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Old 04-20-2013, 05:21 PM   #1
Who Sh0t Ya HxO
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5 year player needs help!

Okay, so I've been playing self taught for 5 years now and I'm decent, I can solo a bit, and I can riff a bit. But the trouble I run into is that I only play in a certain way that I don't know how to break out of unless I take 1 on 1 lessons. I've tried Jam Play but I just need personal lessons because Jam Play was cool and all but it didn't help me break out of my crappy habit of playing. So I don't really grasp the concept of how to play scales or what notes sound good with a certain chord. I can play a scale if you give me the diagram of it with the notes but I wouldn't know how to switch it up in a improvisation, I would just play the cookie cutter 3 notes per string all in order.

I can solo but only in whole steps and half steps(same thing for riffing, all I do is power chords, gallops, and individual plucks of the string using the wholes and halves) of the current tuning that I'm in and only one string? You see what I mean? In what ever tuning I'm in, I know by heart all of the frets that will sound good in the tuning, which isn't hard to figure out string by string, once I play a fret I go "oh well I can go two more whole steps and then a half step and then..." so on and so forth. I don't literally say it, but in my head I just know what ones will sound good going up and down the string.

This is a problem in soloing, I want to know what certain things I need to learn in order to play up and down the fret board. Do I have to learn the notes on the fret board? I tend to change tunings from time to time and that would be a bitch to remember each tunings notes.

I want to play a solo to this backing track but I don't know how to solo properly on other strings once the chords change.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-PP4mygOlc
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Old 04-20-2013, 05:27 PM   #2
TDKshorty
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It would help if you learned a little theory. Learn how scales are made, and what intervals sound like. This stuff takes a long time to learn and to be really good at, but it's worthwhile.
While you're learning that transfer it to your guitar, practicing scales up and down (both vertically and horizontally). I don't believe in learning patterns or shapes, because those are, in the long run, limiting.

Those two things are really important because eventually you'll know what you want to hear, where it's at on the guitar and how to play it.

I think it would help if you learned to play other people's songs. That's how I learned my scales, and I think that's how most other people learn their scales too.

What do you mean by changing tunings? Do you do open tunings, and change from EADGBE to DADF#AD or make up random tunings?

Do you have any recordings of you playing so we can assess where you're at. You may actually be further along than you think, you're just unhappy with where you're at.

EDIT: I can say, when you're soloing, think of the notes in the chords, and how they relate to the next chord, whether they go up or down, getting higher or lower, and focus on playing notes that are in the chord (the root, the 3rd and the 5th) and then notes that would add some flavor to the chord (like 7ths, 9ths, 11ths and 13ths)

By doing this, you'll see how notes relate to different chords. For example, if you just sustain a C note over a progression like C, E-, F, G, you'll notice how the note, though it stays the same, changes based on the chord you're playing.
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Last edited by TDKshorty : 04-20-2013 at 05:33 PM.
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Old 04-20-2013, 10:49 PM   #3
Fourfourforever
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that backing track is nice and easy to solo over i think just be in the key of e minor man and try playing the shit in your head. I gave it a go i am nothing great though and didn't worry about the chords that strictly came up with some good parts though imo. http://www.filedropper.com/improvslowballadmetal sorry a little fun at the end wanted to try another idea out and record it lol. It is in my profile also if you do not trust the link.

Last edited by Fourfourforever : 04-20-2013 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 12:22 AM   #4
Who Sh0t Ya HxO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TDKshorty
It would help if you learned a little theory. Learn how scales are made, and what intervals sound like. This stuff takes a long time to learn and to be really good at, but it's worthwhile.
While you're learning that transfer it to your guitar, practicing scales up and down (both vertically and horizontally). I don't believe in learning patterns or shapes, because those are, in the long run, limiting.

Those two things are really important because eventually you'll know what you want to hear, where it's at on the guitar and how to play it.

I think it would help if you learned to play other people's songs. That's how I learned my scales, and I think that's how most other people learn their scales too.

What do you mean by changing tunings? Do you do open tunings, and change from EADGBE to DADF#AD or make up random tunings?

Do you have any recordings of you playing so we can assess where you're at. You may actually be further along than you think, you're just unhappy with where you're at.

EDIT: I can say, when you're soloing, think of the notes in the chords, and how they relate to the next chord, whether they go up or down, getting higher or lower, and focus on playing notes that are in the chord (the root, the 3rd and the 5th) and then notes that would add some flavor to the chord (like 7ths, 9ths, 11ths and 13ths)

By doing this, you'll see how notes relate to different chords. For example, if you just sustain a C note over a progression like C, E-, F, G, you'll notice how the note, though it stays the same, changes based on the chord you're playing.


