Guitar Techniques - - Guitar Techniques -

TASTES VARY when it comes to what we all like in a lead gui­tarist. Putting jazz and coun­try to one side for a mo­ment (I’ll re­turn to th­ese another time), opin­ion is di­vided be­tween ‘feel’ play­ers and out-and-out tech­ni­cians. Many years ago when I was edit­ing our sis­ter mag­a­zine, Gui­tarist, a common let­ters page de­bate was ex­actly that - feel or speed - with heated ex­changes of­ten go­ing on for months. Usu­ally the pro­tag­o­nists sat firmly in the blues (feel) and rock (tech­nique) cor­ners. Well, to me there’s al­ways been a mid­dle ground: mod­ern rock gui­tarists that pos­sess all the chops and yet have a feel to die for. I can eas­ily reel off Randy Rhoads, Michael Schenker, George Lynch, Ritchie Kotzen, Andy Tim­mons and of course Joe Sa­tri­ani. But there are plenty more whose rock sen­si­bil­i­ties are im­bued with real feel. So we thought we’d give you the chance to get some fire into your fin­gers with some licks that com­bine all we love in the best elec­tric blues, with that won­der­ful added el­e­ment of flash. And, just oc­ca­sion­ally, who wouldn’t like a bit of dig­i­tal dex­ter­ity to turn a head or two? Another thing about th­ese rock play­ers is that they of­ten come out with off-the-wall notes that re­ally prick up the ear. I re­mem­ber hear­ing Steve Lukather’s solo in Rosanna for the first time, and couldn’t for the life of me find where some of the notes were on my fret­board - they cer­tainly weren’t among my hack­neyed shapes, so it was a great lift when I did fi­nally work out what Luke was do­ing. We’ve en­listed the help of Ja­cob Quist­gaard (cur­rently on tour with Bryan Ferry) to come up with 10 great ex­am­ples for you. His list of play­ers goes from hot blues (SRV) to full metal jacket (YJM) but each one shares the same char­ac­ter­is­tics of spice and feel. And re­mem­ber, you don’t have to play the licks at full tilt, even though Ja­cob has done so in or­der to let you hear how great they sound played fast. Learn the licks from the tab at what­ever speed is com­fort­able - you can al­ways run them through your prac­tice rou­tine with the metronome to notch the BPM up a few beats each day. Do en­joy them - and I’ll see you next month.

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