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Rock Guitar Lessons: Scales - High Strings

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All right.
It's time for some scale licks on the two
highest strings.
These I'm gonna put in the key of A minor.
Play A minor chord to get the sound in
your head and again one of the first thing
we wanna do is to be able to visualize
the shapes of A minor on those two high
So, let's take a look, if we just start
with the A root note [SOUND] and
we play A minor scale all the way up on
one string.
I gotta count that bent note.
Bent notes are just as important, if not
more important than the fretted ones.
All right, and let's do the same thing on
the B string.
Now I'm gonna start on the same position,
I'm gonna start on not the root note but
this will, actually be the 5th.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
All right, and
I'm gonna go using the notes of A minor,
I'm gonna start there and
play through the scale on the B strings.
So it sounds like this.
All right,
so that's the basic core of our shape.
Now let's put it together in sixes, so I'm
gonna start on this note [SOUND] and
I'm gonna do ascending sixes, ascending is
going up, of course.
So it will sound like this.
That's six notes in A minor.
[SOUND] Starting on the fifth [SOUND].
All right, now the technique for this.
There's two things you can do.
We can either pick everything with
alternate picking,
starting with the down stroke.
[SOUND] Which is a great exercise.
That's really is a nice way to practice
your alternate picking.
But, I wanna give you an easier and
what I think is actually a more useful way
of playing this.
And that is, I'm gonna do it downstroke
and two hammer ons
So, I get a couple notes for free,
courtesy of my left hand.
I'm gonna pick the last three.
And the strokes are gonna be up, down, up.
So I'm gonna go down.
Now as you speed this up,
to me that has a smoother feel.
And players like Eddie Van Halen and
George Lynch have used this technique a
lot and it almost, when you hear it,
it almost sounds like they're doing
incredibly fast picking but there's that
little bit of smooth hammer ons,
to make it easier to play.
And I think sound, actually sound better
than if you picked everything,
sometimes if you pick everything it gets a
little bit harsh.
And sort of, sort of fussy and this is,
a little more graceful.
So, what I wanna do is I wanna put this
starting on each step of the A minor
scale, so, we're starting on the fifth.
From there we're gonna go to,
the next note, minor six,
and just keep going up the scale,
using notes out of A minor.
We'll print the rules,
we'll have a PDF for you can print out to
see those shapes.
It really helps to look at the shapes on
the fingerboard just to memorize how
they look.
That way you know exactly where to put
your fingers.
That'll help for this lick and
any other sequences you come up with
inside of A minor.
All right, so,
that's a full octave of A minor.
Let's do it super slow and with that
technique you're kind of hammering on,
the second and third notes.
So, let's do it in triplets.
So, it'll be like one, two, three, two,
two, three.
This tempo is awesome.
It's really slow and I could already feel
myself kinda rushing
because I'm so
used to doing those fast hammer ons.
And I think it's great to get used to
doing them slowly because it just
increases your accuracy and your ability
to really lock in the rhythm accurately.
So let's see how we do this.
We'll do it slow again.
I like this.
Three, four.
That's great.
Even if you played this a million times
and are expert at it, I think this slow
tempo's gonna teach you some things.
It's teaching me some things right now and
the next thing I wanna do, same thing.
This is really valuable practice but I
wanna make sure that that first note,
right there.
I just wanna make sure that's an upstroke.
Let's actually take that and
loop it a little bit just to make sure
we've got an upstroke there.
So, we're gonna go three, four.
Make sure that's an up,
first a down,
then up,
down, up.
All right.
Now, we're ready to put in the other
Up, down, up, down.
Up, down, up, down.
All right.
Now, let's speed this up a little bit.
If anything, I think it's actually gonna
get easier when we play it faster because
your hammer ons,
there it's almost easier to do them,
to get that rhythm going, the.
Somehow I can relax a little bit when it
gets to that slightly quicker tempo.
So let's try it at this tempo.
A hair slower, let's see.
Yeah, like that.
That's a good next place to go.
Let's go, three, four.
Let's go all the way up now.
Three, four.
Now, as I practice this, I'm finding it's
really useful to have my foot going
because I find that that downbeat and
I'm of course, doing the upstroke,
with the foot there.
The upstroke is happening with the foot
and it just helps me to lock that in,
to keep that beat going.
So, if you can,
try to get your left foot in there, bang
it away on the ground with your knee up.
And, let's see if we can do it like that.
Three, four.
All right.
We're really locked into this now.
So, let's try it a little quicker see what
One, two, three, four.
That's fantastic.
I'm just going to keep speeding it up,
just a, you know,
you take your time with this but I want to
see, I want give you an idea of how
it'll sound when we get it quicker after
you practice it, one, two, three, four.
And one more time.
One, two, three, four.
All right,
now, I wanna come up with an end for this
because ending kind of abruptly.
So the ending I'm gonna do, when I get to
this last one,
is I'm going to go, I ended with my pinky.
I'm gonna go down to my third finger, and
I'm going to bend like,
so I'm kind of doing a unison bend there.
Let me do it an octave lower so you can
it's sort of hard to hear those high
We'll do it like this.
So, I'm bending the same note that I just
using my giant finger,
three fingers together.
All right.
So, it'll be like.
Let's try it up an octave, three, four.
It's almost like a whammy bar technique
like [SOUND], but instead we do it with
our fingers.
All right,
let's see how that sounds all together,
one two three four.
that's a little nicer ending that puts a
period on the end of the sentence, one,
two, three, four.
Fantastic, one more time.
All right,
I think you're standing on top of the
volcano with that one.
That's a really exciting rock lick, really
fast 16th note triplets and
that's a great technique to learn your
minor scales on the top two strings.
I'd love to hear you play it.
Make sure you play it nice and quiet.
And play it loud.
See if you can go between the two.
And then try taking it all the way up.
that last one, if you can get that bend.
Nice and clean.
That will give you a nice ending for
your lick.
All right, so you're a scale master now,
congratulations these are some
really useful tools for playing fast
inside of scales.
Now, for playing slow,
we're gonna get to that soon but this will
get you burning through the licks.
All right, thank you.