Here is my latest song so you can assess where I'm at.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWkcHSdIFgw

I have done a couple guitar covers but when I do covers, I just memorize tablature , I don't really see if they are playing certain scales or chords, although I do notice if it's a power chord ^.^ Plus most of the songs I do, are within my skill range which usually don't contain crazy and complex scale soloing, although a lot of the songs I want to do, DO contain crazy and complex solos... (Yngwie... MAB)


What I mean by different tunings is sometimes I like to play in D standard, then I'll get a hankering for Eb standard, so I'll tune up a half step, and sometimes I like to play in E standard. Regardless of the tuning, I know what frets will work with the tuning because they're all the same actually for each tuning, they just make a different tone depending one which tuning. So I know 2, 3, 5, 7, and 8, etc. for example on the 6th string will all sound good with the current tuning because they just do, I figured out these patterns on my own throughout the years of playing, and so yeah I know the whole steps and half step patterns that make harmony with the open tuning I guess I'm trying to say? Idk.

I just want to know how to play what I want to play instead of going through the minor scale and playing it in order down the fret board, it's repetitive, The minor scale, and the pentatonic scale I know and use sometimes, but that's really it, it's not like I get crazy on it, I know the major scale but I don't like the way it sounds, so I don't use it.
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:27 AM   #5
Fourfourforever
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well i will say i like your playing man you been playing longer then me and i wish i had some of that metal kind of riffing down and you also like sequencing in 4ths i hear lol. you sound like you need to brush up on your theory. You got to understand where the notes fall on either tuning i mean if you are tuned in d standard every note is just moved down a whole step on your fretboard from e standard tuning.

You also have to understand to love the major scale more man everything relates to it in western music i mean for that backing track the relative major is Gmaj same notes as Em stop playing sometimes man and just look at the fretboard learn your notes learn your triads etc stop being all pattern based i mean yea the instrument is very pattern based but just learn and understand how and why those patterns are formed.

For example i do not know what kind of progression is in that backing track and honestly i do not have a good enough of a ear yet to hear it that well but the notes are e f#g a bcd.
in the key of Em so find those notes across your fretboard map it out man so say if the chord progression is a 1 4 5 well that gives us a Em chord a Am and a Bm chord so cool now the chord tones for the 1 chord is the 1 3 5 intervals in the key of Em witch are of course the E note or the Tonic, our 5th is the B note in the key of Em giving us our power chord and our third interval finally completing our Em chord is the G our minor 3rd that makes our Em chord.

These intervals can be in any order played to make this chord so now our chord tones to be targeting when you hear that Em chord being played is our 1 3 5 notes being the E,G,B so now do that for all the other chords man this is basic chord constructing make it a Em7 chord just add in the 7th note of the key. Basically you can do whatever the hell you want over whatever chord man its music just know why you are doing it and if it sounds good to you it's good. You do not always have to play the chord tones when you hear the chord being played like some sort of chord tone following robot hell if you want to sharpen the minor 3rd of a minor key make it a major 3rd man see how it sounds experiment like you always have but this time do it with awareness and theory gives you that awareness and understanding, and that understanding is that music is ****ing cool shit. Also sean a poster on this site has a great lesson on his site that teaches you your notes and how they are layed out on the fretboard.

Last edited by Fourfourforever : 04-21-2013 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:44 AM   #6
MaggaraMarine
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To know which notes sound good over which chords you could just try different notes. Learning the intervals and how they sound like is pretty important. It's pretty much about sound. You need to think in music, not just in fingerings. It of course takes time to know how different things sound like. Remember that good players know exactly how the thing they are going to play will sound like. They don't guess and hope for the best result.

You don't need to know the note names but it can help. At least there's nothing bad about learning them. But playing good solos is about having a good ear. You just need to train your ears to be able to play what you want to play.

When I play in a different tuning, 022100 is always an E major chord to me, no matter how low or how high the tuning is. Because the name really doesn't matter. You can always transpose notes. If you learn about chord functions, it doesn't really matter any more whether you play C-F-G or E-A-B. They function similarly but just in different key. So what I would do is to learn how different scale degrees sound like over different chords. You don't necessarily need to learn the note names but you need to learn how they sound over different chords. And knowing the names may help in this.
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Old 04-21-2013, 10:02 AM   #7
evolucian
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Hmmm... nothing wrong with what you are doing. Except you may need to build catchier melodies. Maybe I've listened to too much Arch Enemy n stuff, so I might not have the sufficient listening range as others might have.

