Tom Hess: How To Play Emotional Lead Guitar Solos On Demand

How To Play Emotional Lead Guitar Solos On Demand
By Tom Hess
Only a small portion of the guitar playing community knows how to effortlessly play guitar with tons of emotion whenever they feel like it... here are the 2 main reasons why most guitarists can’t do this:
Reason One - They allow their hands do all the creating, rather than relying on the creative skill they have developed in their mind.

Reason Two - Their guitar playing skills have not been integrated together. Taking the time to gain tons of knowledge and skills will do you no good if you don’t know how to use them in a creative manner to make music.

Once you have moved past these problematic issues, playing amazing guitar solos will be totally easy.

The following is the most effective way to play/improvise awesome guitar solos (in six steps):

Step One: Determine The Emotion You Want To Convey In Your Guitar Solo
Creative guitar solos that have tons of feeling and passion begin by first understanding the emotion you want others to feel. This is the foundation to everything else below.

Step Two: Transform That Emotion Into Sound
No matter what emotion you want to create, there is a sound to express it. Once you haveidentified the emotion you want to convey through your guitar playing, your ears need to find the sound that best matches it.
Check out this video to find out how to turn emotions into specific sounds:

Step Three: Determine The Notes You Must Play To Create The Sound You Hear
After you have identified the correct sound with your ears, your understanding of music theory will help you know which note is needed to make it. Unlike what most people think, music theory is much more than just a bunch of rules for how music works or how it should be created.
Study the information in this video to see what music theory really is and learn how it helps you to become more expressive with your guitar solos:

Step Four: Locate The Correct Notes On Your Guitar
As soon as you have determined which notes you want to play, you’ll need to find those notes on the fretboard very quickly. To do this, you must improve fretboard visualization. Fretboard visualization does NOT mean memorizing the letter names of the notes on guitar. It actually refers to the following skill: knowing how to quickly find chords, arpeggios and scales in any key signature + any location of the guitar. Almost no one actually works on this, but those who do make insanely fast progress towards becoming killer lead guitarists. Check out the video below to learn how to practice fretboard visualization with scales:

Step Five: Play The Notes On Your Guitar Using Total Accuracy And Fluency
Tons of people start at this step (by playing notes), although they completely skipped all the prior steps without knowing it. By doing this, your fingers can only function on autopilot, taking away your ability to think creatively. This makes it nearly impossible to play expressive and creative guitar solos.
With this in mind, your guitar technique is an integral part of being able to easily play the notes in your mind. By having better guitar technique, you will be able to more accurately and consistently express the emotions you are feeling in the moment.
Watch the video below to see how to integrate advanced guitar techniques into melodies to make your solos sound more expressive:

Step Six: Express Each Note With As Much Emotion As Possible
As soon as you know which notes you need to play... don’t just play them, use them to express as much emotion as you can! To do this, observe very closely the way you play each note, so that you can milk it for everything it’s worth!

To get tons of examples to help you learn how this is done, check out this eBook on the topic of playing very emotional guitar licks.

The Biggest Difference Between Awesome Guitar Players And Everybody Else:
Excellent guitar players finish all 6 of the steps in this article in an instant. For these players, there exists absolutely NO delay between determining an emotion to express and actually expressing it. Everything is 100% seamless. They then use this exact process over and over until the solo or improvisation is through.

A lot of people leave out several steps from above or have a difficult time completing them fast enough to express themselves with total accuracy. These issues occur because they haven’t learned how to integrate their skills together (or they simply haven’t mastered certain skills on their own yet).
To be able to play killer guitar solos anytime you pick up your guitar, you’ll have to go through each step of the process and master it (until every step is totally mastered). Unless you have done this, you will always struggle to yourself at the level you want to. To achieve this goal fast, work together with an expert guitar teacher who has already taught hundreds of other guitarists how to do this for themselves. This will save you countless hours of frustration, and help you to master guitar in less time than you ever thought possible.

To get a lot more ideas for how to make your guitar playing more emotional, download this free eBook on the subject of playing very emotional guitar licks.

About The Author:

Tom Hess is a professional recording artist, composer, and expert guitar instructor. He teaches and trains guitarists how to become great musicians in his online rock guitar lessons. Visit to receive additional free guitar playing resources and to read more guitar articles.