that's right, the title said classical. No this isn't some boring
lesson on how to write classical music like Bach. Instead, we're going
to take Bach and give him an extreme makover. In this lesson, you are
going to learn how to apply classical techniques into a daily practice
routine that will make you sound like a pro.
guitar is the new age classical. It involves coordination, fast hands,
and some amazing scales and riffs. If you are looking to be inspired or
put in awe by some neoclassical guitarist, take a look at some of
Yngwie J Malmsteen's songs. He has been the pioneer of this new
phenomena and has been building an impressive repertoire of music for
music became known in the early 80's. Before that point, metal and
shred guitar weren't as mainstream as genres such as rock. Then, some
guitarists such as Malmsteen took a leap of faith and started combining
classical sounds into their hard metal songs. They took the best of two
genres and combined them to create neoclassical shred guitar.
You need to understand that neoclassical isn't just classical music.
"Neoclassic" typically refers (as a definition by most guitarists) to
"neoclassic rock / metal", not "current classical music". We're talking
about metal, influenced by classical music melodies. So don't worry,
you're going to be rocking...hard and fast.
here's the fun part, regardless of your taste in music, learning
neoclassical shred guitar can assist you in becoming the best lead
guitarist in your town. The reason for this is found in the various
techniques utilized while playing shred guitar. Once you get a few of
these techniques down, you'll have no trouble impressing your
you haven't picked this up yet, shred guitar is fast... Ok, that's an
understatement. This is why it's so important to use a metronome. A
metronome is a little box that ticks and yes, they are usually over
priced. Why would you want to get one of these over priced tickers?
Well, for starters, your health and mental well being.
most people, the sound of a click every few seconds would slowly drive
them insane. For a musician, it's their key to success. It allows you
to keep time. Start a riff slow and build it up until it's lightning
fast. Not only will this make you sound good and make learning the riff
easier, it will protect your hands from damage. If you start playing
something extremely fast right away, you risk burning out your hands.
By starting slow and working your way up, your hands will do a much
better job playing the correct notes.
reason to use a metronome is phrasing. Phrasing is how you play the
riff while speed simply deals with tempo. If you can play each note for
the correct amount of time, then switch seamlessly to another string or
part of the neck, you will play the music correctly and sound good.
However, if you play the notes sloppy, you will come across as not
being prepared. Which would you prefer? The only way to get perfect
phrasing when you're starting out on guitar is by using a metronome.
scales used in neoclassical shred revolve around the minor scales and
modes. In particular, melodic and harmonic minor scales are utilized to
give a more regal, classical feel to the music. Let's start by running
through E Natural Minor to warm-up.
Bold numbers above tab are for fingerings.
we'll take the above E natural minor and make some adjustments to
create the melodic and harmonic minor scales. Remember, all of these
scales are 100% movable. Use the first note of each scale and move the
scale up and down your low E string. This allows you to play in
how the harmonic minor scale is similar to the natural minor scale?
There is only one note that is different. This makes switching between
natural minor and harmonic minor a breeze while playing.
through each scale slowly. Pay attention to all of the details and
memorize the pattern. Try moving everything up or down a few frets. You
want to experiment as much as possible and get used to playing in a
picking is a technique where you alternate your pick strokes. All too
often, guitarists who are just starting out will use nothing but down
strokes to pick their notes. To gain speed, and to sound better, try
alternating between down strokes and up strokes. After you play a down
stroke to sound a note, use an up stroke to play the next note. Then
alternate between the two.
may seem like a simple concept, but it can get pretty tricky when you
start dealing with string skipping and moving around the fretboard. Try
using this simple C Major scale to alternate your picking:
reason why it's so important for you to master the art of alternate
picking is due to speed. It is almost impossible to gain lightning fast
speed in shred guitar without the use of alternate picking. The only
other option is to tap out the notes, but we won't be covering that
technique in this lesson.
focusing your attention on one note, let's say 12th fret E on your high
E string. Start to alternate your picking on this note. Start slow and
gradually build up speed. Eventually you will get this:
If you're having problems getting that speed, keep practicing. Another
tip is to use a hard pick and hold it at a slight angle to the strings.
