#1
Hi, I have played guitar for almost 2 years. I've learned most from tabs, playing songs of my favorite bands and stuff like that..

I have been on the net and tried to learn some theory. I wrote down some scales, like the blues, major, minor, pentatonic... and I read some tutorials about a lot of stuff but....
the reason i wanted to learn it was because when im sitting and trying to come up with rifs/songs i hit a dead end u know... not much comes out, very rarely....
it feels like im sitting there just playing random on some strings u know.. oh btw yes i know the notes on the fretboard/strings etc.

If you look at bands like Metallica, Pantera, Iron Maiden, Slayer, Megadeth etc...
What do they need to know, before making those songs?
Not how they full off the solos, I want to know more like riffs/rhythms n stuff like that, but also some melodies for sure.

I would appreciate if someone could write some stuff I could practice and put into my "songwriting" process when I'm messin' around.. And maybe give some examples from places where these mentioned bands used "balbal" in riff xxxx for example.
I know that dimebag used the blues scale for cowboys riff for example :p

riffs etc, u write it from scales?

how to use scales effectively in songwriting (not solos)?
what is chord progressions and stuff like that?
what do i.e. James Hetfield need to know as the rhythm/composer in Metallica?

I'm really frustrated since I never get any good answers >.<
I deeply appreciate comments by anyone who think they might help me!

Thanks and Bye!
#2
Most of my good stuff comes from noodling around trying to find good combinations of notes that AREN'T in any scales i know. I do this on purpose and it keeps me from simply folowing the scale patterns.

Just thought I'd throw that in there.
#3
Learn your theory inside out (Crusade articles are a great start),
Analyse some songs with theory,
Find a book on melody writing and analysis (most libraries have one or two books simply called "melody writing"),
Learn advanced classical/jazz harmony stuff,
Learn counterpoint.

That should keep you busy for years.
riffs etc, u write it from scales?
You can. Some people follow scales when they write riffs. Most guys just noodle around untill they find something that sounds cool, which (most of the time) will vagually follow a scale.

how to use scales effectively in songwriting (not solos)?
You just... do? I don't know, the only melody that really needs to be completely diatonic (as in follows a scale) is the vocal melody.
If you know counterpoint you can just write 2 or 3 melodic lines and use counterpoint (which requires alot of intelligence) to stick them together.
what is chord progressions and stuff like that?
Learn your theory, there lies the answers.
In music each riff, set of notes played simulateously, bar of music, or whatever, can be described as having chords or implying chords. The literal definition of a chord is: 3 or more notes played simulateously.
Well when one chord changes to another chord, this is called a progression. The chord is changing.
Read "THe crusades" it probably explains it better than me.
what do i.e. James Hetfield need to know as the rhythm/composer in Metallica?
Do you really want to write like James Hetfield?
Whatever, no-one (except Hetfield himself) can tell you what goes on in his twisted head. But you can study and analyse his music using theory.

Well I don't know what hetfield knows, but I recommend you know: Theory, Melody writing (a subject in itself, it's not a matter of picking random notes), harmony conventions (know how to build them chord progressions),

I'm really frustrated since I never get any good answers >.<
It's because you haven't looked hard enough. You've got to learn to help yourself instead of waiting for help to come to you. Truth be told, I didn't use forums to learn theory, I used books and google.
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Last edited by demonofthenight at Dec 30, 2008,