- Lead guitar
Lead guitar refers to the use of a
guitarto perform melodylines, instrumental fill passages, and guitar solos within a song structure.
In rock and heavy metal bands, the lead guitar lines are usually supported by a second guitarist who plays
rhythm guitar, which consists of accompaniment chords and riffs, often played with a distortioneffect. In some rock or metal bands with two guitarists, the two performers may perform as a guitar tandem, and trade off the lead guitar and rhythm guitar roles.
To create lead guitar lines, guitarist use scales, modes,
arpeggios, licks, and riffs that are performed using a variety of techniques. Heavy metal lead guitar lines often employ alternate picking, sweep picking, economy pickingand left-handed techniques (e.g., hammer ons, pull offs, and tapping) are used to maximize the speed of their solos or riffs. In a bluescontext, lead guitar lines are created using call and response-style riffs that are embellished with string bending, vibratoand slides.
In rock and heavy metal contexts, the lead guitar line often involves melodies with a sustained, singing tone. To create this tone on the
electric guitar, guitarists often select certain pickups and use effects pedalssuch as distortion pedals, for a more sustained tone, and delay effects for a reverberant sound. High volume is also used to induce audio feedback, which increases sustain. Other effects used to embellish lead guitar tone include the wah-wah pedaland univibeeffects.
Multiple guitar players
List of lead guitarists
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