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#2453778 - 12/03/12 06:02 PM I'm new here and I have a ton of questions
Ramiro Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/12
Posts: 18
Loc: Chicago
first question is-where do I go to ask my questions?

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#2453779 - 12/03/12 06:24 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
russclan Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 283
For most anything guitar related...right here. There's a "Feel free to ask Myles" sticky thread for amp questions, though most basic stuff can probably be answered here as well.

Welcome cool
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#2453790 - 12/03/12 07:07 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: russclan]
Ramiro Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/12
Posts: 18
Loc: Chicago
thanks you. I'll head over to that thread.

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#2453801 - 12/03/12 07:50 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Registered: 04/05/02
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Loc: The Great Spirit's Handprint o...
Welcome to the Guitar Player Forum, Ramiro!

Feel free to ask all the questions you want here on the GPF, here on this thread or as new topic-starter/threads.

(I happened to see your post on the "Feel free to ask Myles"-thread; you should feel free to post the same- copy & paste- as a new thread here on the Forum, as well- that way you'll get LOTS more replies and info... )
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#2453855 - 12/04/12 05:16 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Caevan O'Shite]
Ramiro Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/12
Posts: 18
Loc: Chicago
thanks, fellas. ok here it goes...

I have a non amp related question. Actually, I have probably about a million of them but I'll start with basic stuff.

First, I should probably describe my level of playing. I get the basic blues scale and I get the pentatonic minor scale and the toughest solo I've ever taught myself to play is the one from "Two Princes" from the Spin Doctors but I couldn't put a solo together to save my life.

I took lessons for a while and I did pick up some good stuff. I finally figured out why country sounds country-pentatonic major with major keys in place of pentatonic minor. that was a huge dawning for me at the time.

my question is are most guitar solos in classic Rock 'n' Roll within a song done on one scale or the other or are the done using a mixture of both?

I was taught the chromatic and diatonic scales but after a while, I noticed notes started getting added to the diatonic scale and it all just blended together for me to the point of confusion.

I would really like to learn how to solo on my own but I'm super confused. I was also taught to resolve solos on the root note so that's a little bit of guidance for me.

I guess what I'm saying is I can teach myself to mimick a solo but I don't have the capability to COME UP with a solo. The other thing is, is there a hard and fast rule that within a band (and I know this is a stupid question, but I have to ask it anyway) one guitar player has to be the lead and the other the rhythm? or do some bands trade off?

reason I ask is because some songs I'd like to play the lead and others I'd like to play rhythm. i guess I'm guilty of wanting to cherry pick.

Finally, how many total keys are there? I know about the major keys but is there a such key as B flat minor? where does that fall in?

after this, I would like to come up with a song list, run it by some people here, then start working on it little by little. I already know a few songs like "I Feel Fine" and "Get off my Cloud" and Clapton's version of "I'm Tore Down" but I want to improve and start getting into alternate tunings like what Keith Richards used and Humble Pie for "30 Days in the Hole" and the like.

Oh, and how many songs does a typical show have and how many sets and how many songs in a set? I want to start putting this together. I just moved to Chicago and I really want to start jamming here.

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#2453864 - 12/04/12 06:13 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
Fred_C Offline
Gold Member

Registered: 06/12/10
Posts: 944
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: Ramiro

Finally, how many total keys are there? I know about the major keys but is there a such key as B flat minor? where does that fall in?


Hi Ramiro. Welcome to the forum. This is a very good place to hang out with some very knowledgeable and highly skilled musicians.

Let me answer one of your questions. There are twelve (12) keys corresponding to the tones in the Chromatic Scale. However, these can be either major (containing the major 3rd interval) or minor (containing the minor 3rd interval). So, counting both major and minor, there are a total of 24 keys.

Hope this helps. I'll offer the other members of the forum the opportunity to address your other questions.

Regards.
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#2453892 - 12/04/12 07:29 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Fred_C]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
With all respect to Fred C., his answer only goes so far in addressing the number of scales.

I'm kind of nuts, so I also think in terms of scales as number sets, and the biggest number set of all is the Chromatic Scale, which is all twelve tones. Think of it as the Scale/number set from which all other Scales are derived. There are also Modes, derived from the Gregorian chants - modal music is very common in Jazz, and many Folk music forms, as well. You will also find non-Western scales, Pentatonic (five-tone) scales like the infamous Blues Box, and purely invented scales, often called Altered Scales, like the Whole-Tone scale, for example.

