3 Fun Ways To Use Tritone Licks In Your Guitar Playing (Even If You Know ZERO Music Theory)

By Tom Hess


The Secret To Adding Fire &
Emotion To Any Guitar Lick
The Secret To Adding Fire And Emotion To Your Guitar Playing e-Book
ENTER YOUR NAME AND
EMAIL TO GET ACCESS
FREE E-BOOK

By submitting your info, you agree to send it to Tom Hess Music Corporation who will process and use it according to their privacy policy.

Want to quickly spice up your guitar licks and guitar solos?

You are in the right place.

I have something special for you.

It’s a way to create guitar licks using none other than:

Devil’s Interval - the Tritone.

Diabolus in Musica.

Also known as: the flat 5th.

I know, I know.

It sounds evil - like something you should not be using in music, right?

But many professional players use it to create awesome-sounding flat 5th guitar licks & expressive guitar solos.

Today, you will too.

(Even if you are not an advanced guitarist yet and there is no tritone in the key you are in).

How?

Watch this video to find out how to create flat 5th guitar licks to add to your guitar solos (and make them sound intense!):




Are there more ways to use flat 5th guitar licks to play guitar solos that sound really impressive?

You bet!

Here are some additional guitar licks to use as examples:


Tritone Guitar Lick Idea #1. Bend from the flat 5 up into the 5th

I learned this style of string bends from listening to the guitar solos of the great Marty Friedman. (I call it: “Exotic Bends”.)

How does it work to help you play killer guitar solos?

You bend from any note not in the scale to a note that IS in the scale.

Watch this video to see how it’s done:
 



Simply bend from the flat 5 up to the regular 5th. The b5 interval creates tension that quickly resolves as your bend reaches the 5th note of the scale.


The Secret To Adding Fire &
Emotion To Any Guitar Lick
The Secret To Adding Fire And Emotion To Your Guitar Playing e-Book
ENTER YOUR NAME AND
EMAIL TO GET ACCESS
FREE E-BOOK

By submitting your info, you agree to send it to Tom Hess Music Corporation who will process and use it according to their privacy policy.


(You can also do Exotic bends with any other note that’s not in the scale, not only the flatted 5th).

And make sure to wrap your thumb over the neck of the guitar. Use the web between your thumb & index finger to make bending easier.

See the photo below:


Guitar vibrato hand position


Question: “Tom Hess, what if I have a hard time bending in tune while playing flat 5th guitar licks?”

Answer: Play the note you want to bend up to as a regular (unbent) note and get its sound into your ear. This becomes a reference point for your string bend.

Then bend the string and stop when the bend matches your reference pitch. As you improve, you get faster at bending the string without playing a reference pitch first. This gives you total control over the sound of flat 5th guitar licks.

Bonus tip: you build more tension by extending the time it takes to do the string bend. Like this:

Guitar bending lick

Hear It
 

Tritone Guitar Lick Idea #2. Integrate Flat 5th Guitar Licks With Other Exotic Scales And Licks

As you become more advanced & learn new scales, you find new opportunities to use the b5 interval to make a variety of interesting flat 5th guitar licks.

For example: the Lydian scale:

Lydian scale for guitar

Hear It


The red note is the flatted 5th (although in Lydian it’s called: “sharp 4”).

Use the lead guitar licks from the video at the top of this page to bring out the drama from the flat 5 / sharp 4th in the Lydian scale.

And check out this video for more cool flat 5th guitar licks you can play using Lydian (and other exotic scales):

Lydian is a great scale to play with for flat 5th guitar licks, because it sounds unique and emotional compared to other scales.


Tritone Guitar Lick Idea #3. Use Double Stops To Play Flat 5th Guitar Licks

What are double stops and how do they help you play better guitar licks?

Double stops are two notes played at the same time. You usually hear about them from blues & classic rock players.

But you can use tritone double stops in any style (including heavy metal) to make guitar solos that scream.

Check out this example:

Double stop guitar lick with tritone

Hear It


Tip: double stops sound most aggressive with vibrato. If you have a hard time making your vibrato sound good, check out this vibrato video (by one of my top guitar students).

And while we are on this topic:

If you like the sound of aggressive double stops, check out this video to get more ideas you can use in your guitar solos right away:
 



Want more help with playing cool flat 5th guitar licks and making your guitar solos sound more expressive?

No problem.

Download this free lead guitar licks soloing eGuide - This shows you the secret to adding fire and emotion to all your flat 5th guitar licks, guitar solos and improvisations (even if you can’t play fast yet).


Tom HessAbout Tom Hess: Tom Hess is a guitar teacher, music career mentor and guitar teacher trainer. He teaches rock guitar lessons online to students from all over the world and conducts instructional live guitar training events attended by musicians from over 50 countries.

Want to create your own guitar licks and master playing guitar solos? Sign up for online rock guitar lessons.

© 2002-2021 Tom Hess Music Corporation