Guitar lick book - how to?


I have been thinking about making my own lick book. Is there anybody at the forum that have made such?
Any tips on how to organize it, etc.?
Does Justin have any tips?


Hans, I haven’t. But if I did I imagine I would organise it around scale patterns ie minor pentatonic licks in position 1 etc.

1 Like

This won’t answer your question directly because I’m not a lick library guy. Licks are cool, but not something that I would commit to long term memory or pen and paper. There are so many cool licks out there, and it’s more important to know the context and how and when to apply them, and even how to alter them as needed.

If you learn your fretboard, pentatonic boxes/positions/scales and what glues them together, and develop some phrasing skills, you can pick up a single riff that catches your ear and then build a solo around it. That’s how I prefer to roll. Here’s an example:
GFS Nashville Retrotrons & Gretsch G2622 Blooze
A super simple riff idea kicks it off and then call and answer and other phrasing ideas on the pentatonic scale are built around it. The lick is recorded in the track if I ever wanted to dust it off again later.

1 Like

I am starting on this now so I’m interested in this thread. You might find this interesting about licks. I watched this video yesterday.

1 Like

Not a book as such but I have started collating some licks using Guitar Pro. Some material I use provides GP files for the licks they cover. I then transpose these to a common Key, say A to align with Justin’s Blues Lead 1 and 2 course. This means I can practice all the licks over a single backing track rather than many. Plus with GP7 it then easy to transpose to another key for another backing track. But as Clint says context and altering them to suit a different style of track, tempo feel etc becomes a factor as well but is part of the learning process.
And hey I used to be a pen and paper guy in my yoof :rofl:

1 Like

+1 for GuitarPro. I use it for transcribing and to remember the detail of songs I’ve learned. Initially I used a tab sheet but I found that GP ended up being more efficient. It allows me to transcribe multiple parts (chords, riffs, and solos all with timing) and refine them over time. I can use it as scrolling prompter by muting it. I can also mute the part I’m going to play and use it as a backing track. And I can slow it down to learn parts, particularly solos and lead highlights.
I do most everything through a PC, rather than a phone or a tablet, so this tool fits in well. My PC headphone output is plugged into the AUX In on my K50.

1 Like

Thanks for all your replies!
Initially I was thinking pen and paper, but maybe Guitar Pro is more efficient… I’ll have to chew on that one.

I’m aware of the importance of phrasing, context and have the lead melodies coming from within your mind rather from pre-learned licks. However, sometimes I really need a good lick or two to kickstart the musical mind.