How to be Successful – at anything really

the level of achievement that we have at anything is a reflection of how well we were able to focus on it.
The only thing that is holding you back is the way you are thinking.

thanks Steve.

Few other things

If you are looking for some good blues tracks to jam
with over the holiday period this is a great place to grab em’
When ever i get the chance i jam to these loud
(when my wife and daughter are out shopping =)

the very best to you.

Keep Rockin
Heath Nicholson

Posted in guitar lesson, Inspiration | 4 Comments

3 Easy Scales, 3 keys playing over a backing track for practice

this is a great fun way to practice 3 simple scales in combination on your guitar.
Typically you may play these three scales in one key and only one key.

What i find useful is changing the key of the backing track a few different times using Riffmaster pro iphone app to give myself opportunities to play the scales in different positions on the guitar.
While I’m still playing the same scale shapes and same licks in different keys – the “sound” of the key can sometimes give me different ideas on the approach to the notes I play.

Firstly I’m using the Am Pentatonic, Am blues and A Dorian scales. These are all complementary scales and sounds when playing over the Am7 vamp Useful scales for blues, rock, funks and fusion. After playing a while in the Am7 key – i’ll change the pitch of the backing track with Riffmaster Pro down 2 steps or semi tones so that then the backing track is now playing in Gm7. Play Gm Pentatonic, Gm blues and G Dorian scales. The finally changing the pitch up 2 steps from Am to Bm and then playing Bm Pentatonic, Bm blues and B Dorian scales.

Try it yourself and see if it sound or feels any different in each key, plus its just good practise to move these scale shapes around.

 Download the Scales diagrams

Download the Am7 backing track

Check out riffmaster pro for iphone/ipad

Posted in guitar lesson, Guitar Stuff, Inspiration, New Guitar Stuff | Leave a comment

Using Multiple loops on Windows version 4 Riffmaster pro

In the video below we discuss using multiple loops in the windows version 4 ( Windows version only at this time).
You can also export the multiple loops for sequences or practising.

Slowing down music and keeping the pitch. Multi loops Slowdown any song

Check out

Posted in Guitar Stuff, Inspiration, New Guitar Stuff | Leave a comment

RiffmasterPro slow down music on iPhone and iPad

As always I like this software which is now a excellent
iphone and iPAD app to slow down songs and retain the pitch

Going Mobile with Riffmaster Pro on iPhone- and iPad
An awesome way to use Riffmaster Pro at a rehearsal or
practise session or with your guitar teacher.
Check it out on the itunes app store.

Posted in guitar lesson, Guitar Stuff, Inspiration, New Guitar Stuff | Leave a comment

When Too Many Guitars is Never enough!

On a trip to Japan last year (four day stop over) I was intent on seeing the “guitar district” I had heard so much about. So on the last day I dragged my wife and daughter there and I got “stuck” in this street in Ochanomizu city ( a short tube ride from Tokyo)

My wife shot this video because I was so overwhelmed just by the sheer amount of instruments I could not speak for around an hour. My brain started to hurt as there was just soooooo much to look at. I needed a good lay down after that lol.

I was only there for 3 hours and had to rush to get through the stores and see what I could. Two days spent there would not be wasted and I know I would not come home empty handed – there was just so many guitars there. Still amazed just watching this back.

Posted in Guitar Stuff | 11 Comments

Using Rhythm ideas to write

Paul Gilbert in clinic talks about using rhythms that you know and love to write with and get new inspiration and ideas.

the very best to you


Posted in guitar lesson, Guitar Stuff, Inspiration | 6 Comments

Blues Tracks that actually sound awesome

Blues Tracks that actually sound awesome and you can use.

I’ve been recently jamming with some of my students with these blues tracks.
I’ve made some of my own in the past and these one just top those easily.
there are many keys and different feels to work with and there is only one thing that will happen if you work with tracks like these. You will become a better player just for playing through and really listening and working with the keys and tempos Plus its just great fun to jam along to a decent blues groove.
When my wife and daughter go out shopping i often turn these tracks up loud and flick o my line 6 pod and wail away. the best fun =)….recommended !

You can download over 60 blues jam tracks
with video tutorials, chords and scales.

I’ve just previewed all the tracks and I’m
completely blown away with the extensive
range and quality of the package.

This makes learning guitar improvisation

Posted in guitar lesson, Guitar Stuff, Inspiration, New Guitar Stuff | Leave a comment

Riffmaster Pro For Mac – where is it?

Mac version for Riffmaster Pro Released – you can check out the demo videos here

Posted in Guitar Stuff, New Guitar Stuff | Leave a comment

Which Pick to Pick?

Paul asked

What type of pick do you use and thickness ??

Good question.

I use a Jim Dunlop 0.60mm Grey nylon pick.

I’ve used those for about 15 years and I find them
very easy to play with because they have a good flex
for strumming. I like to feel the pick bend a bit when I’m playing rhythm parts.
Then when I pick solos for instance I will hold the pick a little closer to the end
which then keeps the pick more rigid and easier to pick fast runs or riffs.

There is no rules when It come to picks. What pick you use is really a
personal choice. A choice  of what you like.
If you don’t yet have a favorite pick then go to you local
music shop and grab a handful ranging in thicknesses from thin to

Play everything you know with each pick and play just one type for a few days
and then try another.

When I first started play guitar I used really heavy picks and I was heavy handed also
so i would often break strings. Then one of my teachers suggested I try a lighter pick (.60mm)
I did and it felt very strange until I stuck with that pick for a week and I never went back
to the heavy ones.

Happy Pickin

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

You got the Timing?

Music Fundamentals – Timing

This week I’ve been working with my private
students on the real fundamentals of timing.

Here’ a quick link to a great free online
metronome you can use to practice with

Try starting with chord exercises and progressions
say between 60bpm – 80bpm
then moving to scales and maybe riffs and licks.

No matter if you play drums, piano, guitar, or any
other musical instrument, timing has an enormous
affect on how good you will sound.

Impeccable timing will make even the dullest melody
shine while poor timing will make a fantastic
melody loose its appeal.

Remember timing is a
skill that can be learned and improved.

If you want to get something that you can play along
to that sounds better than that incessant “TICK TICK TICK”

I recommend you look at the quickbeat Drummer.
This one has tons of real sampled drumbeats to jam
along with.

This one is not free but worth a look anyway

Keep Rocking

Are you still here?

Go grab your instrument!

Posted in guitar lesson, Guitar Stuff, Inspiration | Tagged | Leave a comment