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Lead Guitar Solo - Learn How To Play Any Style, From Country To Metal, For Free.

Updated on July 7, 2015

Then Steal The Guitar Greats' Secrets...

When I began to learn to play the guitar, back in the 70s, there was one copy of a tattered paperback circulating around school, with a couple of TAB diagrams showing the notes in the blues scale. Now, there's software, YouTube, DVDs, videos, books. There has never been a better time to learn how to play a great lead guitar solo.

Which brings me to guitarist resource number 1: YouTube. There are literally days worth of guitar instruction videos on YouTube. Whatever style you play, whether you like jazz standards, rock, blues or shredding, country or metal, you can find a guitar video that will teach you something you didn't know before.

Start with Guitar Playback, and Creative Guitar Studio. And that should keep you busy for a while. 'Guitar Playback' is the channel of David Wallimann, while 'Creative Guitar Studio' is the channel of Andrew Wasson. David Wallimann's and Andrew Wasson's channels provide incredibly useful tuition that doesn't just teach you how to play a lick or riff, but actually sneaks real music theory knowledge into your head without you even noticing. Both are great natural educators, who find the balance between talking and playing so their videos never get dull - and you always come away knowing more about how to play the guitar than you did before. They get a thorough recommendation from me.

As does this guy, at GuitarJamzDotCom. Marty Schwartz runs 'GuitarJamzDotCom', and deserves credit just for having the nerve to wear that pork pie hat. Another natural teacher, he makes tuition videos that leave you knowing a little bit more than you did before you watched them. All three men have this in common - they obviously love to play the guitar, and they each have a knack for making complicated things simple.

A White Strat

Good enough for Jimi, good enough for me.
Good enough for Jimi, good enough for me.

Chicken Pickin'

What about different lead guitar solo styles? I have a weakness for chicken-picking, that flashy, virtuoso style of fast country guitar, full of popping arpeggios. Grab your Telecaster and type 'chicken picking' into YouTube's search box. Over 1,300 results, right there. Which will keep you busy for a while.

Not all those videos will be grade-A instruction. But most of them are, and they will all teach you something, and even if you only come away with a new lick or an idea for a chord sequence, you're ahead of the game.

Which brings me to my second point about YouTube as a guitar player's resource: whatever style you play, you can probably find tuition for it.

Country chicken picking guitar lesson on Telecaster

How Do I Play Little Wing?

Question: How many guitarists does it take to play Hendrix's back catalogue?

Answer: All of them, apparently.

Seriously, if you're looking for tuition regarding any particular Hendrix song or lead guitar solo, type the title into YouTube's search box. Let's try 'Little Wing'. And up pop 4,000+ results. I think you might find what you're looking for somewhere in there. Top result comes from Andy Aledort on the Guitar World channel, and you get a classy six minute lesson that teaches you how to play 'Little Wing', all the chord changes and runs broken down and explained, simply and well.

Want to play a great lead guitar solo? You can find someone who'll teach you how.

'Little Wing' Intro - Guitar Lesson with Andy Aledort

Want To Play A Great Lead Guitar Solo? Head To YouTube

So let's break it down. On YouTube, you can find

1. Guitar tuition channels that are run by skilled and knowledgeable teachers.

2. Thousands of tuition videos relating to any guitar style.

3. Thousands of videos teaching you how to play any particular guitar piece.

Want to play a great lead guitar solo? It's pretty much a case of how can you possibly avoid it, given what's freely available online.

Which Guitar Scales? All The Guitar Scales

Another good move if you want to learn how to play lead guitar is to practice scales. Which scales? All the scales. Start with the major scale, because that contains all the modes: Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian, Locrian, and back to Ionian. Want to know more about the modes? Check out my hub on the modal system for a detailed breakdown and explanation of how to play them on your guitar. And that's as far as I've got.

If you really want to get into the hinterlands of jazz guitar, Google 'modes of the melodic minor scale' and see what shows up. One of the first results will be this guitar lesson, which should teach you more than I can.

If you'd like to get into music theory - and you should, because everything you learn about music helps you with the choices you can make in your playing - you can download a brilliant free book here. 'Basic Music Theory' by Jonathan Harnum is a detailed, comprehensive beakdown of the whole subject.

How To Play Guitar

To sum up: whether you're looking for a guitar lesson, how to play the guitar, or easy songs to play on guitar, you'll find something on the internet. YouTube is a great place to start.

You'll also find great players. I chanced on this girl's channel a while back, and I keep dropping by to see what she's recorded lately. I always end up grinning from ear to ear - one sure sign you're listening to a great player. They make it sound easy. Want to find someone to listen to? Start with Jezzy Lewis.

What do you think? Do you know any better ways to learn how to play lead guitar solos?

Jezzy Lewis

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