Shred Licks

Hello everyone! It's great to be back on this awesome site! This lesson we are going to learn some shred licks. I'm sure most of you are familiar with the term "Shred". The licks I'm going to show you will be great for your technique. Remember to alternate pick these examples. Also, use a metronome or drum machine to keep everything even. Let's get started......

Ex.1 is a linear style lick in Em (E,F#,G,A,B,C,D). It's great for your alternate picking and it's challenging to play cleanly. The lick uses strick 16th note triplets and incorporates a melodic phrase moving through the scale across the neck very quickly. Make sure you follow the fingerings on this one. Start very slow and precise and build up speed without missing notes.

Ex.2 is another great challenging picking lick with string skipping. This is off my "Total Freedom" CD from a track called "Freedom", which is full of fast passages like this one. Also in Em, like Ex.1. Also, there is a classical, violin type phrase moving through the scale in 16th note triplets. For the first bar and a half we are playing only on the E and B strings, then we jump from the E to the G. Make sure your left and right hands are in sync or else it will sound sloppy. You should also pull out your metronome or drum machine for this one. Try moving this idea on other strings and to other scales.

Ex.3 is a excerpt from a song called "Prelude" from my "Vibe" CD. This example uses the B Harmonic minor scale (B,C#,D,E,F#,G,A#). This lick has a very classical sound to it. Bar one kicks off with a B minor arpeggio (B,D,F#). I'm using the sweep picking technique to play this arpeggio. Hammer the first two notes, B and D, and rake across the strings with all down strokes, except the high B which is played with an upstroke. Make sure you lift off each finger as you ascend up the arpeggio and you must not let the notes run together like a chord. This lick also incorporates a 4 note scale sequence and pedal points common in classical music. Remember, don't forget to follow the fingerings for this.

Ex.4 - Here we have a crazy string skipping legato lick, with some wide left hand careful of your left hand on this one. The phrase consists entirely of hammer-ons and pull-offs. Just pick each string once and let your left hand do all the work. Basically, it's just 2 arpeggios played together, Em13 without the 9th and the 11th (E,G,B,C#,D) and Fdim7 (F,Ab,B,D). Experiment moving this one around the neck.

OK, this wraps up our lesson! If you have any questions, feel free to email me. Also, be sure to check out my CDs and my instructional video/CD Rom release "Virtuoso Rock Fusion Concepts". For more info visit