Soulful Lead Guitar Licks Over "Amazing Grace" - Beginner Tips Included!

Lesson #521 • Oct 16, 2023

In this lesson I’m excited to teach you how to combine basic strumming with soulful lead guitar licks over “Amazing Grace”. This will all be in open position (the first 3-4 frets of the guitar), and is a great way to dip your toes into the fun of lead guitar. I’ll show you two ways to approach things, starting with a simpler version before venturing into intermediate waters. For both versions, we’re embracing the C major pentatonic scale — a five-note sequence that gives us all the melody notes needed to play this classic song.

  • 0:00 Lesson Overview
  • 1:31 Song Structure
  • 2:52 Line 1 of 4
  • 5:56 Line 2 of 4
  • 7:00 Line 3 of 4
  • 8:51 Line 4 of 4
  • 10:28 Intermediate Licks & Fills
  • 13:04 Jam Track Preview

Instructional PDF 3 pages

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Video Jam Track (108bpm)

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Audio Jam Tracks for Offline Practice

If you want to use the audio that’s used in either of my video jam tracks above, I’ve made them available here in mp3 audio format. You can play these directly on this page, in addition to downloading them for offline use. There’s two tempos – one a bit slower (80bpm) and the other a bit more swift in its pace (108bpm). Play and/or download them below!

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Slow tempo - 80bpm (download):

Moderate tempo - 108bpm (download):


Amazing Grace, Played Fingerstyle?

Back in lesson #474 I also looked at playing Amazing Grace - but with a fingerstyle focus. I borrow heavily from John Prine’s playing style, and show how you can use his typical fingerpicking approach to play this song. Note, I’m in 3/4 time in this earlier lesson - which is different from the 4/4 vibe I use in my lesson at the top of this page. PDF download available via the link above.


Major Pentatonic Scales in Open Position

Back in lesson #492 I teach the major pentatonic scales in open position, for the five most common major keys: C G D A and E. I share this because it’s the C major scale that (almost) every single lead note I play is coming from. Learn these scales once, use them in countless situations! PDF download available via the link above.

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