How To Quickly Improve Your Guitar Playing Creativity

by Tom Hess

Ever been told that guitar playing creativity only happens for those who natural musical talent?

Good news:

Almost no one was born with tons of natural talent for guitar (including many of your favorite players), but anyone can become an incredibly creative and expressive guitarist.

More good news – it doesn’t have to take forever to become a creative guitarist.

Get started building a foundation to play guitar creatively in no time by reading these simple tips:

Guitar Playing Creativity Tip #1 – Get More Out Of What You Already Have

Avoid the common mistake of learning tons of new scales or arpeggio patterns hoping this alone will make you more creative. Instead, work on being as creative as possible with just a few notes at once.

Use any guitar pattern you are familiar with and simply play a few notes of it as differently as possible for several minutes straight (use things like vibrato, bending, tremolo, different note rhythms, etc.).

This helps you begin thinking more creatively with what you already know, making it easier to do so while soloing or improvising.

Guitar Playing Creativity Tip #2 – Develop More Emotional Expression In Your Licks

Many guitarists try to put together a long list of guitar licks they’ve memorized to have for any musical occasion…

… but creativity doesn’t work like this really.

Memorizing a lot of new guitar licks is much more likely to make you rely on them when you aren’t sure what to play rather than thinking creatively in the moment.

Here is one way to combat this issue:

Start paying attention to how the scale degrees (like 1, 2, 3, etc.) of a particular scale sound over the chords in that scale. Slowly play through each note after strumming a chord.

Over time, you will learn that certain notes feel a certain way – like the way a 9th feels above a minor chord. This helps you start playing emotionally when you think, rather than just memorizing licks.

Guitar Playing Creativity Tip #3 – –Integrate Theory Into Your Guitar Playing

You don't need to memorize tons of abstract music theory concepts in order to use theory to enhance your guitar playing.

Some simple ways to use/practice theory to do this are:

Learn how voice leading works

Understand basics on keys, chord building and intervals

Develop aural skills

Practice integrating these simple concepts together with your other guitar skills to make creative lead guitar solos that flow effortlessly from note to note.

Now you know some quick ways to start playing guitar creatively during solos and licks.

Now it’s time to discover some more cool ways to play guitar creatively! Get started now by learning how to play creative guitar licks.

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.

Learn even more powerful ways to become a better lead guitarist by studying guitar online.

© 2002-2023 Tom Hess Music Corporation