Yngwie Malmsteen Harmonic Minor Run

Technique: Alternate Picking
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Lesson Name:
Yngwie Malmsteen Harmonic Minor Run

Yngwie Malmsteen is widely considered to be the founder of neoclassical shred guitar. He is known for both his superb compositional abilities as well as his superior technique and application of scales and modes into his playing. In this lesson you will learn how to play a run from one of his most popular songs, ”Far Beyond the Sun”. This run is in the key of F# Harmonic Minor, and involves a lot of alternate picking as well as left hand shifting.

Ex 1: This is the first part of the run. Everything is alternate picked. Fret with your pinky the 21st fret of the 1st string, the 19th fret with your middle finger, and the 17th fret with your index. After playing the 17th fret, shift your hand down 1 fret and play the 16th fret with your index finger. Then play the 19th fret with your pinky, 17th fret with your middle finger, and 16th with your index. Shift 2 frets down and play the 14th fret with your index, 17th with your pinky, 16th with your ring, and 14th with your index. End on the 13th fret by shifting your index finger down 1 fret.

Ex 2: For the second part of the run, you will start with your pinky on the 16th fret 1st string, then play the 14th fret with your middle finger and the 13th fret with your index. Shift your left hand down 1 fret and play the 15th fret of the 2nd string with your pinky, the 14th fret with your ring, and the 12th fret with your index. Shift another 2 frets down, and play the 10th fret of the 2nd string with your index, the 13th fret of the 3rd string with your pinky, the 11th fret with your middle, and the 10th fret with your index. Shift down 1 more fret and play the 12th fret of the 4th string with your pinky, 11th fret with your ring, and 9th fret with your index. Repeat for the fifth string, and end on the 8th fret by shifting down 1 fret.

Final Run: This is what the final run looks like up to speed after combining both parts.


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Paul Gilbert String Skipping Sequence #1

Technique: String Skipping
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Lesson Name:
Paul Gilbert String Skipping Sequence

String-skipping is exactly what it sounds like- the act of jumping, or ”skipping” over string(s); from one note on one string to another on a nonconsecutive string. This technique can come in handy for guitar licks with a high range of notes, such as those that jump from one octave to the next.
Among his many other impressive abilities, Paul Gilbert is known for his flawless string skipping technique. In this lesson you will learn the basics of it.

Ex 1:  This exercise involves 2 pulloffs when descending from the high note, and begins by skipping from the 1st to the 3rd string. Notice that you will skip back and forth from the 3rd string back to the 1st, then back down to the 4th and back again to the 1st string. Except for the first 3 notes (and the repetition of them), everything is alternate picked.


Ex 2: This exercise involves all 6 strings, and can be a little bit challenging at first. Notice that from the first string, you will go straight down to the 2nd string instead of skipping to the 3rd right away. The idea is for you to play every individual string after playing the 1st. Practice a measure at a time, and make sure you are pulling off, alternate picking, and skipping strings where indicated.

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Two Note-Per-String Seventh Chord Arpeggios Pt. 3

Technique: Alternate Picking
Difficulty: Intermediate
Lesson Name: Two Note-Per-String Seventh Chord Arpeggios Pt. 3

Seventh chords are made up of four notes. In this lesson, we will explore one of my favorite ways of playing a Diminished Seventh chord while limiting ourselves to playing two notes per string. When playing these exercises, feel free to either use alternate picking or economy picking (I use alternate picking myself).

To figure out the corresponding notes for any given diminished seventh chord, we take the 2nd, 4th, 6th and 7th notes of the corresponding harmonic minor scale. For example, in the key of A Harmonic Minor (A B C D E F G#) the corresponding diminished seventh chord would consist of the notes B (1) D (3) F (5) and G# (7). Playing them one by one in order would create a B Diminished Seventh arpeggio.

