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#1
Time to dust off your jammies, 'cause here's a new one.

If you're new to the whole thing, here's the deal. We set out some guidelines for a "jam", and then you, dear reader, go out and play a solo within those guidelines. Then, we listen, critique, and enjoy.

Normally, the guidelines are just to follow a set of changes, but this one is a little different.

The What:

Play or compose a solo over a 12 bar blues.

The How

- The solo must use only pentatonic scales.

- A note in the solo can NOT be directly followed by either the note immediately above or below it in the given scale. (Confused? I'll explain below.)

The Why

To force you to explore new uses of the pentatonic scale, and possibly to use some techniques you might not be that familiar with.


I realize that you might have some questions, so I took the time in advance to write a

Hypothetical FAQ

What do you mean by "A note in the solo can NOT be directly followed by either the note immediately above or below it in the given scale"?

Let's start with an example. If we're soloing using E minor pentatonic, we have the notes E G A B D. If I play a G, the next note I play can be any note in the scale, except the note above or below... this means that my next note can't be an A (the note above) or an E (the note below). If I choose my next note to be B, the note after THAT can be anything other than a D above or an A below.

A few other things to note:

- These guidelines do allow you to repeat the same note (an E can be followed by an E).

- While a note cannot be followed by its upper and lower neighbors, it CAN be followed by those notes in different octaves. So, in E minor pentatonic, a G can't be followed by the A a note up (the interval of a major second), but it CAN be followed by the A a ninth up, or the A a seventh down.

Can I only use one pentatonic scale in the solo?

No, you may use more than one pentatonic scale. However, each time a scale is introduced, it must be played for at least one measure.

Can I make my own backing track?

Yes. If you don't want to, though, edg has generously offered us the services of his own blues backing track. You may download it here.

I'm not comfortable playing in these guidelines! Can I write a solo in Guitar Pro?

Sure. You can certainly gain some new compositional ideas from this exercise, but just remember that there's a lot to be gained from playing this way, too!

Plus, we'd all love to hear your approach. Don't worry if it seems simple or the audio quality isn't great; this isn't a competition. Part of the reason I'm making this jam is that I'm not so great with this method!

How do we share our work?

I believe it was branny who made the UG Jams Band, which is probably the best place to share. Here it is: http://artists.ultimate-guitar.com/mtjams/

If you want to join, I think you can just write on the wall or pm one of us and we'll let you in (sorry darren, we'll add you too!)

Then you can add your mp3. I'll make a new album with an appropriate title where everyone can place their tracks.

What are some techniques that might be good for this jam?

The smallest intervals you can use (besides unisons) are fourths, fifths, and the occasional major third. These don't fit so well under the fingers, so you might want to try:

-Tapping
-Long stretches
-Hybrid or fingerpicking
-Sweeping

These aren't necessary, but they might help make some ideas easier to play.


If I've forgotten anything, I'll add it later. Deadline is... two weeks? So try to get your track in by January 18th. I realize that I might not have explained the concept that well, so if you have any questions, please let me know.

Happy jamming!
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#3
Sounds like fun!
Once I get home from band practice I'll definitely give this a go!
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#4
That sounds like a pretty good idea, I'll start noodling around tomorrow. It's a good idea to not allow the note above and the note below.
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#5
Cool, I was waiting for another one. I'll definitely join this one. Like ^ said, good idea with "A note in the solo can NOT be directly followed by either the note immediately above or below it in the given scale."
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Last edited by AwesomenessFTW at Jan 4, 2009,
#6
"- A note in the solo can NOT be directly followed by either the note immediately above or below it in the given scale"

this means all skips.. and no lines. Not a great idea IMO as it forces you to go against the grain of normal melodic practices. Having a set format is great, but not being able to create a melodic line in a piece of music kinda takes the fun out of it for me.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jan 4, 2009,
#7
Quote by Peaceful Rocker
i dont really understand why you can't use the following note in a scale, that just sounds pretty stupid :S
People tend to follow box patterns. I think it's a great idea for that very reason. It'll force us to think "outside the box" (hehe).

I'm a lazy mofo. With that said, I want to join but I don't know if I'll come around to it.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


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#8
Quote by metal4all
People tend to follow box patterns. I think it's a great idea for that very reason. It'll force us to think "outside the box" (hehe).

I'm a lazy mofo. With that said, I want to join but I don't know if I'll come around to it.


