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on January 11, 2013
We guitar players are a jaded bunch that find some kind of sadistic pleasure in pointing out the shortcomings of products, services, and the work of other guitarists. I ordered Barrett Tagliarino's 'Interval Studies And Lead Guitar Technique' with rather high expectations. I have three of his other books; 'Chord Tone Soloing', 'Rhythmic Lead Guitar', and 'Fretboard Workout'. I found all three of those books very challenging to work with, which is a good thing. No, it's a great thing. Too many books try to cover the same beginner material at the expense of the juicy challenging stuff that is the hallmark of Barrett's books.

'Interval Studies And Lead Technique' (from here on I will refer to as ISALT to keep it short and because it sounds funny) is no exception. He starts the book the same way he starts all of his books; he tells you what you need to do to make this book work for you. In other words, you don't just read it and learn by osmosis. You have to integrate it into your DAILY practice regimen or else it serves no purpose, which is no different than any guitar instruction book. You have to apply yourself.

ISALT covers fret hand mechanics, warm-up, and stretching. He doesn't just tell you to warm up and stretch, he explains the hows and whys that few others bother to do.

The meat and potatoes of the book starts on page 18 with the CAGED system and from there he tackles various scales and modes with interval exercises that will force you to think about scales in a much different manner than most instructional methods do. You won't be confined to boxes and playing neighboring notes. If you follow the exercises you will be able to improvise melodies that are much more interesting without having to think about it.

I have a ton of guitar and music theory books, but lately I find myself almost exclusively using Barrett's books. He has a very unique style of teaching that I have been able to connect with that has helped my playing progress beyond my expectations. ISALT is helping me push forward even further.

I found little to complain about with this book. My biggest complaint is that it's not easy. But that's what makes it worthwhile.

One more thing: the book contains a link to download the audio files to your computer, tablet, or smart phone. Since I rarely use a computer with a CD ROM drive I found this pretty convenient. Just remember to download it over a wifi connection instead of using your data plan because it is a pretty big file.
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on October 10, 2012
This review is from my perspective as a self-labeled intermediate guitarist. Instead of taking traditional guitar lessons, I look for books that will teach me what I want to know so I can learn at home at my own pace. I have read and worked through several of Barrett Tagliarino's guitar books over the last couple of years and I have picked up a lot of knowledge from each of them.

This is not a beginner book (if you are just learning the guitar and theory, I would recommend starting with Barrett's Guitar Fretboard Workbook first). The Interval Studies book being reviewed starts out with a brief look at fret and pick hand technique, followed by a few pages on the CAGED system. After that, you jump right into intervals, theory, and techniques such as sweep picking and economy picking. Most interesting to me is a different way to look at modes. I have always struggled with understanding how to use modes - I know what they are but never really figured out how to use them in my playing. Barrett spends a significant part of this book teaching a different way to look at modes that I am very interested in learning and applying.

As with all of Barrett's books I have read, these are geared towards the serious learner. If you want to study, practice, and apply what you learn to your improvisation and playing then this book and Barrett's others will likely deliver great results. You get out of it what you put into it. Don't let the page count (79) make you think this book is thin on content - it is not. I have started with this book and it will take me many months to work my way through the material and exercises with competence. The book includes access to downloadable MP3 examples for each of the exercises.
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on November 10, 2012
I was hoping to blow through this book in a couple of weeks. After a couple of pages I realized it was for the 'serious' guitar player - willing to invest time and effort in a long term effort to grow by listening critically and making changes to the way we approach, practice, and play the guitar.

While going through the book I felt as though the author was right there in the room with me for each exercise, keeping me on track with comments on how to approach each lesson and what to listen for. I liked the section on how to practice, and the example to chart your progress.

Look at the table of contents. Every one of the exercises will improve your technique, even if you already know the basic concepts. Each example starts at square one and explains how to break out of old habits and patterns to get the most out of what each 'unit' has to offer.

Read the other reviews - they're probably going to say the same thing: this book will challenge you, regardless of your familiarity with the guitar and your technical abilities.

