Guitar Tapping – 5-Step Guitar Tapping Video Tutorial
By Tom Hess
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Want to learn 2-hand tapping?
You’ve come to the right place.
For years, I watched in awe as Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhoads and Steve Vai pulled off fast 2-hand tapping licks fast & clean.
But when I tried to play like them?
It sounded bad enough to make a grown man cry.
Everything changed when I took lessons with an awesome teacher in my area.
He showed me what I was doing wrong.
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...he got me on the right track & my playing has never been the same.
I've since taught these 2-hand tapping tricks to my other guitar students and watched their playing improve at an alarming rate too.
Here are the 5 things that transformed my tapping forever.
Watch the video below and use them in your playing in your next practice session:
Now that you know the basics, let's go deeper. Here are 3 bonus tapping tips to add into you playing today.
They are really simple to do (even if you aren’t an advanced guitar player yet).
Check these out:
Guitar Tapping Tip #1. Combine 2-Hand Tapping With Sweep Picking
Combining 2-hand tapping with sweep picking is a great way to make your licks sound much harder than they really are.
Check out this video by one of my students to see what I mean:
Want to see the tab of what he is playing? Here it is (no email required).
Tip: to combine 2-hand tapping with sweep picking – keep your picking hand near the neck pick up (as you see in the video). This helps you to quickly switch from sweep picking into tapping.
Guitar Tapping Tip #2. Combine Pinch Harmonics With Tapping
Did you know you can play a tapped harmonic 5, 7 or 12 frets above any note on your guitar?
Follow these simple steps to learn how:
- Fret (and play) any note on your guitar (example: 4th fret on the G string).
- Lightly touch the string at the 16th fret with the middle finger of your picking hand. Touch directly above the fret and release it immediately.
This creates a harmonic 12 frets above the 4th fret.
Repeat step 2 on frets 11 and 9 to play harmonics 7 frets and 5 frets above your starting note (4th fret in this example).
(Letter “T” in the tab stands for “tapping”.)
Tip: Do NOT press the string down to the fret. If you push the string down, you will simply play a regular note instead of a harmonic.
Guitar Tapping Tip #3. Tapped Vibrato
Tapped vibrato is a very simple technique that makes your licks more melodic.
Here are the simple steps for playing tapped vibrato:
- Play any note on guitar with your fretting hand.
- Tap any note that is higher in pitch with your picking hand. Make sure that the tapped note is in the key you are playing in!
- Apply vibrato with your fretting hand (NOT your picking/tapping hand!). This produces the tapped harmonic sound.
Check out this video to see a demonstration of tapped vibrato.
There are 2 secrets to a great sounding tapped vibrato:
Key #1: Good left-hand vibrato (duh!) :) Great vibrato sound has perfect balance between its speed and width.
If your vibrato is too fast and narrow, it sounds like a mosquito that needs to be swatted.
If your vibrato is too slow and wide, it sounds like a series of bent notes – not vibrato.
Check out this video to see/hear good (and bad) vibrato:
Key #2: String noise control.
Sloppy string noise makes your playing sound bad (even if you play all the right notes and have great vibrato).
How do you avoid it?
There are 3 techniques I use all the time (and teach to all my students).
Here they are:
Now that you know easy ways to play 2-hand tapping, the next technique to focus on is sweep picking.
Most guitarists only wish they could sweep fast & clean. But you can join the ranks of those who actually do.
Download this free sweep picking eGuide and learn sweep picking secrets most guitarists will never know.
About 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.Become a better guitarist by studying with the top online guitar teacher.