This month, we’ll be looking at some of my favorite classical rock licks – these patterns are widely used by players like Malmsteen, Stach, Vai, and Gilbert.

Hey fellow guitarists and welcome to another edition of Surf Rock. I hope you’ve been working hard on my previous lessons and improving your chops. This month, we’ll be looking at some of my favorite classical rock licks – these patterns are widely used by players like Malmsteen, Stach, Vai, and Gilbert. These exercises are very important in developing your picking skills and they sound great thrown into a solo. Classical music is built on diatonic scales and arpeggios, and players commonly add pedal tones to anchor the riffs.

The study of classical music can greatly expand your scale work and build your technique to virtuosic levels. Classical musicians must have flawless technique to play in an orchestra; they get one chance to get it right. They practice in a very disciplined manner by playing small-scale fragments and arpeggios. They also play the same patterns over and over, building speed through a period of hours. When they start to get sloppy, they stop and begin a new pattern at a slow speed and build it back up.

Even if you are not a classical music fan you should still get the benefits of this great music. So fire up your metronome and get your shred on. Remember to start slow and build a solid foundation.

Example 1)
Example 1
This example plays over the chords A minor, G major, F major, E major and finishes with a fast 16th note triplet scale pattern. It outlines the chords and keeps a constant pedal tone going. You should roll your fourth finger for the E and B string notes that share frets. Remember to use alternate picking.


Example 2)
Example 2
This utilizes a cool pedal tone lick in A minor that moves up the neck while keeping the pedal tone going and staying in the scale pattern. It’s a bit tricky at first – take your time, go slow and build speed gradually.


Example 3)
Example 3
In this pattern, we’ll use an F diminished pattern that moves up the neck from the 13th to the 20th fret. Diminished patterns are common in classical music – they move in minor thirds, meaning that every three frets the pattern starts over. They are often played over the V chord of the key center.


Example 4)
Example 4
No classical lesson would be complete without the harmonic minor scale. This can be played over E major to F major. Try recording E to F major and play the A harmonic minor scale over it.


Hopefully this gives you some new ideas to add to your bag of tricks. The more you know, the more you grow. For musicians, when it comes to theory and technique, knowledge truly is power. Feel free to e-mail me with any questions or comments. We’ll see you next month.




Gary Hoey
you can email Gary at: info@garyhoey.com
garyhoey.com
myspace.com/garyhoey

When it comes to surf music, typically the guitar is drenched in high levels of reverb to emulate the sounds of the surf rolling in, but as always, you can adjust it to your taste

Hey there, fellow pickers. I hope you’ve been practicing my previous lessons with your metronome and slowly building up speed. It will prepare you for this month’s lesson. If you’ve missed any of our previous topics, you can find them all at premierguitar.com.

This month, in line with this column’s title, I would like to begin teaching the basics of surf guitar. Having recorded the soundtrack to the surf classic, Endless Summer II, I learned a great deal about surf music, surf culture, and even had the honor to record with the King of Surf Guitar, Dick Dale.

When it comes to surf music, typically the guitar is drenched in high levels of reverb to emulate the sounds of the surf rolling in, but as always, you can adjust it to your taste. The tone is not real dirty, it’s more of a clean sound but big in tone. For the rockers, a crunch tone can also work (medium distortion).

Surf guitar involves very fast tremolo picking with the right hand and playing repetitive patterns with the left hand. Another technique often heard is sliding your left hand over the strings while running your hand down the neck and picking fast. This creates the sound of the waves crashing. When it comes to rhythm parts, a common effect used is tremolo. They come in small foot pedals and amps sometimes have them built in.

Of course, surf guitar is not as easy as it sounds. You don’t have to know how to surf or even love surf music, but it’s a style you should study. Keep your mind open to all types of music, because diversity is what makes a great musician. Playing different styles of music can get you out of a rut. I grew up playing blues, rock, funk, surf, jazz, country and basically whatever gave me a new challenge. Here are a few examples to add surf to your guitar vocabulary.

Exercise 1)
Exercise 1
This is an exercise using a harmonic minor scale, similar to the scale used in the surf classic made famous by Dick Dale, “Misirlou.” Try recording the chord progression E major to F major for 5 minutes, and then play the scale up and down the neck. Your goal should be to reach 180 beats per minute, but take your time getting there.


Exercise 2)
Exercise 2
This is the same as example 1, but now you are playing on the low E string. Many classic surf songs are built around open string playing.


Exercise 3)
Exercise 3
Now we’re cooking! This will put your tremolo picking to the test. Start slow – about 55 beats per minute – and try to reach 180 beats per minute. Always use the approach I gave in my earlier columns to speed up: every 60 seconds, increase your metronome’s speed one click.


Exercise 4)
Exercise 4
You should use a tight muting technique to create a surf/spy sound on this one. Surf music has a big connection to the blues, as many of the riffs are built on a I-IV-V blues progression. It’s common to hear an open string riff that is repeated over a I-IV-V. Try recording the open minor chords and play the riff over it.


If you’re new to playing surf guitar, try checking out Dick Dale, the Safaris or the Ventures for a taste of some classic surf. For a more modern approach to surf rock, check out my CDs, Monster Surf or Endless Summer II. Keep shredding, surf’s up!




Gary Hoey
you can email Gary at: info@garyhoey.com
garyhoey.com
myspace.com/garyhoey

Many players practice scales in different positions but don’t know how to connect them for fluid lines that weave across the neck

Welcome back to this month’s lesson, fellow pickers. I hope you all got your metronomes cranking last month. Well, keep it running, because this month we will cover getting your scale patterns to connect across the neck.


“Many players practice scales in different positions but don’t know how to connect them for fluid lines that weave across the neck.”



This month’s examples use a very common technique among guitar shredders like Satriani, Vai, Gilbert and yours truly. It uses three notes per string while moving from position to position.

The picking pattern is an alternating down, up, down, up. You’ll need to shift your hand up to the next position by always starting the next position with your first finger on your left hand – similarly, you will shift with your pinky finger when descending. You can also try doing these as pull-off and hammer-on exercises. Make sure you start your metronome at a slow tempo of 55 beats per minute. Every 30 to 60 seconds, speed up one click until your playing becomes sloppy.

Exercise 1)
Exercise 1
This example uses the A minor scale – or A Aeolian mode – with a triplet timing. There are three notes per beat or six notes per beat when you get faster. It starts on the 5th fret on the root note and ends at the 17th fret. Try recording a rhythm track to jam to – A minor to F major for 5 minutes. Then practice the examples and make up a few of your own.


Exercise 2)
Exercise 2
This example is a descending pattern with a triplet timing. This one will most likely be harder to play fast, so take your time, start slow and then try all pull-offs to strengthen your left hand.


Exercise 3)
Exercise 3
Here we are using the E minor scale – or E Aeolian mode – with a 16th note timing. However, if you look at the pattern, you’ll see it could easily be played as a triplet run. Playing 16th notes gives it a cool syncopated feel. As with the last example, try recording an E minor to C major backing track to jam to.


Exercise 4)
Exercise 4
Here’s the descending version, again with 16th notes. Try to see all the notes in the scale and not just memorize the pattern. The more you explore the neck, the freer you’ll become with your ideas.


Good luck with it. Visit me online if you have any questions.




Gary Hoey
you can email Gary at: info@garyhoey.com
garyhoey.com
myspace.com/garyhoey
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