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Lessons From Freebird - Video Guitar Lesson
Guest teacher series
Bob Murnahan
LeadGuitarTactics.com

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Lead Guitar Lessons From Freebird
by Bob Murnahan
LeadGuitarTactics.com

Does this sentence contain any words that you have never seen before? I am sure that it doesn't. As a matter of fact, think about the last book or magazine/newspaper article you read. Any new words there? Possibly, but you can always whip out the dictionary and look up the meaning.

What's the point of asking these questions? Well...think of all the books, articles, etc. that have been written using the same old words over and over again, yet think of how many different stories have been told with the same old words.

By using the same old words in different orders and combinations, authors have been able to, and will be able to write an infinite variety of stories and tales to capture our imaginations.

But what's this got to do with playing guitar solos?

Learning to solo is a lot like using words to tell a story. The more words you can have in your vocabulary, the more stories you can tell.

Consider the following list of words.

  1. The
  2. A
  3. Big
  4. Little
  5. Dog
  6. Ran
  7. Fast
  8. Slow

How many sentences can you make out of these words? Here are a few I came up with.

  1. The dog ran.
  2. The big dog ran.
  3. The little dog ran fast.
  4. The big dog ran slow.
  5. A little fast dog ran slow.

There are many more. These are just a few of the possibilities and there are only 8 words here. Now pretend that each of these words correspond to a lick you know on the guitar. You can take these licks, combine them and recombine them just like words to make sentences, the sentences go together to make paragraphs and the paragraphs combine to make a story.

I hope you can gather from this the importance of expanding your vocabulary. How do you do this? One way is to learn licks by your favorite players and incorporate them into you playing right away.

In the following video lesson I have taken three licks from the Freebird solo and used them to play a solo. This entire solo is played using the pentatonic scale at the 15th fret and variations on the following three licks.

guitar tablature
guitar tablature
guitar tablature

Imagine how your playing would change if you learned just one new lick a week. That would give you 52 new ideas to combine and use to create solo ideas. Look at how many we made with just three. What could you do with 52?

Last but not least, (possibly the most important) take what you learn and find a place to apply immediately. Jam with friend or play along with recordings. But use what you have learned right away so you can internalize it, make it your own, and have ready when you need it.

To your guitar playing success,

Bob Murnahan

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