Watch This Video To Learn How To Master Vibrato Guitar Technique
Vibrato is one of the most important guitar techniques... yet most guitar players never master it. Until you have excellent guitar vibrato, your playing will lack the expression and emotion needed to make it sound truly amazing. On the other hand, if your vibrato technique is solid, every phrase you play will drip with emotion!
Learn how to make your guitar vibrato sound amazing right now by watching this video:
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Now that you know how to make your vibrato better, here are a few more tips on improving the rest of your guitar phrasing:
Guitar Vibrato Tip #1: Practice Vibrato With A Metronome
Believe it or not – you can use a metronome as a way to test your vibrato. Here is how:
Set the metronome to 70 beats per minute and practice doing vibrato in:
8th notes, 16th notes, and 8th note triplets. As you do it, concentrate on:
- keeping your vibrato in sync with the click. (Believe it or not, many people struggle with this. But when you get good at synching you vibrato with the click – it will really sound musical and expressive.)
- controlling excess string noise. This is an easy element to ignore (especially when you try to do vibrato in time to a tempo). Concentrate on muting notes above and below the one you do vibrato on. This is key to making your vibrato sound clean.
As you get your vibrato under control at 70 beats per minute, begin to speed up the tempo to challenge yourself.
Note: the faster the tempo becomes – the wider your vibrato should be to sound good.
Guitar Vibrato Tip #2: Copy Vibrato Of Great Singers Into Your Guitar Phrasing.
This is possibly the single greatest thing I’ve done to improve my own guitar vibrato and lead guitar phrasing.
Great rock singers do vibrato much better than (most) rock guitar players. I say this because:
- great singers make their vibrato lock in with the tempo of the song at all times. (This is partially what inspired my idea to practice vibrato to a metronome. Few guitar players do this. But the ones who do, end up with great vibrato.)
- unlike guitar players, singers don’t just do instant vibrato (Instant vibrato happens when you play a note and instantly add vibrato to it.) Singers often do delayed vibrato. This happens when you play (or sing) a note, let it ring out for a bit and then add vibrato.
(The only exception to what I just said are opera singers. Opera singers only do instant vibrato and they do vibrato on every single note. In my opinion, this kills the drama and expression of vibrato and is a big reason I can’t stand opera singers.)
That said, great rock singers nail all the nuances of great vibrato.
My 2 favorite singers are: Fabio Lione and King Diamond.
And here is a trick you can use to get your vibrato chops in shape:
Transcribe your favorite singer’s vocal parts on your guitar. But don’t just copy the notes. Mimic their phrasing and vibrato nuances.
(If you don’t know which singers to start with, study Fabio Lione and King Diamond.)
This was how I got my vibrato chops in shape years ago and many of my guitar students have done the same.
Guitar Vibrato Tip #3: Vary how you use vibrato.
Here are some ways to do that:
- Add vibrato to double stops and chords. Believe it or not, you don’t have to only add vibrato to one note. You can also practice adding vibrato to 2 (or more) strings in power chords and double stops. This adds a ton of grit to your guitar licks and solos.
And when you do power chords, you can add vibrato to the highest strings of the chord. This makes the chords sound more emotional compared to just strumming them.
- Do delayed vibrato with rearticulation. This is my most favorite way of doing vibrato. It works like this: play a note. Let it ring out for about 1 second. Then hit the note again and this time apply thick, wide and fast vibrato.
This makes the vibrato as dramatic as it can possibly be.
Bonus tip #1: do this kind of vibrato on bent notes.
Bonus tip #2: when you do bent-note vibrato make the vibrato swirl above and below the note for maximum effect.
- Do vibrato tapping. Here is how: play a note with your fretting hand. Then tap any note with your picking (tapping) hand). Next, do vibrato with your fretting hand.
This is a great effect you don’t hear very often… which is a shame, because it’s very simple and fun to do.
Now you know the best ways to master vibrato on guitar. The next step is to transform the rest of your guitar playing (everything from your guitar technique, fretboard knowledge, creativity and music knowledge), so you can…
…Finally put it all together and feel like a real musician!
I can help you with this inside my Breakthrough Guitar Lessons.
Here is how it works:
You tell me about your guitar playing challenges, current skill level, musical knowledge and your goals.
I create a lesson strategy and your lesson materials tailored specifically for you.
As you practice your lessons, I am here for you every step of the way.
I give you feedback on your guitar playing, answer your questions live on video every week, give you unlimited email support and train you in student-only live video classes.
And if you do your best to practice what I teach you at least 30 minutes per day, you almost can’t fail to turn your guitar playing into something you feel really proud of.
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My last lesson I took with a local guitar teacher before joining Tom, I was struggling with a sweep picking pattern, which was the 5 string root major, I was really struggling to get the rolling technique down. I took it to my guitar teacher and I was like “Help me with this, I don’t know what I’m doing wrong.” This is his exact phrase: “At high speeds, it doesn’t really matter if you can play it clean or not, no one can hear it anyway.” At that point, I was just like, “Ah man.” But thankfully, in that same message, he mentioned Tom’s name. Then the doors opened. That very night, I went home and looked at every single lesson Tom had, had my guitar in hand, every YouTube lesson on you know “correct motions”, “play this over chords”... just applied it instantly, and it was instant results within an hour... just from his free stuff. I was like, oh man, I’ve got to do lessons with this guy.I remember when I first started out with lessons, I instantly jumped on the forum to greet myself, and it’s amazing how there’s like 30 responses. Just like, “Hi welcome.” and stuff... “Hi Dan, great musical tastes”. That made me feel really at home and welcomed into Tom’s forum and community. Every time I’ve had an issue when I was first starting out be it like theory or technique, there’s always been someone there who’s helped. Otherwise it could’ve been this potentially awkward process where I’d have to wait a whole week to get an answer from my teacher, who even then may not have answered it correctly and may have never solved it. Whereas there are guys on there who have been with Tom and have been through exactly what I’ve been through. They know exactly how to help, in what order, what information you need... it’s just a friendly atmosphere really.
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