Page 5 - lead-level-1

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Lead Level 1
Bandwagon Guitar Studios
This book is the first in the series on how to play
lead guitar.
This book looks at playing “riffs”. Riff is the
term given to the main guitar part of the song.
The riff is usually played as an introduction but
can reappear throughout the song. The riff is
different to the solo or lead break. The riff is
always played the same and is the guitar part
which gives the song its character and start.
The main aims of this book are -
1. to teach you the fingerings of the scales
commonly used in riffs.
2. to recognise their sound by ear.
3. to learn some examples.
4. to improve your technique (control of both
Concentrate on 1 and 2 because if you know the
fingerings and sounds you can figure out your own
examples from C.D.'S, tapes, etc.
There are two main scales that are used for
creating riffs.
1. The minor pentatonic scale.
2. The mixolydian mode or 7th chord scale.
The minor pentatonic is the most popular. Most
rock songs use this scale for its riffs.
Learn the examples off by heart and try to
create your own riffs based on them.
A note on Picking Direction
There are many different ways to play the same riff in regards to the direction
you pick the strings. You should first try to play the riff with all down picks, then
try alternating up and down picks. For a more in depth study of picking direction,
see the accompanying book, Technique for Guitarists.
Picking directions will be included in riffs that require a special picking pattern or
if it makes the song easier to play.