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Example 1 is the initial A Natural Minor scale position that we are going to be using for all of this month's examples. Take it slow and memorize it before attempting to play it fast. Also make sure you keep your thumb behind the neck; it shouldn’t be poking over the top. Also keep a slight bend in your wrist and keep each joint arched in each finger for maximum legato fluidity. One last thing: don’t let the palm of your hand touch the bottom of the neck either; it should just be finger tips against the string and the thumb on the back of the neck.
Example 2 starts you off with a very small bite to get you going. Memorize it and start your chops building.
Example 3 builds a little more, continuing along the same process while getting a little more challenging.
Example 4 and 5 build into longer lines. Again take it slow, memorize and shred away.
I highly recommend practicing each example five minutes a day until you feel like you have mastered it. These ideas will help you develop smooth connected legato lines that seamlessly flow together. You can also try these ideas in every position of the key and on multiple string groups.
Rusty Cooley has been playing and teaching for over 20 years, and has recorded as a solo artist, with his band Outworld, and keyboardist Derek Sherinian. He has six instructional DVDs and a signature model 7-string guitar, the RC7 by Dean Guitars.
Visit Rusty online at rustycooley.com.