How should I go about practicing something like this?

This is the ending part for the Deep Purple song called Burn. Solo done by Ritchie Blackmore. This is the toughest part of the solo for me.

Burn Solo.pdf (53.4 KB)

I can only tell you how I would approach doing a cover. I would just make sure I could play it from memory at 50% speed, then I would just slowly bump up the tempo, you will know when enough is enough. It takes me a few days or weeks to go from like 75% to around 80-90%. I don’t really try to match the tempos 1 for 1 as that would require learning the players entire repertoire to further seat the phrases into the hands for speed to really kick in gear.

At 50% speed the speed should be slow enough that you should be able to play along with no stops, if you mess up just keep practicing it. Each day your brain and hands will start adapting, and you will slowly start learning all the phrases and nuances that go into that solo. When you start to feel 50% is simple you start increasing the tempo in 5% speed increments.

Well I’m trying a technique that pianists use to learn groups of sixteenth notes. I’ve also realized that using only the wrist is probably not going to work, so I’m trying to use my elbow and forearm. There is a lot of power and speed there.

Ok my man, I don’t know much - but I know from what I have seen and experienced in my musical life that the wrist is probably the most flexible option for executing quick passages with a plectrum on guitar?

I’m a big Blackmore fan, his stuff isn’t too bad as far as difficulty goes - kind of “entry” shred level. I mean, it’s not simple, but it’s not difficult, either. it’s a bit tricky in spots, but it’s not Malmsteen or Impelliteri typewriter tempos. Ritchie’s stuff in Purple is cool, but I personally prefer his playing in Rainbow. Awesome! Anyways…

The passage on your first post is all on one string, 16ths @ 140BPM; I messed with that and then taught it to my 12 year old daughter who is NOT a shred type player (Taylor Swift is her thing! lol). She got it up to 140 no problem.

I tried a variety of approaches from a lot of different setups and was able to get it up to tempo with all of them.

If you’re having troubles, maybe it’s the pattern recognition? Maybe you just haven’t ever played fast? Maybe you are just very new to guitar? I don’t know because I haven’t seen or heard you play. Anyways, none of those are a problem just do your best!

Hopefully this helps?

Try a 4 note “chunk” and get that nice and quick (Should be very doable) and then do the same with the next 4 notes by themselves and then pair the two together. From there you should start to see a pattern.

Anyways, good luck - make sure you have fun and rock on!


Look at How to Post an Audio File. That’s one lick I have been working on. And I find the Blackmore sixteenth notes on the G string very challenging. Blackmore is an excellent guitarist. For you to post the shit that you did is not very understanding nor is it helpful in any way. But then again, this is the internet.

So everybody is different, but this is what I think.

Thanks for posting the TAB, it has a few nice features:

  • It fits nicely on one string.
  • There is the -0-0- part to give your left hand plenty of time to slide up or down; in other words, while you are picking the empty string, your left hand is in flight, so it need not urgently rush.
  • Many parts repeat! One the first page, there are really only three things: -12-15-0-0- (5x + 2x), -10-12-0-0- (10x), and, in just two places, -8-10-0-0- (2x).
  • You can use USX, DSX, or whatever technique you like.

I’d memorize it in terms of the groups of 4 notes, then the groups of those four (where there are only two such groups of 16 notes on the first page), and do the last page separately.

Finally, as suggested, above, after memorizing I’d start with the metronome, and for each click play 4 notes.

Good luck on this, I suspect you’ll do an awesome job on it, and I look forward to the video! :grinning:

Yes I have it already memorized so that is not a problem. The problem I’m having is getting the speed up. I will be posting a video of my picking hand hopefully soon so maybe that will shed some light on what may be slowing me down.

Hey man; I did not mean to offend in any way - yes Ritchie Blackmore is an excellent guitarist; I am just saying it’s not blazing deadly like Yngwie or Paul Gilbert. A different level of difficulty is all, but of course it depends where you’re at, what your starting point is. My daughter was able to do it, but then again she’s really into Taylor Swift and pop stuff like that- perhaps that’s what gives her the competitive edge! lol (That’s a joke there, hopefully you find it funny?)

Anyways, apologies for the miscommunication, I get that you’re super frustrated! Good luck, man!


My personal approach would be to:

  1. Memorise it
  2. Make sure I can play it through with as little mistakes as possible not worrying much about timing
  3. Play it at 50% speed with a metronome or following guitar pro, really focusing on accuracy
  4. If you find any sections which are causing you to mess up, like where you are missing notes for whatever reason to then work on those sections separately and get them clean at 50% speed. Then go back to playing the full section.
  5. Increase the speed, there’s a few ways to do that depending on your situation and technique but I’d generally play it how fast I can without mistakes and then slowly increase from there.

Because this is all on one string I would use downward pick slanting as that will make it easier.


first of all although your pdf says 140bpm this is not true. the original is played at 190bpm.

The part itself is not really tricky but you have 2 problems to solve IMHO.

  1. consistent picking on one string at that speed.
    As it is just one string your free to choose any movement you like. Try anything from wrist deviation, forearm rotation or elbow, anything that can handle the speed. In theory any of them should be capable, but try whatever feels most natural to you.

  2. synchronisation
    My approach would be to continuously pick and try to punch in the fretted notes. You can start with just the 12 15 i guess.

Start to pick g-string, speed >160 bpm. the every 8th note insert 12 15
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 12 15 0 0 0 0 0 0

Once you can do that, add the missing notes, the lick itself is not hard to memorize.

Good luck, you got this!

I changed the metronome marking. And I am not trying or looking to play this solo at the speed that Blackmore is playing it. That I feel is not realistic.

My goal is to play the solo at 70 percent of the original.

Right now I’m at about 63 percent.

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I really got the impression he was trying to help you and even offered advice on how to practice the passage you were talking about. This seems like an overreaction to me.