But regardless, you may need to listen to some other stuff to get a general idea of what you want to do... then find out what they did. Then incorporate it. In my metal days (a long long time ago... cough wheeze) I wanted melodies so I listened to Scorpions and how they approached things. It didn't matter that we weren't writing that kind of music, its what I wanted. I got a lot of goodies from listening to other players and just maybe it'll help you too.

The problem you describe in your first post is not a problem at all. You just have to continue and find something cooler. If all you wanted was for us to listen to your stuff, thats fine.. because in your vid you did have a general idea of what sounded good over the progression or riff.

As for open tunings, use your ear. Sounds like uncharted territory for you so make a map. Not kidding. You'll find patterns to muck around with just as easily. Once you recognise the sounds in the patterns, away you go.

In a nutshell, learn how to craft melodies... whether its standard tunings or altered tunings.
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Old 04-21-2013, 03:51 PM   #8
Who Sh0t Ya HxO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evolucian
Hmmm... nothing wrong with what you are doing. Except you may need to build catchier melodies. Maybe I've listened to too much Arch Enemy n stuff, so I might not have the sufficient listening range as others might have.

But regardless, you may need to listen to some other stuff to get a general idea of what you want to do... then find out what they did. Then incorporate it. In my metal days (a long long time ago... cough wheeze) I wanted melodies so I listened to Scorpions and how they approached things. It didn't matter that we weren't writing that kind of music, its what I wanted. I got a lot of goodies from listening to other players and just maybe it'll help you too.

The problem you describe in your first post is not a problem at all. You just have to continue and find something cooler. If all you wanted was for us to listen to your stuff, thats fine.. because in your vid you did have a general idea of what sounded good over the progression or riff.

As for open tunings, use your ear. Sounds like uncharted territory for you so make a map. Not kidding. You'll find patterns to muck around with just as easily. Once you recognise the sounds in the patterns, away you go.

In a nutshell, learn how to craft melodies... whether its standard tunings or altered tunings.



The user "TDKshorty" asked for my material to be posted in the 2nd post, I already posted this in the "recordings" sections when I first uploaded the song, I wasn't trying to get more views.

You say learn how to craft melodies. I do, whenever I play my guitar I'm always trying to find a catchy melody in my ears to use for my next song, in fact it's really all I ever do if I'm not jamming to other band's music.

@Fourfourforever All the guitar terminology just confuses me more, and the lack of commas man! It's the thought that counts though and I did get some of what you were saying, thanks. Also what do you mean by sequencing 4ths?

Also I tried learning theory on JamPlay but all they did was talk about musical notation and learning how to read sheet music, confusing as **** >.<, they didn't talk about why this sounds good with this and all of that other stuff.
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Old 04-22-2013, 04:22 AM   #9
evolucian
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Alrighty then, despite me actually giving you a compliment and you missed it by rather focusing on other things you don't agree with, I'll just go point for point then.

Quote:
But the trouble I run into is that I only play in a certain way that I don't know how to break out of unless I take 1 on 1 lessons

Easy enough, go for lessons or force yourself to get out of it.
Quote:
I've tried Jam Play but I just need personal lessons because Jam Play was cool and all but it didn't help me break out of my crappy habit of playing

You can't expect some other product to break your habit, you have to do it. A second mention of lessons in two sentences, perhaps you should.
Quote:
So I don't really grasp the concept of how to play scales or what notes sound good with a certain chord

Lessons can sort it out, or another method would be to lift the veil and quit thinking that the stuff goes over your head. Play a chord, play your scale - find notes that fit, find notes that sound really good. Next, play it with regards to it being in a progression. Now find ways that link these chords together while building a stellar melody or superb line. Work on three chords at a time. Seriously sit down and find out what notes make up each chord - play them on different parts of the neck. Work on adding extensions to the chords, again on different parts of the neck.
Quote:
I can play a scale if you give me the diagram of it with the notes but I wouldn't know how to switch it up in a improvisation