Here are some ways of playing a B diminished seventh arpeggio in a two note-per-string fashion:

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Triplet Alternate Picking Exercise

Technique: Alternate Picking
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Lesson Name:
Triplet Alternate Picking Exercise

Triplets are often the most useful way of organizing pairs of notes to reach the desired effect- whether it be speed or rhythm. Practicing triplet sixteenth notes to a metronome is a helpful way of building speed and accuracy. In this lesson, you will learn how to practice these in a way that will exercise your picking hand as well as your fretting hand position shifting abilities.
Ex 1: Play the 5th fret of the 6th string with your index finger, the 7th fret with your ring finger, and the 8th fret with your pinky. Repeat for the 5th string (repeating the sequence twice), and then shift your hand 2 frets up on the 4th string and play the same pattern. Notice that the last 3 notes are the same 3 notes as the first 3, except an octave higher.

Ex 2: You will now take the previous sequence and extend it another octave. This time, you will be playing triplet sixteenth notes. When picked correctly, you should end with a downstroke on the 1st string 12th fret.


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Paul Gilbert Alternate Picking Licks #1 & 2

Technique: Alternate Picking
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Lesson Name:
In the style of Paul Gilbert- Alternate Picking Licks #1 & 2

For most people, the most challenging aspect of Alternate Picking is crossing over from string to string (downstroke-upstroke, or upstroke-downstroke). This is due to fact that it involves more movement than picking several notes on 1 string does. The purpose of practicing these licks is to get used to crossing strings by alternate picking.

Lick #1: Play the 9th fret of the 3rd string with your index finger, the 12th fret of the 4th string with your pinky, the 10th fret with your index finger, and the 9th fret with your index finger. Notice the 2 sets of triplets at the end: triplets are played 1.5 times as fast as normal notes. If this lick were to be played at 90bpm, the triplets would be equivalent to 16th notes at 135bpm.

Lick #2: This lick starts the same way as lick #1, but repeats the last 2 notes of the sequence to exaggerate the string crossing motion.

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Introduction to Chords Pt.2

Technique: Strumming
Difficulty:
Beginner
Lesson Name:
Introduction to Chords Pt.2

In the last lesson, you learned how to play the C Major and A Minor chords.  In this lesson, you will be taking a look at two more open position chords.  As with the first two, make sure to practice transitioning between these two new chords. Once you have these chords down, you will be able to play a full 4-chord progression.

Ex 1:  The F Major Chord consists of three notes- F,A, and C (F and C are repeated in this chord shape). Put your index finger on the 1st fret of the 1st and 2nd strings (this will require you to flatten the tip of your index finger on the fretboard over those notes), your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 3rd string, your pinky on the 3rd fret of the 4th string, and your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the 5th string. Strum downwards beginning at the 5th string. Avoid hitting the sixth string.
The G Major chord consists of 3 notes- G, B, and D (all three notes are repeated in this chord shape). Put your index finger on the 3rd fret of the 6th string, your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 5th string, and your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the 1st string. Strum down beginning at the 6th string.

Ex 2: Now that you know how to play the F Major and G Major chords, try playing all four chords. Strum each one four times, then twice, and finally strum each one once.

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Introduction to Chords Pt.1

Technique: Strumming
Difficulty:
Beginner
Lesson Name:
Introduction to Chords Pt.1

A chord is a set of 3 or more notes played simultaneously. There are many combinations of notes and fingerings that can be used to form various kinds of chords. In terms of difficulty and applicability, the most fundamental chords, as with scales, are Major and Minor chords. There are many ways of playing the same chord, so we will begin with the most basic fingerings.

Ex 1:  The C Major Chord consists of three notes- C,E, and G (C is repeated in this chord shape). Put your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the 5th string, your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 4th string, and your index finger on the 1st fret of the 2nd string. Strum beginning at the fifth string and end on the second string. Avoid hitting the sixth and first strings.

Ex 2: The A Minor chord is another fundamental open position chord. To play it, position your index finger on the 1st fret, 2nd string; your ring finger on the 2nd fret, 3rd string, and your middle finger on the 2nd fret, 4th string. Strum from on the fifth string to the second string.
For this exercise you will first strum a C Major chord four times, and then switch over to the A Minor chord and play it four times. Then, strum each chord twice. The point is to get used to transitioning between the two chords. Each strum should last for one beat, or one quarter note.

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