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Guitar Lessons with Paul Gilbert: String Bending

 
"I think the most exciting day in my guitar life so far is when I learned to bend the strings." - Paul Gilbert

String bending: you love to hear it, now it's time to learn how to do it right.  So grab your guitar and let Paul Gilbert show you how it's done!

Paul starts you off with a big bend on the G string. The secret?  Look to the Giant Finger…

What this means is to combine the strength of 3 fingers into 1 Giant Finger: 1 finger per fret, creating a "locked hand" which you can rotate with your wrist.  

string bending

If this hurts, don't worry. You definitely need calluses for this, and you'll build those the more you practice. One of the advantages of Paul Gilbert's electric guitar lessons is that they're designed to go in order, so by the time you reach this lesson in the curriculum you should already have some calluses built up. 

Paul plays a nice simple lick that will help put this in the context of playing music - that's the whole objective here, remember?

Watch Paul's Free Guitar Lessons

Note the difference between string bending and adding vibrato here. When string bending Paul bends upwards towards the sky, and when adding vibrato he bends the strings down to the floor. The reason is because you can push a string over the edge if you push in the wrong direction. So what to remember is to bend down for the lower strings, and bend upward for the higher strings. Keep those strings on the fretboard! 

This string bending technique is fundamental to a lot of what Paul teaches in his electric rock guitar lessons, so be sure to take the time to get it right.  Make sure the power is coming from the correct part of your hand, and to rotate your wrist the way Paul shows in the video.  

string bending

Oh yeah, and don't forget your rock face!

paul gilbert guitar lessons

Visit www.paulgilbertguitar.com for more info about the Online Rock Guitar School and fill out the form for more free guitar lessons! 

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