How To Play Creative Guitar Licks Very Easily Using Sequencing
Wish you could consistently play guitar licks that sound like actual music instead of a series of memorized runs, exercises, techniques, etc.?
You don't need to learn a bunch of new scales, techniques or tricks to start playing guitar licks that sound great. You just need to improve your guitar phrasing using whatever skills you've already got.
It's easy and totally fun.
One way to play more creatively with your guitar licks is to use sequencing. Playing guitar solos that flow from idea to idea is easy when you know how to create guitar licks using sequencing.
Learn how to play guitar licks using this powerful phrasing concept by watching the video:
Click on the video to begin watching it.
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Now you are able to use guitar licks in sequences to consistently play expressive solos. Use these tips to help you transform your lead guitar playing:
Play Better Lead Guitar Licks & Solos Tip #1: Develop Expressive Vibrato Technique
Vibrato gives your lead guitar licks the sound of a human voice and is essential for expressive playing.
Improve this technique and start using it more expressively in your lead guitar licks by using these tips:
1. Wrap your thumb around the neck to play vibrato just like if you were using bends. This gives you complete control whenever you are playing lead guitar licks.
2. Don’t use the approach of moving your finger side to side to play the vibrato. Instead, perform mini-bends that move up and down. This is how you get solid control over your vibrato technique.
Avoid guitar vibrato that is fast & narrow + out-of-control vibrato!
- When you play fast vibrato, make it wide
- When you play slow vibrato, play it narrow
3.Don’t do vibrato by only using your fingers.
Instead, use your entire arm. This is similar to playing bends.
4. Delay your vibrato.
Most guitarists apply vibrato instantly while using it in their lead guitar licks. In other words: they play a note and apply vibrato to it right after they play it.
There is more than one way to creatively use vibrato in your guitar licks!
Here are a couple of great phrasing approaches:
- play a note, let it sustain for a moment and then apply vibrato.
- play a note, let it sustain for a moment , hit the note one more time, then apply vibrato).
Play Better Lead Guitar Licks & Solos Tip #2. Use Rubato In Your Phrases
Rubato is a phrasing technique that makes your guitar licks sound more alive and expressive.
It has nothing to do with playing lead guitar licks with speed.
And you don't have to learn complicated music theory concepts.
It’s simply a method for squeezing as much emotion as possible from every one of your guitar licks.
Here is all you have to do:
Suddenly speed up or slow down, without playing in perfect time at any point during a lick.
When you do this, it creates tension and drama in your guitar licks - release this tension by playing a long note on / stopping on the beat. This makes your playing sound unique while also making all of your lead guitar licks more expressive and engaging.
Play Better Lead Guitar Licks & Solos Tip #3: Clean Up Unwanted String Noise
If you want to play guitar licks with great phrasing, you’ve got to eliminate sloppy string noise.
There are two main kinds of sloppy guitar string noise to get rid of:
- Unwanted guitar string noise from strings lower (in pitch) than the one you are playing on.
- Unwanted guitar string noise from strings higher (in pitch) than the one you are playing on.
When you play lead guitar licks using some of the ideas on this page, string noise generally comes from lower strings.
How do you get rid of it?
Use your picking hand’s thumb to mute it.
Simply rest the thumb on the lower strings at all times (unless you are playing on the lowest string) When you switch from one string to another, your thumb needs to slide up and down the strings making sure they stay covered.
Now that you know how to play better lead guitar licks, it’s time to improve all areas of your playing.
This means developing amazing lead guitar technique, learning how emotional expression works in music, developing better aural skills, and more.
When this is done, your guitar skills reach a whole new level.
I can help you get there faster (without needing to practice hours on end every day) in my online guitar lessons.
They are not some generalized course you read out of a book.
Instead: I put together your guitar lessons to help you transform your guitar playing based on your specific goals.
First, you’ll fill out an evaluation form on my website – this shows me everything I need to know about your musical skills, guitar playing background, previous lesson experience (if any) and of course…
… your short & long-term guitar playing goals.
From there, I get started.
I carefully read through your evaluation form in detail and build a lesson plan for achieving your guitar playing goals. Then, I create a lesson strategy and organize your lesson materials.
Your lesson materials are the actual exercises, concepts and training drills that help you achieve your goals.
You practice what I give you and you get results.
And the best thing is:
You don’t need to practice for hours on end every day in order to become a great guitarist.
A lot of my guitar students practice 30 minutes daily. You get better by practicing more, yes... But even if you practice just 25 minutes per day, you can make a ton of progress.
