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more... ArtistsLessonsSeptember 2008Michael Angelo Batio

5 Licks with Michael Angelo Batio

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Exercise 1
This example features 16th note triplets diatonically ascending and “back tracking” up the fretboard. For me, the key is to take the riffs and go in unexpected directions rather than just ascending or descending in a predictable way.




Exercise 2
Exercise 2 is an example of one of my riffs in the key of Bb. Again, I like to use chromatic passing tones, but in a rock and metal guitar context. These exercises are good examples of how I take what could be standard melodic choices and twist and turn the notes around to create my own style.




Exercise 3
Here we look at using asymmetrical note groupings – it’s one thing to use triplets and another to use groups of odd numbers of notes in a count or beat. This is a good example of how I use rhythm and melody to create interesting lead guitar lines that are not stock or standard.




Exercise 4
This exercise makes up a complete section from my song, “The Finish Line.” It is in the key of C major, and again utilizes a lot of passing tones. I made this in the style of Charlie Christian, who is one of my inspirations as a guitar player. When I perform it, I add a dotted rhythm to give the
notes a “swing” feel.




Exercise 5
This riff is in the key of G major and is from the studio version of my song, “No Boundaries.” I use this kind of pattern because I like the flow of the notes; instead of just straight ascending or descending, I use a technique that I call “back tracking,” where I actually use descending passages of notes while ascending up the fretboard and vice versa.

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