10 Awesome Guitar Tricks You Have to Try

Do you have dreams about becoming the next big guitar player? By so far your guitar skills are average and they don’t impress your friends.

Those days are over. We know a few guitar tricks you can learn that will wow your friends and family. And will grow your guitar playing skills.

All you have to do is grab your guitar and read on.

1. Guitar Slides

This trick is exactly what it sounds like. You play a note and slide your finger to a lower or higher note. It’s important to use the tip of your fingers and not the flat part for a smoother sliding sound.

Always slide your finger carefully so you end up on the note you intended. It’s important to use the tip of your fingers and not the flat part for a smoother sliding sound.

You can slide using single notes, but if you are a more advanced guitar player you could also try chords.

2. String Bending

All the great guitar players such as Jimmy Hendrix used this trick [1]. String bending will add a lot of character to your playing.

The bending needs to start at your wrist, not your fingers. Master the note you want to bend up before you try it.

Don’t forget to use more than one finger. Because it requires a certain amount of finger strength, the more you use the better. To help the bend, try using non-fretting fingers.

Popular string bends include the quarter, half, and the whole step ends. These are the 5 most common bends often used with the blues scale [2]:

  • b3rd to the 4th
  • b3rd to the quarter step
  • b7th to the root
  • 4th up to half step to b5th
  • 4th up to a whole step to 5th

After you master bending the strings, release the note back to the desired pitch. Then you want to return the string to the original pitch.

3. Galloping

Out of all the guitar tricks, this one is popular in the heavy metal genre. If you listen to some heavy metal songs with the words muted you’ll be able to pick up on the three-note rhythm.

Galloping is made to sound like the gallop of a horse [3]. Think of the sound horse’s hooves make when they hit the ground at high speed.

It combines forward rolls followed by open strings creating a rhythmic lush sound.

4. Descending Harmonics

To achieve this sound, your hand should pick a note and have your hand hover over any string.

Remembering to press lightly, slide the fret note down the guitar. As you slide down the guitar you will hear the sound of the harmonics [4].

Try this technique using the low E string.

Check out this video and see some tricks:

5. Vibrato

Similar to string bending, vibrato adds character to your single note. Think of it as trying to make your guitar sing.

The way to do it is by holding your fretting and pushing the string quickly. Remember the movement is quick but it also needs to be gentle.

For this technique, the movement is in the hand more than the fingers. Move your hand back and forth as to make the pitch wabble.

If your guitar has one, try using the whammy to sound the vibrato. Hold the bar in and out as the note rings.

6. Natural Harmonics

Have you ever thought your guitar could sound like a harp? You probably haven’t tried playing using natural harmonics.

Play natural harmonics on the 5th, 7th, and 12th frets. Remember your fingers should only be lightly touching the string.

Don’t add too much pressure or the note could sound too heavy.

To achieve the harmonic sound, hover your hand directly over the fret. And pick the string your hand is hovering over.

7. Tapping

Tapping is a technique that requires you to tap the strings using your right hand. Alternate this movement with notes played by the left hand.

The basic way to tapping is by playing 3 notes on one string. Try playing them in a sequence. Tap the first note using your right-hand fingers, and then let it pull-off onto a second note using your left-hand. And finally, pull-off a third note by your left-hand fingers.

8. Octave Skipping

It’s important your guitar playing is clean and evenly to achieve this sound. The pattern is easy to memorize if you concentrate.

Start by picking the same note at an octave higher. Do it in a rapid succession for maximum effect.

Do it slowly at first and then increase the speed until you get the hang of it. The sound should not be sloppy, otherwise, decrease the speed.

9. Pinched Harmonics

Start by holding your guitar pick between your thumb and second finger. Youch the string using your index finger over the thirteen fret. The result will be a high pitch squeal.

Holding this position makes the pinched harmonics sound when you pick. You can use a distortion pedal or turn up the gain on your amp. Don’t forget to set the bridge pick up on your guitar.

Don’t forget to set the bridge pick up if you’re using an electric guitar. On an acoustic guitar, use your thumb to barely brush the top of the string.

10. Feedback

Do you have a neighbor you want to piss off? Our list of guitar tricks wouldn’t be complete without feedback.

You will need the right amp settings to create feedback, otherwise, it can be tricky to achieve this sound.

Locate the ‘mids’ on your amp. If you turn up the mids, it will create feedback easily. Make sure the volume is higher than the gain

Ready to Try These Guitar Tricks?

Which trick was your favorite?

Whether you want to become the next rock star, or you have a more classic sound, you can learn from these guitar tricks.

Try playing one at a time, or combine them all to develop your own style. Have you tried using a guitar tuner app? You can also try it out and see if it will suit you.

If you enjoyed the article and want to read reviews on some of the best guitars on the market, check out our site.

Stephanie Su

Started learning music when she was four years old, Stephanie is a music teacher and a music therapist who is highly proficient in Piano, Violin, Guitar, and Ukulele. She likes to learn, teach, and share her music playing experiences.

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