Pros: You will learn to break away from playing every note in a scale to create something memorable. You'll break the habit of playing consecutive scale tones, learn new approaches to make your playing more musical, and feel comfortable playing new things anywhere on the guitar.

Cons: If you follow the author's advice, you'll have to slow down, listen to what you're doing, and make corrections on the fly. In the end, music is about listening, after all. If you're more interested in how you look while holding a guitar, or how fast you can play the same old patterns, you won't enjoy the effort required to complete these tutorials.

After years of playing, I was surprised to see the difference between what I thought I sounded like, and what was coming out when I did the exercises in the book.

If you're ready to invest the time, this book will take you and your guitar to the next level. This one will separate students of guitar from every one else.
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on February 10, 2014
this is the 4th book i've bought from Barrett and none of them has disappointed me and this one is really interesting. It starts off with some explanations on techniques. You may think the first 18 pages aren't necessary to cover but for those who haven't paid close attention to some small details on playing clean, may be surprised and if you are not used to record yourself practicing you will find help on these pages. After that, things starts to get exciting and as you will progress thru the book you will encounter a lot of challenges that will make you think hard and WILL make you move forward. A lot of ideas will come at you fingertips when building your solos. Another great value, are the tips for practicing, the book has lots of good tips and the last page is reserved for those who want to build speed so bad!! A very nice strategy to implement on your building speed session. Another cool thing is that ideas and exercises presented on each chapter are demonstrated on one scale mode, you will need to expand the idea over others scales you want learn, it will make you think harder and progress faster!!! ONE MORE AWESOME BOOK FROM Mr. Barrett!!
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on October 25, 2012
I have owned this book for quite some time, and while I have not diligently practiced and/or reviewed the material on a daily basis, I have spent an adequate amount of time practicing and absorbing the information provided. Believe me when I say, "there is a ton of material to practice." I have previously purchased numerous books on similar topics, and have found this book to provide new, refreshing, yet very non-familiar information. To say the least, this book is definitely going to provide a much desired learning experience. I look forward to any future releases by this artist/author.
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on April 19, 2014
For some reason I really like this guy. He lays out the information in a way that for me, is effortless to understand. I'm thinking in new ways when I practice now. As a self taught player this book helped me see the whole picture more clearly. It's pretty exciting in a guitar nerd kinda way.
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on May 29, 2014
This is the 4th book of Barrett's that I have bought

Barrett writes in a great way that takes the time to explain things in a understandable way. He explains many important details that many other authors don't bother to do

I am working my way through the first part of the book which concentrates on lead guitar technique. These techniques that Barrett teaches are critical if you want to take your guitar playing to the next level.
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on May 7, 2015
Thanks to Mr. Tagliarino, I have just entered a new phase in my quest for guitar mastery. With his methods you get not only first-class instruction by a professional musician but also excellent advice, little golden nuggets dropped here and there throughout, on how to practice to make the best use of your time--a confusing issue for me and for many would-be guitarists. Another huge plus is that this author makes himself available to his readers. As busy as he is, you can interact with him. If you have a question about any of the material in his books, he takes the time to give you a thoughtful answer. With that accessibility and the thorough content in his books, you feel as if you're working with a live teacher. I am going through three of his methods (also Rhythmic Lead Guitar and Chord Tone Soloing) and keeping a practice log, and for the first time in a long while I truly feel I can reach my goal of being a professional guitar player. I actually look forward to practice time every day, something I haven't done in a long while. It feels as if every minute spent practicing is worthwhile now. There's no wasted space in Barrett's courses: there's some real meat on these bones!
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on September 10, 2014
I really got a lot out of this book. Great exercises and descriptions. I'd really give this a 4.5 stars. The only thing that kept me from 5 stars was the end of the book seemed organized a little haphazardly.
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on May 2, 2014
I give this book five stars because Barrett Tagliarino explains the big picture in his book Interval Studies and Lead Guitar Technique. I recommend that you take music theory and aural class at a school before you start working in the book.
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