Learning to play pull offs and hammer ons on guitar
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Fingerstyle Guitar Pull-offs, Hammer-ons, slurs

This final lesson in the fingerstyle series of lessons by James Akers covers the important techniques surrounding slurs. Slurs are often referred to as hammer-ons and pull-offs in non classical guitar styles, but they are essentially the same thing.

Learning to play with these techniques as an integral part of your style will give your guitar music a lyrical sound and get away from a continuously picked approach. Players from all styles employ these techniques, so this lesson is worth watching at least a couple of times until you have mastered the concepts shown.

Topics Covered

  • How to play a pull-off.
  • Pull-off exercise.
  • Performing multiple pull-offs.
  • Hammer-ons and where best to begin playing them.
  • Demonstrating exercise number 12 from the Guitar Exam Book.

Like The Free Lesson? BUY THE BOOK!

Learn More About James Akers’s Guitar Exam Exercise Book.

BOOK CONTENT 85 exercises & 16 studies grade 1 to grade 5 and beyond covering:

  • GRADE 1 – The exercises for grade 1 are intended to help the guitarist in the early stages of their development build up their finger strength, improve their coordination, tone production, speed, and accuracy.
  • GRADE 2 – The exercises for Grade 2 extend and consolidate the ideas introduced in Grade 1, providing more material to allow the evolving guitarist to improve their technique in a systematic way.
  • GRADE 3 – New techniques are introduced, including slurs, (or hammer-ons and pull-offs) and natural harmonics. In addition, as well as exercises, there are several specially composed study pieces, in a variety of styles, to allow the techniques learned so far to be practised in a more musical context.
  • GRADE 4 – Common descending arpeggio pattern across three strings, 4 note chords using all right-hand fingers, multiple slurs, or hammer-ons and pull-offs, in various finger combinations including open strings and multiple fretted notes, the half-barre technique for the left hand.
  • GRADE 5 – Ascending arpeggio patterns, speed & rhythmic pattern exercises, left hand workouts with repeated patterns, mixed ascending/descending slur patterns, full barre technique
  • BEYOND GRADE 5 – Tremelo technique, natural harmonics in exercise and within a study.

STUDIES

Sixteen original studies are provided for grades 3 onwards:

  • GRADE 3 – Six studies individually demonstrating various left hand finger combinations, two part chordal textures, three part chords, ascending slur and hammer on techniques,
  • GRADE 4 – Four studies individually demonstrating arpeggio playing, three and four part chordal performance, half barre in a musical context, ascending and descending slurs, playing in complex time signatures, introducing natural harmonics.
  • GRADE 5 AND BEYOND – Six studies individually demonstrating arpeggio playing, slur exploration, speed study, thick textured chordal playing, tremelo study, artificial harmonics in melodic scenario.

DOWNLOAD

All exercises and studies have been recorded by James Akers and are included as a free download to accompany this book. Details of how to access the free download are detailed within the publication.

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  • Highest quality paper and print.
  • Wire comb bind for flat lie on music stand.
  • European A4 size; larger and easier to read.
  • Highest quality paper and print.
  • Wire comb bind for flat lie on music stand.
  • European A4 size; larger and easier to read.

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