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Guitar Basics
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Advanced Jazz Guitar Concepts
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Jazz & More Guitar Lessons: Building Technique

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Tips and Techniques,
Technique Introduction.
Since I'm known for being able to
play fast, I get a lot of questions
regarding technique and how to build up
technique that is clean and accurate.
And this is something that a lot
of students are struggling with.
They're getting tense trying to play fast,
and if you get tense,
that's, you, you creating,
you're creating a bad habit, you know?
It's, you're playing with sound stiff and
unrelaxed and, and also sloppy.
So, it's important to approach these
fast tempos, playing fast tempos,
the right way.
Really, you know, being relaxed and
trying to focus on,
on what to play musically instead
of getting too caught up with
just being able to play physically
with you, with your right hand.
My approach to this subject is slightly
different from what you usually hear in
music education.
You know, the old way of doing it is like
starting really slow with an exercise,
playing it a little bit faster,
little bit faster, you know.
And my approach is actually to,
of course you had need
the first to have a basic technique and
I will give you some exercises as well.
But as soon as you have.
A decent technique going, you can actually
try to approach these really fast tempos.
But, the thing is instead of trying
to play really fast at once,
you're approaching these fast tempos from,
from another direction.
You're playing freely and slow and, and.
Like, surfing above the beat more or less,
and then after a while when you're getting
used to hear the tempo without getting
stressed and you can still play something
being relaxed, you start to add a few
faster elements, a few faster lines,
just short ones and
then back into these free and floating.
Tempo.
And then step by step you add a little bit
longer lines and, if you continue in doing
this you will soon be able to play at
these fast tempos still being relaxed and,
and, and it's not as difficult
as you think actually.
'Cause it's just about getting used to it.
Without being like.
Afraid of it and offended by it.
So in a sequence here of four lessons,
I'm gonna step by step teach you
how to do this, so stay tuned.
[MUSIC]
Tips and Techniques, Technique Part 1.
I will now show you
the first important steps.
How to build up a clean and
relaxed technique.
And of course, to be able to play,
you know, anything on,
on guitar, you need to work on your,
your right hand.
So like I explained before in the basic
department talking about picking,
I am, I am, and I'm, like doing like this.
When I'm holding the pick.
See it from the side.
Holding it really lightly and
then twisting it a little
bit in this direction.
Not much.
Not like that.
Not like that.
Not totally straight.
A little, little bit, like this.
Tipping it over.
And personally, I'm not touching,
some electric guitar players,
they're used to like resting their right
hand palm like this [SOUND] on the bridge.
I don't do that.
I have like a [SOUND]
little bit of a free hand.
I can move it like this.
[SOUND] Like a free wrist.
But I'm, I don't have that same,
you know bent wrists that you see some
of these gypsy guitar players do.
'Cause I like to play both acoustic and
electric and doing somewhere in between.
Where my wrist is free but
but it's not that bent.
So as you can see,
I'm holding it like this.
And [SOUND] really relaxed and
gripping it like really lightly.
[MUSIC]
And sometimes, I'm touching the strings,
but I'm not resting on the bridge.
So I don't, I don't really
have that much of a distance.
Sometimes, I'm touching here and
sometimes I'm above, but, but
not, not really resting.
So good exercises to start with, just to
get the basic technique going is to play.
[MUSIC]
Four notes,
our first you can just play a number of
notes on each string, [SOUND] alternating.
[SOUND] I'm starting down going up.
[MUSIC]
Doing like this.
[MUSIC]
And you,
when you feel comfortable and relaxed.
[MUSIC]
You move change string.
[MUSIC]
You can practice to a metronome.
At first, [SOUND] you might just
do [SOUND] really slow like.
[SOUND] Try to play on time.
[SOUND]
Then after a while, you might be able to,
[SOUND] when you're relaxed and you're,
you're playing even eighth note like one.
[SOUND] Two.
[SOUND] Three.
[SOUND] Four.
[SOUND] Put the metronome like one, two,
three, four.
[SOUND]
Like that.
[MUSIC]
And after a while.
[SOUND]
Can start.
[SOUND]
Really playing.
You know,
[SOUND] increasing the tempo that way.
[SOUND] Still being just as relaxed.
And the next step would be to start,
like switching strings.
Maybe play four note on each,
four notes on each string.
[SOUND]
You can either you go.
[MUSIC]
Like that [SOUND] or
you, you might skip between
strings like first.
[SOUND] Third.
[SOUND] Second.
[SOUND] Fourth.