In between the lessons, you have tons of options to help you get better faster.
You can get help and support from me, by:
- Attending weekly office hours (where you can ask me questions and get help from me live on video). I hold weekly Zoom sessions for you and my other students and answer any questions you have.
- Sending me recordings. This shows me how well you are doing and allows me to give you feedback on what I see/hear.
- Asking me questions by e-mail. (You can email me 24/7.)
- Updating your guitar practice journal on my student forum, so I can easily observe your daily advancement.
- Asking for additional help from other great player on the forum (many of them are guitar teachers whom I trained to teach guitar effectively).
- Attending monthly live classes. In these classes, I take the hardest guitar playing topics and break them down to make them easy to understand and master. Plus, it’s another opportunity for you to ask me questions.
- Sending me direct feedback. This way I know exactly how you are doing in your lessons and can answer your questions when you need help.
From all of these things, I can track your progress and adjust your lesson strategy to keep you on the right path.
Note: how much time you spend practicing is just one piece of the puzzle. Plus, your goals will change as time goes on. Whenever this happens, I will adjust your lesson plan accordingly.
Here are the results you can expect on guitar when you apply what I teach you:
“I was looking for help, I played a lot in the 80’s, and I didn’t touch guitar for 15 years maybe. And I decided to get back into it. And I was an OK player. But I decided I wanted to take it to a new level, I was looking for hobby I could spend time on.”
After playing around for a few months, I decided I needed a teacher. I had taken music theory classes in college. I understood a lot of the basics of music. I felt like I needed a jump start... something to get me going and keep me practicing every day. So, I’d been to the websites and YouTube, on my own, sort of seeking teachers and I came across Tom Hess, saw his videos, and so I gave that a shot.
The online guitar lessons are very high quality lessons, there’s plenty there to keep you going from lessons to lesson, it forces you to practice a lot to keep up with the lessons.My guitar playing improved immensely! I knew some of the theory, I knew I was a fairly good player, but a lot of this just tied it all together. The typical teacher was just some guy in a band, who was sitting in a music store room, who kind of showed you whatever you asked or what he felt like… there were various techniques used. This is much more professional. You have more of a specific plan the second you walk in, what your goals are, what direction you want to go, you’re kind of mapped throughout your progress and pushed in the right direction.
Daniel Kunde, South Beach, Oregon, USA
"I had actually I tried many things before I tried Tom Hess. I’ve taken guitar lessons from many different guitar teachers… some of which were decent, but I surpassed all of them in the end."
And I tried learning from books and from different online places. But in the end, I decided to take correspondence lessons with Tom Hess, because unlike anything else online, or unlike a book, he actually creates a unique lesson plan to address my specific problems.My guitar playing has improved since taking correspondence lessons with Tom Hess in several areas, but, the main areas that they’ve improved in are being able to improvise over a backing track and visualizing the fretboard, and I’ve also gotten faster at playing since starting lessons with Tom Hess.
Chris Hirsch, Ruston, Louisiana, USA
“Honestly, a lot of the guitar teachers that I took lessons with, they were great at the time, but eventually they just kind of ran out of stuff to show me and teach me or whatever.”
One thing Tom Hess does that a lot of other teachers don’t do is he guides lessons in such a way that they fulfill your personal goals as a musician. Since I start taking lessons with Tom, my playing has gotten a lot cleaner, and he's given me a lot of strategies for building speed on the riffs that I've been having trouble with, and exercises to work out all kinds of different issues that I have in my playing.Tom’s goal oriented approach really helps to focus your practice into things that you know, honestly things you really want to do. It forces you to really stop and look at, you know, “Hey, I want to get into this style or I want to do this with my musical career, I want to get into this or I want to get into that.” You know just basically whatever directions you choose to go, he gives you the lessons that’ll give you the straight path to that. There’s entirely no BS with other stuff. There’s no useless stuff. It’s all stuff that’s going to help you.
Daniel Cruzan, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
“Before I started taking lessons with Tom, I was doing things on my own and it was quite frustrating. I thought I was doing things correctly, but once I started lessons with Tom, I was able to see what I was doing wrong and quickly applied that and got results instantly, within a couple of weeks ... your playing just improves so quickly!”
I've become a hundred of times better guitar player since I've been working with Tom. Most private guitar teachers are somewhat unprepared and kind of work on just whatever, which is ok, but it isn't really as effective as the way Tom does it in terms of how much material he gives you, what material he gives you, and the long term goal of what you want to do. Tom has all that in mind. Tom is very good at giving you what you need to reach your goals.
Mark Court, Professional Musician,
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