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Old 04-14-2012, 03:23 PM   #1
modern death
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Guitar Exercises

What are some exercises you guitarists use to get your chops up? I've never been one to practice scales / runs, always been a riff dude, but I'm trying to get my chops up and am looking for a good place to start. Just different exercises / tip appreciated. There used to be a thread started by Mr. Sotelo I think, couldn't find it though.

Uploading GP files or any tab would be helpful.
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:28 PM   #2
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Sorry, couldn't help it.
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:38 PM   #3
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thanks for the help
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:49 PM   #4
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lots of chromatics. first i alternate pick them and then i economy pick them. i also do a lot of string skipping with both alternate and economy picking. i do a lot of legato exercises and then i sweep pick.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:02 PM   #5
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Practice alternate picking with chromatic runs. If you are good at alternate picking, I think you would have a decent chance of playing just about anything metal-related.

I am familiar with your playing. It seems that you have all the technical skills needed for soloing though.

Also, there is a very good video called Rock Discipline by John Petrucci. If you have the patience, that video can provide a solid set of technique and exercises.

Last edited by Corpseifier; 04-14-2012 at 04:06 PM..
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:04 PM   #6
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Try to find shawn lane's "power solos" book online in pdf. It has some of the best exercises while retaining musicality and never confining you too much to specific "patterns". I like to pull it out once in a while and just practice a few licks here and there, it's good help IMO.

EDIT: nvm, uploaded it

https://rapidshare.com/files/1364720...Solos_Book.pdf

Other things I like to do is a given scale and its subsequent modes in 8ths, triplets, sixteenths etc... and in different groups I.E Assuming C major: C,D,E,F - D,E,F,G - E,F,G,A or C,D,E - D,E,F - E,F,G etcetc. Its an amazing exercise though I don't do that often enough since it's incredibly boring.

Last edited by Claude; 04-14-2012 at 04:11 PM..
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:06 PM   #7
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:16 PM   #8
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Reminded me of these classics. The Yngwie one is gone apparently : (
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corpseifier View Post
Also, there is a very good video called Rock Discipline by John Petrucci..
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claude View Post
https://rapidshare.com/files/1364720...Solos_Book.pdf

Other things I like to do is a given scale and its subsequent modes in 8ths, triplets, sixteenths etc... and in different groups I.E Assuming C major: C,D,E,F - D,E,F,G - E,F,G,A or C,D,E - D,E,F - E,F,G etcetc. Its an amazing exercise though I don't do that often enough since it's incredibly boring.



Sick, thanks!
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:23 PM   #10
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Learning this DVD has helped me shitloads in my technique, definitely recommended!!


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Old 04-14-2012, 05:29 PM   #11
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Learn full songs, not just random exercises.

I built my chops learning a shitload of Neoclassical metal songs at a young age, mainly stuff by Yngwie Malmsteen, Racer X, Cacophony, Tony MacAlpine and the likes.
I also remember learning "No Boundaries" by Michael Angelo Batio at age 15.
I basically locked myself in my room for hours and played that shit non-stop.

Around 2 years and a half or 3 years later, I recorded this (my favorites are the first and last one) :


(A friend did this video)

I'd say it was worth it.

Last edited by Chromaticity; 04-14-2012 at 05:39 PM..
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:05 PM   #12
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Well, what area of your technique do you want to develop?

If it's your left hand, this is a great one for developing finger independence that's actually fun. It's a notorious exercise for classical guitarists, but you can use a pick.

http://www.guitar69.com/PDF%27s%20fo...nterpoints.pdf

Be sure to do all permutations across the fretboard on the 4rth, 5th, and 6th string as well. It will be awhile before you can do that, but when you are comfortable with one, move on to the next.

Great video about this lesson here:



Be careful when playing anything that has wide stretches. If it hurts to play, stop. Practice slurs (hammer-ons and pull-offs) with all 1,2,3,4 permutations (there are 24 total) in 5th position (first finger on the 5th fret) if 1st position is too uncomfortable for you. Be sure to do them on all six strings. I do each one four times. Stretching and washing your hands before you play is really helpful.

