A terrific guitar riff can do more than
just about anything else in a piece of music to set a mood, or
inspire an emotion. No matter what your favorite style of music
is, the licks and riffs of the lead guitarists are most likely
the things that you will remember. If you have always wanted to
learn to reproduce those awesome sounds, you may be interested
in Riff-O-Matic. It is a members-only website that claims to
contain more than 1000 riffs which are reproduced note for note.
The site uses both audio and video instruction, as well as
tablature, diagrams, and photos to help teach you how to sound
like your personal guitar hero.
I can see how a website like this can be motivating. Anyone who
has ever tried to learn to play a musical instrument can testify
that there is a lot a practice and repetition required before
you really begin to sound like you know what you are doing.
Riff-O-Matic can help keep your interest level high by teaching
you a chop that sounds cool, even if you are a relative novice
at the guitar.
Variety of Content:
There are lots of songs by lots of artists on the website at
Riff-O-Matic. They are all given a difficulty rating so you can
determine which ones you might be able to tackle. Once you’ve
chosen a piece to work on you can read some background
information on the song, such as its release date, composer,
band members, etc. Next, you will see the music and tabs for
each part of the piece that has been broken into smaller phrases
or segments. You can hear an audio clip of every individual
section and repeat it as many times as you like. After you learn
the separate parts alone, you can finally put them all together
to play the whole song.
A nice feature of the site is that you are allowed to download
and print all the tabs and traditional notation they offer so
that you can work on the song away from the computer. The large
variety of music is another big advantage of Riff-O-Matic. I
can’t think of any three artists that are more different from
each other than Chuck Berry, Metallica, and The Eagles, for
example, yet all three are represented there, as well as many
more. There are pieces from nearly all the greats of the 70’s
80’s and 90’s, and lots of more modern selections, too.
Membership and Bonuses:
A membership to the site will cost you $29.95 for a year, and if
you check back often enough you can sometimes find it offered as
a lifetime membership for the same price. If you like the idea
of finding the song you want to learn when you want to learn it,
and are pretty sure that you won’t lose interest in the guitar
in a couple of months, that might be the way to go.
There are several bonus materials that come with your
membership. First, you get access to a report called, “10 Songs
Every Rock Artist Should Learn.” You will find out why the songs
were chosen for the list and what things each piece has to teach
you as a guitarist. Next, you’ll get a chance to play an
entertaining game called, “Name That Tab.” It’s a fun way to see
if you can identify the song that a particular riff comes from.
Finally, you will be able to download MP3 versions of many Jam
tracks, so that you can play along with a band whenever and
wherever you like.
The Riff-O-Matic folks say that you can skip right over all the
“boring” theory that other guitar instruction sites try to teach
and get straight to the fun stuff. As they say, “You start out
holding a guitar, not a pencil.” That sounds pretty appealing,
but I think there are times that understanding theory is really
vital to making progress as a musician. In my opinion, you can
find good reasons to use Riff-O-Matic as a change of pace, but
you should not rely on it as your only method of instruction.
For a comprehensive, organized, and engaging way to learn all
the guitar fundamentals you need, you should try Learn and
Master Guitar by Steve Krenz. It will help you understand the
theory of music, but does it in a way that does not seem
repetitious. It also exposes you to a wide variety of styles and
genres by using DVD lessons that will work even if your computer
access is limited or slow. To learn more about this top-notch
To your success,
...I'm off to
the Guitar Licks!