[SOUND] Third.
[SOUND] Fifth.
[SOUND] Fourth.
[SOUND] Sixth and the opposite.
[MUSIC]
Then you can do random like.
[MUSIC]
Go between the first and sixth and it,
second and fifth.
[MUSIC]
Practicing, you know, the string skipping,
'cause that's really difficult to be,
to be relaxed and clean doing that and.
[SOUND] And of course, you can [SOUND]
do like a tremble on one string,
as well really fast, if you like to.
It's a good exercise.
So, so when you got some of that down,
so you at least can use a pick and
you do, do it fairly, it relaxed
without getting tense here, or here.
Then you can start apply it and
you're playing songs, play playing music.
And the traditional way of learning is
like starting a, improvising over a song.
Starting at a really slow tempo and
then step by step, doing it faster.
But I have another approach, 'cause
a lot of people, on the way of playing,
getting, doing it faster,
they get stiff and they get tense.
And they will never be able to
get to these really fast tempos
;cause they have too much respect for
it, and they, and
they get tense as soon as
they gonna start playing it.
So my advice is to actually,
pretty soon, you know,
getting used to hearing and
trying to play over fast tempo.
But here's the key to it.
Instead of trying to play
something really fast,
you're just like kinda surfing
on top of this fast tempo.
Playing a, a free melody,
you can have a melodic ID or melod,
rhythmic motif,
a melodic motif that can move around.
So I will if we have a twel,
like a minor blues.
[SOUND] G minor for four barres.
[SOUND] C minor for four barres.
[SOUND] G minor for four barres or
two barres, I'm sorry.
[SOUND] Then [SOUND] one barre E flat 7.
[SOUND] One barre D7.
[SOUND] Two barres of G minor or one
[SOUND] barre of G minor [SOUND] and D7.
[SOUND] One barre leading back.
I will show you how this might sound,
you know,
approaching a fast tempo
from this direction.
Starting with just free melodies.
Rebuttal on top of the tempo.
Then it's the melodic and rhythmic motifs.
And then maybe just playing
one note on one string.
[SOUND] Playing eighth notes.
If the tempo is [SOUND] one, [SOUND] two.
Maybe just stay on one note.
[SOUND] Then change to another
note on another string.
I will demonstrate it now, so
you will grasp this concept.
Here we go.
[MUSIC]
As you hear, the tempo's really fast.
So I start slowly.
[MUSIC]
A rhythmic idea.
[MUSIC]
That maybe.
[MUSIC]
Rhythm.
[MUSIC]
Eight notes.
[MUSIC]
Changing string.
[MUSIC]
Rhythmic.
[MUSIC]
And by doing this, you will start feeling
comfortable with the tempo,
you won't be afraid of the tempo.
You can show to yourself that you
can still play some beautiful and
something kinda simplified.
Still with that tempo going on in the
background without making you stress and
then you can start doing some of
these pick, picking exercises.
Just doing the eighth notes,
playing trying to be relaxed on one note,
maybe change strings.
Do a little string skipping up and down.
Just to, to get used to you know,
switching strings.
And then that's actually the,
then you have the tempo within you,
even those fast eighth notes.
And, and during the next lesson, I will
show you how to take it to the next level
and start playing some lines,
really short lines using eighth note and,
and still keep this kind of
free floating field to it.
So, stay tuned for the next lesson and
it would be great to see you
upload a video doing this.
If this is you first time,
you ever try these fast tempos before or
you tried them and
got really stiff and sloppy.
It would be nice to hear you do a take,
you know, this way, trying make,
keep it really simple and send in
the video and I will review it for you and
give you feedback.
So thank you.
[MUSIC]
Tricks and Techniques, Technique Part 2.
Before moving on and watching this lesson,
I'll recommend you to really shake out
the first lesson and technique number one
to make sure you got the basics down and
you, you understand my concept.
And you can do the first exercise in a
relaxed way before moving on to this one.
The first exercise I was showing
you during the last video was,
is playing like with open strings.
[MUSIC]
And trying to like get it even and
relaxed.
[SOUND] Right hand for
picking, like moving strings.
Now we can actually add, this,
you can do this with a scale, but
you can also do it with the same
fingering, like just a random.
[MUSIC]
Four note per string.
You can do,
if you start here for instance.
F, A flat to G flat, A flat,
that kind of fingering.
Then you do the same
thing on the next string.
[MUSIC]
So.
[MUSIC]
Then you.
[MUSIC]
You can go back.
So you start really slowly.
