Playing Rating: Intermediate to Advanced

Example 1

Essentially this lick is derived from the minor pentatonic but incorporates the natural 9. This is very typical of Johnson to pivot on the 9 in combination with the minor pentatonic.

Example 1

Example 2

This example demonstrates some of Johnson’s string skipping techniques, whereby the minor pentatonic is played in a very angular way. It is probably best to employ alternate picking for this one.

Example 2

Example 3

Here is a fast pentatonic run using the natural 9 again. Take care to get every note as clean as possible by playing this slowly and then building to speed. These fast pentatonic lines are very commonplace in Johnson’s solos.

Example 3

Example 4

This ascending minor pentatonic run is digital-like and is a great device for building tension in a solo.

Example 4

Example 5

Really slowly with this one as it is important to make every note heard. This is another one of those fast pentatonic Johnson style licks where the choice of notes is very simple but used effectively with two note per string efficiency.

Example 5

Example 6

Another string skipping example using the minor pentatonic. This demonstrates an effective way to use the scale; playing the notes of the minor pentatonic but making it sound a little different.

Example 6