The Festive Challenge

by Gabriel Leopardi

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  • Hello GMC! Welcome to this special lesson for The Festive Challenge! I arranged three Christmas songs and each one in a different level: Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. These lessons are inspired in the original Christmas song but they have my own style and my own melody variations. You’ll find that sometimes the melodies suggested me to compose different arrangements/solos/guitar ideas over the chord progressions. Well, I hope that you enjoy this Christmas gift! I wish you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy new year!

    Beginners: Jingle Bells
    The beginner’s song is a power metal version inspired by “Jingle Bells”. I adapted the original melodies to a Helloween/Iron Maiden style. It’s a simple melody and I’m sure that you’ll find this very easy to play. We will use techniques as palm muting, alternate picking, bending, vibrato and easy trills. The song is in E major key and the scale used is E minor Aeolian. The tempo is: 115 bpm. DIFFICULTY LEVEL 3.

    Intermediate: Winter Wonderland
    For the beginners we have a metal arrangement of this song with wonderful melodies. It is called Winter Wonderland and it’s a fantastic Christmas song that I didn’t know before starting this project (thanks Andrew for the suggestion!).
    In this song I started with the original melody, then I play a variation and finally I play a cool lick very in the style of John Petrucci over the chorus progression. The techniques used are alternate picking, vibrato, bending & legato. The song is in A major and that the scale that I use. However there is a modulation to C# major in the first part of the chorus. The tempo is 140 BPM. DIFFICULTY LEVEL 4.

    Advanced: O’ Holy night
    Finally we have a neoclassical metal arrangement of O’ Holy Night for the advanced players. The melody of this Christmas song is so epic. I must say that this one was the most inspiring for me and that why I chose it for the advanced arrangement. The techniques covered in this lesson are alternate picking, sweep picking, legato, bending and vibrato. It has 3 difficult moment that must be isolated if you want to play this piece. I’m talking about the fast alternate picking ascendant lick, the sweep picking mini etude and the fast legato ascendant lick. The song is in G major key and I use G major scale in the solos. The tempo is 120 bpm. DIFFICULTY LEVEL 7.

    Guitar Pro Files:
    Jingle Bells
    O' Holy Night
    Winter Wonderland

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