Pentatonic Licks - Speed Style

A lesson teaching various pentatonic licks to help build up speed and style. Utilizes bending, vibrato, slides and hammer-on and pull-offs.

Ultimate Guitar

Lick 1

Alright, welcome. This first lick is designed to build up finger strength. Great to use for a really fast break, sounds great and is easy to play. Check it out:
     |---3--|  |---3--|  |---3--|  |---3--|
Okay, so nice easy triplets using the blues note on the sixth fret of the A-string. Now, all examples are in A-minor, but can easily be transposed. Now lets break it down. First, place your second finger on the sixth fret of the A string and you first finger on the fifth fret on the D. Now pick the A string, hammer on the 7th fret with you third finger and then play the D string. Easy. Now it gets hard. PLay the A string again, hammer on the 7th and then lay your third finger flat over the 7th fret of the D string as well. Your third finger should cover both the 7th fret of the A and D strings. Now play the D string. Okay, good. Play it over and over until you can play it - super fast!

Lick 2

This next lick is a great finger warm up. It uses both hammer-ons, pull-offs, bend and vibrato. Check it out:
E |--------------5----------------|--------------------------| 
B |-----------5-----8p--5---------|--------------------------|
G |-----5h-7---------------7b(9)--|--5-----7--5b-------------| 
D |--7----------------------------|-----7-----------7ZYABLA~HUYABLAZYABLA~HUYABLAZYABLA~HUYABLAZYABLA~HUYABLA|
A |-------------------------------|--------------------------|
E |-------------------------------|--------------------------|
Okay, this one is a little bit more involved. Star with you third finger on the D string and your first finger on the G. PLay the A string, then the G-string, then hammer on the 7th fret with you third finger. Now bar the B and E strings with your first finger and play them. Then fret the 8th fret of the B-string with your second finger, keeping the B and E barred, then play the note and pull off. Bend the 7th fret of the G string with your thrid finger a full tone. Fret the G string with you first finger, then the D string with your third, then lay your third finger over the 7th fret of the G string. Finally, slightly bend the 5th fret of the G string with your first finger and end on your third or second finger, which ever it is easier to vibrato with. There!

Lick 3

This third lick is the first of our "solo licks". This one is very popular with players like Eric Clapton. Here goes:
            |---3--|         |---3--|            |---3--|    
E |---------5----------------5---------|---------5-------------------|
B |------5----h8p--5------5----h8p--5--|------5----h8p--5--8b--------|
G |--7b---------------7b---------------|--7b-------------------------|
D |------------------------------------|-----------------------------|
A |------------------------------------|-----------------------------|
E |------------------------------------|-----------------------------|
First off, barre the B and E strings with your first finger. Now, bend the G string a full tone with your third finger, play the B and E strings, hammer-on the 8th fret of the B string with your second or third finger, whichever is stronger, then pull off. Don't pick the B string, just hammer-on, then pull-off. This allows you to build up more speed. We'll look further into this technique later. Now repeat this pattern three times and end by bending the B string a full tone with you third or second finger.

Lick 4

This next lick is a speed lick. It goes like this:
     |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-|
E |--8p-5---8p-5---8p-5---8p-5---8p-5---8p-5---8s10--8ZYABLA~HUYABLA~|
B |-------5------5------5------5------5------5-----------|
G |------------------------------------------------------|
D |------------------------------------------------------|
A |------------------------------------------------------|
E |------------------------------------------------------|
This one is eay. Just barre the B and E strings with you first finger, and fret the 8th fret of the E string with your third finger. Pick the E string, then pull-off and pick the B string. Do this six times then slide up from the 8th fret to the tenth fret with your third finger then play the 8th fret with your first finger and vibrato. Done!

Lick 5

This is the last lick and this one is great for building chops and speed. We touched on this in lick thre. Here it is:
   |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-| |--3-|                  
Start of by barring the B and E strings again. This time, play the E string, then hammer-on the 8th fret with your third finger and pull off. You don't ever pick the B string, only the E. The triplet is created by the hammer-on and pull-off. Because you are only picking one out of every three notes this allows you to play ridiculously fast! Alright. That's it for me. If you would like the Guitar Pro version of these licks, just PM me! Ciao.

23 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    Dear Sir, I want two classic solo songs note of Richie Blackmore,But I don't know this solo name.Please forgive me about this.If you okay,please send to my mail help me,I want this tabnote.
    it sounds really good too if in lick 5 you hammer on the 8, then pull off to the five. you only have to pick one note, so you can play it really fast.
    Thanks everyone. These licks were actually taught to me by an old session guitarist i had lessons with for a while. The best thing to ever happen to me. This guy has played with all sorts of amazing musicians and the best thing is, you really can use these licks anywhere.
    good lesson, nice variety of licks to learn + if its practice, its good, 9/10 good job
    Great licks I'll definitely use them. One did you come up with them? Because whenever I improvise it always sounds bland,like I'm playing the actual scale. I do mix it up with double stops,bends and slides but it doesn't really sound like solos I like. Would it be better to use licks and just improvise to join the licks?
    8p means pull off, 8s10 means slide from the 8th fret to the 10th, 7b means you bend that note(in this case the 7th fret) and 6h means you hammer on to the 6th fret
    I discovered lick 5 accidentally while playing 'Carry On Wayward Son'. This technique is the best thing since sliced bread! It impresses the hell out of people and its reasonably easy to master
    great schelevation in this lesson, also the tylorixif scale is wonderfully blytersful!