Chicago’s three-day, punk-rock carnival was host to Slayer, Jawbreaker, Raconteurs, Patti Smith, Rise Against, Bob Mould, Rancid, Bikini Kill, Lucero, the Struts, and more. Here are our favorite guitar-related moments from the 15th annual gathering.

Cherry Glazerr

Clementine Creevy had a one-two punch of quiet (jab) and the heavy (uppercut) during her Riot Fest set. She rocked her Fender American Professional HSS Shawbucker Strat (also featured on her newest album Stuffed & Ready) for the whole set. It’s modded to have nothing but the bridge ’bucker (wired straight to the output jack), which is the only thing living inside the guitar. She explained during our 2019 Rundown: “I ripped out the guts, basically, and all that’s left is a volume knob. To me, it sounds much better, as well as being lighter, which is nice when you tour as much as I do. But mostly, I did it because I don’t use the tone knobs. I was always keeping the guitar on my humbucker pickup. So, I just have one humbucker and a volume knob. It sounds very cool. It sounds a little bit louder and a little bit tougher and clearer to me.” The lone axe stays loaded with Ernie Ball Power Slinky (.011–.048) strings and she hammers away with Dunlop Tortex .73 mm (yellow) picks.

Rig Rundown: Adam Shoenfeld

Whether in the studio or on solo gigs, the Nashville session-guitar star holds a lotta cards, with guitars and amps for everything he’s dealt.

Adam Shoenfeld has helped shape the tone of modern country guitar. How? Well, the Nashville-based session star, producer, and frontman has played on hundreds of albums and 45 No. 1 country hits, starting with Jason Aldean’s “Hicktown,” since 2005. Plus, he’s found time for several bands of his own as well as the first studio album under his own name, All the Birds Sing, which drops January 28.

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Diatonic sequences are powerful tools. Here’s how to use them wisely.

Advanced

Beginner

• Understand how to map out the neck in seven positions.
• Learn to combine legato and picking to create long phrases.
• Develop a smooth attack—even at high speeds.

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Knowing how to function in different keys is crucial to improvising in any context. One path to fretboard mastery is learning how to move through positions across the neck. Even something as simple as a three-note-per-string major scale can offer loads of options when it’s time to step up and rip. I’m going to outline seven technical sequences, each one focusing on a position of a diatonic major scale. This should provide a fun workout for the fingers and hopefully inspire a few licks of your own.
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