Hybrid Lick Extensions - Isolation Exercises

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Hybrid Lick Extensions - Intro and Playthrough

In this part we’ll first look at the lick slowed down, and then some isolation exercises derived from the lick. I want to note here that I have not notated the isolation exercises to conform to any kind of bar-lengths, that is say 16 notes over 4 bars. Rather, I have isolated the idea itself, and notated it within one barline regardless of it being much shorter than a full bar. Therefor I have not added rests to complete the bar either, since all of these isolation exercises are intended to be played in a continuous loop rather than once through every time you come round to the "1" beat. So, in other words, don't worry about it not being correctly notated form a theoretical standpoint, rather just play it round and round with a smile on your face =)

You will find that my approach to hybrid picking when improvising utilizes the pick and two fingers (middle and ring finger) when ascending. When descending however, I tend to favor hammer-ons from nowhere. For some lines I use picking, economy picking or sweeping, but for lines like this one, hammer-ons from nowhere is my weapon of choice. It might be a bit more tricky to add separation and definition to the line with this approach, but at the same time it adds a different kind of fluidity.

 If you feel at all uncomfortable with this line, I suggest you first visit my Hybrid Picking Sequences for Fusion tutorial and go through that first, familiarizing yourself with the technique.

 Now, simply just learning this lick and trying to play it in your own improvisations is just part of the task at hand. Milking it for all its worth is the second. In order to do this you need to isolate segments within the line that stands out at individual concepts. This is beneficial for two reasons. First, it will help you nail technical aspects and difficult transitions within the lick, making you able to flow more effortlessly when improvising with this technique. And yes, I know I said in the video "I'm not gonna tab this out". But, I came to my senses ;)

The second is that it will help you think in terms of “concepts” rather than technique or scales. Isolating segments and “altering” them to fit different scales and rhythmical patterns will allow you to incorporate the technique itself much deeper and make it accessible on a more unconscious level. The goal here would be to make your right hand unconscious in its approach. That is, that your right hand is something you need to concern yourself with, but will “follow suit” for whatever rhythm and melody your left hand aims for.

 Just as with rhythm playing, be it metal, funk or fusion, your right hand is most often where your timing is. Your sense of rhythm is situated here rather than in the left hand, which I’m sure you have discovered in your won playing. This is also why it is so much easier to keep a solid note value and alter note values when picking than when using only legato. In this sense Hybrid Picking is the perfect middle ground! You get enough pick and/or nail strokes with your right hand to help keep your playing tight and rhythmical, and enough left hand fluidity to make it sound “fluid” as opposed to strict picking. This is the number one reason for me using Hybrid Picking, since my approach is very timing and rhythm-based.

OK guys, that's all for this time! See you again in my next tutorial.

Stay groovy!

//RIchard