You should really practice ear training too. IMO, practicing scales up and down is one of the most useless things to do on the guitar. I mean, you should do it if you've never done it before, but don't spend a lot of time with it and do it in a practical and logical way. That is, play them over a chord progression (example: strum the chord, play said scale in two octaves, arpeggiate the chord, move on to the next chord in the progression and repeat). Use rhythmic variation to break out of the monotony once you are comfortable with it, change the progression or the key, apply concepts like augmentation and diminution, etc. It will be much more beneficial to your playing if you practice playing triads and seventh chords by putting together certain melodic ideas (arpeggiation, upper, lower and neighbor group tones, suspensions, pedals, passing tones, tension tones, etc.) to help you create more interesting lines. Your improvisation skills will improve greatly since these are small ideas that lead to big concepts that can be applied to any genre of music really. Practicing in this manner, to me, was a huge break through.
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:09 PM   #13
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A lot of this thread already has great input. Like Phil said, I find learning really difficult songs/solos to do the trick. Sure there are chromatic exercises and scales, but that gets stale quick. If all you're going for is chops, learn songs that require them--it just kind of happens over time as long as you use a metronome (or midi playback) and endure playing things over and over with proper technique (which you can observe through instructional videos). If it's strictly shredding and soloing you're looking to build then try learning some Jason Becker, Guthrie Govan, Paul Gilbert, Micheal Romeo solos, etc.

Shawn Lane said in one of his instructional videos that instead of training your fast runs at slow tempos, see if you can just casually (relaxed and semi-focused) play it at normal speed for a bit. In other words, don't just stick to the regular sequential, incremental BPM practice sessions. That's crucial, but not to be fetishized. Just casually play it at normal speed, even if it's sloppy and try to develop your technique at that specific speed. The way you play is particular to certain tempos, so you don't want to hone in on being able to just play runs at slow tempos. You won't get far playing fast if you can't do it relaxed. Guthrie said in some Guitar World Video that you shouldn't only stick to practicing slowly, otherwise you won't ever see high speeds as something manageable. He said something cheesy along the lines of "you gotta just believe and pretend you can do it", but it's the truth. Oh shiznit, here's the entire Shawn Lane Power Solos instructional video!



I think youtube is in boss mode right now, cause I've been seeing loads of full version of documentaries and instructional videos. There's a full-length Michael Romeo video in the related vids section!! Holy shit, even more full vids of Paul Gilbert and other guitars in those related vids.

fuck yeah youtube :derp check out all of those related videos, it's a goldmine.

Also, here's Holdsworth's Reaching For the Uncommon Chord.

http://www.mediafire.com/?tb24ufaui51th1s

No shred, but damn, do Holdsworth's chord voicings test finger dexterity. Check out the transcription for the song Home in particular, beastly chords galore. Some I'm pretty sure are actually physically impossible.

And here's a powertab of this classical shred piece this guy uploaded on Powertab, back when it still had archives. He said it was his audition piece into Berkeley.

http://www.mediafire.com/?jjb8mv1xqj09f1y

Probably has some of the craziest runs I've ever heard, the whole song has a very...twisted classical feel to it. Enjoy the drawbar organ, it's worth it.

Last edited by Oleg; 04-14-2012 at 07:33 PM..
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:13 PM   #14
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I have that Shawn Lane guitar instructional on dvd, I don't remember where I found it but I would definitely recommend it as well.
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:42 PM   #15
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So happy you made this thread marlon. I've found myself in the same boat recently. After years of just learning death metal riffs and not caring about scales/modes and what not im seriously regretting not learning them first. So thanks to everyone so far who has had any input!

I have been working through some of this book which is crazy hard for my pathetic hands haha. Its Guthrie Govan and i definitely recommend it to all of you to check out.

