Bending Techniques Every Guitar Player Should Know

Bending Techniques
Every Guitar Player Should Know

Welcome to an exciting two lesson series dedicated to elevating your soloing and improvisation on guitar.

The aim is to help you become more expressive when soloing/improvising on guitar by showing you creative ways to use phrasing elements you already know.

The string bending technique is one of the best ways to improve our musicality and grab people's attention. The string bending technique is the go-to tool used by the greatest guitarists of all time to add flavor and dimension to their solos.

We'll focus specifically on five crucial bending techniques that every guitarist should have in their arsenal.

NB: Assuming you already know how to perform the string bending technique on guitar, today's lesson will not cover its intricacies. However, if you wish to improve and execute your string bending technique without tension, click here for ''The Ultimate String Bending Exercise''.

Let's dive right in!

String Bending Technique #1: The Double Stop Bend

We begin with double stop bends. What are double stops you might ask? In essence, a double stop refers to playing two notes simultaneously during soloing or improvisation.

Check out min @1:10 for a quick demonstration.

We're going to apply the string bending technique to double stops, here are some examples.

Example #1: Unison Double Stop Bends.
The idea here is to bend and play the same note on 2 strings simultaneously.

-Play the D note on the higher string. (Ex: Fret 10 of the high E String)
-Bend the C note on the lower string (Ex: Fret 13 of the B String) into the same pitch.

Check out min @1:29 for a quick demonstration.

Make sure you take into consideration the difference in tuning when using this bending technique on the G and B strings, you'll have to adjust accordingly:
-Play the D note on the higher string. (Ex: Fret 15 of the B String)
-Bend the C note on the lower string (Ex: Fret 17 of the G String) into the same pitch.


Check out min @1:55 for a quick demonstration.

Example #2: Regular Double Stop Bends.
In this particular example of the double stop bends, we're still playing 2 notes on 2 different strings simultaneously. However, this time we're playing 2 different notes

Check out min @2:15 for a quick demonstration.

Example #3: Bend both strings.
In the previous examples of the double stop bending technique, we were always bending one string, but we will bend both strings for this one.

 

Check out min @2:40 for a quick demonstration.

String Bending Technique #2: The Re-Articulation Bend

For this bending technique, we're playing a note and then bending into that note on the same string, for example:
-Play fret 12 on the B string (B note).
-Bend fret 10 also on the B String (A note) into the same pitch.
Check out min @3:10 for a quick demonstration.

String Bending Technique #3: The Exotic Bend

An exotic bend is essentially a re-articulation bend, but for you to perform an exotic bend, you need to be bending a note from outside the scale.
For simplicity's sake, I'll do this example on the minor pentatonic scale, notice how the note in red (the note I'm bending) isn't inside the scale.

Check out min @3:41 for a quick demonstration.

Since we're in the key of Am, I'm essentially:
-Playing fret 8 on the B string (G note).
-Bending fret 7 on the B string (F# note) into the same pitch.

Check out min @4:00 for a quick demonstration.

String Bending Technique #4: The Teaser Bend

To perform this bending technique, you have to tease the bend. Let's suppose I want to bend from fret 13 to fret 15.

The Idea here is to not hit the second pitch right away, instead you will bend up and bend down several times before eventually getting there.

It's kind of like you are contouring the bend.

Check out min @4:35 for a quick demonstration.

String Bending Technique #5: The Pre-Bend Release

This a very simple but powerful bending technique. Instead of bending and releasing like usual, just like the name suggests, to perform this bending technique, you want to pre-bend the string, only articulating the release.
Check out min @5:11 for a quick demonstration.

String Bending Technique #6: The Re-Articulated Pre-Bend Release

Bonus string bending technique #6, is emulating a famous lick from the Hotel California solo.
The idea here is we start off with a pre-bend, and we re-articulate that pre-bend multiple times while releasing the note, creating a sort of diving bomb effect.

Check out min @5:42 for a quick demonstration.

Final Words
In conclusion, incorporating these bending techniques into your soloing and improvisation will help you take your melodies to the next level.

Take the time to practice and master each technique, have fun with them, experiment, and apply them to your solos.

Don't miss part 2, where we'll explore 5 sliding techniques every guitar player should know.

Do you want to be able to play your favorite songs and solos? Do you want to take your lead guitar playing to the next level? Do you feel like you could use some extra guidance, to help you reach your goals quickly and efficiently?

If you answered yes to any of these, then you must check out our premium guitar training program "guitar elevation'', it might be just the thing you've been missing!

 

 
Author: Jack Haddad
Jack Haddad is an expert Guitar educator and teacher and has been helping guitarists, through his innovative methods, get incredible results on the guitar, whether they want to jam with friends or rock out on the big stage.

You can find out more about Jack Haddad's teaching here: https://www.jhguitarschool.com
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