Now that I've given you a splitting headache, I suggest finding a good book of scales to study, or even better, a book on Music Theory, which should help tie all of the various elements (Scales, chords, time & notation) together for you. Good luck, and don't be afraid to check back in. Sometimes, there are simple answers, too.
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#2453895 - 12/04/12 07:40 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Winston Psmith]
Fred_C Offline
Gold Member

Registered: 06/12/10
Posts: 944
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: WinstonPsmith
With all respect to Fred C., his answer only goes so far in addressing the number of scales.


Hi Winston,

Actually, the question I answered was "How many keys are there?" I believe that I answered that original question correctly. I may be mistaken, but I believe that all the various scales you mention in your post are all subsets of the chromatic scale. Nevertheless, although a discussion of these subsidiary scales does not answer the question regarding the number of keys, it is still very valuable information.
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#2453909 - 12/04/12 08:44 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Fred_C]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
Fred C., you're correct - I was careless about the language of my response, and I apologize. Too much caffeine, too little sleep . . .
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#2453912 - 12/04/12 09:01 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Winston Psmith]
Bartholomew Offline
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Registered: 02/29/04
Posts: 394
Loc: Montreal
If you want to play Lead Guitar my advice would be that you learn to play in phrases like a horn player. In other words - create lead lines by learning simple songs that have a melody. Play the actual melody of the song (which will develop your ears) and put in "rests" rather than blowing non-stop wanker bull-shit like most players out there who think that speed is talent.

Aside from open strings my most important scale is a simple C scale at the fifth fret using my first finger on the 3rd string as a pivot or anchor point. It can be moved into any key up and down the fret-board. Memorizing scales is useful but not the answer in my opinion.
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#2453913 - 12/04/12 09:02 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Winston Psmith]
Fred_C Offline
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Registered: 06/12/10
Posts: 944
Loc: PA
No problem, brother. We're cool.

Regards.
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#2453914 - 12/04/12 09:03 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Fred_C]
SEHpicker Offline
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Registered: 05/16/02
Posts: 1001
Loc: Inverness, Florida
Welcome to the forum Ramiro - you have definitely found the right place to answer your guitar related questions.

To answer a couple of questions in your list:
- mixing up scales is key to coming up with original sounding solos that stand out-IMHO
- learn as many solos from your favorite guitarists as you can- after awhile you will begin to connect the dots and understand what is going on - this will take you a long way in helping you to find your own voice on the guitar.
- accomplished guitar players generally can play both lead and rhythm and when two guitar players are in a band, trading off between leads and rhythms is a GOOD thing - listen to some old Allman Bros - Duane and Dickey were masters at this. And they would often overlap leads to create harmony guitar solos - which were sublime.
- Certainly not all - but most classic rock solos are based on the major and minor pentatonic scales.
- As for your last question about number of songs in a set etc. - it will depend on the venue you are playing - but generally a working band playing nightclubs, private parties and such - you'll be expected to play about 4 - 50 minutes sets with a 10 minute break between sets - my band averages about 10 songs a set, give or take a few. Sometimes we'll skip a break when the house is really rockin.(usually 3rd & 4th set)
- Stay tuned in to this forum - you'll get answers to questions you haven't even thought of yet!!
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#2453934 - 12/04/12 10:27 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: SEHpicker]
whitefang Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5756
Loc: Lincoln Park, MI, UNITED STATE...
I'm only chiming in Ramiro(welcome to the forum!) to give an "outsider" viewpoint. That is as someone who can't read music, and has learned by mimic and personal exploration.

When you mention things like "pentatonic scales" and "chromatic scales", I have NO idea what the f*** you're talking about. And I really don't care. It seems at first blush, your worries about how to create a solo is slightly roadblocked by the concern over which "scale" to use as a root.