Thats nice that you can play to a diagram... monkey see, monkey do. The trick is to understand what you're playing (and the points above this one help in that understanding). As for improv, it takes time and a lot of practice. It uses ears and knowledge of notes and chords.
Quote:
of the current tuning that I'm in
This tuning you speak of is nothing but standard tuning. The only way this would be daft is if you decide to record your rhythm track in D standard and your 2nd guitar track in Eb/E. Then yes, you would need to know why you did it, make sure you understand your current progression as it pertains to your now different tuning and adapt. Some people like making things difficult for themselves.
Quote:
once I play a fret I go "oh well I can go two more whole steps and then a half step and then..." so on and so forth
Nothing wrong with that. It wouuld be preferrable to know what you're playing and how it affects everything in context.
Quote:
This is a problem in soloing, I want to know what certain things I need to learn in order to play up and down the fret board
By ceasing the thought patterns of things going over your head. It's not going over your head... you just don't have an interest in staying focused to learn it. Your impatience makes you just want to grab your guitar and play instead of learning what you say you need to learn.
Quote:
Do I have to learn the notes on the fret board?
How are you going to know what you are playing if this step is not done?
Quote:
I tend to change tunings from time to time and that would be a bitch to remember each tunings notes.
As pointed out earlier, it would be daft to have two different standard tunings in a song. So if you don't have two different standard tunings in a song, then you treat it like you would when tuned to standard E. It will be notated a tone or semitone lower but that doesn't change the way to look at it. All your "shapes" remain the same in cookie cutter version.

In your next post, you actually say you understand the previous tuning points I mentioned. In that case, the above quote doesn't make sense. You either understand it or you don't... which is it?

Quote:
Plus most of the songs I do, are within my skill range which usually don't contain crazy and complex scale soloing, although a lot of the songs I want to do, DO contain crazy and complex solos
Thats good to understand and accept your skill range. You aren't going to get the Yngwie/MAB thing right without knowing your basics in theory. Unless you just mean technique. Technique would be the easy part. The other easy part would be knowing your basics and applying it in context to your song/s.
Quote:
I just want to know how to play what I want to play instead of going through the minor scale and playing it in order down the fret board, it's repetitive, The minor scale, and the pentatonic scale I know and use sometimes, but that's really it, it's not like I get crazy on it
Repetitive, interesting. The way you are mentioning it means ascending - abcdefg... lets go down - gfedcba. Thats repetitive. Now when I mention crafting melodies, you have to jump in and say thats all you do. Then how is it you are making it repetitive? Do you not believe your melody is formed from the scale you are playing? Your chord tones are in that scale too, as are all the extensions you can dream about if you just make it chromatic. Without making it chromatic, you still have lots and lots of possibilties of actually making it work. Having said that, you also have a few possibilities of making it bleh and ordinary. The pentatonic you mention has gaps in it of 3rd intervals (apart from the 2nd intervals). Zakk never had a problem with pentatonics. Understanding how to make lines flow into each other comes with practice. You are at the 5 year mark and with your questions you want to learn more, which is a very good thing. Sometimes one just has to change their current way of looking at something and it just all clicks into place.
Quote:
I know the major scale but I don't like the way it sounds, so I don't use it.
... *speechless* ...

Quote:
Also I tried learning theory on JamPlay but all they did was talk about musical notation and learning how to read sheet music, confusing as ****
In order to understand the bigger pieces of the puzzle, you must understand the smaller parts too.
Quote:
they didn't talk about why this sounds good with this and all of that other stuff.
You won't find many that do. Its also subjective - we all have different ears. The basics of it sorts it out but its how we interpret it that makes all the difference. When people say this chord and this scale work together - they never give you the magic notes. You have to find that out for yourself. They give a progression and a scale but they also never give the magic notes. You still have to do all the work yourself without the need to be spoonfed. Having said that, there is a video by Larry Carlton on some site where he goes through each and every note of a scale versus said particular chord - that in itself is gold... however, it doesn't give you the magic notes either as it is your lines that have to make it work and blend into the next chord all the while accentuating your melody. Lots and lots of practice. To start going crazy and complex in your solo's is just a flip of the switch that controls your mentality/how you look at things.

If you think my post is bullshit, good luck to you in all your future endeavours.
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Old 04-22-2013, 10:31 PM   #10
Who Sh0t Ya HxO
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I wouldn't even know where to begin to respond to that. Thanks for the well written response.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:00 AM   #11
Who Sh0t Ya HxO
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Ahhh... I figured out what I've been trying to say. From being self taught, I've noticed the "NATURAL MINOR" intervals across the strings, if any of what I said makes sense to natural minor in my 1st post.
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:30 PM   #12
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Backing track is E minor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relative_key
E minor scale has same notes as G major (relative minor)

So, try playing G major scale notes over this backing track.
http://www.looknohands.com/chordhou...r/index_rb.html
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