^ You'll still be in the box, it's just you won't be able to create any melodic lines.... it will be all skips. The only thing it will force you to do is play melodies that are non-linear and disjunct.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jan 4, 2009,
#9
Quote by GuitarMunky
^ You'll still be in the box, it's just you won't be able to create any melodic lines.... it will be all skips. The only thing it will force you to do is play melodies that are non-linear and disjunct.
I don't know then. I guess I'll just have to try it out.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
#10
Quote by metal4all
I don't know then. I guess I'll just have to try it out.



It can't hurt.

at the very least you'll learn what disjunct sounds like compared to linear.
shred is gaudy music
#11
Quote by NiceMuscles Bro
Wacky melody restrictions like this aren't going to fit over traditional blues.


Then don't play traditional blues.

I'm in.
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#12
This sounds awesome! Well, also easy. When's the deadline and how long does the track have to be?

EDIT: Ok, now that I think about it, yeah, it's not easy, I'm used to doing steps in the scale... This will be good practice to do new things, too.
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Last edited by SilverDark at Jan 4, 2009,
#13
Quote by GuitarMunky
"- A note in the solo can NOT be directly followed by either the note immediately above or below it in the given scale"

this means all skips.. and no lines. Not a great idea IMO as it forces you to go against the grain of normal melodic practices. Having a set format is great, but not being able to create a melodic line in a piece of music kinda takes the fun out of it for me.


Well, you can still create implied lines, which I think is a fun part of the exercise, but if it's no fun I suppose it's no good forcing you. Pity, though, your jams are generally fun.

Quote by NiceMuscles Bro
Wacky melody restrictions like this aren't going to fit over traditional blues.


If you are that set against it, you may play something else. I just liked the idea of playing over a form that people are familiar with, to see how they can try to apply these ideas in a "normal" soloing situation.
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#14
Quote by psychodelia
Well, you can still create implied lines, which I think is a fun part of the exercise, but if it's no fun I suppose it's no good forcing you. Pity, though, your jams are generally fun.
.



Thanks, and I didn't mean to put down your idea. It's just something I can't get into.
shred is gaudy music
#15
Quote by metal4all
People tend to follow box patterns. I think it's a great idea for that very reason. It'll force us to think "outside the box" (hehe).

I'm a lazy mofo. With that said, I want to join but I don't know if I'll come around to it.

Meh, I don't feel like i'm stuck in any boxes anyways. Saying you can't play two notes in the order they appear in the scale just really resticts you a bit too much imo
#16
I'm in. Can I play piano for the solo?
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#17
Hey, can you play the neighboring note an octave up or down? It technically isn't the note next to it...
If you play guitar, please don't waste your time in The Pit, and please instead educate yourself in the Musician Talk forum, where you can be missing out on valuable info.
Quote by DiminishedFifth
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#18
Quote by ramm_ty
I'm in. Can I play piano for the solo?
We've always been able to play any instrument. I doubt it matters.
Quote by SilverDark
Hey, can you play the neighboring note an octave up or down? It technically isn't the note next to it...
Yup. It's in the Hypothetical FAQ


It's gonna be hard to solo over 12 bar blues without bending
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
Last edited by metal4all at Jan 4, 2009,
#19
Quote by metal4all
Yup. It's in the Hypothetical FAQ

Damn. I should read things more intensely.
If you play guitar, please don't waste your time in The Pit, and please instead educate yourself in the Musician Talk forum, where you can be missing out on valuable info.
Quote by DiminishedFifth
It's like you read my mind!

I got meself a self-approving sig. Kick. Ass.
#20
I haven't posted here in forever.. just got my own laptop in my own apartment so I'm definitely in for this. I've been meaning to look into hybrid picking so i guess this is my chance.. pentatonic probably will sound pretty awkward without those typical licks and things we're used to hearing.. this is gonna take some effort heh
#21
Meh it's a good idea, but to much rules. Not the note above and below in a pentatonic scale is meh.

if this was with a major scale then at least I could play arpeggios.

Now people probably just gonna use gp to make crazy tapping/sweeping lines and forget all about the musical aspect. I see poor phrasing coming already

EDIT: Ah it's a challenge not a JAM.

In that case I will make uber shredz lines lol.

EDIT2:
Wait I can use any pentatonic scale?

You know that means I can use technically speaking all notes if I play no more then 5 different notes a measure based on a diatonic form.

srry for the bitching just asking

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Jan 5, 2009,
#22
so no accidental notes are allowed at all?

and you can't go up or down by one note in the scale..

so that leaves you with only 3 opions as what your next note choice will be?!
#23
^ + a few more if you're brave enough to venture outside a single octave

I thought it was pretty restrictive but it will challenge me to try something different. I'm already thinking in terms of patterns or leaps that move up through the scale.

