Exotic Techniques: Multi-Finger Tapping Lesson

Here's a technique I use that also helps me break out of a "guitar" sound and allows me to groove with an electronic four-to-the-floor dance groove.

It basically consists of executing octaves with unassisted hammer-ons using your fret hand while tapping the first, third, and fifth string using the ring, middle and index finger of your right hand.

Remember to check out my other columns under RELATED CONTENT at left -- and note there's a video at the bottom of this column, plus three figures.

In FIGURE A, this technique yields us a Dmin11 without a fifth. You will likely find this to be an interesting and somewhat exotic sound. An important note on this technique: immediately after your initial octave is hammered out, make sure that you pick up your fingers from the fretboard with your left hand to assume a “muting” position as your fingers from your right hand come down in attack.

This will keep the riff from becoming audibly muddy, giving it a more staccato essence and resembling a computer-like sound.

FIGURE B shows us a similar pattern that gives us a Cmaj9 without a fifth.

The last example shows these two chord voicing tied together into a progression with an Amin11(no5) and a Gmin11(no5). This technique is presented in groupings of four, and tends to work best that way. But that's not to say you can't creatively find out another rhythmic grouping using this technique!

Cyamak Ashtiani is an award-winning rock/pop guitarist and songwriter who has written, toured and recorded with a multitude of major and indie recording artists. Recently, he has toured with Rockstar: Supernova's Lukas Rossi and country/rap artist Mikel Knight. You can catch his new project with former Dry Cell frontman Jeff Gutt at ShadesOfTheVillain.com and his clothing line at 1251Clothing.com, of which he is a cofounder.

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