[MUSIC]
Maybe practicing with a metronome.
[MUSIC]
So you get, and
now I feel for
your eight notes you can actually do it.
Put the metronome on two and four as well.
One, two, three, four.
[MUSIC]
Do it,
try to get a little swing feel to it.
[MUSIC]
And you can start moving around.
[MUSIC]
On
[MUSIC]
Any fret, and then you can go,
start going in between.
[MUSIC]
Skipping
like strings that's a really
good exercise, as well.
[MUSIC]
Like that.
Just don't do this for too long.
So your fingers will get stuck in these,
you know, fingerings.
This is more like a technique exercise to
synchronize your left hand with your right
hand, and
make you able to do it in a relaxed way.
You can also do it with a scale,
for instance.
[MUSIC]
A major scale, G major.
[MUSIC]
But then the fingering will,
will be differently of course for
each, each string.
[MUSIC]
Or G minor.
[MUSIC]
Want to do like.
[MUSIC]
Like that.
So you can choose like any, any scale to,
to work to work on this thing, but
it's a really good exercise like
combining the right hand being relaxed,
being able to pick really clean and
without getting tense.
So, let's go back to the song
to this minor blues.
We're gonna work a little bit
to continue on my concept like
trying to play a faster a tempos,
trying to get used to it, but
without playing really
fast stuff at first,
just floating on top of the beat
playing melodies using melodic ideas.
And then step by step adding
some faster lines, so
during the first performance we
were playing totally like roboto.
Using some rhythmic melodic ideas and
then starting doing eighth notes.
[MUSIC]
On one string, on one note.
So now the next step is, is to play
a little bit of eight notes, like a little
run of eight notes just before, maybe we
start one, two, one, two, three, four.
[MUSIC]
Just a little run.
A couple of eighth note leading
into the one of the next bar,
and we'll see how it sounds.
I would try it play along
with the backing track.
See if you get this.
Here we go.
>> One, two, one.
[MUSIC]
Just a line of eight notes
leading into next bar.
[MUSIC]
Rhythmic idea.
[MUSIC]
A short line of eighth notes.
[MUSIC]
You can even use the pentatonic.
[MUSIC].
[MUSIC]
Repeat the same line.
[MUSIC]
So now you notice that I'm starting to
add at least a few eighth notes, maybe,
one, two, three, four, one, two,
three, four, one, two, three, four.
[MUSIC]
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,
eight, and then.
[MUSIC]
Like one, two, three, four, one, two,
three, four, one, two, three, four.
[MUSIC]
And end on the one, and
go back to this floating feel.
[MUSIC]
Just adding a,
a short elements of eighth notes.
So send in a video doing this,
and I will watch it for you,
making sure that you're staying relaxed,
and staying clean you know,
without hitting other strings,
or, or making it sound sloppy.
You can always, also practice
this with just a metronome, or
without the metronome, and just like
I'm doing now playing, like, acappella.
Just pure solo guitar, and then you
will hear everything, every mistake.
This is a really good way of practicing,
and
it will also help you how to
outline the chords in a good way.
So looking forward watching your videos.
[MUSIC]
Tricks and Techniques, Technique Part 3.
All right.
It's time for
the third breakdown of my concept how
to play at fast tempos
still being relaxed.
And building up a good,
solid, clean technique.
Remember it's important to record
yourself while are you playing,
even if you don't wanna
send in video to this site.
Maybe you can record like some audio and
listen back to it.
Hm, a really good way is also
practicing without backing track,
then you will be like completely naked,
you will hear every mistake.
'Cause we don't want you to get tense.
And the, the moment you will start to
getting tense it, it won't sound relaxed
and it, and you might like hit on the,
on the other, the other strings like
unintentionally or your tone might
you know start to get, sounding very.
Like, like this.
Very harsh.
Instead of the soft, soft.
[MUSIC]
Relaxed attack.
[MUSIC]
It might start,
starting to sound like that.
So remember to stay relaxed.
Another thing I'm using
all the time when picking.
You know, it's, when I can, I don't do
this alternate up and down all the time.
When I can, I actually use some sweeps.
And sweeps means that
you let the pick fall.
If you have a number of notes on
a number of strings you can actually let
the pick fall like this.
[MUSIC]
Instead of doing.
[MUSIC]
But
this will be much more
accurate than alternating.
So you can start another exercise.
That's pretty good.
Playing.
[MUSIC]
Starting on the fourth string.
Letting the pick fall.
Fourth, third, second, first, downstroke.
