Cool Guitar Riffs #2

I’ve decided to start a series of videos for the cool guitar riffs lessons. Hence the name “Cool Guitar Riffs #2.” Mostly because I’m running out of things to call them, so why not start giving them numbers?

I once had one of those Siamese fighting fish as a pet, and I wasn’t sure if he would live very long, so I named him Louis, in case I needed to start a dynasty…

Anyways, cool guitar riffs are a lot more fun than dead fish, so back on topic here! Today I’ve got one for you that uses fourths, and the A pentatonic minor scale. That’s the first riff in the video, and I’m sure you’ve heard this style of riff all over the place. It’s a pretty classic sound. Keep in mind that these riffs can sound very different if you simply turn off the talent button and play clean for a moment, or if you just change up the timing a little bit.

The second riff comes out of the A diatonic minor scale, root 5 – also known as the Lydian scale if you like being technical about it. I find it more intuitive to talk about these scales in terms of what they are (A minor diatonic) and where they start (root 5 = 5th string… think about it… that means you’re starting on the 5th string, 12 fret, where you find the A). I’ve never related well to the technical terms like Lydian, Dorian and all the rest, and by and large I don’t find the terminology particularly helpful.

Get on with the Cool Guitar Riffs Already!

Okay, my rant for the day is done – go ahead and hit play, watch the lesson, and then leave a comment below the video when you’re done!

If you liked the style and difficulty level of this guitar riff, you might like to check out my short course that contains a bunch more guitar riffs in G major.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

  1. Thank You, Jon……………
    Those are a couple a Cool Licks…….

    Now its just Practice,Practice,Practice and a Budweiser or 2

    Wal of the`RAPIDS` `CEDAR`that is……………………..

  2. Jonathan
    I really love all the cool riffs and everything you teach!!!
    You really make me love playing my guitar by watching makes me want to play more and more each day.
    So don’t stop emailing me any thing you got going on!
    Keep it sounding great like you already do. You really got it!!

  3. Been playing a long time mainly as a rhythm guitarist doing some backup lead.When I started out a friend taught me this box pattern starting at the 6th string 3rd fret hitting the G then A notes, move to the 5th string hitting the C – D notes, slide up a whole note/step(2 frets) continuing the pattern and slide up again ending on the E note on the 1st string 12th fret. I then taught myself the Do, Re, Mi scale. I don’t know what it ‘s called (isn’t it the C maj. Chromatic?). I learned the five different positions up the neck. So my challenge is pulling melodic riffs from all that limited knowledge. When I heard your Pentatonic and Diatonic minor scales and how they lay on top of each other my mind exploded with the cravings of a sponge in the desert seeing water for the first time!! You pulling riffs out of these scales is exactly what I need and want.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you.
    Sir George

  4. You are a great teacher and one cool, llaid-back dude from BC.

    I am really glad that I found your courses to really lear guitar beyond only chords. This will be the first step in learning vs. being confused by all the stuff out there. You are a gifted teacher and I’m sure in time, I’ll find something to gripe about. 😉

    Chow/my best ~ Allan

  5. Playing riffs are fun it really helps on learning where to find notes on the fret board and how to get around on the fret board. Many thanks and keep on rocking.

  6. Was good, Jonathan !. Been awhile since I practiced any of your licks.. Used to get your lessons in 2010 in Palm Harbor, Fl….but life happens. After 13-14 years and 5-6 moves I’m in Puerto Rico trying again.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Totally Free, Customized Guitar Lessons

  • How to find your way around the fretboard
  • How to use scales and riffs
  • Improvising and soloing lessons
  • Customized to your current level