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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An Allan Holdsworth-Inspired Pentatonic Run | Guitarworld

I remember listening to Holdsworth play when I was a kid—with complete disbelief at what I was hearing. 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. 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.

He […] Diminished Possibilities: The problem with this is that these techniques are not really suited to the pentatonic. The third phrase mm. On the high E string, we are fretting four consecutive notes moving up the scale of the pentatonic, then we move back down the scale using the same notes. The first line we are going to break down mm. Francesco is currently part of a Metal band called Hiss of Atrocities, and has also recorded three instrumental solo projects. Random Lessons Polyphonic Writing for Keyboard: Allan is outlining an 8 note synthetic scale, which includes both b9 and 9 — 1 b2 9 3 4 5 b6 b7.

Once again you can see Allan refusing to highlight only one harmonic possibility for the vamp he is playing over, choosing instead to color the simple vamp with phrases that imply more harmonic motion than is really there.

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He ends the phrase on the b13 of the E vamp. Download the latest version hlldsworth. You will notice I incorporate my thumb in this lick also; I do this to enable myself to play longer one-string runs.


Part 2 Minor Artist Riff: Traditionally, we are taught to play scales and runs using a combination of two and three notes per string. Once again, take care to play these lines in time and with precision. Rather, this was holdswortj I took out of his style and approach.

The speed and the wide intervalic playing was simply amazing. For other great goldsworth of Allan playing over one chord vamps take a look at his solos in these two songs: This is one of the hardest phrases to play in the solo, but at the same time one of the most rewarding ones.

This will clearly demonstrate how much Allan can bring to a rather simple progression with his masterly rhythmic and harmonic vocabulary. The second line mm. This particular line is what I would focus on the most. It is by far the most technically challenging part and a very unique way to play up and down the pentatonic scale on one string. When you start applying this approach, you tend to cover the neck very quickly. Further, notice how Allan ends the phrase in bar 11 with a chromatic line that when compared to the vamp gives us both the b6, the natural 6, the b7, and the natural 7.

Obviously, it was a combination of his incredible knowledge and technique. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser. His column at Guitar Messenger is called Technical Difficulties, 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.

Notice how Allan lets the phrase breathe with the wide open phrasing and his rhythmic control — By starting and ending the phrase on off-beats, the sense of predictability is lost. Launched on Monday, October 15th, This time I would like to talk about a component of guitar playing that has always fascinated me: I use the same approach to ascend back up the scale.


Being a rock guy, I tend to apply all of my techniques to the pentatonic scale first then slowly branch out into other scales. I believe it’s important to listen to as many guitar players as possible and do your best to learn something from them all.

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.

It requires immense concentration and control of your fingerings. They are better suited to modal playing, but I always love a challenge, and as you can hear from this lick, it really creates an amazing sound!


This time I am going to dive a little deeper into the Octatonic scale. I want to thank you all for reading my column, and I will hopefully see you next time, until then! The vamp changes back to a D chord in measure 29, which is yoldsworth by another huge string skipping line which utilizes the Whole Tone scale 1 2 3 4 5 6 for the first 8 notes, and changes to a D Lydian Dominant scale 1 2 3 4 5 6 b7 for the remainder of the phrase, ending on a tritone against the D 4.

For this lick Allan is using very wide intervallic lines via string skips — something holsworth common to his playing.

To play these string skipping lines, be sure to practice at a slow tempo where you avoid allam the string you are not playing. I want to show you some of the […]. From here it leads into a six-string arpeggio starting on the high E and ending on the low E.

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.