Guitar Legends Answer: How to Play Guitar in 3 Words or Less

Featuring John Petrucci, Zakk Wylde, Brent Hinds, and more.

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Guitar Legends Answer: How to Play Guitar in 3 Words or Less

Reporting from this year's NAMM convention, Tyler Larson from Music Is Win asked a variety of notable guitar dudes to answer the big question:

"How to play guitar? (in 3 words or less)"

Some of the giants that answered the question include John Petrucci, Zakk Wylde, Michael Angelo Batio, and more.

You can check out their answers below, make sure to watch the clip for the full experience.

Zakk Wylde: "Practice, practice, practice."
Jeff Loomis: "Fast, melodic, aggressive."
Brent Hinds (Mastodon): "Don't do it."
James Valentine (Maroon 5): "Serve the song."
Michael Angelo Batio: "Practice, practice, practice."
Rachel Bolan (Skid Row): "Very, very loud."
Nick Johnston: "With great difficulty."
John Petrucci: "Don't fuck up."

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60 comments sorted by best / new / date

    That's some good advice from the Maroon 5 guy tho.
    or it helps to justify being average at what you do ...I do agree still, I had a period playing only bass and I was like that, it really tightens the bond.
    I think James Valentine is so damn talented and that is the best 3 word advice on this list.
    Rhythm has to be tight, that's the whole point of keeping rhythm. Bass can also lead, very underestimated instrument.
    James Valentine is not average. He's a very talented rhythm player, and this is definitely the best advice out of all of them. The rest of the band is what's average; they've gone waaaay downhill since the first album.
    it's crazy, the guys thinking I said the guy is just said that saying that can be a way to justify being average at your instrument, I did not say he I even said it is good to serve the band in how you play, I even agreed...well, reading and interpreting it correctly is a good combination. ...this will probably get downvotes also, so mew..
    Yngwie Malmsteen: "Arpeggios replace creativity" Prince: "Want some pancakes?"
    and if you cant play arppegios, just play an out of tune bend and call it the blues, it works way better as a replacement of creativity
    This was actually fun! I love the "practice, practice, practice", but for me, the winner is "serve the song".
    ~Maxi King~
    It's funny how both people who said 'practice, practice, practice' are my least favourite guitar players on this list. That doesn't mean they are bad by any means, just not as unique and inspiring for my playing style as Brent Hinds, for example.
    Response aside, they are all into practice though. I'd imagine that's how Hinds got his sound and style, by sheer practice.
    Paul Gilbert: lots of notes. Guthrie Govan: use weird modes. Rusty Cooley: add more shred. Herman Li: fuck up live. Joe Satriani: add more groove. Jeff Loomis: use harmonic minor. Chris Broderick: two hand tapping. Alexi Laiho: get drunk first. Marty Friedman: wear plateau shoes. Michael Romeo: lots of practice.
    In a theater play, I pretended to be a guitar. Does that count as guitar play practice?