Don't worry too much about it. Creating a solo is largely based on your level of skill. My illiterate and hack-leveled advice would be to take what you learned from copying those other solos and mixing them up a bit. You could probably work something out while alone and then try it out with the rest of the band during a rehearsal. I'm betting(hoping)that you've voiced your concerns with this to your bandmates. They should be understanding of your apprehensions, and supportive. You mentioned the sharing of "lead" duties with the other guitarist of a band. If you have another guitar player in the band, and HE has no trouble creating HIS own solos, don't be afraid of asking his advice. WHO should be "lead" guitarist should depend on who's better at it. If you're both as good as each other, then who TAKES the lead should be on a song-to-song basis.

Playing in a band should be more fun than work. Even the work part should seem like fun. When the WORK part causes anxiety, you should consider a different band.

Hope this helps.
Whitefang
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#2453937 - 12/04/12 10:41 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: SEHpicker]
Larryz Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Welcome aboard Ramiro! You can break some of your questions in to different subject matters like: Pentatonic Major/Minor Scales, Set Lists, Song Lists, Questions About Keys, Equipment, Amps, Pedals, Mic's, etc., and start new threads at anytime...I learn a lot just by reading everyone's responses...I'm going to try that C scale on the 5th fret using the 1st finger as a pivot point on the 3rd string that Bartholomew mentioned! The major/minor pentatonics were a major break through for me and can be used in the same song and interchanged with the 7 tone major/minor scales in the same 4 fret postitions...I also like to throw in some basic melody lines and mix and match them all up...but while scales are great for leads, I also like to get more into chords and play more interesting rhythms to back up my solo vocals too. Have fun with it! thu

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#2453987 - 12/04/12 02:51 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Larryz]
Terrell Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 1722
Loc: Austin, TX
In my typical smartassedness, I must point out that standard keyboards have 88 keys, but I'm staring at one on my desktop with 24.

Yes knee slapper I know...



I can tell that you are a pattern thinker. ole whitefang might not be. Don't let that bother you! Just look above and you can see that music is built on patterns.

In western music, there are many keys but only 12 (15 with ambiguous sharp flats) key signatures in notation. The circle of fifths is an awesome little visual aid to show that major and minor are the same key signature.

WHICH ALSO MEANS THEY ARE THE SAME SHAPE or PATTERN on the guitar. They just start and end on different notes (the tonic). A minor = C Maj in every way except where you start and end the scale A or C!

I wasn't yelling, just making sure you're heard that!

Why is that important? In western music there are 7 notes in the key. So, if you stretch that out onto the guitar neck, you will see there are 7 positions (7 patterns that are interlocked up and down the neck). Once you learn the 7 patterns up and down the neck, you will have every position mastered for one key. Starting and Ending on different notes within the pattern will get you major and minor and all of the modes. You've probably heard of modes? Well it the same 7 notes, just stopping and starting in a different place. So, if you move all the patterns together in one direction or the other, you will be able to cover every major and minor key and most of the "unaltered" modes!!!! YES!!!!!

The Altered Notes are the important ones. That's where things begin to get interesting. This is where the cooler stuff happens that blows your mind a little bit. It's important to remember that the most common altered notes in western music are the third, fifth and the seventh. Those notes can give Maj/min (bluesy rock) ambiguity or build tension (classical resolution). So, to speak of your rock gene, think about your "box shaped" minor pentatonic. That is a pattern. Think about the root or tonic. The second note is a minor third. That note is the most important one. If you move it down, it's a second and that's no big deal. But if you sharp that third, all hell breaks lose and nobody can tell what key you are in. Same with the 5th, you flat that and you gotchoself a slur... If you sharp the Seventh in a minor key, everyone thinks something dramatic is going to happen like devil tattos spitting fire from your chest (see tritone).

Then there is modal stuff. Which is where a lot of what you might think is diatonic, IS, it's just not the key you thought it was. For instance the riff sounds in D maj, but your solo is in G maj... What is that all about?!?!?! It's modal...


Edited by Terrell (12/04/12 03:01 PM)

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#2454012 - 12/04/12 04:57 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Bartholomew]
p90junior Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/01/08
Posts: 57
Originally Posted By: Bartholomew
If you want to play Lead Guitar my advice would be that you learn to play in phrases like a horn player. In other words - create lead lines by learning simple songs that have a melody. Play the actual melody of the song (which will develop your ears) and put in "rests" rather than blowing non-stop wanker bull-shit like most players out there who think that speed is talent.