Then up.
[MUSIC]
Down, down, down, down, up.
[MUSIC]
Down, down, down, down, up.
[MUSIC]
Up, up, up, up,
then you're turning around.
And you can do,
starting on the fifth string.
[MUSIC]
And
so on,
you can practice this to a metronome.
And the sixth.
[MUSIC]
The third.
[MUSIC]
And after a while.
[MUSIC]
You can do it really fast, like this.
[MUSIC]
But
it's important to practice
it slowly as well.
So you can do it very even.
Even at, at these lower tempos.
The next step is to coordinate
these right hand mov, movements
[MUSIC]
With the left hand.
So you can put on like a triad.
An E flat triad.
G, B flat, E flat and G.
Fifth on the fourth string 5th
position on the third string,
3rd position on the fourth string.
Fourth position on the third string.
Third position.
And you start slowly with a metronome.
One, two, three, four.
Down, down, down, down, up,
up, up, up, down, down, down,
down, up, up, up, up,
down, down, down, down, up.
Now you can go back down if you like.
[MUSIC]
Trying to be relaxed.
Then you can do, you know, faster.
[MUSIC]
Or even faster.
Like.
[MUSIC]
And, and go on like that.
It's a really good exercise.
You can use another shape, another form.
[MUSIC]
Where the, where the fingering is,
is easier like.
[MUSIC]
C, F sharp, B, and E flat.
[MUSIC]
Can actually move it around.
[MUSIC]
Like this.
[MUSIC]
Move it three frets up and down at a time.
[MUSIC]
It's a good exercise as well.
So you don't have to
alternate all the time.
Sometimes when you have like a shape or.
[MUSIC]
A fingering where you can play several
down strokes in a row, it's easier
to do that instead of alternating.
And the same goes for going down.
[MUSIC]
So let's get back to the song.
And I'm gonna now.
[MUSIC]
Play over this backing track one
more time.
And now I'm gonna try to play eighth
note lines that are slightly longer.
'Cause first we really started freely,
and then we added just a couple
of eighth notes on one string.
Then the next thing will be to play like,
not even a full bar.
Just a short line of eighth notes
leading into the one of the next bar.
And now I'm actually, now I'm feeling
comfortable and relaxed with the tempo so
now I'm gonna try to play a little
slightly longer lines actually.
And a good way of mm practicing is
to sing along while you're playing.
'Cause then your lines, you know,
you really play what you hear, and
your lines won't get too long
either because you have to breathe.
So first I will just play a little,
and then I will sing.
And then I will take off the backing
track, and I will practice without it.
So here we go.
[MUSIC]
Stay rely, relaxed
[MUSIC]
Melodic idea.
[MUSIC]
And so on.
Now I was able, now at this point I'm so
comfortable with the tempo so
I can both play slowly and
when I want I can play longer lines.
Of course you need to have
the knowledge of, of, of harmony.
And, like,
being able to hear these melodies.
But let me show you, like,
a jazz line that you can practice.
In case that you don't have
the vocabular for, vocabulary for it.
[MUSIC].
[MUSIC]
Like this.
[MUSIC]
C.
Of course,
you can learn all these devices.
And everything else within
the other lessons, of course.
'Cause I, I've tried to cover how
to build up a good jazz vocabulary.
But here's a line for you to work on.
If you wanna work on this song.
[MUSIC]
Starting on C, C.
[MUSIC]
Chrommatic passing tone.
[MUSIC]
C, C sharp or B.
[MUSIC]
B flat, A, G, F, C,
D, C, chromatic passing tone.
B, B flat, A, G, F and E.
[MUSIC]
Now starting down,
up, down, up, down, up, down, up,
down, up, down, up, down, up, down.
Use alternating.
[MUSIC]
So let me show you can you can use
this line over this song
to use as an exercise.
[MUSIC]
The same line.
[MUSIC]
Transposing to C minor.
[MUSIC]
One octave up.
[MUSIC]
So also remember to keep your
technique clean and relaxed.
Send in a video for each and
every one of these lessons.
And I will make sure that it looks
good and you don't get tense.
And it sounds clean and relaxed.
The last step when you,
when you're at this point.
You can play a relaxed at these fast
tempos doing eighth notes mainly, or
like at least a few bars of eighth notes,
mixing it up with these harmonic ideas and
that you might be able to sing
along a little bit as you're in control
of what you doing, what you're doing.
Then you can actually play
without any backing track.
Try to do it like this.
One, two, let it go.
[MUSIC]