To submit requests for assistance, or provide feedback regarding accessibility, please contact

Arts & Entertainment


Tom Morello

Lesson time 08:01 min

Tom teaches you how to structure your practice time, from balancing technique and theory to segmenting your practice day.

Tom Morello
Teaches Electric Guitar
In 26 lessons, Grammy-winning musician Tom Morello will teach you the guitar techniques, rhythms, and riffs that define his signature style.


Practice is also a means of erasing the barriers between what's in your mind, what's in your artistic soul, and what you can actually do with your fingers. And that is really the reason to do it. And the amount that you practice will reveal how much it is that you can express yourself on the instrument of guitar. [MUSIC PLAYING] Let's talk now about practice and process. You practice technique to get your fingers to go where you want them to go. You practice theory to understand where they can go and why. You play live and you write songs, you practice that to bring the theory and the technique and create art with it. And you seek inspiration to make that art something that's meaningful to you that can communicate to others. Practice has played a huge role in my life as a musician. I had literally zero natural ability on the guitar. I had to fight for every single inch of my guitar playing. Later on, there were breakthroughs where creativity came easy, where I was able to move my fingers around the fretboard. But I promise you, and hear these words-- I had zero natural ability. It was only through hours, and hours, and hours of practice that I was able to amass some sort of ability on the guitar. Practice is really-- is something that I absolutely have sworn by my entire life to become a better musician and a more fulfilled artist. [MUSIC PLAYING] Three crucial building blocks to practice are practicing every day, playing with other people, and playing live. I received some tremendous advice when I was a beginning guitar player. A friend of mine in high school said, practice an hour a day-- he said, if you're serious about wanting to play guitar, practice an hour a day, every day, without fail. And I took those words as gospel. And I began practicing an hour a day, every day, without fail. And I found over a very short period of time, that like a slow rising tide-- I'm like, oh, after a couple of weeks my playing was noticeably better. Rather than, you know, jamming four hours on the weekend with friends, and then playing again in two weeks, and then practicing one night for a half hour. I made a commitment to practicing every day. And it was-- and I felt-- like, I started playing late. I started playing when I was 17 years old. So I always felt that I was tremendously behind. But in practicing every day, that one hour-- you can really get better when you practice an hour a day. What happens if you practice two? And then I saw my playing grow exponentially. And what if it's four? And what if it's six? And eventually it was eight hours a day, every day, without fail. And the without fail part was very important to me and the commitment to the instrument. Sometimes I'd be-- like, I'd be at college. And I'd have a-- in college I was around the four hour a day-- four hour a day mark. I'd have an exam the next morning. I'd have a fever of 101. I'd finish studying at 1:00 AM. And I would play until 5:00 AM. Not 4:58 AM. ...

Strike a Chord

Tom Morello is a two-time Grammy winner and one of Rolling Stone’s "greatest guitarists of all time." In his first online guitar class, the co-founder of Rage Against the Machine will teach you the riffs, rhythms, and solos that launched his career and sent his music to the top of the charts. Tom will share his approach to making music that challenges the status quo and teach you how to create your own musical style.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

It's interesting that I got so much out of this class, and yet the type of music I write/play is very different from Tom's. What came across in his class was his level of commitment and individuality, which has greatly inspired me, especially given that I tend to write about serious subjects. I'd highly recommend this class!

I feel like giving up most of the time. This class has kept me inspired.

I've only been playing for a couple years now so many of the examples / lessons Tom includes are beyond my skill level but I find him to be massively inspiring and a real pleasure to listen to. This was a great class. Very glad I did it. Rock coming soon!

It has empowered me to do what I like. Combining music with activism. Thanks Tom!


A fellow student

Interesting how the first several lessons seemed more appropriate for seasoned guitar players, focusing on Tom's artistry, creativity, and influences. Then by lessons 9-10 he gets into the mechanics of becoming a skillful musician with practice, technique, and theory, apparently more geared toward beginners (which I am, with guitar, at least). I wonder if this is by design...early lessons to inspire students by showcasing artistic genius, and then getting into the nitty gritty of how it is done. Very valuable, nonetheless.

Quinn J.

Really helpful to see how he chunks his practice into four essential sections. One thing thats helped me a lot is also understanding the science of learning and the difference between certain types of practice(Regular Practice and Deliberate Practice.) This video has helped me out a lot if you want to learn more about Deliberate practice:

Jacob M.

Very good insight on practicing guitar on a daily basis. However I can't access the PDF as it has an error code for some reason.


I have been playing acoustic guitar for about a month now. Carrying bad memories of childhood piano lessons, I wanted to learn the guitar on my own terms. That consisted of youtube videos of my favorite songs because it was fun; however, everytime I searched “fretboard” and saw all the charts and notes I was overwhelmed. I started watching Tom’s lessons in order but then skipped to the theory, fretboard, and practicing videos first. I needed that pathway to understanding that fretboard and how I was going to move forward and found that and more. Thank you Tom! Practicing an hour a day which now includes “soloing”. I am saving for an electric guitar as a gift when my proficiency improves!!

Jeremy D.

I have tons of songs but always felt a mediocre player, especially live cause when younger i was lazy.....Now, already a few weeks in and I know a lot more then I used to. Looking forward to finding my own voice.

Robert G.

The more you play and practice or whatever, improves your playing. Even if it's a shitty session.

Jonathan S.

This guy is freaking awesome! Because I have ignored his genre, I had never heard of him before, which only goes to show the importance of opening your horizons. So much of what he's teaching us has come from his investigating music that he had spurned in the past. Lesson learned!


Thanks Tom this is critical- I have lost a lot of time in the past because my practice was not efficient. I did make progress, but career-wise I did not get to the crucial milestones in time to be competitive enough. I will not make that same mistake with guitar. Next time I'm heard by artist management it will go very differently from the last time.

Gilbert R.

I feel so lucky to be a music teacher and play at least 6 hours a day and get paid for it. Nothing beats the feeling of going to the next level and having an amazing command of your instrument in any genre. Keep on rocking it Tom. I too started when I was 17 and I played 8 hours a day for 2 years straight. I never missed a day. If you love it, practice is just gonna happen.

Patrick M.

I have been doing these exercises day in day out since I learned them here. My left hand is on fire. But I can tell you I have already seen progress. I've quickly moved from 50 BPM to 60 and have practiced with double time as well. I will emphasize the need to use a metronome. You will find yourself staying in time with two fingers but moving away from time on others. Also transitioning between strings in time is crucial and I have taken time to slow down my practice to nail down timing and tone. Tone comes from correct finger placement. Something Tom says in this lesson is how long this will take to develop as a skill. He is not joking. I can see these exercises being a part of my daily routine for many many hours to come. Thanks Tom for the insight and inspiration.