Before tackling this course, you should be comfortable with all the material from Unit 4 | Harmonies

In our final unit, we will be tapping into Brian May's more advanced playing. Pun intended! We'll be taking an early Queen style track to teach you some bluesy, arrogant playing, with some advanced tapping techniques thrown in for good measure. This solo is instantly applicable to all of your usual bluesy rock soloing as well, making it extra useable! Check out the first video to get started and click here to check out the Materials Section below to access backing tracks and interactive tab!

Lesson 21: Lick 1

First up, let's just establish that we are working in the key of G minor, or G blues. As we are predominantly using power-chords and a riff, we can be a little loose with the definition, but we are mainly working with G minor. This therefore means that we are using the G blues scale for the majority of the solo, which you can see in the fretboard diagrams. We are also using tapping notes form this scale, as well as some cool chromatic ideas, which Dion walks you through in the video.

Getting used to tapping...

The most important thing to remember with tapping is that you treat it like a hammer on and then a pull off. In the same way you would perform a pull-off from one finger to another, making sure to still pluck the string with your pull off you apply the same principle to the tapped note. This can be very hard at first, but this is a fun track to practice it on!

Lesson 22: Lick 2

For the next lick, we are back on the cool tapping ideas, but this time starting up in the 2nd blues scale box (see the fretboard diagrams). We actually deliberately use the flat 5th from the blues scale as our bend, which adds an extremely dissonant sound to the whole thing. This is then wonderfully resolved as the lick continues. Before moving onto the next link in the next lesson, try to piece these first two together. Good luck!

Lesson 23: Lick 3

For the third lick we are back in the root position blues box, but we are using some really cool chromatic ideas as we play through the lick. Chromatic ideas are there to deliberately add some interest, dissonance and tension that likes to be resolved. In this instance we are using the out notes (notes outside of the scale) around the G minor pentatonic or blues scale. This is a fairly easy way to apply chromatics as all of the notes in the G minor pentatonic scale are pretty safe and satisfying when you land on them! So, refer to the tab again to get this lick in the bag, and we'll be doing the last lick and putting it all together next time!

Lesson 24: Lick 4

For our final lick, we have a really cool harmonised part. For this part, we very much switch to a G major tonality, which immediately adds a more euphoric sound to the end of this track, due to the shift from minor to major. We are using a simple G major scale shape, which you can see in the fretboard diagrams, and should familiarise yourself with! As for the harmonised parts, Dion doesn't specifically go through those in these videos, but use the tab below to have a bit of fun and try and get them together! Use everything you learnt in the previous lesson to understand exactly how they work! Good luck 😃

Materials: Interactive Tab & Backing Tracks

Below are the materials for this group of lessons. Click on the tab icon to open our super cool interactive tab player (this will allow you to slow down the tab and play along with the video). Alternatively, jump straight in with the backing tracks below. Good luck!

All done?


You've now completed Player Studies: Brian May and taken a huge step forwards in your guitar playing journey.

Feel free to bask in glory for a while, or go ahead and try another course if you're hungry for more.