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Develop Your Style

Hello! My name's Simone Gianlorenzi and I'm an italian guitar player. In this column I'd like to speak about a few problematic aspects that I've found in some of my students (but not only!!). I've noticed that often rock guitar players seem like they're trapped in the cage of usual sounds. It seems so difficult to escape from them all, but in the end, it's not.

Let's think about tapping. It's like an obligation to propose always the same equation: Triads + Tap + Triplets = ERUPTION!. Going out from Van Halen's tapping sound is easy! First of all, you need to use intervals far from being a triad, a rhythmic figure different from triplets, and string skipping, as you can see in my first example. It sounds good over A dorian.

After this, you can apply other devices to create your tapping phrases. The next phrase, in Greg Howe's style, uses 5ths with left hand, and 4ths with right hand. It sounds good over E dorian.

To escape from scalar sounds you must work with intervals. For example, when you use alternate picking, seems inevitable playing scales.

Instead, dispersing notes in a different way, by thirds, you can obtain a new sound thanks to playing triads that exist within the scale.

Speaking about sweep picking, you are not forced to play triads! As you can see in example 5, thanks to the knowledge of intervals, you have the possibility to create new extended arpeggios. In my example I've used also tapping and a rhythmic figure in quintuplets: it sounds good over F lydian or D dorian.

In the end of this speech, I can say that, to go out from standard and common sounds, you need to use intervals, rhythmic figures different from triplets and sextuplets, and of course, your fantasy! That's the right way to develop your style!

Take care. See you soon, ciao.

Simone Gianlorenzi

the following bio material provided by Simone Gianlorenzi

Simone Gianlorenzi started playing in 1992. In a little time he began to teach in many schools and to play in a lot of bands. At the moment he is a contributor for the italian guitar magazine "CHITARRE" and he teaches rock & heavy metal guitar in the magazine's school. Last March 26th Steve Vai went to do a clinic in that school and Simone had the honour to play before him. But, in the same time, Steve Vai had the honour (?!?) as well to play Simone's guitar. In this last period Simone is working on different projects and the realization of his personal web site. If you want, you can e-mail him at or you can visit the "CHITARRE" web site at to know more about the school and the magazine.