Here ya go! https://rapidshare.com/files/8259906...es_booklet.pdf
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:49 PM   #16
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Chops From Hell - http://chopsfromhell.com/chopsfromhe...uctionals.html
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:53 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Also, here's Holdsworth's Reaching For the Uncommon Chord.

http://www.mediafire.com/file/1bewrg...9ig/AH_-_R.rar
Password my man?
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:01 PM   #18
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I'm a big fan of any Holdsworth study material. The man is a fucking alien.
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:14 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChAAPY View Post
It will be much more beneficial to your playing if you practice playing triads and seventh chords by putting together certain melodic ideas (arpeggiation, upper, lower and neighbor group tones, suspensions, pedals, passing tones, tension tones, etc.) to help you create more interesting lines. Your improvisation skills will improve greatly since these are small ideas that lead to big concepts that can be applied to any genre of music really. Practicing in this manner, to me, was a huge break through.
This is excellent advice, regardless of whether you want to develop good improv or not. You build your musical vocabulary and end up enlarging your toolbox, so to speak, and not just relying on your chops. It's a fun way to practice, but I personally find it hard to stay disciplined because it's a very fluid way of doing things and not as rigid as other practicing schemes, atleast for me...
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:18 PM   #20
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Play stuff slower, then play it faster
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:34 PM   #21
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Password my man?
Link is now updated :karma
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:00 PM   #22
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forgot to mention Guthrie Govan's "Creative Guitar" volumes 1 & 2 are probably the best books out there for what you or anybody else here is looking for. those are two books every intermediate guitarist should have, especially volume 2.

volume 2 (complete with audio tracks) - http://www.sendspace.com/file/m95xo5

Last edited by ChAAPY; 04-15-2012 at 12:57 AM..
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:12 AM   #23
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I'd rather try to play music. Find songs that are in the style you'd like to develop yourself, and try to play along. Also try to go from the more simpler ones to the intricate stuff. Exercises can be useful but only in moderation. It should always be a little warm up and exercise and then lots of playing. Thats my take (i dont play guitar myself but i guess this works for every instrument)
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:29 AM   #24
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More fuk yeah here

Not as good as you but check out my shit anyway

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Old 04-15-2012, 07:41 AM   #25
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I hope Mike Gilbert posts in this thread since he's one of the best soloists in DM imo.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:35 AM   #26
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Quote:
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Learn full songs, not just random exercises.

I built my chops learning a shitload of Neoclassical metal songs at a young age, mainly stuff by Yngwie Malmsteen, Racer X, Cacophony, Tony MacAlpine and the likes.
I also remember learning "No Boundaries" by Michael Angelo Batio at age 15.
I basically locked myself in my room for hours and played that shit non-stop.

Around 2 years and a half or 3 years later, I recorded this (my favorites are the first and last one) :


(A friend did this video)

I'd say it was worth it.
Dude are you ever going to release the tabs for those solos? They're amazing.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:44 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chromaticity View Post
Learn full songs, not just random exercises.

I built my chops learning a shitload of Neoclassical metal songs at a young age, mainly stuff by Yngwie Malmsteen, Racer X, Cacophony, Tony MacAlpine and the likes.
I also remember learning "No Boundaries" by Michael Angelo Batio at age 15.
I basically locked myself in my room for hours and played that shit non-stop.

Around 2 years and a half or 3 years later, I recorded this (my favorites are the first and last one) :


(A friend did this video)

I'd say it was worth it.
that was very nice! I like your soloing!
and now release that first fragment EP!
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:46 AM   #28
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I'm going to use the tips in this thread too. see If I can do something with it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 01:24 PM   #29
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Learn No Boundaries by Michael Angelo. This is the only advice you should take. Terrible song but it includes every technique you need. There's no need to learn anything else, just learn that song. When you can play that, you can now solo very well.

I also learned every Symphony X solo there was at the time (The Odyssey was the latest record back then), but that's not necessary.
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Old 04-15-2012, 01:30 PM   #30
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Also, in my opinion, just like with riffs: exercises are worthless.

Chromatics, etc, all worthless. It takes ages to get good by learning that.

Instead, learn solos from songs and play along. If you learn a solo, learn a harder one next. Never stay learning more solos of the same level.
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