Watch the Double Stops Licks: 2 online guitar lesson by Johnny Hiland from Ten Gallon Guitar
With this next lick, I utilize the different strings sets to for a double stop run. I use a little bit of steel guitar bending within the double stops scale. Here we’ll go into a different realm of double stops where I’m not afraid to take one of the notes and bend it a little bit. It’s all about having fun with the guitar. I’m starting in the 3rd position in A. Let’s start with the 3rd finger on the 14th fret (B string), 1st finger on the 12th fret (high E string) and bending just a half tone, not all the way. Next, chromatically walk down two frets. You’ll notice the bend position changes, a half tone bend on the first one, a whole tone bend on the next one, whole tone bend on the next one. Now we are back to the A position where the finger positions have changed. The 2nd finger is on the 10th fret (B string) and the 1st finger is on the 9th fret (E string). Bend the B string up a whole tone, slide that down two and do the same thing. Put that all together. GO back to the barre on the 5th fret (B and E string). When I hit that I instantly jump with my 3rd finger to a bending on the G and B string together. You’ll notice I’m not really bending the B string, but really just bending the G. Now, I’m just doing a half tone bending a little bit by using my 1st finger and angling a little on the 5th fret and pulling on that G a little bit. I am bending it down and then grabbing my A note on the bottom 7th fret D string (which is an A note) to finish off the scale. Take some time with this. We’ll go over it slow together, but you should take you time with these and have more fun experimenting around with bending notes around and using double stops. It is something that is unique. I have delved into it because I love the tone of a steel guitar and I think it brings forth the true Nashville sound.
I've loved all of the olds steel players from John Huey to. There are so many great ones out there. It's great for guitar players to want to carry on the true steel guitar tradition. Have fun experimenting with bending double stops. Let me play this for you, a couple of times a bit slower so you get a better feel. Don't be afraid to add the double stops, or double stop ghost notes in between at your discretion. Let's start back again on the 12th and 14th fret, do that half tone bend. Let's try it one more time a bit slower. I'd count you in but there is no meter here so jump it with the feel. You can actually have fun with double stops, don't be afraid of them. Actually, just reach out and grab them. There's so many different ways you can have fun with them. In fact, I'm going to take this time to share one more little fun thing with you using the horizontal scale we did before. Why? Because we have the time and because I love to teach this stuff to you. Let's go back to the horizontal scale we played in A. Remember when I was talking to you about string skipping, now we're going to do that but add bends to it as well. There's two different ways to do this but I'm going to show you this one. once you have this scale you can use. I played it this time a bit more percussively. Let's just take it from the major scale element. And then we'll play it together. We're used to playing the G note on the horizontal scale, and now instead of playing the B string directly behind it we're going to move to the A string. So we're going to invert it and play the third behind the root. Root on the G and the third below the A string. So G string 14th fret. A string on the 16th fret, and what we're going to do is bend the G a whole tone and the trick to getting this right is using the right hand technique to where we're going to pick on the A, pull up with a finger on the G and reach down with the pick and release it. Now we're going to go our 13th and 14th fret and do a half tone bend. Slide down two frets and we're going to do a whole tone down. Now we're back to the one- 11th fret A string, 9th fret G string with a whole tone bend. Slide that down too. Now we're back to position two which is our 2nd finger on the 7th fret A string and our 1st finger on the 6th fret with a half tone bend. Slide that down too now with a whole tone and then back to position one again. Here we will utilize a whole tone bend - 4th and 2nd fret. Yes, I'm using a 9 to 42 set of Elixers. I like the Elixer string and I use 9's for these kind of bends - if you use 10's you'll have a bit of a fight but you can get it. The reason we took so much time over the right hand technique behind this because when this is used in a fast fashion, like in a song, it will become more distinctive (for examples, see the video). Double stops can be fun and you can add some steel guitar licks to that or bends and it sounds so cool and gives you that true country chicken pickin’ Nashville pop. I'm not afraid to add a little distortion to this and when we get to section two you will see how that works. You can use this in rock and blues, western swing or anywhere you want to. We are trying to not just meld you into a monster chicken picker but to give you tools for your genre of guitar, rock, blues, jazz, etc. We'll do more of this in second two. Remember to experiment and have fun with the double stops and licks.