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Below, you will find some free mini-lessons with licks, tabs and exercises!

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DISCLAIMER: These are original works, composed and transcribed by myself.


B♭ Minor 11 extended arpeggio – An example of connecting arpeggio patterns to create extended arpeggios, applicable in all keys and minor/minor 7 tonalities. This example connects a B♭ minor 7 arpeggio with a C# major 9 arpeggio, suggesting a B♭ minor 11 arpeggio.

G# Phrygian alternate picking run – Three-string alternate picking run in the mode of G# Phrygian (3rd degree of E Major).

C Diminished arpeggio sequence – WITHOUT sweep picking! – How you can play two-string diminished arpeggio licks in sextuplets without the sweep picking technique.

G Dorian legato lick – 32nd note legato run in the mode of G Dorian (2nd degree of F Major). Pick the first note on each string very gently for extra fluency.

F# Minor (Aeolian) Alternate/hybrid picking lick – This lick idea combines alternate and hybrid picking.

Intervalic exercise – An exercise for practicing both hand dexterity and intervalic movement on the fretboard. Articulation is all alternate picking. Pay close attention to the fingering!

A Minor Pentatonic triplet sequence –  Minor pentatonic lick, where you play the minor pentatonic scale as a sequence in triplets (groups of 3 eighth notes). To play it as a sequence in this case means to repeat each first note of every triplet, placing an accent on the first note of each triplet. You start the lick halfway through beat 4 in bar 1. This example is in the key of A Minor, but you can play it in all keys! This is not only an awesome sounding lick in almost any popular style (blues, rock, metal or even jazz), but also a great rhythm exercise if you are just starting out using triplets in your solos.

Chromatic legato exercise – Chromatic fretting hand strength and legato exercise in 32nd note groups of 10. Pick the first note on the high E string only! Play every other first note on each string using a hammer-on from nowhere. Tip: start the exercise slowly and build up the speed as you go.

5-string triadic arpeggios for guitar – with inversions – 5-string arpeggio patterns for major, minor, augmented and diminished and their inversions.

Tapped diminished sequence – Another lick idea using tapping technique with diminished triads on one string in a sixteenth note sequence.

E Lydian legato run – Stretchy legato lick in the mode of E Lydian (4th degree of B Major) in the style of Joe Satriani. Hammer-ons from nowhere and slided position shifts, here we go! 😉

E♭ Mixolydian legato run in septuplets – Another legato run, this time an Eb Mixolydian (5th degree of Ab Major) lick in septuplets (groups of 7 notes). Only pick the first note. Every other first note on each new string is played as a hammer-on from nowhere.

B Minor triplet lick – 2-string lick in triplets with slides position shifts, combining both B Natural Minor (Aeolian/6th degree of D Major) and B Minor Pentatonic. The first note, 14 on the D string, is slided. The other notes on the D string, each being the first note of each triplet, are palm-muted to add percussiveness to the lick, placing the accent on the second note of each triplet. Quick and easy way to play horizontally across the fretboard, rather than up and down!

String skip and fourths exercise – A stretchy lick with string skipping. This example is in the key of E Major, but can be practiced in any major key over a I-ii chord progression.

Proggy syncopated 16th note lick – A lick in the scale of B♭ minor pentatonic (4th position) using a 4/4 time signature with syncopations. The lick is played using 16th notes only. The syncopations are caused by the specific amount of notes per note group (6, 8 and 14) and use of 8th rests after each note group. The first note of each group is accented, which will give you more of a grip on the syncopations. You can use this lick, for instance in a progressive rock/metal context, in any key – if you transpose it correctly!

B Diminished 7-String Arpeggio Etude – Diminished mini-etude specifically for 7-string players. The etude starts in root position and moves into 1st inversion and is played over all 7 strings. Study the articulation carefully and make sure all picked notes sound smooth. Practice tip: aim for equal fluency between the legato and picked notes!

Stretchy lick: C augmented to C major pentatonic – Another stretchy lick, combining C augmented and C major pentatonic.

A natural minor (Aeolian) tapping lick – 4 note per string tapping lick with an A natural minor/Aeolian (6th degree of C major) tonality. The trick to successful tapping technique? Accent the first, picking hand tapped note in each 16th note group (the strong beat) and make sure the space between all of the notes is even. Play straight 16th notes all the way through.

2-string arpeggio lick – Bm7 to Dmaj7 – arpeggio lick, connecting Bm7 and Dmaj7 as 2-string arpeggio patterns. You can transpose it to any key to play over a i-III chord progression or a static minor chord or vamp.

Major scale exercise – thirds – A useful exercise for both hand dexterity, fretboard visualization and creativity is playing a certain scale in specific intervals. With this example, you play the scale of A Major in thirds. Due to the intervalic structure of the major scale, you get a mixture of major and minor thirds when playing the scale ascending and descending. When you get comfortable with thirds, you can practice the scale in fourths, fifths, sixths, etc. The long-term creative goal behind this exercise is to break out of only playing scales up and down the fretboard when improvising or soloing. Varying and mixing up the intervals you play will make a big difference in the way you sound as a player and bring you a step closer to finding your own unique voice on the instrument!

Quintuplet lick in B minor pentatonic – A way to spice up your licks is by adding extended note groupings, such as quintuplets (groups of 5 notes), sextuplets (groups of 6 notes) and septuplets (groups of 7 notes). This is an example of a minor pentatonic quintuplet lick in the style of Joe Bonamassa and Eric Johnson. Try it out!

7-String Augmented Triad Sequence Exercise – A sequence exercise to connect your close voicing augmented triads accross the fretboard for 7-string guitar, moving through all inversions. Notice how the shape is nice and symmetrical!

John Petrucci style scale run – D Natural Minor/Aeolian 32nd note scale run in the style of John Petrucci (Dream Theater), moving diagonally across the fretboard with position shifts. Practice tip: divide the lick into groups of 3 notes, accenting the first note of each group.

Close to You (Solo Mini-Study) – A mini-study over the solo section in ‘Close to You’ (The Carpenters). Bar 1 starts with a Db Major triad arpeggio, followed by scale tones from the Db Major scale, landing on the 4th degree (F) and resolving to the 3rd degree (E) of C Major to highlight the Csus4 to C transition in bar 2. The grace note slides in bar 1 add extra color and expression. In bar 3, the Cm7 chord is highlighted by playing the b7 (Bb), root (C), b3 (Eb), back to the root and ending on the b7.  The lick leads into the F Minor scale run in bar 4 to outline the Fm7 chord. In bars 5 to 8, the vocal line is  imitated to highlight both the Dbmaj9 and Abmaj9 chords. To outline the Dbmaj9 chord, you play an Fm7 shell voicing arpeggio from the 3rd degree of Db (F), also playing the 5th (Ab) and the 9th (Eb) in bars 5 and 6, with a slide from the 9th (Eb) to the 10th, back to the 9th at the end of bar 6. In bars 7 and 8, the 6th (F), root (Ab) and the 5th (Eb) of Ab Major are played to outline the Abmaj9 chord.



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