Do the notes you play on guitar end too soon or feel a bit lifeless?

Getting more sustain on your notes doesn't require special pedals, just an understanding of how to use proper technique in both hands, a heavy guitar pick and an amp with the gain turned way up.

Sound good?

Great! You're about to learn exactly what to do.

All set?

(Note: Make sure your volume and tone knobs are turned up as well.)

Check out this video tutorial to learn the secret to amazing sustain:

After your sustain gets better, these tips help you squeeze emotion out of the notes in your playing like juice from an orange:

Lead Guitar Solo Tip # 1: Make Your Notes Like A Singer's Voice - Here Is How:

The trick to making notes sing is ... vibrato.

Put simply: the better your vibrato is, the better your notes sustain.

Here are the absolute most crucial vibrato playing tips:

1. Stay clear of using fast and narrow vibrato. This resembles a mosquito buzzing around ... and it makes your entire guitar playing sound anxious.

2. Keep your vibrato in tune at all times. This means: release the string all the way down to its original pitch in between the vibrato bends.

Watch this video to see how to perform it:

Lead Guitar Solo Tip # 2: Amplify Your String Bends

What's the absolute most dramatic part of a string bend? It’s not just the bend alone.

It’s a very specific part of the bend:

The release.

And the more sustain your notes have, the longer you can drag out the release of your string bends.

You do it by:

Using more pre-bends in your guitar solos (where all you hear is the release of the bend) ...

... and by slowing down the release of regular bends.

Check out this video to see what I mean:

Extra Tip: when you bend strings, wrap your fretting hand thumb over the back of the neck of the guitar.

And keep the finger doing the bend right next to the fret wire. See the photo below:

This is one of those small guitar technique tips that makes a big difference.

Lead Guitar Solo Tip # 3: Play Notes Without Actually Picking Them

To me, the best part of playing electric guitar are all the options you have for articulating notes.

What is one of the best ones?

Sliding into notes.

And I don't suggest just doing a boring ascending slide (from a lower note to one above it) or a descending slide (to a lower note).

This is just the most basic approach. Instead:

I mean using "backslides".

Watch this video to see how to do backslides:

Lead Guitar Solo Tip # 4: Changing Pitch Function

I saved the very best for last.

Modulating pitch function implies holding a single note as harmony changes under it. As this occurs, the function (feeling) of the note changes (is altered).

The end result?

Your "one note" suddenly expresses a whole world of emotions!

Check out this video to see and hear what I mean:

Now that you understand how to make your lead guitar playing better-- the time has come to strengthen the rest of your lead guitar technique too.

And I have a quick way for you to do just that. Check out my no cost lead guitar skills cheat sheet to quickly troubleshoot any guitar technique challenge and make your playing feel a whole lot easier than it does right now.

Author's Bio: 

About The Author:

Tom Hess is a highly successful guitar teacher, recording artist and composer. He teaches guitar players from all over the world in his online guitar lessons. Learn more on the Tom Hess Wikipedia page.