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Proper Muting Technique While Soloing – Guitar Lesson

FavoriteLoadingBookmark this Lesson. This lesson for GuitarLessons365.com focuses on controlling the unused strings while you are playing single string lines. Half the battle of playing guitar is keeping the unused strings quite during playing. The is especially important the more gain or distortion that you add to your signal, which is common during solos in just about every style of music.

The key is to develop a consistent muting technique that you do almost subconsciously so you can better focus on the notes that you are playing. There are a few different way to approach muting. The main way that I describe in this video is how I personally do it. I also believe that it is probably the most common way of muting on the guitar. I also talk briefly about alternative ways of muting as well.

Take your time to develop a solid muting technique. It is extremely important to pay close attention to what you sound like. I have had countless students start soloing for me and don't even realize that there are a few open strings just humming in the background. Proper muting will tighten up the sound immensely.

Take your time and have fun!!

If these free lessons help you, please donate to keep new ones coming daily. Thanks!! 🙂

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Proper Muting Technique While Soloing - Guitar Lesson

17 Comments

  1. sergio on July 21, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    Great lesson! You are a great teacher. Thanks!

  2. Ruben III on January 26, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    Sir, nice lesson. I’ve followed your advice to come check out this palm muting advice. Great video best on Youtube! What Boss/Digitech pedal do you suggest to sound like Yngwie? Coz here in the Philippines they are the most common guitar effect available, others are hard to find. I’m just using the dirt channel on my Laney prism35. Thank you in advance!

    • Carl Brown on January 29, 2012 at 11:41 pm

      Hey Ruben, I used a Line 6 POD X3 Live when I recorded this lesson. It has all of those effects you would ever need to get his sound. 🙂

      Cheers! Carl..

  3. Mike on April 1, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Definitely one of the better guitar teachers on the web.

  4. Frank on May 10, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Is it an option mutting the noise of released notes using the edge of the right thunb, or would it be a bad habit?

    Thank you!

  5. ryan on January 13, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    maaaaaaaaaan ive always had so much trouble on bends with sounding the string above it just like you showed. your tutorials are awesome! and i repped your site on one of your youtube vids

  6. Danny Christianto on February 26, 2013 at 4:54 am

    Hi Carl,

    how to mute unwanted harmonic sound ?
    Everytime I lift my left hand finger from 12th fret or other harmonic fret position, I hear the harmonic sound comes and its terrible and make my sounds very bad …
    Its much more difficult to mute it by my right palm hand when I play in 6th string
    how to keep it clean and muted?

    Thanks,
    Danny
    Jakarta, Indonesia

  7. Haidar Ali on July 25, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Hi Carl,

    Thanks for share your lessons, you are really great.

    I appreciate your work.

    Cheers!

  8. Basel Khalil on July 23, 2014 at 10:13 am

    Hey Carl,
    Do we use muting technique in the acoustic guitar ,while practicing and playing ?

    • Carl Brown on July 23, 2014 at 5:32 pm

      Yep! Pretty much the same concept for both electric and acoustic. 🙂

  9. Jackson Hall on February 2, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    Hi Carl,

    You talked about muting the string directly below with the tip of your first finger. Do you do that with your other fingers when your first finger is on a string above them?

    For example, if you played the chromatic exercise descending, how would you mute the string directly below when you just changed strings with your fourth finger, but your first finger hasn’t moved over yet?

    Thanks,
    Jackson

    • Carl Brown on February 3, 2018 at 9:16 am

      Hey Jackson, do you mean below in pitch? In other words, when your finger moves from the 1st string to the 2nd string how do you mute the 3rd?

      If that is the case, most of the time you will be able to bring your index finger over pretty quickly to mute behind the notes begin played on teh 2nd string. However, any strings that the index finger can’t mute are muted by the inside of the pickinhg hand’s palm.

      Hope this helps!
      Carl…

      • Jackson Hall on February 3, 2018 at 3:30 pm

        Yes, that’s exactly what I meant. Thanks!

  10. Roman Grey on May 8, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    Hi. Could you help in my doubt about muting when playing single notes?
    My example pattern is: 9th fret on the 1st string, 12th – 2nd, 9th – 1st, 12th – 2nd. It’s just 1/8 notes and I’m increasing the speed. I use index finger on the 1st string and ring finger on the 2nd.

    –9——–9——
    ——12——-12

    The problem is that when I lift up the ring finger from the 2nd string to mute it and to play the 1st it creates a muffled sound because of the harmonics on the 12th fret. If I release the string on the 12th fret just a little bit to prevent the harmonics it mutes the 1st string so I can’t play tha 9th fret.
    (I hope my explanation is clear until here)

    So I wanted to ask if there’s a common thechnique in this case? Maybe I should lightly touch the 2nd string with the index finger so it doesn’t sound when I release it (on the 12th fret)? Or should I curve more my 2 fingers to allow the strings sound (but then I guess I should lift up the index findex a bit to mute the 1st string after the 9th fret note)?

    Thanks.

    • Carl Brown on May 10, 2018 at 11:34 am

      Hey Roman, you should use the tip of your index finger to slightly touch the bottom of the B string so that you can let your ring finger come all the way off of it without worrying about it making a sound. 🙂

  11. Medha Siddhi Gautam on May 26, 2018 at 9:17 am

    Carl Sir,
    You’ve been doing a great job. I have been trying to learn guitar online for three years but i hadn’t found any good websites like this as all others are paid and i couldn’t afford it. Thank you very much sir for all the lessons you’ve made.

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