The Blues & Rock Player’s Guide to the ‘Rhythm’ Changes

By Dave Eichenberger If you have studied various forms of music, you most likely have figured out that most songs are a combination of several patterns arranged in a particular order. If you are a blues guitarist, you understand a basic blues I-IV-V progression. Playing a blues tune, you naturally hear how the chords change,…

Feed Your Frankenstein: Ten Halloween Sounds You Can Make With Your Guitar

Have you ever wondered how they make all of those cool sound effects in your favorite thrillers? On those backlot tours I learned that there are entire crews of people dedicated to that very purpose for every horror film that is made. The cool part? You can use your guitar to make some of the very same sounds you’re used to hearing during your favorite horror movies.

Turning Your Pentatonics Into Blues

My earliest experience with playing blues guitar was being taught the Minor Pentatonic scale. I loved that damn scale: it allowed me to play those cool blues-based Chuck Berry licks. And it was always cool to be able to say “dig me as I play some sweet blues” at a jam with my then-fellow-13-year-olds (it happened once). But after a while, as I started to listen to more and more blues, something started to bug me.

Chords of the Melodic Minor Scale

Scales by themselves are not much more than finger exercises. However, you can unlock the sound of each and every scale by learning to use what chords to use them over. The secret to this arcane knowledge is in the scale itself. This article focuses on a very popular but certainly very strange sounding scale, the melodic minor, and how we can figure out some chords to play behind our rockin’ solos.

The Ultra Mega Sweep Lick Of Doom

Okay, today I’m going to give you a little freebie: my Ultra Mega Lick Of Doom. This started out as a melody I was working on for a song I never got around to finishing. Frankly, as a melody it kinda sounded a bit boring. But I soon realised that a) whenever I practiced it,…

The Art Of The May I Help You Riff

Music stores can be intimidating. You’re walking into an environment where all the staff there have heard every cliche’d song butchered a million times, and where it can sometimes be hard to get some attention in order to be assisted in choosing your new guitar, pedal, pick, strap, pickup, gadget or wotzit. Now, it would…

Making Sense of Seven-String Chords

The easiest thing in the world to do with a seven-string is to go straight for those lowest two strings and simply chug out. But there’s a lot more you can do with them, whether you’re into metal or not. So this month I’m gonna show you some of my favourite seven-string chords – chords which can be useful no matter what style you’re in. After all, doesn’t the extended low range of a seven-string make sense in a context like country, for instance?

The Ultimate Prog Metal Rhythm Tuning

One of my favorite alternate tunings is Open C, or CGCGCE. As you can see, it’s mostly made up of a bunch of Cs and Gs in different octaves. What I really like about it is that it can be a brutal low tuning for aggressive chugging, but it also gives you a nice sense of atmosphere and additional harmonic complexity on the middle strings and it’s laid out on the fretboard in a way that invites some pretty interesting sweep picking patterns too.

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