#1
Hey everyone, I need lots of help and tips...its about shredding ( a beginner to its as well). Its been a while since I really "practiced" and now I feel like I need to learn guitar straight from scratch. I really want to become an amazing lead player but I dont know really where to start and how to do it. The only I have been doing really is play that chromatic scale up and down my string such as starting on the E string (1234) then A string (1234) and so on. But I feel so limited and I dont really feel like Im progressing at all, which makes it very frustrating. I've searced through many of the lessons on here but Im not sure if they really explain it well enough for me. I really want to learn to play solos from songs I cover from other bands, but I want to also start creating my own solos and be shredding like crazy!!! I dont know anything about scales or modes either. So guys can you help me out here so I can reap the benefits of practicing to my full potential to the point I could impress myself in my musicianship?

Thank you all so much, and if any clarifying needs to be done or ask any questions to help even more to solve my problem, just ask.
#2
to become a truly great lead player .... forget shred!
if you think of the great lead guitarists (ie clapton, hendrix etc) then they make all shred players look like douchebags
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#3
It just sounds like you haven't knuckled down and practiced enough yet. I mean there's no point knowing what level you want to get to, without accepting the amount of effort it'll take to get there

Learn songs, by ear if you can, (which means learn songs you already know well, it saves a lot of time), and you'll pick up a lot of the technical side to it through that.

As for theory, the more you play your guitar, the more you'll be able to see the bigger musical picture, so just keep playing and ur awareness of modes and scales etc will slowly increase.

Basically, practice, for a long time, take each hurdle as it comes rather than fantasize too much about being a great lead player cause it'll take a while to get there.
#4
If you want to be a good lead player, then you need to learn:
a) basic music theory (though advanced always helps)
b) scales (at least all major scale modes and pentatonic scales)
c) soloing techniques (bends, legato, double stops, string skipping, etc.)

So, learn that, try playing easy guitar solos from the bands you like and get better at it. And, actually, I would advise you to start learning improvising as early as you can, because it will make things much more interesting and will benefit you greatly in the long run.
#5
Quote by thrash-it-up
to become a truly great lead player .... forget shred!
if you think of the great lead guitarists (ie clapton, hendrix etc) then they make all shred players look like douchebags


Douchebags eh?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxuEFUKJQwk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpzLTJ_9twc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MqzFN5-5jk

You know what, I suppose you're right. None of those guys were any good...
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#6
every teacher teaches the 1234 method thing and i for one think it is a completely useless exercise, picking on one string, even fast is easy, and going up or down a string isn't really upping the difficulty.

a good exercise (although similar) is from John Petrucci, you do the 1234 progression, but like this (it doesn't matter where you start on the neck, or which string):

|-------------------------------------------------4-1------------
|------------------------------4-1-------------3-----2----------
|---------4-1--------------3------2--------2----------3--------
|-------3-----2---------2-----------3----1---------------4-----
|----2-----------3----1---------------4-------------------------
|-1----------------4----------------------------------------------

and you can do it like this, or many other variations on it, such as putting a fret space between your 1st and 2nd fingers, 2nd and 3rd, 3rd and 4th, etc. and working your way up the whole neck. you can either alt pick this (which i do) or sweep it for sweep help (although just practicing sweep shapes is better for that)

|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|---------------------------------------------------------9-----------------------9-10-12-9-10-12-----|
|------------8---------------------8-10-12-8-10-12----12-10-8-10-12------------------------------|
|-8-10-12----12-10-8-10-12---------------------------------------------------------------------------| etc.

(this is usually played in triplets, continue this pattern up a scale [if you alter it a little bit it can be used for any scale])

start slow, as in eight notes at 100 bmp (two notes per click on a metronome) or slower if need be, and gradually go faster. when you get moderately fast (as in 120+ bpm 16th note triplets [six notes per click] or 160+ bpm 16th notes [four notes per click]) try:

putting your metronome up about 10-20bpm (4 or 5 metronome clicks) faster than you can comfortably play continuosly and try doing bursts, then put it back down about 2 or 3 clicks so you are around 5-10bpm faster than previously, and try to play continuously.

these are just a few things you can try, there are legato exercises and other picking and fretting hand exercises but i dont have the time to tab all of it out. hope this helped, i'd like to be a shred teacher some day

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Last edited by SPBY at Aug 13, 2009,
#7
Quote by SPBY
every teacher teaches the 1234 method thing and i for one think it is a completely useless exercise, picking on one string, even fast is easy, and going up or down a string isn't really upping the difficulty.

