Easy Lead Guitar – Well, isn’t that what we all want? I wish someone tought me about 28 years ago some basic guitar theory. Instead, they learned me how to play a handful of songs on guitar, and I was ready to go conquer the world with my skills, right?
Now, I must admit, I was happy with that for many, many years. I could play my favorite songs by U2, Bob Dylan, Larry Norman, play in Church, play rhythm guitar,.. and even my own songs. Untill I came to the point that i wanted to do some ‘lead’ guitar. I never learned anything about guitar theory and my busy work schedule prevented me to go back to take lessons. Apart from that, I didn’t feel like starting taking lessons.. but playing ‘by ear’ is only for the very gifted and I don’t consider myself to be so.
So I started looking into some of these online courses promising you to be a ‘Rock Star’ within 30 days (.. yeah right!) and started watching and learning trough some youtube video’s. Now, there are a lot of great video’s on the web. That’s for sure! Andrew Wasson, for example, is one of the best online teachers I’ve seen.
Now, what to do, when you don’t know a thing about guitar theory, know only basic chords and have a vague notion of what ‘the key a song is in’ means? Well,… to learn the ‘keys’, click here and watch this 5 minute crash course. Or download the chart he made (mirror).
So — construct a song, or find a song, in a certain key and now play a lead. But how? There are, as I said, many video’s online but they’re time-consuming and many of them show you how to play “this or that lick” .. That’s not what i was looking for, I want to know what notes fit into that song or key. Without learning those notes by name and studying loads of theory and playing “Old MacDonald” over and over again. So I stumbled across some instructions about it, collected them, put it together and here it is, a ‘free crash course for playing leadguitar‘.
Look at the pictures, learn to play these ‘scales’, and you know almost all there is to know. Yes, you still need to ‘study’, but I guess this is a lot less harder, at least I found it a lot easier to learn to play lead this way. Oh, I almost forgot.. to play a lead you don’t need to use all the notes in a scale, and you can play, bend up/down, notes as much as you like. The only thing left, when you need the scales, or at least some scales, is ‘feeling’ .. TIP: it helps to sing along.