Creating Memorable Solos With Fast Rock Licks on Guitar

In today’s lesson, we are going to examine the use of fast rock guitar licks in creating memorable guitar solos. Adding speed variations in your improvisations creates excitement and can sound incredibly impressive. By learning these repeating rock licks and how they are made you will be able to create your own.

Example 1 – C#m Rock Repeater

Throughout the course of this memorable solos series all the examples have been played over the same chord progression of C#m A E B. Example one is a classic rock repeater lick that uses the C#m pentatonic scale. Watch how I roll my fingers through the 9th frets in the YouTube video.

Example 2 – C#m Rock Repeater 2

In example 2 we see a subtle variation of example one by using the C#m pentatonic notes on the high ‘E’ string instead of the ‘B’ string. You can also experiment by combining example 1 and 2 creating an alternative repeating rock lick. These fast rock licks are a fantastic addition to your soloing arsenal, but don’t let them distract from making your solo melodic. Walter Trout is a master of applying fast rock licks throughout his blues-rock songs, be sure to watch him on YouTube and check out my album recommendation below!

Example 3 – C#m Rock Repeater 3

Examples 3 uses slides and legato to create a “slippery” C# Blues scale rock lick. It is important to practice all these examples slowly and make sure you can hear each note clearly. When you do speed these examples up, they sound incredibly impressive, so it is worth the practice!

Recommended listening

For classic fast rock licks, I recommend buying the album “Best Of Walter Trout.” My favourite track on that album being “Hardtime Blues.”

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Guitar Lesson Video Transcription

Hey Youtube, Simon here once again for Fundamental Changes. Today we’re carrying on with our memorable solos series by looking at creating some faster rocks licks, some cyclone licks in your playing. Let’s go and have a look at 3 examples, just after this.

[guitar playing]

We’ve been talking a lot about the different techniques used to create memorable solos. We’ve look at arpeggios, we’ve looked at legato licks, and various different things like that.

Something that can really capture a listener’s attention is creating differences in your speed of your playing, so having 1 lick that might be slow and bluesy and full of feel, and having some quicker licks in there as well – can create that as well.

A cyclone lick is basically something that can go round and round and round. It’s what’s sometimes referred to as rock repeater, or a rock repeater lick. These licks, once again, are all up around the C sharp minor pentatonic blues feels, as our backing chords are the same as they have been throughout.

If you’re not aware of those, go and check out the other videos as well. Lick 1 here is just really important that you bend the 11th fret of the G string, and then you roll your index finger or your 1st finger through the 9th fret. You’ll see that on the slowed down version, and then pull off 12 to 9.

These licks today are very simple. They’re there as the starting point for you to create your own longer lines, longer licks as well, and work them slowly before building them up to full speed. Let’s look at Example 2.

[guitar playing]

In the same way to Example 1, Example 2 uses pretty much the identical idea, C sharp minor pentatonic, but this time you’re pulling off 12 to 9 on the top string, as opposed to 12 to 9 on the 2nd or B string that we saw on Example 1. Very, very similar, these 2 you can put together into 1 lick.

You can do Example 1, and then Example 2 on the top of that very, very – Joe Satriani uses this a lot – high tempos. Let’s look at Example 3.

[guitar playing]

Example 3 here is one of my favorite rock repeater licks. You’re going to get slide 11 to 12 on the 3rd or the G string and back – you can slide that or pick it – and then you’re going to get 11-9, pull off on the 3rd string or the G, and then 11-9 picked on the 4th on the D string.

Once again, these licks don’t sound incredible at slow speeds. They’re there to be built up and just injections of pacing your solos. Your nice melodic licks that we’ve been looking at, and then bang! Out comes a rock repeater a few times around.

The other thing you can consider is how to finish them off. You can add in a bend, for example, you can go round and round Example 1, and then maybe bend the 12th fret of the 2nd or the B string. Example 2, you could bend the 12th fret of the top string. Example 3, you could resolve it to the root note, 11th fret of the D. There are no specifics of what’s right. It’s just going to be time and practice and see what feels right for you.

I hope you’ve got something from these. Leave a comment in the section below if you need anything clarified. This tab will be up soon on Fundamental Changes website with the full article to go with it as well.

Take Car, I’ll see you next time for more lessons.

[guitar playing]

Hi everyone, I hope you enjoyed this fast rock licks lesson. I hope you’ve got something from it. Go and check out Joseph’s books on Amazon: Fundamental Changes series of books, and come and check out my YouTube channel SDP guitar for way more free guitar videos to inspire you wherever you’re at in your playing.

Take care, I’ll see you next time.