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Get your string bends in shape with this Slash guitar tip and quick lesson

Slash
(Image credit: Future)

“To be honest with you, I didn’t even know what intonation was until somebody told me a long time ago," Slash admitted to Total Guitar back in 2000. "They said: ‘You’re getting pretty good, Slash – you’ve just gotta get your intonation together.’ I didn’t really know what that meant, but what it came down to was: if you’re gonna bend a note, make sure it’s going somewhere. Don’t let it go half in or half out, or whatever.”

It's a fundamental part of good string bending, but often forgotten – especially by us players when we're in the early stages of learning essential techniques. And Slash’s advice applies to any string bend, whether or not you’re playing G’n’R songs. 

(Image credit: Future)

The opening bend in our example above rings out against other fretted notes – it’s vital to get the bend just right or it’ll sound out of tune. For the final two bends the key is to not over-bend as this sounds more obviously wrong than slightly under-bending.