A master of pickslanting, economy picking and pentatonic flurries, Eric Johnson is one of the smoothest soloists on the planet – and his techniques will really make your solos pop

Eric Johnson performs on the 2024 G3 tour
(Image credit: Daniel Knighton/Getty Images)

Hailing from Austin, Texas, Eric Johnson integrates the influence of the blues greats with more modernistic harmonic structures and grooves. Eric is a virtuoso player with a unique style. One thing that distinguishes him is his incredible picking technique. His musical language is sophisticated and personal, and I’ve crafted this month’s examples as an intro to Eric’s style without making them too daunting. 

The first is a bluesy phrase typical of Eric’s melodic phrasing. The use of the low A note states the harmony, and a lot of players who are used to working in a trio setting use this approach to fill out the texture. 

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Andy G Jones

A professional guitarist for many years, Andy G Jones has played with Van Morrison, James Ingram, Lamont Dozier, Queen (Brian May and Roger Taylor), Robben Ford, Billy Cobham, John Illsley (Dire Straits), KT Tunstall, Albert Lee (featured on Andy's upcoming CD), Mike Finnigan, Dave Landreth and Ryan Voth from The Bros. Landreth, Malford Milligan, The BBC Radio Big Band, Patti Austin, Hamish Stuart (Average White Band), Lalo Schifrin (Hollywood film composer Bullitt, Mission Impossible), Hank Marvin, James Dean Bradfield (the Manic Street Preachers), Grady Tate, Agnetha from ABBA, Cliff Richard, Dudley Moore, Nathan James (Inglorious), Joey Tempest (Europe) and Kelsey Grammar.