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Watch the Rocking Chair: 4 online guitar lesson by Chris Buono from Guitar Cubed

For the better part of this eight bar jam Guitar 1 is a classic chromatic walk-up from bVII-I. When viewing the Am portions of the arrangement in bars 1, 3, and 7 you should notice there’s something extra going on besides just playing three chromatically ascending power chords. A little something called counterpoint is what it is and it will be fully explained in the next segment. For now, think of counterpoint as two opposing voices--in this case chord tones--that are independent of one another but together make an interesting whole.

Another element that might escape you, but has big-time relevance, is the pick hand strokes. Notice it’s a flowing down-up-down motion instead of a steady stream of downstrokes that might seem like the more appropriate approach given the vibe of the part. This helps Guitar 1 have a sort of swing or groove to it that makes it more appealing and not so rigid.

In the next segment you’ll discover more about what’s going in Guitar 1 including the mystery behind counterpoint.