Aside from open strings my most important scale is a simple C scale at the fifth fret using my first finger on the 3rd string as a pivot or anchor point. It can be moved into any key up and down the fret-board. Memorizing scales is useful but not the answer in my opinion.


Beat me to it.

Eric Clapton once humbly summed up his solos as (if I remember it correctly) "one Freddie King lick, one Albert King lick, then hopefully a lick of my own that those two inspired in the moment..."

I read that when I started playing and was blown away that he said it... but it helped point out that it's a vocabulary of phrases (a language) that you build up and use when appropriate, and HOW you use them becomes YOUR voice.

I think a common mistake people make starting out - in solos or writing material - is thinking they have to "invent" things out of thin air, believing the myth that musical geniuses are vessels for the voices of the Gods who whisper into their ears music that is not related to anything that came before...

Music is a language. One doesn't master speaking the English language by not having a vocabulary of phrases to string together to communicate with people, instead just making noises. It's the way that you string together the common vocabulary of words and phrases that makes you an original and great speaker.

Same with music.

Ramiro, just immerse yourself in learning solos you like, from whatever instrumentalists. Build up a vocabulary (the wider the range of styles and instruments they come from, the better) and all of that information gets stored in your conscious and sub-conscious mind, and at some point it will be like speaking through your fingers at will.

I've given lessons to a couple of guys who were older than I am, who'd been playing much longer - since their teens - but had never broken through, after seeing me play somewhere they asked if I could teach them how to solo. They knew scales, etc., just had a few licks they repeated and wanted a push. I started them with just playing the vocal medley of whatever song they were doing on guitar, then letting them play that for a couple of bars then having to do a variation in some way. After that it was messing with modes and then the little rock tricks we all use... then they got good and inspired and I'd put myself out a job fairly quickly.

Another old trick is to hum something, then play it, since most people aren't mentally stuck in scale patterns and shapes when they hum.

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#2454013 - 12/04/12 04:58 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Terrell]
Larryz Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Cool post Terrell, and since you have a grip on the cycle of 5ths...I have a question for you as I'm finally at the ripe old age of 62 getting around to playing & practicing with it. I know there are a lot of chord variations to learn using the II V I pattern for the major keys. I'm using: a minor7, then a 9th and ending with a maj7th...is there a similar simple II V I chord pattern for the relative minor keys that you might suggest?

Ps. Just in case Terrell does not see this, anyone else that can answer this for me, it will be appreciated...Fred? Thanks thu


Edited by Larryz (12/04/12 07:06 PM)
Edit Reason: Ps.

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#2454019 - 12/04/12 05:26 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
p90junior Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/01/08
Posts: 57
Originally Posted By: Ramiro

1) my question is are most guitar solos in classic Rock 'n' Roll within a song done on one scale or the other or are the done using a mixture of both?

2) I was also taught to resolve solos on the root note so that's a little bit of guidance for me.

3) The other thing is, is there a hard and fast rule that within a band (and I know this is a stupid question, but I have to ask it anyway) one guitar player has to be the lead and the other the rhythm? or do some bands trade off?

reason I ask is because some songs I'd like to play the lead and others I'd like to play rhythm. i guess I'm guilty of wanting to cherry pick.
...

4) Oh, and how many songs does a typical show have and how many sets and how many songs in a set? I want to start putting this together. I just moved to Chicago and I really want to start jamming here.


1) Some are, some aren't... my personal faves throw something in that is clever and surprising, that most people wouldn't throw in because they wouldn't think to do it.

2) that's a good rule to go by... of course, Miles Davis made his name by masterfully breaking it.

3) The Stones in the Jones/Richards and Wood/Richard lineups have two guitars tugging and pulling weaving between rhythm and lead the entire time (Mick Taylor settled more into being a traditional lead guitarist, while Keith in that period settled more into heroin). A lot of my favorite bands have that tug thing going on... Television, Dumptruck, Sonic Youth (if you consider what they do "lead" and "rhythm" by any means).

4) it depends... really on what kind of gig you can get and how long they will let/want you to play. "Cover band" sets, in my experience, last from 2 hours to 4 hours... Original material band sets can last from 15 minutes to 2 hours, rare is the unknown original band that can hold a club audiences attention for 3 or 4 hours (rare is the unknown original material band that has that much material, never mind that much good material).