a good exercise (although similar) is from John Petrucci, you do the 1234 progression, but like this (it doesn't matter where you start on the neck, or which string):

|-------------------------------------------------4-1------------
|------------------------------4-1-------------3-----2----------
|---------4-1--------------3------2--------2----------3--------
|-------3-----2---------2-----------3----1---------------4-----
|----2-----------3----1---------------4-------------------------
|-1----------------4----------------------------------------------

and you can do it like this, or many other variations on it, such as putting a fret space between your 1st and 2nd fingers, 2nd and 3rd, 3rd and 4th, etc. and working your way up the whole neck. you can either alt pick this (which i do) or sweep it for sweep help (although just practicing sweep shapes is better for that)

|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|---------------------------------------------------------9-----------------------9-10-12-9-10-12-----|
|------------8---------------------8-10-12-8-10-12----12-10-8-10-12------------------------------|
|-8-10-12----12-10-8-10-12---------------------------------------------------------------------------| etc.

(this is usually played in triplets, continue this pattern up a scale [if you alter it a little bit it can be used for any scale])

start slow, as in eight notes at 100 bmp (two notes per click on a metronome), and gradually go faster. when you get moderately fast (as in 120+ bpm 16th note triplets [six notes per click] or 160+ bpm 16th notes [four notes per click]) try:

putting your metronome up about 10-20bpm (4 or 5 metronome clicks) faster than you can comfortably play continuosly and try doing bursts, then put it back down about 2 or 3 clicks so you are around 5-10bpm faster than previously, and try to play continuously.

these are just a few things you can try. hope this helped.


I agree, those chromatic exercises are ****, unless all you want to do is play fast chromatic runs everywhere. Scalar exercises are the most important, since you are playing melodies and scale runs most of the time while soloing.
#8
Quote by thrash-it-up
to become a truly great lead player .... forget shred!
if you think of the great lead guitarists (ie clapton, hendrix etc) then they make all shred players look like douchebags


Just out of curiousity, is there really a difference between lead guitarists and shredders? If so someone explain to me.
#9
Quote by swordsman14
Just out of curiousity, is there really a difference between lead guitarists and shredders? If so someone explain to me.


shredder = someone who shreds (i.e. plays excessively fast)
lead guitarist = plays solos, and (usually) more complicated riffs than the rhythm guitaist.
rhythm guitarist = keeps rhythm (usually) while the lead guitarist plays something more complicated. sometimes plays solos.

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#10
Quote by Prophet of Page
Douchebags eh?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxuEFUKJQwk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpzLTJ_9twc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MqzFN5-5jk

You know what, I suppose you're right. None of those guys were any good...


OH I KNOW MAN, they sure can't nor can these guys...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WqE_q3kFUM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1IbXEqx4xs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFMqQj6SfJs
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#14
Quote by swordsman14
Just out of curiousity, is there really a difference between lead guitarists and shredders? If so someone explain to me.

No

Shredders are just guitarists that ave pracitced a hell of a lot and got really good, enabling them to play at high speeds. They don't practice anything different, they just practice a lot more. Shredders pay more attention to practicing and perfecting the basic, core skills rather than fancy showboat tricks. They also need excellent theory and fretboard knowledge because you can only play as fast as you can think.
Actually called Mark!

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#15
learn every note on the fretboard, every scale, learn to use rhythm and space perfect your legato and vibrato and make sure your bends are intonated. train your ears so you can recognise intervals......etc, learn music theory, learn out to move between the scale positions

as a teacher i teach ther chronomatic runs but move away from them very quickly they`re good to use as a warmup and to improve neck awareness so you can move between positions and even appear in countless great songs as small licks.

start slow and build it up.

theres alot of hard work and practice ahead for you
Last edited by ibanezgod1973 at Aug 14, 2009,
#16
Quote by steven seagull
No

Shredders are just guitarists that ave pracitced a hell of a lot and got really good, enabling them to play at high speeds. They don't practice anything different, they just practice a lot more. Shredders pay more attention to practicing and perfecting the basic, core skills rather than fancy showboat tricks. They also need excellent theory and fretboard knowledge because you can only play as fast as you can think.


