Watching Allan Holdsworth perform may leave you with the impression wide- interval licks and ideas that you’ve never had access to before. Welcome to my second column/lesson! This month I’d like to talk about one of my favorite players of all time – Allan Holdsworth. He’s been a big influence in the.

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This is repeated on the G string, but this time its only a three-note run with the third note being the start of the arpeggio.

Random Lessons Polyphonic Writing for Keyboard: This solo is a great example for all players focusing on Rock playing in general, because it shows how much one likcs really do over a simple vamp. The first line we are going to break down mm.

While it can be heard as a simple chromatic line, the harmonic ambiguity it sets up seems to have been very much intentional. There are lots of exercises that help to achieve this, and I think one of the best ones is the common chromatic exercise across all strings.

Allan seems to have been adding more and more tension to each phrase as the solo progresses — this last line seems to be the tensest line of the solo, capitalizing on the ambiguity of the implied dominant chord.

I want to show you some of the […]. Obviously, it was a combination of his incredible knowledge and technique.

An Allan Holdsworth-Inspired Pentatonic Run | Guitarworld

As with any technique I create, my main focus is that they enable me to play lines or runs that would otherwise not be possible at speed.

This is played with all up-strokes. The goal of this column will be to break down some of those lines, and talk about how they relate to the harmony Allan is approaching. This line allxn in measure 25, where the vamp changes to G.



Thanks and I hope you enjoy! The purpose of this column is to show how to incorporate all the different techniques into musical phrases, and not just seeing them as physical workouts rhythm, melody, and harmony are always the primary concern. The last fast run mm. Once again, take care to play these lines in time and with precision.

The alllan phrase mm. In bar 12 Holdsworth concludes the phrase in the D natural minor mode 1 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7 holrsworth, another color to highlight the harmonic ambiguity of the line that preceded it — typical Holdsworth! I think you should have mentioned what chord each section was played over and ilcks why those scales work over holssworth.

Being a rock guy, I tend to apply all of my techniques to the pentatonic scale first then slowly branch out into other scales. When you start applying this approach, you tend to cover the neck very quickly. Allan is outlining an 8 note synthetic scale, which includes both b9 and 9 — 1 b2 9 3 4 5 b6 b7.

Guitar Messenger Music Magazine

The final run in this lick is similar to the way I start the lick; I finish with a four-note run on the high E string leading into to a full bend on the 22nd fret.

You will notice I incorporate my thumb in this lick also; I do this to enable myself to play longer one-string runs.

Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser. Liicks remember listening allna Holdsworth play when I was a kid—with complete disbelief at what I was hearing. Notice again how he avoids the downbeat when starting a phrase.

I start this lick with a four-note run on the A string with the fourth note being the start of the three-string arpeggio. Rather, this was what I took holesworth of his style and approach. I’m not saying that this the secret to his playing—not by any stretch of the imagination.


His column at Guitar Messenger is called Technical Holdsworh, and it will be focused mainly on developing different techniques such as vibrato, bending, picking, legato playing, tapping, sweeping, and every other mechanical challenges related to the guitar. The problem with this is that these techniques are not really suited to the pentatonic.

This time I am going to dive a little deeper into the Octatonic scale.

This particular line is what I would focus on the most. Francesco is currently part of a Metal band called Hiss of Atrocities, and has also recorded three instrumental solo projects. This time I would like to talk about a component of guitar playing that has always fascinated me: It starts on a C natural b7 and the phrase then descends in quarter note triplets across the next two bars ending on an Eb b9.

This will clearly demonstrate how much Allan can bring to a rather simple progression with his masterly rhythmic and harmonic vocabulary. From here it gets tricky! Traditionally, we are taught to play scales and runs using a combination of two and three notes per string. The speed holdsworhh the wide intervalic playing was simply amazing.

Further, notice how Allan ends the phrase in bar 11 with a chromatic line that holdswprth compared to the vamp gives us both the b6, the natural 6, the b7, and the natural 7.

Holdsworth represents everything that is good in the realm of guitar: