I have recorded a run through of my variations on John Petrucci’s Rock Discipline Exercise 15, as featured in a previous article. I use this in the morning to practice my Three Note Per String (TNPS) shapes. And for a while there, I thought I sounded pretty good. Unfortunately, I went back and watched Petrucci’s original demo after recording this lesson. Let’s just say my version doesn’t quite sound like Flight of the Bumblebees…
A funny thing happened to me the other day. I went to the park to play guitar, and discovered that I could merge 4-note per string shapes with the diminished scales we all know and love. Isn’t that crazy? I know, right?
Well, if you think you can handle to insanity, you can follow along using the PDF and Powertab files: Continue reading →
So, just hanging out after a successful BBQ, listening to Meshuggah, and working on a Ragtime lesson? What the heck. Well, deal with it. What’s wrong with Ragtime? It’s a challenging expansion on blues (much like All Blues Jazz), and you know how much life requires challenges. Continue reading →
Welcome one and all to another exciting lesson from the folks at LWSMDB. Today I will be expanding on a scalar lesson from John Petrucci’s epic educational Rock Discipline instructional video (now DVD). If you are not familiar with John Petrucci, he is the guitar player & vocalist in the prog trio Dream Theater. Continue reading →
Well I separated my shoulder at the beginning of the month, and have had to significantly curtail my playing while I heal. However, prior to my injury, I have really been enjoying the plethora of great videos available from Google videos from Tony MacAlpine, Ritchie Kotzen, Joe Pass, Emily Remler, and others. Been learning more than I can really apply, but I’m trying to make my playing a bit more interesting. I also started listening heavily to Gregory and the Hawk, and have been working on my finger-picking too. Got an exercise for that you’ll like. Also have an extension of a John Petrucci exercise from Rock Discipline, that I conjugated into all the modes and reversed.
Today I have an exercise that I started playing one day in Am.It starts as a sweep, and ends as a sweep, but in the middle is something called “contouring”. I read this term in an old guide to playing from the 1970′s that a friend of mind gave me. On CD. Here’s what it looks like:
The tempo is a recommendation for learning the pattern. So we start with a classic 5-string Am sweep in groups of 6, but instead of topping out at the A, we top out at the G to give it an Am7 flavour. Then the fun starts. We use the 2nd and 3rd groups to do descending patterns through A minor / Aeolian, in backtracking groups of 4, then 6, then 2. Because the majority of the movement is descending, start of each group is an up-stroke. This gives it an economy picking feel. However we are definitely not economy picking, as we are alternate picking between some of the string changes. Finally we get to the final sweep, which ends on the low 7th. This gives the tonic a kind of reinforcement, and a bit of tension before returning to the tonic.
I like to listen to the effect of modality on things I play, and see how the shape changes, so I conjugated the figure into all the modes of C major. Here’s a PDF showing what that looks like, and a PowerTab file too: