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William Roberts

William Roberts

William is a Guitar instructor at JamPlay.com



William currently offers 61 guitar lessons at JamPlay, with 61 intermediate lessons.

William Roberts's contribution to JamPlay

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Rock

30 Rock and Pop Licks You Must Know

Rock, Pop and genres bent from it are punctuated by signature licks, riffs and rhythmic ideas. William Roberts dissects these sounds and ideas and parleys them into this vocabulary pack. Drop these licks and riffs directly into your lead playing, or use them as an inspirational platform on which to create your own.

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30 Rock and Pop Licks You Must Know Introduction

Do you have a couple basic diatonic and pentatonic scales under your fingers but don't really know how to use them? This lick course is designed to take your scale knowledge and apply it practically to melodic lick and riff concepts. Join William Roberts as he breaks down 30 rock and pop licks designed to break you through scaler playing.

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Pentatonic Power

To start off, William offers up a minor pentatonic sounding lick in the Blues or Classic Rock genre.

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Color it Blue

This lick uses a descending scale sound and is based off of the lick you learned in the previous lesson.

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4

The Chuck Slide

This is minor pentatonic meats Dorian sounding lick in the style of Chuck Berry.

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5

Angus Steps In

You're still using that Dorian sound from the previous lick, but now in the style of Angus Young.

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6

Stevie's Way

Lick 5 uses the pentatonic scales to groove on a Stevie Ray Vaughn inspired lick.

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7

The King's Line

In lick six you'll be using a major pentatonic sound in the BB King box.

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View this Lesson
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Move like Mayer

In lick seven, you'll take the ideas from the previous lick and modernize it a bit in the style of John Mayer.

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Jimi’s Double Stops

In this lick, you'll be moving into more of a rhythm and riff based sound, emulating double stops in the style of Jimi Hendrix.

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10

Lead Like Rhythm

We're still playing around with rhythm based riffs on this one. Using the guitar's upper register we create a lead like sound that is distinctively rhythmic.

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11

Minor Double Stops

Now let's take a look at double stop riffs in a minor tonality.

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The Jackson Stops

Lick 11 has more double stops flying at you! This one has both a rhythm and melodic elements to simulate a lead part.

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Just Like A Slide

Let's switch things up for lick 12. In this one, you'll emulate the sound and feel of using a slide.

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Still Sliding

In this lick you'll remain in a major pentatonic modality in a slide type fashion.

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The New Nashville

Lick 14 is based in a major pentatonic sound that incorporates many of the techniques from the previous licks.

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16

Pop Country Steel

This lick is another country style lick that will emulate the pedal steel guitar.

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17

Stomping in E

This E minor lick is blues oriented and is based in the E minor Pentatonic tonality.

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18

In the Garage

Lick 17 is in the style of modern garage rock bands like The White Stripes.

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19

The Magic Interval

This lick is based around William Robert's favorite interval, the sixth.

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20

A 6th of Whiskey

William is once again playing with sixths. This lick will extend the intervals to create a bit more movement.

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21

A Classical Blues

This C minor lick has an ascending arpeggios with a descending scaler motion, in the style of Eric Johnson.

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22

Jimi's Octaves

Lick 21 uses octave shapes that re decidedly Jimi Hendrix-esque.

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23

The Octave Lead Up

Using the octave ideas from the previous lick, William demonstrates how to modernize the sound.

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24

The Caprice

Lick 23 is a scaler motion lick centered in the key of F minor.

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25

The Eddie Tap

In this lick you'll learn a basic tapping pattern in the style of Eddie Van Halen.

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The Tap Continues

Lick 25 will continue to work tapping into your repertoire. This one expands the pattern slightly.

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The Modern Minor 9

This lick has a combination of runs and chords in the same passage.

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Double Trouble

Like the previous lick, you'll be playing through a series of chords. On this one you'll be adding some fills.

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Talking With Two Notes

Lick 28 continues the idea of playing through changes. This lick encompasses more melodic phrasing.

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The Virtuoso

Lick 29 is designed to get you more comfortable with hammer-ons and pull-offs using the pentatonic pattern.

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The One String Wonder

For the last lick in this series, you'll use hammer-ons and pull-offs to blaze a lick on a single string.

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Lead Concepts & Techniques

The Language of Lead Guitar

When we start our journey on the electric guitar, we are often mystified by the ability of seasoned guitar players, who can improvise and piece together melodic lead lines on the spot. Let's join William Roberts as we learn the techniques behind creating quality single-note licks, solos, and melodies. To achieve these techniques, William will focus on 4 scales that can provide us an endless amount of melodic material: the Minor Pentatonic Scale, the Major Pentatonic Scale, the Minor Scale, and the Major Scale. In addition to learning two positions that work for each one of these scales, he will cover a variety of different licks and solos. By learning licks that utilize each one of these positions, we will better understand the melodic potential that lies in each one of these scales. William will also cover the core inflections that are standard in modern lead guitar - such as bends, vibrato, hammer-ons, and pull-offs as well as a variety of exercises that isolate and develop different aspects of single-note guitar playing.

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Introduction to 'The Language of Lead'

William Roberts introduces us to his new course, 'The Language of Lead'.

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Minor Pentatonic Scale: As Fundamental as it Gets

To open the course, we will take a look at one of the cornerstones of lead guitar - the Minor Pentatonic Scale.

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View this Lesson
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Lick 1: Pentatonic Blues

For our first lick of the series, we will expand our application of the Minor Pentatonic Scale with a look at a classic Blues lick that incorporates a slide within the scale.

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Lick 2: A 'Classic' Classic Rock Lick

In this next lick lesson, we will break down a very familiar Classic Rock lick that utilizes a vibratic bend.

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Lick 3: The Blue Note Lick

For our last Minor Pentatonic lick, we will look at a slight variant of the Minor Pentatonic Scale that incorporates the fabled “Blue Note.”

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Technique 1: Bend it like Becker

For our last Minor Pentatonic lick, we will look at a slight variant of the Minor Pentatonic Scale that incorporates the fabled “Blue Note.”

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Major Pentatonic Scale: Does this look Familiar?

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Lick 4: Major Power Ballad

Expanding on our knowledge of the Major Pentatonic Scale, we will now look at a slower vibratic bending lick that is used widely in many of the classic 80’s power ballads.

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Lick 5: Just Like the King

Continuing with the Major Pentatonic Scale, here we will learn a classic lick based on what is often called the “B.B. King Box”.

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Lick 6: A Modern Take

Closing out our section on the Major Pentatonic Scale, get ready for a lick that uses the 'B.B. King Box', but in a Modern Pop context - similar to the style of the Blues/Pop crossover artist John Mayer.

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Technique 2: Singing Vibrato

Moving on, in our second technique lesson of the series we will take a look at a useful exercise that focuses on perfecting the singing quality of proper vibrato technique.

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12

The Major Scale: Where it All Starts

The Major Scale is by far the most common scale used in western music. In this lesson, we will break down this useful scale in two separate positions on the neck.

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Lick 7: The Power Ballad Continues

Jumping into the application of the Major Scale, here we will revisit our Hair Metal roots with a look at a lead line in the style of an 80’s power ballad.

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Lick 8: A Taste of Classical

Continuing with the Major Scale, now let's take a look at a tasty lick in the style of Neoclassical guitar.

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Lick 9: Popping Off

It can be argued that no genre is as synonymous with the Major Scale as Pop. In this lesson, we will look at a Pop-style lick that utilizes the Major Scale.

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Technique 3: Hammer Ons and Pull Offs

For our next technique lesson, we will look at two of the key tools used in playing lead guitar: hammer-ons and pull-offs. Here, we will break these techniques down and show how the proper application can increase our speed and dexterity while navigating the fretboard.

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Minor Scale: The Final Piece

Now we've made it to our final scale of the course, you guessed it - the Minor Scale. In this lesson, we will dissect the Minor Scale and discuss its relationship to the Major Scale.

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Lick 10: Neoclassical

Let's apply our knowledge of the Minor Scale and head back to the realm of Neoclassical guitar! In this lesson, we'll take a look at a Minor Scale application of this popular style.

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Lick 11: The Sad Pop Song

Further expanding our use of the Minor Scale, in this lesson we will look at a lick that uses the scale to set a tone that conveys a sad or melancholy mood.

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Lick 12: The Classic Rock Lead Up

We use our minor scale again in this intense ascending rock lick. We also learn the essential technique of tremolo picking.

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Technique 4: Alternate Picking

In this last technique lesson of the course, we will look at a few key exercises that can help us develop a crucial skill needed for successful lead playing - alternate picking.

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Major Arpeggios: Triads

"Moving on, in this next lesson we will discuss the Major variation of a couple key figures that can really help identify and use your chord shapes in a lead setting - triads and arpeggios.

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Minor Arpeggios: Triads

Continuing with our triads and arpeggios, in this lesson we'll cover the Minor variations of these key figures.

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Major Arpeggios: Playing the Changes

Let's put our arpeggios to use! In this lesson, we will work on playing through a simple two-chord progression utilizing our major arpeggio shapes.

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Minor Arpeggios: Playing the Changes Cont.

Now let's put our minor arpeggios to use! In this lesson, we will work on playing through a simple two-chord progression utilizing our minor arpeggio shapes.

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Solo 1: Pop Country Paradise

You've come this far, now it's time to get your solo on! In this first full solo, we will learn a short guitar melody in the style of modern Pop- country artists like Carrie Underwood, then view an example solo by William before taking the reins and applying all of the lead skills we've learned thus far to create our own full-fledged guitar solo!

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Solo 2: Rockin' All Night Long

In this next full solo, we will repeat the same method and look at a Classic Rock style melody that highlights the guitar playing of the great Rock bands of the ’70s.

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Solo 3: The Modern Magic

Continuing this method, in this next solo we will look at a lead line in the style of the Modern Pop and Blues crossover artist John Mayer.

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Solo 4: A Rock Sonata

Let's keep adding to our repertoire of guitar solos by taking a look at this Neoclassical-style solo that hints at the classically influenced Rock of the ’80s and ’90s.

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Solo 5: The Big Stage

Congratulations on making it this far! In our final solo and lesson of the course, we will take a look at a lead line that focuses on slow melodic parts over a power ballad backing track.

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