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Two-Handed Tapping 1: Welcome, Gear, & Tone

 

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Two-Handed Tapping 1

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In this tutorial Dave will introduce you to the technique of tapping.

Two-hand tapping goes as far back as the 1920’s with Roy Smeck tapping on an ukulele and six-stringer Jimmie Webster used his tap technique in a jazz context in the 50’s. In the 70’s tapping exploded, beginning with Genesis’ Steve Hackett, Emmett Chapman tapping on his patented ‘Chapman Stick’, and Edward Van Halen, who catapulted tapping into the mainstream spotlight where it became a universal and necessary technique, sending guitarists everywhere to the practice woodshed. And more recently guitarists Yvette Young and Tosin Abasi are putting their own spin on the two-hand tapping technique.

In this tutorial I’ll break down and show all the secrets of this amazing guitar technique, from the ubiquitous Van Halen tapping arpeggio lick through how it developed into a musical tool with many applications. And it’s not just for rock guitarists. The second section of this two-part tutorial is more intense and covers the styles of jazzer Stanley Jordan and acoustic players Andy McKee and Michael Hedges, who have incorporated taping into their own style with amazing results.

In this first section you’ll learn single finger tapping ideas with arpeggios, sliding, string bending, pentatonic scales, diatonic scales, pedal points, and tapping harmonics.

For the best learning experience, you’ll want an electric guitar with light or extra-light strings and slightly lower action. I’ll be using an over-driven tone for most of the examples as well as a string damper wrapped around the neck that’ll be used on the final lesson to reduce string noise.