18 And Life Guitar Lesson – Skid Row

In this 18 & Life guitar lesson video series, I will show you how to play this classic by Skid Row song note-for-note.

The first video will cover all of the rhythm guitar parts, including the intro and the outro guitar solo.

The intro is instantly recognizable and is built around a C minor bar chord. It is arpeggio picked with slight variations added each time the pattern is repeated. Getting this riff to sound correct is probably the most difficult task of all the rhythm guitar parts.

For the other sections of the song you mostly encounter power chords except in the chorus where there is also an arpeggio picked guitar riff doubled over the power chords. All-in-all though, the rhythm guitar parts for "18 & Life" should be pretty easy for the intermediate level guitarist. I will finish up the first video lesson with a look at the highly melodic outro guitar solo!

Up next in the second video lesson, the MAIN GUITAR SOLO!

The lead guitarist on this Skid Row track was Scotti Hill who created an instant classic with a solo containing some nice melodic licks, liberal use of pinch harmonics and little bit of flash at the end.

In this 18 And Life guitar solo lesson, I will teach you note-for-note how to play all of those techniques.

Besides being one of the greatest power ballads ever written, "18 And Life" is Skid Row's most successful single to date. You need to have a great solo to compliment such a great song and it is a good thing that Scotti Hill definitely delivered the goods with this one.

Except for a couple fast licks towards the very end of the solo, I think an intermediate level player could handle playing this guitar solo. The pinch harmonics can be a bit tricky, but finding the right spot on your guitar for those harmonics is the key. After you have done that it shouldn't be much of an issue. If you don't know how a pinch harmonic is created, just check out my lesson on how to play them by clicking this link. How to Play Pinch Harmonics

I think the solo for "18 And Life" is also a great one to study to learn how to create a solo that compliments a song well. There were lot's of good ones written in the 80's, but in most players opinions, the solo for "18 And Life" is one of the very best. It has everything a great 80's guitar solo needed, melody, a few cool guitar tricks, a memorable hook and a little bit of guitar flash.

I Hope you guys enjoy learning this classic song from probably the greatest era for rock guitar lovers! Well at least it's my favorite era!


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18 And Life Guitar Lesson - (Chords/Outro Solo)

18 And Life Guitar Lesson - Solo


  1. Bob Krashna on July 7, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    HI Steve.
    Can you do Rock City by Kings of Leon.

    • Carl Brown on July 8, 2015 at 11:15 am

      Hey Bob, who is Steve?? Haha

      I will definitely check out the song!

      CARL.. 🙂

  2. Tony Wilson on March 26, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    Hey Carl finally got this solo down. I can’t believe this song can not get enough likes.

    I have the guitar transcription but cannot get it to sound 100% right. Would you consider doing a full lesson on this song.


  3. Jun Seung Hoon on June 24, 2018 at 10:17 pm

    Dear Teacher.
    I thanks a lot your free lesson.
    If you can provide tab text file?

  4. Mark Johnson on August 16, 2018 at 9:16 pm

    Hey Carl!

    Been loving your site and all your lessons! Had a couple questions. What do you use for amp/effect pedals? You nail the tone I’m going for. With premium membership, are there additional song lessons I would have access to? Would love to see more Def Leppard (like Animal) and some Cinderella (like Nobody’s fool)!


    • Carl Brown on August 17, 2018 at 11:37 am

      Hey Mark, thanks for checking out my lessons!

      My current setup for recording the lessons in using a Line 6 Helix LT. That is also the processor that I am using in the new guitar tone course in the GL365 Academy which you would get full access to with a Premium subscription.

      When it comes to song lessons, the ones found in the song lessons section are all there is, except for some classical pieces in the academy.

      The Academy is geared around my guitar courses and is not focused on learning popular music. So you won’t find any additional songs to learn as a Premium subscriber. All of the more than 1000 song lessons are found in the song lessons section. But your subscription would definitely help me keep cranking out those song lessons!

  5. Chris Lehmann on February 3, 2020 at 8:58 am

    This has been one of my favorite lessons so far. Never thought I would be able to play 18 and Life. Great teachings Carl


  6. Tammy Murphy on January 28, 2023 at 1:43 pm

    I just subscribed. I kept using your lesson so figured it’s time to give back! Keep rockin’.

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