Guitar Techniques - - Lesson: Blues -

[Bars 0- 4] We launch straight into a cav­al­cade of uni­son bends sound­ing not un­like another Jimmy (Jimi). Bend the lower note up to the pitch of the higher and add vi­brato, cre­at­ing a puls­ing os­cil­la­tion as the notes and over­tones move in and out of tun­ing. The ef­fect is suit­ably psy­che­delic and goes hand in hand with the popular fuzz-laden sounds of the pe­riod. [Bars 5- 8] Rapid pen­ta­tonic se­quences have gone on to form such a sig­nif­i­cant and highly ex­ploited sound in the world of rock that oc­ca­sion­ally licks such as th­ese have be­come almost ‘clichés’ of the genre and are con­sid­ered to be ‘pub­lic do­main’. Way back in the late ‘60s how­ever, Page’s play­ing was at the cut­ting edge of con­tem­po­rary gui­tar tech­nique. E Mi­nor Pen­ta­tonic is the or­der of the day here (E G A B D), along with much of the melodic ma­te­rial to follow. [Bars 9-12] Page’s BB King in­flu­ences are clear for all to see and hear with this col­lec­tion of two and three-fret bends based around E Blues scale (E G A Bb B D) with the root on the sec­ond string. As with all bend­ing ideas, en­sure you are suit­ably warmed up and make sure you al­lo­cate the majority of the lifting work­ing to a revo­lu­tion of the fore­arm and not with the fin­gers. Jimmy used quite light string gauges, so this might help, but Ste­vie Ray Vaughan was ca­pa­ble of coax­ing sim­i­lar sounds from his Her­culean set-up Strat, so good tech­nique is the or­der of the day and any­thing is pos­si­ble.

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