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My No-BS Riff-O-Matic Review:

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 product, look HERE.

To your success,

Crazy Dave


...I'm off to the Guitar Licks!


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