|The steady, repeating beat of a piece of music. You can usually pick up the rhythm of a piece of music by listening to the drumming, but in some cases it will inevitably be more difficult.|
Lessons for: Rhythm
1: Introduction to Rhythm Embellishments
Earlier we looked at some ways to spice up or "embellish" the sound of our basic open chords by adding and removing a single note. In this tutorial we'll explore a similar concept, but now we'll use different rhythmic tricks to spice up the sound of our basic rhythm guitar playing. Let's get started!
2: Introduction: The Importance of Rhythm
When many new guitar players first start out with a whole new style of music, they often focus purely on the notes, chords, and scales and forget about the secret ingredient that makes all these notes sound the way they do: rhythm! Rhythm is one of the most important elements in rock, and that's something most guitar players realize way too late. Because if you have a good understanding of the rhythms used in rock and a solid rhythmic feel, you can play world class rock guitar without really knowing that much about the notes. Ideally you'll know a lot about the notes as ...
3: Metal Rhythm Workout II: Intro
In this tutorial I will give you 9 more rhythms that will help develop your metal rhythm playing. Just like in Metal Rhythm Workout I, I will just use an E power chord for all of the examples in this tutorial, but I really recommend that you take these rhythms and apply to your riffs, scales and chords as well. In this tutorial we will focus on syncopated rhythms and 8th note triplets.
4: Metal Rhythm Workout: Intro
In this tutorial I will show you 9 example rhythms that are really good for developing your metal rhythm playing. For simplicity's sake, I will just use an E power chord for all of the examples in this tutorial, but I really recommend that you take these rhythms and apply to your riffs as well.
5: Rock Rhythm Voicing: Telly Tone
In this tutorial I'm going to be using my Telecaster, and I'll be running it through a modeled VOX amp, but as always you can play the examples on any guitar and through any amp. I'll be using a wide range of gain for the different lessons, ranging from a bluesy overdrive (which I get from the amp being turned up pretty loud) to a heavier distortion that I get from a distortion pedal similar to the RAT. Other than that I'll just use a little bit of reverb.
6: Dominant Chords: Rhythm 7ths
In this lesson I'm going to introduce you to a new type of chord that rock originally borrowed from the blues. This is the classic dominant 7 chord, and you might recognize it by its bluesy tension. In this lesson I'm going to show you how it's used in a rock context.
7: Upbeat Rhythm Embellishments
Now it's time to check out what it sounds like if you only play every other eighth note, meaning the eighth notes in between the quarter notes. These are called "upbeats", and they have a very strong rhythmic effect that's mostly associated with a reggae sound, but often used in rock as well.
8: Rhythm Embellishments Practice Tune 1
Now it's time to break down and play through a practice tune that uses all of these different rhythmic embellishments. First we'll break down the different sections, then we'll practice each of them slowly with the metronome, and finally play through the whole form with the backing track.
9: Rhythm Embellishments Practice Tune 2
Now let's break down and play through another practice tune, but this time we're going to change up the form a bit. Not all songs have a separate section that works as a "chorus"; some songs just have the lyric "hook" built in to the end of the verse. So for this practice tune the form will be intro - verse - verse - outro (same as intro). I hope you've had fun with this tutorial on the rhythmic embellishments. It's always great to have several different ways to approach the variation in your playing, and the rhythmic approach to fills and variations is a very valuable t...
10: Metal Rhythm Workout III: Intro
11: Syncopated Rhythm #1: Two Hits
12: 8th Note Rhythm #1: Starting Simple
13: 8th Note Rhythm #2: Add One More
14: 8th Note Rhythm #3: Three Twos
15: 8th Note Rhythm #4: Fill The Bar
16: 16th Note Rhythm #1: Groups of Two
17: 16th Note Rhythm #2: Groups of Three
18: 16th Note Rhythm #3: Groups of Four
Again we remove one rest, and replace it with a 16th note hit. When we loop this bar, there's no rest in between, and we end up playing eight 16th notes without any rest, which can be a bit tricky at this tempo. A slower version (70 bpm) of the backing track for this lesson can be found here.
19: 16th Note Rhythm #4: Two Fives & a Four
20: 16th Note Rhythm #5: Fill The Bar
21: Introduction: Rhythm Between the Lines
In order to become a great rock rhythm guitar player you need a solid vocabulary of both right hand techniques like strumming patterns, palm muting, and arpeggiation - plus left hand techniques like the different chord voicings and embellishments, for example. But that's really only half the battle; you could call it "what" you play. The other half is "how" you play it, and one of the most important elements in this is having a solid and driving rhythm when you play. You want to be able to maintain this rhythm comfortably through all the different rhythmic feels, groove...
22: Suspend the Rhythm!
A solid rhythmic groove is a cornerstone of rock music, but sometimes you'll hear that driving rhythm being temporarily suspended for dramatic effect. This technique is often used in intros and outros, but it can also happen in the middle of a song to setup an important lyric hook or the beginning of a solo for example. Some of the classical, more technical terms for these techniques would be 'fermatas" and "rubato", and in this lesson I'm going to show you how they're used in a rock context.
23: Rock Rhythm Practice Tune
Now it's time to break down and play through a practice tune that employs some of these different rhythmic feels and concepts that we've covered in this tutorial. And in order to maintain our focus on the rhythm, we'll keep it simple with just an A and a B section. Let's rock!
24: Rock Rhythm: Easy Practice Exercises
In this lesson I'm going to show how to practice these rhythmic concepts and arrangement tricks with a metronome. In this tutorial we've explored a handful of new rhythmic concepts that are all extremely relevant to playing rock rhythm guitar. Although these concepts are less "visible" and flashy than a new chord, riff, or lick, they are the things that are going to make you sound like you know what you're doing - almost regardless of what you play. So make sure to keep at least one eye on your rhythmic feel and groove while you're learning new chords, riffs and other t...
25: Bluegrass Rhythm Strum 16th Notes With Fills # 1
This is the same strumming pattern, but we are adding the fills in between chords. If you're not familiar with the strumming pattern, check out Driving Bluegrass Rhythm: Strumming 16th Notes Starting in the G chord here, and again I'm adding the D note in the 3rd fret on the 2nd string. I got this from Tony Rice, but I'm sure others have used this too. Play almost two measures of the G chord, and then you'll walk into the C chord, or the 4 chord in the key of G. Walk back to the G chord, and play the last measure in G. ...