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Total Guitar created a scientifically perfect guitar solo – here’s what it sounds like and how to play it

Man playing electric guitar
(Image credit: Future)

You named the 50 greatest guitar solos. And we investigated what they have in common, using the power of science (and a lot of graphs). Now, we’re using the knowledge we acquired as a guide to create a brand-new Frankenstein’s monster of a solo for you to learn. Here’s the essential info...

First, the tempo – with a range between 64 and 170 bpm we’ve opted for a close to average 120 bpm. A minor key is essential, so we’re in E minor here, but with a few moments spent hinting at E harmonic minor and E Dorian. A minimum of 2.5 octaves of pitch range is vital, and we’ve covered about three octaves here.

The lowest notes appear in the first half of the solo, before building to the highest point later on. The ‘notiest’ bars of music begin about two thirds of the way through and we’ve made sure to include a mix of fast, shreddy content and melodic hooks – all essential stuff.

There’s loads for you to learn in our tab, including licks in the styles of several iconic guitarists. Just remember, if anyone asks what you’re playing, tell them it’s the scientifically proven greatest solo of all time!

Franken-solo part one

(Image credit: Future)

This is essentially the same as the intro, except it’s varied with a move two frets down the fingerboard to imply a C chord in bars 7 to 9. 

Try playing the D5 and C5 powerchords with your second and fourth fingers. This keeps your first finger free to fret the lower notes that open each bar of 2/4 time.

Franken-solo part 2

(Image credit: Future)

Following our melodic opening lick, we move into a Comfortably Numb-style arpeggio, Bohemian Rhapsody-style staccato notes and Crazy Train-inspired tapped string bend – all before bar 6! Bars 11 and 12 feature Highway Star-style picking, taking in brief Free Bird and Sweet Child O’ Mine-inspired licks to lead into a Fade To Black idea in bars 15 and 16. 

 The arpeggios from bar 20 reference Hotel California over a While My Guitar Gently Weeps-influenced chord progression, and we round things off with a Sweet Child… motif and Beat It-style harmonics. Phew!