Also thinking of using open strings in conjunction with a melodic idea so that every other note is an open b string or something.

Heaps of options if you think about it. Just got to get creative.
Si
Last edited by 20Tigers at Jan 5, 2009,
#25
If you think about it, you could just have normal melodies, but with each note separated by its relative sixth or seventh (depending on which is present in the scale). It's kind of cheating, I guess, but it works.

Anyway, I don't really have any good way of recording this. I suppose I could use my dad's dictaphone (It's surprisingly good quality)... what are you guys using to record it?
#26
Quote by ramm_ty
I'm in. Can I play piano for the solo?


I hope not because reaching the seperate notes on a piano is waaaaaay easier than on a guitar.
#27
Quote by michal23
If you think about it, you could just have normal melodies, but with each note separated by its relative sixth or seventh (depending on which is present in the scale). It's kind of cheating, I guess, but it works.

Anyway, I don't really have any good way of recording this. I suppose I could use my dad's dictaphone (It's surprisingly good quality)... what are you guys using to record it?


I plug my guitar into a cheap korg unit which goes into my line in on my computer.

The "Re-incarnation of Plato" Award 2009
(most intelligent)
The "Good Samaritan" Award 2009 (most helpful)

[font="Palatino Linotype
Who's Andy Timmons??
#29
What about sliding? Is it okay to pass the next higher/lower note without stopping/pausing on it?
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#30
Oh crap, I just realized this will mean no arpeggios since it's pentatonic, I hope I'm going to get some nice licks out of this, it's certainly out of the box thinking.
Also is sliding, or "whammy-ing" to a next note okay? Since normal bending wouldn't get you so high, it might be time to finally make use of my whammy.
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#31
This is cool. Kudos, Psychodelia.
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#32
Sounds cool, but I can only record my guitar in very low quality. Is it okay to use GP and make a midi too?
#33
Quote by ramm_ty
I'm in. Can I play piano for the solo?


Yep.

Quote by GuitarMunky
Thanks, and I didn't mean to put down your idea. It's just something I can't get into.


No offense taken.

Quote by xxdarrenxx
You know that means I can use technically speaking all notes if I play no more then 5 different notes a measure based on a diatonic form.


...Sure. If that's what you want.

Quote by michal23
If you think about it, you could just have normal melodies, but with each note separated by its relative sixth or seventh (depending on which is present in the scale). It's kind of cheating, I guess, but it works.

Anyway, I don't really have any good way of recording this. I suppose I could use my dad's dictaphone (It's surprisingly good quality)... what are you guys using to record it?


Or even octaves...

Quote by Guitartist
What about sliding? Is it okay to pass the next higher/lower note without stopping/pausing on it?


Yes.

Quote by 100Roy001
Sounds cool, but I can only record my guitar in very low quality. Is it okay to use GP and make a midi too?


Sure.
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#35
Does sound like a lot of fun. I'll be kind of sad if I can't find enough time to brush up on my pentatonics and record something in the next two weeks.

I think that the concept of banning consecutive notes sounds interesting. It does really force one to think about things differentially. If not else, at least to give up or alter most of my licks and to rely more on my inner ear, or something like that.

So, count me in, I'll make some magic happen.
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#36
Interesting idea. I had a play around last night and came up with the beginnings of a few interesting licks. I'll put something up if I can get something together that sounds half decent.
#37
It's the 12-bar blues backing that interests me the most. The restrictions on the melody will be absolutely no problem for me, but making the 12-bar blues sound like anything other than...blues...will be challenging (I despise the entirety of the genre).
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#38
can we use the chromatic scale?
edit: I mean can we use Chromatics in the solo? or is that not allowed?
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Last edited by theocao at Jan 6, 2009,
#39
I think we should make an exception with bending: as long as you bend to a note which isn't a direct following note, it should be allowed.

IE:
G>A not allowed, bending from G to A wouldn't be allowed either.
G>B would be allowed, but it would require massive bending. Could be cool though

Considering sliding is okay, this should be allowed as well.

Anyway I might be on keyboards.
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#40
Quote by Archeo Avis
It's the 12-bar blues backing that interests me the most. The restrictions on the melody will be absolutely no problem for me, but making the 12-bar blues sound like anything other than...blues...will be challenging (I despise the entirety of the genre).
Wow that's a pretty huge despising on your part of what can arguably be seen as perhaps the most culturally significant musical form of the past hundred years.
Si
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