I really wish the local kids would start putting some covers into their sets and just play the worthwhile songs they've come up with instead of the aimless "even we know this is time-filler" tunes they sometimes end up playing... I know they're budding sensitive artistes but it's not like their "sound (and that seems to be the focus these days, on sound instead of songs, per se)" is ever anything without direct recent precedents. I mean, I can tell they want to ape Radiohead, so just go ahead and master some Radiohead songs, the way Heart did with Led Zeppelin when they were a start up club band, and eventually they'll hopefully develop their own dimension to it.


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#2454042 - 12/04/12 06:55 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: p90junior]
Ramiro Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/12
Posts: 18
Loc: Chicago
ok, first off, thanks for the warm welcome. it is much appreciated. Terrell, you are right on, I am a pattern thinker. I need to make sense of it. I think what I need is a poster I can put up on my wall that shows all the keys and all the chords within the key.

As I see it, and please correct me if I'm off, there are 24 keys. I just looked up this site and had a little dawning...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_written_in_all_24_major_and_minor_keys

so that helps me a little. SO, if I keep it in the context of these here 24 keys, that helps. now, from there, what I need is a poster to hang on me wall that has all of these keys and all of the chords within the key. I don't need something that shows five hundred million ways to play the same chord. I can actually figure out from there where else to form the key on the fretboard.

now then, with each key goes a diatonic scale. so let's say I am in key of C. the diatonic notes in this key are-C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C(this C being the next octave up), right? then you have the pentatonic scale that you can play too. (this is confusing, I'm more mixed up than Rodney Dangerfield here). you mix these up and it's almost chromatic to me because almost all the 12 notes are in here. are your typical solos done as a mishmash of these two scales or are they played on one and not the other? I'm so confused I don't even know what I'm asking.

I think I just need to use the these scales as my skeleton and then figure out how the solo I'm playing fits into the rule book or into the context of the scale. from my lessons, I learned not to flat the second, that that particular note does NOT sound good in the solo. then there are the passing notes (I forgot which other ones get flattened but I think those other ones are passing notes). it's all confusing.

I took lessons from one of the guitarists from Sponge and he taught me some good things but it seemed as if the questions in my head never got resolved. he's the one who taught me about not using that flat 2nd. He taught me some blues turn arounds and some licks but I never seemed to get "it".

I get what was said earlier in this thread that if you learn it in one key, just move up a fret and you're in the next key up and the patterns (or signatures, I believe was the word used) are the same. I get that part of it.

Perhaps what I will do is learn a song and then ask you guys "what's going on in this song?" that may help me.

thanks again, fellas.

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#2454062 - 12/04/12 09:36 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
p90jr Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 1958
That's funny, just last week I was playing with a couple of guys and we played a couple of SPONGE songs, "Human Wreckage" and "Molly," two of the better and more enduring hit songs from the 90s alternative period with cool guitar work going on. You're lucky to know that guy IMO.

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#2454095 - 12/05/12 06:05 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: p90jr]
Ramiro Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/12
Posts: 18
Loc: Chicago
Joey Mazzola. he's a great guy. he taught me some nice stuff but I'm trying to learn more of the technical kind of stuff. he was giving me fish but I want to LEARN HOW TO FISH.

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#2454115 - 12/05/12 07:05 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Larryz]
Terrell Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 1722
Loc: Austin, TX
Originally Posted By: Larryz
Cool post Terrell, and since you have a grip on the cycle of 5ths...I have a question for you as I'm finally at the ripe old age of 62 getting around to playing & practicing with it. I know there are a lot of chord variations to learn using the II V I pattern for the major keys. I'm using: a minor7, then a 9th and ending with a maj7th...is there a similar simple II V I chord pattern for the relative minor keys that you might suggest?

Ps. Just in case Terrell does not see this, anyone else that can answer this for me, it will be appreciated...Fred? Thanks thu


Look here for a nice explanation as well as description of the altered notes within the melodic minor on Im7: Jazzclass

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#2454162 - 12/05/12 08:46 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Terrell]
Larryz Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Originally Posted By: Terrell
Originally Posted By: Larryz
Cool post Terrell, and since you have a grip on the cycle of 5ths...I have a question for you as I'm finally at the ripe old age of 62 getting around to playing & practicing with it. I know there are a lot of chord variations to learn using the II V I pattern for the major keys. I'm using: a minor7, then a 9th and ending with a maj7th...is there a similar simple II V I chord pattern for the relative minor keys that you might suggest?

