PHIL HILBORNE’S ONE-MINUTE LICK

Guitar Techniques - - Intro -

Phrases us­ing chro­matic ideas are pop­u­lar in a mul­ti­tude of styles. This idea is very sim­ple in con­cept, in that the chro­matic notes are ‘fill­ing in the gaps’ between the sta­ble chord tones. Nearly all the notes in this idea can be seen as be­ing com­mon ex­ten­sions of a Dom­i­nant 9th chord fin­ger­ing. For in­stance, in bar 1 we see the b7 (G) head­ing to the root (A) via the maj7 (G#); this is fol­lowed by the 9th (B), the 3rd (C#) via the b3 (C), and fi­nally the 5th (E) to the 6th/13th (F#) via the b13 (F). If you an­a­lyse the notes in re­la­tion to the fol­low­ing D7 chord you will see that it is the pretty much the same idea re­peated – only here us­ing the ex­ten­sions of a D9 chord. Keep it as met­ri­cal as pos­si­ble – it is easy to rush this type of legato lick. Also, try it with a va­ri­ety of sounds – it will work well played dirty, clean or any­thing in between. Licks like this were com­mon in Jimi Hen­drix’s play­ing – es­pe­cially in the lat­ter pe­riod of his ca­reer. Please note that my lick is de­lib­er­ately ex­er­cise-like, so aim for more va­ri­ety in your ver­sions – they will sound a lot bet­ter for it.

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