No disrespect to you, sir, but that is nonsense! Playing fast usually doesn't require any thinking at all. You just mix a lot of scale patterns and licks (tricks) and play them all over the neck. I wouldn't call that a core skill. I would say the main skill in soloing is making melodies and landing on notes you want to hear when you want to hear them. And there are many 'slow' players who much better at this than the ones who play fast. Of course, there are some players who are both tasty and fast, but they use speed just as a phrasing technique, they still put melody making before speed.
#17
Quote by UNIe
No disrespect to you, sir, but that is nonsense! Playing fast usually doesn't require any thinking at all. You just mix a lot of scale patterns and licks (tricks) and play them all over the neck.


Yeah, but you need to know the scales so...

EDIT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkpZ645ztl0

If you call that shred, it's pretty thought out.
Last edited by CrimsonBizzare at Aug 14, 2009,
#18
Quote by UNIe
No disrespect to you, sir, but that is nonsense! Playing fast usually doesn't require any thinking at all. You just mix a lot of scale patterns and licks (tricks) and play them all over the neck. I wouldn't call that a core skill. I would say the main skill in soloing is making melodies and landing on notes you want to hear when you want to hear them. And there are many 'slow' players who much better at this than the ones who play fast. Of course, there are some players who are both tasty and fast, but they use speed just as a phrasing technique, they still put melody making before speed.

You've just pretty much summed up everything that's wrong with guitar playing these days...playing fast obviously requires MORE thinking that playing slowly because you're trying to fit more notes into a shorter time and you've got far less time in which to do it.
Actually called Mark!

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#19
Quote by CrimsonBizzare
Yeah, but you need to know the scales so...

EDIT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkpZ645ztl0

If you call that shred, it's pretty thought out.


And I'm not saying that it doesn't require thinking at all, but I get really frustrated when people say that shredders are better guitarists than players like Slash or Clapton, because it's not true. Shredders are good at what they do, and slow players are good at what they do. Period.

Edit:
Quote by steven seagull
You've just pretty much summed up everything that's wrong with guitar playing these days...playing fast obviously requires MORE thinking that playing slowly because you're trying to fit more notes into a shorter time and you've got far less time in which to do it.


No, just no. Playing licks doesn't require any thinking, just a bit of listening. Because shredders don't try to find each note they have in their head. They find their phrases because they know the lick, the scale, whatever. And that requires less thinking than, for example, playing an improvised jazz solo with all eight notes. If you don't believe me, study the solos of shredders and you'll see that they use lots of patterns and licks that are just repeated and connected.
Last edited by UNIe at Aug 14, 2009,
#20
Quote by UNIe
And I'm not saying that it doesn't require thinking at all, but I get really frustrated when people say that shredders are better guitarists than players like Slash or Clapton, because it's not true. Shredders are good at what they do, and slow players are good at what they do. Period.


No one said a shreader was better, they just practice more....
#21
Quote by steven seagull
You've just pretty much summed up everything that's wrong with guitar playing these days...playing fast obviously requires MORE thinking that playing slowly because you're trying to fit more notes into a shorter time and you've got far less time in which to do it.



You need to think about scales, etc, when composing and practising. However, muscle memory is ftw, and if you've already done it a billion times in rehearsal, composing, etc, you don't need to think about it.
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#22
Quote by UNIe
I'm not saying that it doesn't require thinking at all, but I get really frustrated when people say that shredders are better guitarists than players like Slash or Clapton, because it's not true.


I posted videos by Eric Johnson, Shawn Lane and Allan Holdsworth, all of whom have fantastic technique and can play (past tense for Shawn) at very high speeds. If you want to make the argument that Slash and Clapton are better musicians than the guitarists I have mentioned, that would be entirely subjective. That would be your opinion, and I could not refute it, however I would disagree with it.

They are better guitarists. Being a good guitarist is based purely on technique, being a good musician is something entirely different.

Also, I think you should listen to the music of the people I mentioned before making the judgement that Slash or Clapton is indeed a better musician. I've listened to everything Slash has ever done, I haven't enjoyed much of it. I would consider myself a Clapton fan. I don't consider either of them to be comparable to Johnson, Lane or Holdsworth or a musical level.

If you make an "emotion" argument, I will disagree. Emotion is not in guitar playing, it's in the listener. Different listeners will have their emotions triggered differently by different music.

Quote by UNIe
Shredders are good at what they do, and slow players are good at what they do. Period.


What exactly is it that slow players do? What exactly is it that shredders do?

Quote by UNIe
No, just no. Playing licks doesn't require any thinking, just a bit of listening.


I completely disagree. Regardless of what lick or melodic line I might be playing, slow or fast, I always think about how I'm phrasing it.

