3 Easy Drop D Riffs — Cool Guitar Lesson On Heavy Metal Riffs
Hey, how’s it going this is Darren Goodman with Guitar Control, I want to show you “Three Cool Drop D Riffs”. Some of these songs are actually drop D flat. They’re tuned down more, but I’m just doing it in standard tuning with the drop D. Let’s take a close up look of what we have here.
Click on the Tab button to follow the chords and tabs.
The first thing you’re going to do is tune your 6th string from an E down to a D, that way your 6th and 4th strings are tuned to the same pitch.
The first group we’re going to look at is “We Die Young” by Alice In Chains. This entire riff is just based on the 6th and the 5th string. You’re going to use your first and third finger to play this. We start off, on the 2nd fret of the 6th string and the 5th string with your first finger. This entire riff is based in 8th notes, and a couple of parts for the 8th notes are tied together. I’ll explain that when we get there.
Just bar that 2nd fret, 6th and 5th string. That’s one, and then on the end, one, and the downbeat of two. You just hit the 6th string open twice. Then we go to the 5th fret of the 6th and the 5th string, and we’re going to hit that and bend it a half step. Then follow that with 6th string open again back to the 3rd fret of the 5th and the 6th string with your first finger. Then follow that with the open string again. That’s the first measure.
Then starting on the downbeat of one on the second measure is the open 6th string again. Now we’re barring that 3rd fret again, 6th string open twice, 3rd fret again, 6th one more time. Then that 3rd fret, and we’re going to do a hammer-on to the 5th fret. You’re going to bar it with your first finger, the 3rd fret, and then do a hammer-on to the 5th fret with your third finger. All right, so that’s the first two measures.
Then starting on the third measure, it’s actually the same as the first. Again, we start off 2nd fret, 5th fret bend open, three, open. Then the fourth measure is just a little bit different, we have the open 6th, 3rd fret open, 5th, and then you hit that 5th again and bend back to 3rd, and then open the 6th again. Major three and four. The whole sequence.
All right, next, we’re going to look at “Out Shined” by Sound garden. This riff is like the previous one, it’s entirely based on the 6th and the 5th string.
We start off, we rest on the first six beats, and then we start on the seventh beat on the first measure, and then that leads us into the main riff, which is the second measure. We start off, on the 10th fret of the 6th string, and I’m going to use my first finger. You pick and slide out of it, and then immediately start the riff.
The riff starts off with the 6th and the 5th string played together open, and palm muted. Then we go to the 3rd fret of the 6th string with your first finger to the 5th fret with your third finger back to the 3rd fret, back to open, back to the 3rd fret.
Then we follow that 3rd fret on the 5th string. You do a little vibrato on that, and that one is actually a whole note. The rest of these have been 8th notes. After you do that, you follow it with barring the 6th fret of the 6th and 5th string. In this case, I use my third finger, and then it goes to the 5th with my second finger, and then back to 3rd fret with my first finger. Then you just slide out of that.
Finally we have, a riff. It’s one of my own riffs from original song of mine. It’s called “Night Terror” from my band Sonic Prophecy. This one, is for the most part, is played just on the 6th and the 5th string, but it does have a D5 power chord. It’s on the 5th and the 4th string. All right, so start off, we play the 6th and 5th string open together, and then pedal the 4th string open four times. It’s like this is an 8th note and then four 16th notes.
Then we follow that with the 5th fret of the 6th and 5th string. I use my first finger. Then it goes to the 6th fret. I use my second finger. Back to the 5th fret, and then to the open string. That’s the first measure.
Then starting on the second measure, we go to a D5 power chord, so 1st fret of the 5th string with your first finger and 7th fret of the 4th string with your third finger. Then after that, we do the 6th string four times pedal tone. Then five, six, five, again on the first two measures. Then for third measure , it’s actually the same thing as the first measure. Then the fourth measure is the same as the second measure except for one thing.
We start off the same way with that D5 power chord, to the 5th fret, and this time when we go to the 6th fret, we just hit it twice instead of going back to the 5th fret.
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