"Lenny" is a jazz-inflected Hendrix inspired instrumental that was the final track of Stevie Ray Vaughan's debut album Texas Flood.
"Lenny" is a perfect example of using dynamics and a blending of musical styles to create something 100% original. "Lenny" has remained a favorite of many S.R.V. fans for that very reason.
In the first Lenny guitar lesson video below, I will take a look at the opening main riff. It isn't a very technically demanding riff to play, it is the dynamics and phrasing that you will want to concentrate on the most with this one. This first lesson was originally part of my "famous riff" series. So for those just wanting to learn the main riff of "Lenny" to impress your friends, this video is for you.
After that, I will begin a note-for-note breakdown of "Lenny" from beginning to end across four video tutorials.
For these more in-depth lessons, I will tune down one half-step to (Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb) just like S.R.V. did on the original recording. There is also liberal use of the tremolo bar throughout a lot of the song, so you will want to make sure your guitar can handle that.
In the first note-for-note tutorial below, I will take you through the entire opening section of the song up until the first solo starts. You will be playing lots of cool jazzy chords along with some highly emotionally charged blues soloing. "Lenny" truly is a perfect combination of these two styles of guitar playing.
In the second video we will cover S.R.V.'s first solo and the short section that follows it. It is during the solos where S.R.V. really ramps up the technical challenges. You will need to be able to quickly jump into some quick blues licks from time-to-time.
The soloing throughout the song uses the scales E minor pentatonic, E minor blues, and E major. It is a great study on how to combine these scales to create a stunning musical statement.
The third in-depth lesson will take a look at the more extended and technically challenging second solo.
I will then wrap up this lesson series showing you how to play the outro section of the song. All-in-all there are going to be a lot of notes to learn, so take your time and let all of the material for each lesson sink in before moving on to the next. You will be well rewarded for your efforts!
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