Surf Guitar Instrumental & Solo in E minor

Original SURF guitar instrumental and solo I wrote, called ‘El Camarón’ (The Shrimp), inspired by an imaginary shrimp super-hero and its quirky adventures in the beach sand 🙂 Aside from this sunny backstory, the track is inspired by the surf hits of Dick Dale, Hank Marvin (The Shadows) and others! Download the TABS (pdf) here: 

About the solo

This uplifting, instrumental surf song is in the key of E minor. The song is inspired by surf instrumental classics from Dick Dale, Hank Marvin (The Shadows) The Ventures, and other surf instrumental bands. The track has a repeating motif with a clear Tex-Mex sound to it. I love this blend of Latin, Spanish and Exotic riffs in Surf Music. This is really fun to play for guitarists.-

Gear
  • To record this track, I went back to ‘basics’, playing my 1994 Fender American Std Stratocaster into a Fender Blues Jr. I used the spring reverb from this amp and added some more by sending the recorded signal through the Eventide H9 spring reverb algorithm.
  • Bass: Spectrasonics Trilian Drums (programmed by Maarten)
  • Steven Slate 5.5 (programmed by Maarten)
  • Recorded with Logic Pro X, mixed with Steven Slate & Izotope plugins.
Backing track

Check out the backing track here.

Blues Lick Lesson #05 (Jump Blues Lick)

In this 5th blues lick lesson, I show you how to play this jump blues lick in the key of C scale. This lick uses some interesting concepts, like the use of the major 3d, grace notes and a reverse sweep (or rake). Recommended playing level: intermediate and up.

C major pentatonic

This is mostly an C major pentatonic blues lick that is used on the I-chord. The lick has a triplet feel and is played mostly in the 8th position on the guitar neck. On the figure below you can see the major & minor pentatonic (in the 8th position) next to each other as a comparison (R=root). Look specifically at the major 3d, because this is a recurring theme in this blues lick.

C minor pentatonic vs C major pentatonic
C minor pentatonic vs C major pentatonic
Concepts in this blues lick lesson

In this blues lick lesson, you get the guitar tabs on screen, a detailed explanation of the picking technique and 2 variations (adaptations) for a slower blues. Concepts that are present in this video

  • Using the major 3d (mixing major & minor pentatonic)
  • Grace notes
  • Reverse sweep (upstroke sweep) and rake.
Backing Track

Up-tempo jump blues backing track (150bpm) here.

Gear

The guitar used is my 2013 Gibson ES-335. The guitar has a warm, vintage sound. Everything is recorded through my pedalboard and the Fractal Audio Systems AX8.

👉 Check out my gear page on Thomann: gear-thomann.guitar-inspiration.com

Practice Tips

Practice this lick slowly first, then with the backing track on my channel. The lick is also easily transposable to other major blues songs, so I hope you’ll get some mileage out of this one.

Keep on playing that guitar!

Hope to see you again next time,

Maarten

Melodic Pop Rock Solo in G

Melodic Rock Guitar solo (with guitar tabs) for the original jam track (‘Modern Country Rock Jam Track’) I posted before. The main elements for this guitar solo are melodic licks, double stops, and modern adaptations of country licks. Enjoy!

About the solo

The intro sets the tone for an uplifting, modern country rock pop groove. After a tasty country guitar lick, the verse starts with the same chords as the intro. In this first part of the melodic rock guitar solo, I focus on chord tones, embellished with slides pull-offs and hammer-ons. I play in the bridge position of my new Fender Vintera 60s Modified LPB. I was quite surprised to learn that this tele bridge pickup is ‘hot’ enough to produce this type of guitar lead tones. 

After the melodic turnaround (bar 26-29), the guitar solo continues with a motif of double stops. The energy continues to build, and in bar 38, I play a melodic pattern with a pedaling open E-string. The inspiration for this part comes from songs like ‘The Chain’ (Fleetwood Mac) or ‘Oh Darkness’ (Admiral Freebee). What follows is the guitar solo’s highest point of energy (bars 41-44), with a few blazing blues licks and a pinch of shredding. Bar 46 is the bridge of this song, but you could look a this as a post-chorus. The guitar solo emphasizes melody and double stops again. Some of the melodic patterns return and – after pickup in bar 53 – the melodic pop rock guitar solo lowers its register. 

Featured lick

The solo ends with a modern country lick in G. This lick is mostly G ionian with a cool legato pattern (bar 60 – see colored box), some hints of the G minor blues scale (bar 61) and chromatic ending. 

Modern Country Lick in G
Modern Country Lick in G
Gear
  •  Fender Telecaster Vintera 60s Modified LPB (solo + rhythm parts)
  • Yamaha Pacifica P90 (slide guitar parts in the background)
  • Martin HD-16R Acoustic (acoustic guitar parts)
  • All guitars played by Maarten
  • Overdrive used: Crazy Tube Circuits: Black Magic MKII
  • Amp: Fractal AX8 Carr Rambler Preset
  • Delays: H910 H949 algorithm from the Eventide H9
  • Bass: Spectrasonics Trilian Drums (programmed by Maarten)
  • Steven Slate 5.5 (programmed by Maarten)
  • Recorded with Logic Pro X, mixed with Steven Slate & Izotope plugins.
Backing track

Modern country rock backing track here.