Riff Playbooks

Riff Playbooks: Nick Johnston - Musical DNA Part.1


The "Riff Playbooks" column is designed to make you a better player. By gleaning some insight into the technique, composition, and execution of these fine riffs by fine SH artists, you are bound to make headway in your own playing. We cordially invite you to steal a page from our books in order to expand your own diabolical playbook of musical wizardry!

Posted — June 14, 2023

Every once in a while, our good friend Nick Johnston has cause to stop by the SH office, and any time he does so, we try our best to get a guitar in his hands - in hopes that he will absolutely melt our faces with his world class guitar playing - and subsequently melt all of your faces as well.

On this occasion, he opted to show us a bit about what makes him..."him" - from a musician's stand point anyway!
His left hand legato, right hand hybrid picking, and an intimate understanding of the guitar and his relation to it; all important aspects of Nicks musical DNA.  Watch Nick rip through some arpeggios using all of the above - wrapping up with a wild little etude off the top of his head...stunning!

We here at SH feel as though there is general lack of depth when it comes to instructional videos on "Hybrid Picking", and we are very grateful to have had Nick walk us through a few examples of how he incorporates the technique into his own playing. His contextual use of the technique and explanation of it's viability in any situation is simply invaluable.

Check out the first of a two part series from Nick below & be sure to grab the FREE download pack at the link right here, featuring guitar pro transcriptions of all the examples played throughout the video (PDF as well)!

Once your hands are tired and need a rest, check out a full video interview we did with Nick below.
We cover his favourite records, his early influences, physical health and its impact on performance, and much more!

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