Slippery Fun Finger-Sliding 11's and 13's

Welcome to my fourth column at the world's greatest guitar site, “Chops From Hell”!!!!

Today, we are going to focus on one of my favorite techniques that I like to use when playing legato called “Finger-Sliding”. This comes in handy anytime you feel like you are stuck in “the box” using licks and scales that you are trying to expand out of on the guitar neck. This can add a whole new dimension to your playing and spice up your soloing ideas. It can also give listeners the illusion you are using more fingers on your left hand than what you really are.

Lick #1 demonstrates this approach in a descending 11's odd-note grouping pattern. Not only does this give your fret hand a great workout, but it gives you that slippery legato type sound that moves all over the place. Use your first finger to slide between positions.

Lick #2 demonstrates this approach in an ascending 13's odd-note grouping fashion. Playing these types of odd-note grouping licks always makes it a little more interesting to the listener by tricking their ears. Once again, use your first finger to slide between positions. This is one of my personal fun favorites because of the workout it gives me.

Practice both of these licks slow at first in time with a metronome before bringing them up to speed. The biggest challenge at first is keeping the notes you are sliding in time with the regular notes to where they blend together evenly. As always, these licks work well within any type of scale groupings in most any position on the neck. Don't be afraid to experiment and come up with your own ideas and variations off of any of my techniques or licks. Have fun with this stuff, open your mind, and email me with any questions you might have. I love to talk guitar technique.

Andy Garrett (nicknamed “StringMaster” by his friends) has played guitar and bass for 30 years, performed 100's of shows, and has worked professionally testing strings for Dean Markley/American Winding Company. He continues to release his instrumental guitar music independently through his own label “GBM Records” in Ocala, Florida; and is putting the finishing touches on material for his first instructional CD-ROM explaining his advanced shred techniques. You can contact Andy by email at and also download and burn your own CD-R of his free MP3 shred demos at and