Earlier this year, as part of the expansive Dimebag Darrell coverage that appeared in our February 2015 issue, Guitar World was invited into Dime's home and recording studio—and we got to bring our cameras.
While Dimebag Darrell was touring Japan with Damageplan, he took time out during the band's Tokyo stop to shoot an impromtu lesson video. The video, which focused on what he considered his trademark licks, was shot in honor of the 35th anniversary of Young Guitar, a Japanese guitar magazine.
Whenever you get into a rut, always try and remember these two things: One, you ain't the only dude that gets hit with this shit-we all go through it from time to time! And two, you're not always gonna be stuck there, so don't totally schiz out! The only way that'll happen is if you let it.
Whenever I feel my chops are slacking, I’ll play some widestretch trilling exercises and take them up and down the neck as well as across it. I’ll start off with a two-fret stretch trill between my index and middle fingers and do that until I feel a burn. Then I’ll do the same thing with a three-fret trill between my index and ring fingers, and then a four-fret one between my index and pinkie.
Last time we scoped out the diminished-sounding root/flat-fifth chord shape (Figure 1), a tension-building power chord I use in the intro to "Rise" [Vulgar Display of Power]. This time around we're gonna get into some more tricky-sounding diads. (a diad is a two note chord: a power chord that can add extra color and dimension to your rhythm playing.)
Van Halen’s impact on Dimebag’s playing is unmistakable. The “vibe” of early Van Halen is by far the most recognizable influence in Dimebag’s playing. From the grooving rhythms played like leads of their own, to the tone, to the phrasing in his lead playing, Dimebag took the inspiration of Edward Van Halen and forged his own identity.
Below, check out a video of a complete Dimebag Darrell clinic that took place June 3, 1993, in Arlington, Texas. The Randall Amplifiers-sponsored clinic, which is basically a Q&A session where Dime is practically begging the crowd for questions, also features some fine playing by Darrell.