Ps. Just in case Terrell does not see this, anyone else that can answer this for me, it will be appreciated...Fred? Thanks thu




Look here for a nice explanation as well as description of the altered notes within the melodic minor on Im7: Jazzclass


THANKS TERRELL! This is the exact info I was looking for and a cool site (will play with the chord fingerings and see which will fit in for me)... thu

Ps. I should be saying circle instead of cycle but I just can't remember to quit doing it...and, the hardest part going into the minors was figuring out where to start? Now that I know a half diminished II chord is just a minor7th flat 5 (which I picked up from my old Jazz chord book) I can begin, with a 6th string root... cool


Edited by Larryz (12/05/12 05:08 PM)
Edit Reason: ps. IIm7-5 V7 Im7

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#2454282 - 12/05/12 11:52 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Ramiro]
Terrell Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 1722
Loc: Austin, TX
Originally Posted By: Ramiro
ok, first off, thanks for the warm welcome. it is much appreciated. Terrell, you are right on, I am a pattern thinker. I need to make sense of it. I think what I need is a poster I can put up on my wall that shows all the keys and all the chords within the key.


YEAH! There are plenty of posters out there... You can google image them and find a ton!

Originally Posted By: Ramiro

As I see it, and please correct me if I'm off, there are 24 keys. I just looked up this site and had a little dawning...


24!?!?! That's overwhelming and not applicable to your pattern thinking. Even more overwhelming is the realization that with all of the modes (not just Major / minor) you could say there are umpteen to 12th power (exaggeration). YIKES!

First, in western music, there are only 12 notes + the octave. And, when you break it down to diatonic scale, there are only 7 notes + octave (oct=8). Remember that Major minor (natural) are the same pattern of notes, just ending on different notes. So are most of the classical modes. If you learn all of the patterns for one Major/minor key across the entire fretboard, you will be set to play ALL keys by moving the entire pattern to a new key (adjust the entire pattern 1 fret up or down through all 12 frets). So 7 is the number! It repeats on the 8th pattern position...

Originally Posted By: Ramiro

now then, with each key goes a diatonic scale. so let's say I am in key of C. the diatonic notes in this key are-C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C(this C being the next octave up), right? then you have the pentatonic scale that you can play too. (this is confusing, I'm more mixed up than Rodney Dangerfield here). you mix these up and it's almost chromatic to me because almost all the 12 notes are in here. are your typical solos done as a mishmash of these two scales or are they played on one and not the other? I'm so confused I don't even know what I'm asking.


You are mixing it up by overlaying a C Major diatonic scale with a C minor pentatonic. If you do that, yes you get crazy results! It sounds pretty cool. But you are mixing a major scale and a minor pentatonic and that's where you are confusing yourself.

The C Major pentatonic is a direct subset of the C Major scale. C,D,E,G,A!

When you hear people playing Major/minor ambiguously (rock or blues), they are usually raising the 3rd on a minor pentatonic box and slurring or passing 4th 4# 5th and sometimes # the 7th.

So play your A minor pentatonic box. On the 5th fret A-C-D-E-G-A. Keep in mind that it is a subset of the C Major / A minor scale. Now forget that! Raise the 3rd (to a major 3rd) A,C#,D,E,G,A. All of the sudden it sounds Major! Add in a 4th 5th passing note A,C,D,D#/Eb,E,G,A and we have some funky fun around the 4th and 5th (also called the "blues scale"). Then # the 7th as well as the 3rd, and it really sounds major! A,C#,D,G#,A. You can noodle in and around there and really weave some cool ambiguous major/minor blues by going back and forth between these Altered Notes. Remember this in an A minor center riff where we are making it major for effect.

In the classic I-IV-V progression, you can apply the same technique to the notes you choose on the changes in chord. On the V chord change (or E in our example) you can raise the 3rd of E - G# and include the 5th B. On the IV chord in the progression (or D in our example) you can do the same thing. Include the 3rd of D maj or min.

