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Lessons

Using just a few notes or a barrage, John Frusciante creates guitar parts which deftly guide listeners through Red Hot Chili Peppers’ songs.

I had a bit of a strange introduction to the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Back in the day, during my first week of school at New York University, I noticed a sign on the door of the student cafeteria indicating that a relatively unknown band called “Red Hot Chili Peppers” was playing a show across the hall that Saturday night. I remember thinking, “Well, that’s a silly name for a band. Those guys are never going anywhere.” Yeah. Good call.

Cut to winter 2002: I’ve been a professional music transcriber for about five years, and I find myself in the Chili Peppers’ NYC management office, transcribing an advance copy of their By the Way album, set to be released that summer. It was the band’s eighth album and fourth with guitarist John Frusciante. It was also my first deep dive into Frusciante’s playing, though it would not be my last.

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Rig Rundown: Ariel Posen [2023]

The silky smooth slide man may raise a few eyebrows with his gear—a hollow, steel-bodied baritone and .017s on a Jazzmaster—but every note and tone he plays sounds just right.

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Riffs are the building blocks of classic rock. They are the earworms that stick with you and make the songs memorable. In this video, you will learn how to play five of the most popular riffs from bands such as Deep Purple, AC/DC, Black Sabbath, The Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin.

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Here's a crash course in how one of the most eclectic and influential guitarists of all time developed a unique vocabulary through speedy rockabilly licks, fuzzed-out melodies, and an otherworldly use of the vibrato bar.

Intermediate

Intermediate

  • Understand Jeff Beck’s rockabilly roots.
  • Learn how to create tension-filled phrases over a 12-bar blues.
  • Develop a more nuanced vibrato technique.
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Jeff Beck is arguably the most eclectic and ever-evolving guitar hero. He was part of the holy trinity of Yardbirds guitarists, along with Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page, and is the one who has consistently remained at the forefront of the electric guitar ever since. From John McLaughlin to Eddie Van Halen, Beck is a favorite of just about any guitar player you could name, and that includes the other Yardbirds alumni. Stephen Colbert explained it best at the Grammy awards, “You know the game Guitar Hero? He has the all-time high score—and he’s never played it.” Let’s take a look at some of the many highlights of Beck’s playing throughout his illustrious and uncompromising career.

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Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

Eight ways to add excitement to your blues rhythms.

Intermediate

Intermediate

  • Learn classic shuffle and walking bass lines.
  • Explore chord voicings that can be combined with bass lines.
  • Develop the ability to combine different patterns to create variation in accompaniment.
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Combining bass lines with chords can be an effective way to perform solo or accompany a singer or other instrumentalist. This technique is often employed to thicken up parts in a setting where there's space to fill. While common among jazz guitar players, it is equally suitable in other styles of music, and lends itself very nicely to blues playing.

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