Guthrie Govan Phrasing Style

by David Wallimann

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  • Guthrie Govan is an amazing player. Even his on the spot improvisations on the guitar are full with very useful licks and complex ideas. Approaching his style is not an easy task and it's with great humility that I will share with you a few tricks that the master uses in his playing.

    Today we will take a look at his approach to playing outside of the box. The idea is to play a part of a lick in the original key and at some point slide a half step up or down to create some tension in the musical idea. Once your tension is built, don't forget to resolve in the original key of the song.

    The key of the backing track is in A Dorian. You can also use A minor pentatonic if you wish to give your lead a bluesier feel. Study each lick carefully and spend time studying the rhythm behind each idea. Once you are comfortable with the suggested licks, improvise over the looped backing track and experiment with these ideas.

    Make sure to check out Guthrie's solo album Erotic Cakes. It is a great source of inspiration and in my opinion the best instrumental rock album since Steve Vai's Passion and Warfare.

    Practice well my friends!

    A Dorian.jpg

    A blues copy.jpg
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