Quote by UNIe
Because shredders don't try to find each note they have in their head.


..and you of course can read their minds...

Consider a musican like Greg Howe, Guthrie Govan, Brett Garsed (really it's an endless list) or any of the players I listed above, are you really going to tell me that they don't mean the notes they play? There or some shredders sure who just play licks, but there are also many that are right with every note they are playing.

Quote by UNIe
They find their phrases because they know the lick, the scale, whatever.


And blues players don't find some of their phrases because they know the classic licks, the positions on the pentatonic and blues scales etc? Everybody, regardless of how good they are has to have something to fall back on, some form of an auto-pilot mode. You mentioned Clapton and Slash, they certainly do. Many of the best "shredders" (I hate that word..) fall back on scalar patterns, learned licks whatever, sometimes you just have an off night. When they're really on, it's a completely different story, for the "shredders" like Garsed and Holdsworth as much as it is for Clapton and Slash.

Quote by UNIe
And that requires less thinking than, for example, playing an improvised jazz solo with all eight notes.


Which requires much less thinking than being Allan Holdsworth and improvising a jazz solo over a complex chord progression with very complex rate changes and brass/wind instrument like phrasing. Or it requires less thought than being Shawn Lane and playing with a Carnatic music group (the syncopation on his records with V. Selvaganesh rivals just about anything from the BeBop era).

There are plenty of fast players out there who don't think very much (there are even more slow players that don't, in my experience), but don't write off all of them based on what you've seen or heard so far, that''s purely ignorant.

Quote by UNIe
If you don't believe me, study the solos of shredders and you'll see that they use lots of patterns and licks that are just repeated and connected.


Depends very much on the player you're transcribing. Maybe a little with Lane (but then, only on his fastest lines) , very little with Eric Johnson, absolutely none with Holdsworth.

It amazes me that technical ability is frowned upon in the blues/rock guitar community.

You should strive to be fluent in the mechanics of whatever instrument you choose to play. It allows you complete control in expressing your musical ideas.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#23
Quote by UNIe
No disrespect to you, sir, but that is nonsense! Playing fast usually doesn't require any thinking at all. You just mix a lot of scale patterns and licks (tricks) and play them all over the neck. I wouldn't call that a core skill. I would say the main skill in soloing is making melodies and landing on notes you want to hear when you want to hear them. And there are many 'slow' players who much better at this than the ones who play fast. Of course, there are some players who are both tasty and fast, but they use speed just as a phrasing technique, they still put melody making before speed.

i agree

melodies are were all the shizzle is at but over the top stupid crazy shredding and mental whammy bar wanking ads a very awesome element to certain styles of music. i choose children of bodom as my example
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#24
Quote by Prophet of Page
Douchebags eh?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxuEFUKJQwk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpzLTJ_9twc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MqzFN5-5jk

You know what, I suppose you're right. None of those guys were any good...

Just because you have a video on youtube, doesnt automatically make your music decent.
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#25
I guess I have an idea of where to start my lead playing now since from many of the posts I read on this thread. But I do I have another question. Besides me covering other songs from other bands, I want to compose my own riffs and songs. But I dont know how exactly how to do so. I hear a lot of people say they just mess around the guitar to find notes that sound good and just use them That would really amaze me if the majority of guitarists/musicians did that because many of them write some pretty technical stuff and I would imagine you would have at least some theory( correct me if I'm wrong). For example, I listen to bands such as:

Testament
Exodus
Slayer
Pantera
Black Sabbath
Crowbar
Suffocation
Morbid Angel
Black Dahlia Murder
At the Gates
In Flames
Cannibal Corpse
Death
Misfits
Dying Fetus
Internal Bleeding
Pyrexia
Cro Mags
Merauder
Madball
Biohazard
Metallica
Napalm Death
Carcass
Minor Threat

so just to name some those bands and mnay others (but the list goes on...) and I like George Benson, Carlos Santana, Jimi Hendirx, and other music beyond other genres.