The 3rd of the root is the most important one to hang on (the C in my example). It defines major and minor and most any western ear can tell. Think about most bendy guitar licks. They bend or slurr the 3rd or the 7th or pass between 4th and 5th...

I hope I'm not confusing you...


Edited by Terrell (12/05/12 02:43 PM)
Edit Reason: because it was wrong

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#2454355 - 12/05/12 04:03 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Terrell]
picker Offline
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Ramiro, I just read an interview with Jimmy Page in the new issue of Rolling Stone. In it, Page says he never worked on practicing scales. He wrote his songs by playing things that were familiar to him, then expanding on them.
I would never advise anyone NOT to learn scales, or theory, or any of the other technical tools available to guitarists. The more you know, the more you have to work with and the better you can understand what you're doing.
But you need to work on learning songs. Without them, there is little context for the technical information you are learning. It makes it easier to make sense of it all if you can see how scales are applied in actual music. Eric Johnson says he works on learning Hendrix songs till he has learned all he can from them, then he takes up another one. I assume he's gone over all of them several times, and learnied something new every time. I think that's one of the best methods of study I've ever heard of.
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#2454416 - 12/05/12 08:17 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: picker]
Sharkman Offline
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Registered: 06/12/10
Posts: 290
Time for me to throw in my opinion, for whatever it's worth. I don't know who I learned this from, so I'm not sure who to give the proper credit to. A solo is a song within a song. It has a beginning, it has an end, and somewhere in between, it has to evoke some sort of emotional response from you. It can make you feel happy, sad, excited, whatever. But most importantly, it has to sound good. Otherwise, it's just a bunch of notes.

A great way to create solos, riffs, and melodies is to hum, sing, or whistle something that sounds good, record it, then play it on the guitar. Ramiro, you found a great website to ask your questions. Many of the people who post here know far more about guitar playing, music, and the music business than I ever will, and it's great to have access to this huge wealth of knowledge and experience.

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#2454424 - 12/05/12 09:11 PM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Sharkman]
russclan Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 283
I'll give a nod toward the Guitar Grimoire series of books. There are DVDs too, but I don't own any of those, so I can't speak to them.



Edited by russclan (12/05/12 09:12 PM)
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#2454496 - 12/06/12 07:01 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Terrell]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
Originally Posted By: Terrell
Originally Posted By: Ramiro

As I see it, and please correct me if I'm off, there are 24 keys. I just looked up this site and had a little dawning...


24!?!?! That's overwhelming and not applicable to your pattern thinking. Even more overwhelming is the realization that with all of the modes (not just Major / minor) you could say there are umpteen to 12th power (exaggeration). YIKES!


Thank you, Terrell, for expanding on the point I was trying to make, but hadn't articulated so well. Part of what I wanted to say was that, yes, the Key of C is the Key of C, but if you're playing from a C major scale, and the rest of the group is in C Myxolydian, you're playing in two different scales, different number sets, going back to my example. There'll be overlapping notes, of course, but that flat 7th is going to come up at some point.

Sharkman also raises a very important point. I knew a young player with extraordinary talent & technical skills, but his solos were just fireworks displays - they didn't say anything. I told him that he should think of each solo as a sort of mini-composition, rather than a 3/5-of-a-mile-in-10-seconds drag race.
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#2454523 - 12/06/12 08:41 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: Winston Psmith]
whitefang Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
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Loc: Lincoln Park, MI, UNITED STATE...
B.B. King once claimed that he doesn't play guitar "solos" per se, but rather treats it as the guitar taking a turn at singing. Meaning "Lucille" was the only other "vocalist" in the band. He'd sing a few lines of melody, then "Lucille" would sing a line or two of melody. This is probably why B.B.'s solos weren't rapid-fire "cascades" of notes, but more musical.

I kinda liked the way he put that.
Whitefang
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#2454528 - 12/06/12 08:51 AM Re: I'm new here and I have a ton of questions [Re: whitefang]
Dannyalcatraz Offline
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Registered: 07/28/04
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Loc: Dallas/FW Metroplex, Texas
He's not the only one who thinks like that- Prince one asked one of his touring guitarists to learn to play a part like "Billie Holliday would sing it."
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