Lead Guitar Techniques for Beginners: Hammer-On-Pull-Off

by Dirk Hagemann

Today we take a closer look at one of the most simple lead guitar
techniques. But if you can play this very fast you´re on the way to
become a guitar hero. ;-) You can learn this technique and after that
I have some nice exercises for you.

Hammer-Ons (abbr. h.o.) you hit a note and after that you use your
finger to hammer on another string to produce another note.

E.g.: Use your forefinger to play the note on the 5th fret and hit the
same string with you ring finger two frets higher on the 7th fret.
You don t pluck the string again for the second note.

In a tabfile you can read a hammer-on like this:


Now we play a hammer-on with more notes.

Your 1st finger lays on the 5th fret the whole time. Play the e-String
on the 5th-fret, hammer-on the 8th fret then on the 7th fret with your
little finger and then remove the finger so that the sound of the 5th
fret note keeps ringing. This sounds harder as it is.
Play it slow at first.


Practise: Play some Hammer-Ons like this (it´s the first pattern of the



The Pull-Off technique (abr. p.o.) is quiete the same as the hammer-on,
just backwards.

Put your finger the 5th string of the D-string, pick the
string and pull of your finger without interrupting the sound.

Put two fingers on the 5th and 7th fret, then hit the string and remove
the finger from the 7th string and let the note from the 5th string ring.

  Ex.1     Ex.2 

Hammer-On-Pull-Off Exercise

    Exercise 1a - Pentatonic Exercise                Exercise 1b - More notes

Exercise 2 - Start slow at first!


Exercise 3a - For advanced players


Exercise 3b - No Blues anymore ;-)


Exercise 4 - Small h.o./p.o. solo


For more exercises and GuitarPro files for this lesson visit:


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