So how would you compose riffs along the vein of those bands ( it would be suprising if many of them just mess around the guitar to find notes that sounded good so...)?
#26
Quote by swordsman14
I guess I have an idea of where to start my lead playing now since from many of the posts I read on this thread. But I do I have another question. Besides me covering other songs from other bands, I want to compose my own riffs and songs. But I dont know how exactly how to do so. I hear a lot of people say they just mess around the guitar to find notes that sound good and just use them That would really amaze me if the majority of guitarists/musicians did that because many of them write some pretty technical stuff and I would imagine you would have at least some theory( correct me if I'm wrong). For example, I listen to bands such as:

Testament
Exodus
Slayer
Pantera
Black Sabbath
Crowbar
Suffocation
Morbid Angel
Black Dahlia Murder
At the Gates
In Flames
Cannibal Corpse
Death
Misfits
Dying Fetus
Internal Bleeding
Pyrexia
Cro Mags
Merauder
Madball
Biohazard
Metallica
Napalm Death
Carcass
Minor Threat

so just to name some those bands and mnay others (but the list goes on...) and I like George Benson, Carlos Santana, Jimi Hendirx, and other music beyond other genres.

So how would you compose riffs along the vein of those bands ( it would be suprising if many of them just mess around the guitar to find notes that sounded good so...)?

IMO all of the bands right there, most of there solos sound the same.
#27
Quote by VanTheKraut
Just because you have a video on youtube, doesnt automatically make your music decent.


I completely agree, your music being decent makes your music decent (personally I think Eric, Shawn and Allan have made some of the best music ever recorded, then of course, there is plenty of great music out there that hasn't ever been recorded either). There are thousands of fret wankers who've put videos of themselves on youtube, and there's even a few of them that are famous (I won't name names).

I could have listed any number of very musical players who have incredible technique, or I could show you some. Youtube was the tool I used to show some of those players. If I were to make a blanket statement that insulted your favourite players, and you wished to convince me otherwise, would you not use youtube?

Purely based on my own curiosity, how would you attempt to justify a musicians music? Popular opinion obviously means very little, there are plenty of bad musicians who've won a Grammy or two, etc. You'd show it to me and let me make up my own mind, wouldn't you?

Also, did you watch the videos through or just dismiss them entirely?
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#28
Quote by thrash-it-up
to become a truly great lead player .... forget shred!
if you think of the great lead guitarists (ie clapton, hendrix etc) then they make all shred players look like douchebags

shred doesnt mean your a crappy player, it also takes to skill to make the notes sound uniform and its really what you do with it that makes it worth listening to

on topic i would suggest learning songs with powerful lead and also some theory to understand what makes it so powerful like scales, harmonies, etc.
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#30
Quote by thrash-it-up
to become a truly great lead player .... forget shred!
if you think of the great lead guitarists (ie clapton, hendrix etc) then they make all shred players look like douchebags


Douchebags?

Paul Gilbert is probably one of the coolest guitarist/people ever...
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#31
Quote by darkcheef
IMO all of the bands right there, most of there solos sound the same.


Metallica and Pantera?

They sound nothing alike.
#32
Quote by Nilpferdkoenig
Metallica and Pantera?

They sound nothing alike.

No I mean in there own solo's Most metallica solos sound the same to me, most black sabbath solos sound the same to me, most pantera solos sound the same.... And so on, that's what I mean.
#33
Quote by darkcheef
No I mean in there own solo's Most metallica solos sound the same to me, most black sabbath solos sound the same to me, most pantera solos sound the same.... And so on, that's what I mean.


Metallica definatly sound the same, Kirks quality is in his slow melodic stuff.

Tony Iommi is just way too generic in general.

Dimebag sounds different everytime though I'd say.
#34
Quote by UNIe
And I'm not saying that it doesn't require thinking at all, but I get really frustrated when people say that shredders are better guitarists than players like Slash or Clapton, because it's not true. Shredders are good at what they do, and slow players are good at what they do. Period.

Edit:

No, just no. Playing licks doesn't require any thinking, just a bit of listening. Because shredders don't try to find each note they have in their head. They find their phrases because they know the lick, the scale, whatever. And that requires less thinking than, for example, playing an improvised jazz solo with all eight notes. If you don't believe me, study the solos of shredders and you'll see that they use lots of patterns and licks that are just repeated and connected.


Jazz musicians do that more than anyone else because they're soloing style is based so heavily off of the underlying chord progression. If you really study Coltrane's solos, you're going to see a lot of the same arpeggio patterns and whatnot.

Quote by darkcheef
No I mean in there own solo's Most metallica solos sound the same to me, most black sabbath solos sound the same to me, most pantera solos sound the same.... And so on, that's what I mean.


Oh really? When a guitarist has a distinct style, that style comes through in everything they play? Wow, that is fantastic!
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Last edited by DaddyTwoFoot at Aug 15, 2009,