String skipping

String skipping

String skipping is a guitar-playing technique that is used mainly for solos and complex riffs in rock and heavy metal songs.

Explanation of technique

String skipping is a method of achieving a guitar sound that is different from more traditional solo riff styles. In more traditional styles, the guitarist will often play several notes on one string, then move to the adjacent one, noodling on the fretboard in a melodically linear manner. In string skipping (as the name implies), a string is often skipped during the riff. Essentially, this technique is used to introduce larger intervals than are usually common in guitar melodies, thereby creating melodic interest.

Example of "traditional" solo riff style

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8e|-|-------------3---|---------------2-|-----------3-2---|-----------------| B|-|---------3-5---3-|-------------3---|---------------5-|-5---------------
G|4|---2-4-5---------|-----------4-----|---------------^^^^^HOLD-----------
D|4|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------
A|-|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------
E|-|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------

Example of string skipping style

---------------|--------------7--
------------5--|------7^8--10----
---------2-----|-----------------
---------------|----9------------
------3--------|-5---------------
---------------|-----------------
Notice that not every note played represents a string-skip; it is usually the case that string skipping is interwoven with traditional adjacent riffing. Playing the above example, one can hear the difference; the string skipping makes the solo stand out.

One example of string skipping involves string bending on the 7th fret of the G string, then jumping to the 8th fret of the E string ("skipping" the B string). Another way to achieve the desired aesthetic is when playing a thrash riff while chugging open E's, to pick strings E, B, G, or D to play extra notes in the riff.

ongs featuring string skipping

A famous example of string skipping is the intro riff to Sweet Child O'Mine by Guns N' Roses. Another specific example of string skipping can be heard in the song "Cliffs of Dover" by Eric Johnson, during the intro (measures 6 and 7). [Ah Via Musicom, Full score. ISBN 0793592593] Johnson, who has built his guitar style "combining the music of many influences with his own ideas"cite book| title = Eric Johnson: The Fine Art of Guitar| edition = DVD| last = Johnson| first = Eric| coauthors = | year = 2006| publisher = Hot Licks | id = ASIN: B000EBGEQ4 | pages = ] has said that string skipping is an important part of his soloing.cite book| title = Eric Johnson: The Fine Art of Guitar| edition = DVD| last = Johnson| first = Eric| coauthors = | year = 2006| publisher = Hot Licks | id = ASIN: B000EBGEQ4 | pages = ] Johnson refers to executing "wider intervals" with the method, and also says with skipping, you're sometimes "replacing certain notes into another octave." He mentions it "gets a little more interesting" when the guitarist comes across a note normally fretted, that can be replaced with the open string version (played instead on a "skipped" string).cite book| title = Eric Johnson: The Fine Art of Guitar| edition = DVD| last = Johnson| first = Eric| coauthors = | year = 2006| publisher = Hot Licks | id = ASIN: B000EBGEQ4 | pages = ]

Guitarist Paul Gilbert (of Mr. Big, Racer X, and G3) often employs string skipping.cite book| title = Paul Gilbert - Intense Rock: Complete| edition = DVD| last = Gilbert| first = Paul | coauthors = | year = | publisher = Alfred| id = ISBN 0-7390-4037-5| pages = ] A video example of string skipping is provided below in the external links.

References

External links

* [http://www.ioannis.org/rock/AV.asp?id=2 Art of Guitar - example videos of string-skipping]
* [http://www.paulgilbert.com/ The official Paul Gilbert site]
* [http://www.ericjohnson.com/ The official Eric Johnson site]
* [http://gosk.com/arpeggios/string-skipping-guitar-arpeggios.php String skipping arpeggios] at GOSK.com


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