Vibrato And Bending (Guitar Lesson)


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Steve Smyth

Vibrato And Bending

Steve covers how he uses vibrato and bending to give a more vocal sound to lead lines and solos. For all his lessons on JamPlay Steve tuned to Eb tuning which is 1/2 step below standard.

Taught by Steve Smyth in Lessons With Steve Smyth seriesLength: 5:17Difficulty: 2.0 of 5


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Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.


siegbsiegb replied on April 15th, 2012

Very good instruction. The exercises sound great and I'm gonna practice them. Thanks.

gorbaggorbag replied on March 22nd, 2012

cool ideas towards the end about matching the vibrato to the rhythm. I never much thought of that.

Lessons With Steve Smyth

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Veteran metal gunslinger Steve Smyth currently is in the bands Forbidden and The EssenEss Project. Having also been in bands such as Testament and Nevermore, Steve has a unique style that he teaches here on JamPlay.



Lesson 1

Interview With Steve Smyth

JamPlay sits down with veteran fret grinder Steve Smyth of Forbidden and The EssenEss Project. He talks about how he got started with guitar, his inspirations, general tips about playing, and of course...

Length: 15:00 Difficulty: 0.5 FREE
Lesson 2

Technical Approach And Warmup Routine

Steve covers his overall approach to playing with a focus on his right hand technique. He also shows his basic hand stretching and warmup routine that he recommends doing before any practice.

Length: 7:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 3

Vibrato And Bending

Steve covers how he uses vibrato and bending to give a more vocal sound to lead lines and solos.

Length: 5:17 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Scale Fragments

Steve Smyth shows you how to use smaller bit-sized scale chunks to create a blistering solo.

Length: 9:00 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

String Skipping

Steve goes in-depth with a topic that is integral to his style: string skipping. He teaches you a basic etude and then moves it across the strings for variations. He also teaches a couple of really cool...

Length: 18:05 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 6

Intervallic Playing

Steve gives you some different ideas on the topic of "intervallic playing". He covers playing in 4ths, 5ths, and 6ths. And he shows you his favorite way to use this concept.

Length: 9:30 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Sweep Arpeggios

Steve shows how to practice sweep picking arpeggios. He shows major and minor forms and how to connect the shapes.

Length: 14:30 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 8

Coloring Arpeggios

Steve shows you how to "color" arpeggios with different intervals and combining swept arpeggios with tapping.

Length: 12:00 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only

About Steve Smyth View Full Biography Steve Smyth (Forbidden, Nevermore, Dragonlord, Testament, Vicious Rumors) is no newcomer in the metal music or shred guitar world, first being tipped for the top in Shrapnel Records president Mike Varney‘s “Hometown Heroes” column in the October 1993 issue of Guitar World magazine.

A four year tenure as lead/rhythm guitarist with Bay Area power metallers Vicious Rumors started in 1995. During this time, Smyth contributed to two well received albums; 1996?s Something Burning, and 1998?s Cyberchrist (both released by Massacre Records), and toured extensively in the USA and Europe in support of both albums.

Then in 1999, Smyth began a four and a half year touring stint with Bay Area thrash metal legends Testament, touring the world in support of The Gathering album and then the First Strike Still Deadly album, playing to nearly 500,000 satisfied fans.

During this time Steve also helped form the lineup of Testament guitarist/founder Eric Peterson‘s black metal side project, Dragonlord. Two successful albums followed over the next four years: Rapture (Spitfire Records, 2001) and Black Wings of Destiny (Escapi Music, 2005).

Smyth spent late 2003 touring the world with Nevermore, the well respected underground progressive metal band, in support of their album Enemies of Reality. In 2004, Smyth was invited to become part of the band’s permanent line-up, leading to the critically acclaimed album, This Godless Endeavor (Century Media, 2005), the band’s sixth full length, which featured several songs penned by Steve. A world tour followed, which saw the band play the first Gigantour (the brainchild of Megadeth mainman Dave Mustaine), a headlining tour of Europe, as well as countless support tours across the globe in support of the effort.

In between tours in 2006, Smyth was invited to lend his voice to the character Snizzy Snazz Bullets, on the hit cartoon series Metalocalypse, a role he reprised again in 2008, along with a few other voices.

Smyth officially left Nevermore in 2007, citing “personal and business differences”, and then released The EssenEss Project, an instrumental effort with longtime bandmate Steve Hoffman on bass, and special guest drummer Atma Anur. The effort was released world-wide on Steve’s own imprint, Two Louder Music, to positive critical acclaim. Some touring in support of the album followed, in addition to several clinics and masterclasses in the States and abroad.

2009 found Smyth joining Forbidden, touring Europe and the US with the band, and participating in the writing process for Omega Wave, Forbidden’s first album in 14 years, released October 22nd in EU, October 26th in the US, and Asia two weeks after. A North American tour leg involving a mixture of headlining dates as well as a support slot with thrash metal legends Overkill, kicked off November 4th in Springfield Virginia, wrapping December 11th in San Francisco. More touring in 2011 has commenced, with 2 shows aboard the 1st Annual 70,000 Tons of Metal Cruise (Miami-Cozumel-Miami), a South American tour, and the Spring Festival Season in the EU. Catch the Wave when Forbidden brings it to North America once again with a headlining tour, as well as appearances at select Summer Festivals across Europe, and a full European headline tour in the works for late summer!

2011 saw the release of a Steve Smyth signature series line of guitars from BC Rich, Signature 6 and 7 string Bich guitars designed to Steve’s specs. The guitars made their debut at the Winter NAMM 2011 show in Anaheim Ca, and are now available for sale at a dealer near you! Ask for it by name!

2011 also sees Smyth co-writing the followup album for The EssenEss Project, as well as the debut of new band Firehead, who are presently at work writing a debut album due for release by Fall 2011. Touring in support of both band’s releases is in the planning stages.

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