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Neoclassical Sweeps, Jason Becker Style

by Zsolt Galambos

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  • Hi GMC-ers!

    In this lesson I will make an attemp to cover the sweeping style of Jason Becker with a neoclassical aproach.

    Jason Becker is one of my favorite guitar heroes. He began playing at a really early age, and joined the band Cacophony at age 16, where he played along with Marty Friedman. They recorded two albums, "Speed Metal Symphony" and "Go Off!". At the age of 18 he recorded his first solo album, entitled "Perpetual Burn" which is my all-time-favorite shred album. At age 20 he joined David Lee Roth's band replacing Steve Vai, but was diagnosed with a very rare disease called ALS. Eventually he lost the ability to walk, play guitar and even to speak. Doctors said he would live only for a few years, but his strong spirit kept him alive eversince, and have been recording albums via a special computer.

    His techniques combine blues and a neoclassical aproach with exotic scales. His best known technique is insanely fast sweeping.

    Sweeping in my oppinion is one of the hardest and most beautiful sounding techniques, expecially the way Jason Becker was playing them.

    When learning this excercize, try to isolate small parts and play them as much as you can at a slow tempo first. The wide stretches with your right hand also require a good amount of a warmup.

    Good luck practicing!

    -Zsolt

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