In other words, don't hold it flat like you usually would for
strumming. This slight 20 or 30 degree angle will help you "attack" the
note and enable you to play it faster.
Neoclassical shred guitar has a very distinct sound that comes from
various distortion and overdrive pedals. Some of the most popular
pedals used in this genre of music include the following:
DD-5 Digital Delay
Original CryBaby Wah Pedal
far as the guitar is concerned, you can find success with any electric
but the Fender Stratocaster seems to reign supreme amongst the world's
hottest shredders. However, Ibanez, Jackson, and B.C Rich have all seen
their fair share of action in neoclassical as well. It comes down to
personal taste and style. Les Pauls and similar style guitars are
rarely used in this style because they don't have a tremolo bar, which
is a popular item to have for shredders.
choice of amps is just as diverse as the guitar. Marshall is a
favourite with shredders such as Yingwie Malmsteen. Whatever the case,
the amps are big and they're loud!
To get the feel of shred, you need to get a good handle on your
technique. Hammer on's, pull off's and coordination between your left
and right hand are a necessity.
far as the sound is concerned, neoclassical works around patterns.
Let's take these four riffs for example:
above four riffs will continue to repeat forever. All
I'm doing is using the scale to my advantage and working around the
notes. No one said you are only allowed to use the notes in the scale
pattern, so long as they are the correct notes in that key, you can
play them anywhere on your neck. This adds texture to the music.
Planet Waves - See The Future?
today's society, the guitar industry is continually changing. With new
inventions, patents, and refinements around every corner, knowing who
to trust and who's the leader is tough. Not any more. Introducing
Planet Waves natural perspective of innovative design. This is a
company on the leading edge when it comes to the tool that make your
week we took a look at a few of the gadgets from their "Smart Tools"
series. This week we will be continuing our mini series as we take a
closer look at capos.
you don't know what a capo is, relax. It's not the end of the world. A
capo is a tool that's used to transpose and make difficult chords
easier to play. They are a valuable tool for song writers and rhythm
a capo that offers functionality and keeps your chords in tune can be a
wearisome task. Rarely will you find capos that offer a balance of the
two. Planet Waves new Ratchet Capo and NS Capo open up new options to
guitarists like you.
Ratchet Capo is the perfect solution for stage guitarists. Nothing is
more aggravating than wasting time between songs putting your capo on,
adjusting the capo so your strings aren't too much out of tune and
trying to sweet talk your audience in the meantime.
the Ratchet Capo, you simply take the capo, put it on the fret you want
and squeeze. You can move the capo to any place on the fretboard within
seconds. This is done through a clever quick release latch.
of the unique features about Planet Waves capos is that they add hardly
any additional weight to the neck of the guitar.
the Ratchet is great for doing live gigs, it's not the best option for
the studio. Capos may be a fantastic tool for transposing, but they
often pinch the strings so hard that they make the strings buzz and go
out of tune.
counteract this problem, J. D'Addario and world renown product expert
Ned Steinberger teamed up to produce the NS capo. This capo utilizes a
sleek design with flawless performance. Getting perfect pitch has never
been so easy with velvet smooth dial. Simply turn the dial to adjust
for perfect in tune performance and eliminate string buzz at the same
NS capo is light weight as well and is a fantastic choice for all
my humble opinion, I recommend the NS capo for most guitarists. The NS
capo will serve your purposes a little better. Whatever the case, both
capos deserve due consideration. Made for guitarists by guitarists.
What more could one ask for?
raps up yet another edition of our Guitar Tips newsletter. I hope you
have enjoyed learning about neoclassical guitar.This
style of music is of benefit to anyone
who desires to be able to play with confidence, speed, and accuracy.
important that you leave your comfort zone to aquire new skills. I'm a
blues guitarist and found that shred guitar enabled me to add more body
and life to the music I create. It can do the same for you. Even if you
never plan on using the above information, the technique you'll gain
will assist you as you grow into a better guitarist.
way you look at it, neoclassical shred guitar is a great tool to add to
us next time as we take a look at some of the latest gear to help your
playing. We'll also have our Guitar Tips Feature band. You won't want
to miss what we have in store for you!
next time, keep on picking.
Elmore Music Pty Ltd
BY ELMORE MUSIC
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