your picking hand.
Developing coordination with this odd time alternate picking idea across all 4 fingers on your fretboard hand will help not only with picking ideas like this but also many other aspects of your playing, from advanced chords to riffs and of course shred techniques.Continue Reading
Today we’re going to look at some arpeggios for seven string guitar. In this episode we’ll learn some of the basic triads across 7 strings and then in future episodes we will expand on these to form more complex chord arpeggios.
If you’re an extended range player you’re probably already curious as to how to expand your ability to include the 7th string. These 7 String Sweep Picking ideas will definitely test your playing and finger dexterity. Always remember to take these ideas slow at first, speed is always a by-product of control! Lets go!Continue Reading
Today we’re going to look at some ‘Tritone Substitutions’. So what is a Tritone and what is a Substitution?Continue Reading
Understanding the differences between the scales and modes can feel like a daunting task. What makes a scale Major or Minor? Why do we get different chords from different scales? Understanding the intervals which make up each scale or mode can help. One way to do this is to learn the scales across a single string so that you can more easily see the distances between notes.
In this post we’re going to look at 11 different scales/modes, all starting from the root note A. We’ll play these single string scales on the A string to keep things simple. Moving these patterns to other strings will give you different key centers as will moving the patterns up the fretboard. We’ll start by looking at all twelve intervals in relation to the note A:Continue Reading
In this episode of Power Up! we’re going to look at a simple tapping lick in B minor. This will help you to perfect the technique before moving on to more complex tapping ideas.
Tapping in B Minor – We’re going to tap with both hands rather than pulling off from the picking hand to the fret-board hand, although feel free to play it that way too. This will give us a slight “staccato” feel. Check out the video below:Continue Reading
Welcome! Today we’re going to look at a simple Legato lick to help ‘power-up’ our playing. The aim is to improve our dexterity, finger strength and stamina.
In traditional musical notation “Legato” means to play or sing notes smoothly transitioning from one to the next with no gaps in between. (The opposite of this would be Staccato, where you cut off each note and have a brief silence before the next note.Continue Reading
Writing (not Falling) In Reverse! In this lesson we’re going to look at some ways to add rhythms to a lead guitar part when the lead part was written first. We’ll use a lick that we’ve previously written in B phrygian to demonstrate and find inspiration to how this can work.
Most commonly you would write a rhythm track and song structure before exploring how melodies and solos can work over the given chords. Understanding how to reverse engineer these ideas will not only help writing a guitar solo, but it will help your guitar playing in many other ways too. If you can master this you’ll be a versatile band musician as well. If you’re anything like us you’ll always find times where you’ve written an incredible lead lick, solo or melody that then needs backing music to support it! Let’s get into it!Continue Reading
Lets talk about slides! Not the kind you get at the park because as everyone knows swings are way more fun. Today we’re talking about sliding technique.
Sliding involves plucking a note and then sliding your finger up, or down the fretboard to a new fret position, so for example we could play a G on the 5th fret D string and slide up one fret to the 6th, the note Ab.Continue Reading
Hello! Today we’re going to look at a few different ways you can add some extra interest to a solo, chord progression or riff by using a wah-wah pedal. The Wah is a truly classic pedal, however, even now, there’s still many reasons to have this formidable pedal in your effects arsenal!
There are various makes and models of ‘wah’ out there. The Dunlop ‘Crybaby’ is probably the best known. There’s also the Morley ‘Bad Horsie’, the Boss ‘V-wah’ and the Snarling Dogs ‘Fire Bawl’ (See cover image) to name just a few. I personally use an Ibanez ‘Weeping Demon’.
Let’s go through some examples of how the wah effect can be used, how it works and some examples of songs which use it.Continue Reading
Welcome to episode 2, if you missed episode 1 you can check it out here. In this part we will be combining string skipping with some tapping using our middle and ring fingers (T2 and T3).
We’ll be in the key of E minor and are going to learn 4 chords. We will play these using string skipping and tapping to create arpeggios in sequence to form a progression. Each pattern can be practiced individually until you get the hang of them and then we can link them together at the end.Continue Reading
Today we’re going to look at some basic string skipping drills to help improve your speed and precision. The string skipping technique, as the name suggests, involves skipping over one or more strings to the next.
For example you might be playing on the low E string and then skip the A string and move straight to the D string. Remember to practice these string skipping basics slowly until you have built up your ‘muscle memory’. In this lesson we will be focusing on string skipping whilst alternate picking.Continue Reading
In this lesson we’re going continue to build on our knowledge of music theory and learn how to use the Circle of Fifths to change keys.
Let’s take a simple chord progression and put it under the microscope. Analyzing an example like this using the circle of fifths will help you to write your own music and ideas using this concept. If you’ve started to learn about music theory the following progression might seem ‘wrong’:
E Major – D Major – G Major – D Major
This is because there is no Major key which contains all three of these chords. If you want to learn about which chords occur in each key check out this post.
If I play that progression E – D – G – D, it sounds like this:
Today we’re going to look at the ‘Circle of Fifths’. You may have come across the term before, or the ‘Circle of Fourths’, or just ‘The Circle’.
Check out the diagram below and then we’ll look at what it means and why its useful.
As you can see if we move clockwise in The Circle of Fifths we go up in fifths, e.g. C to G. If we move anti-clockwise we go up in fourths, e.g. C to F. The inner ring shows the relative minor key of each Major key. For example the relative minor to C Maj is Am. The relative minor of G Maj is Em etc.Continue Reading
Playing through a scale is a great way to warm up your fingers before going into an intense practice session or playing a gig. Today we’re going to look at a simple warmup sequence using the Mixolydian mode, the fifth mode of the Major scale.
You can play this warmup sequence across 6, 7 or 8 strings or extend it further if you have more.
Warming up is very important, especially if you are going to be playing fast, complex or intense riffs. The last thing you want is to strain the ligaments in your hand during practice. Warming up helps prevent repetitive strain injuries and the dreaded condition of carpal tunnel syndrome.Continue Reading
Tremolo picking involves picking the same note multiple times in a row, usually at least four. This technique originates from classical guitar and other stringed instruments. The idea was to create modulations in volume by finger picking a note multiple times with harder and softer plucking.
In rock and metal Tremolo Picking is more common to use the technique to maintain volume by giving each note less time to decay. It also provides more attack giving a harsher, more aggressive sound.Continue Reading