#1
I always thought it was whatever key the song was in, but a lot of songs I've learned solos from, particularly Alive by Pearl Jam, have a different solo key than song key. Is there some sort of rule of thumb for soloing or should I just play whatever sounds good?
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#2
Hit notes until you find it, making the crap notes sound good by covering the mistakes with technique and stuff.
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#3
Ummm....thanks?
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#4
use ears.

thats really only thing anyone can tell you.
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#5
chord progressions... find the root chords, and that will help
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#6
They usually are in the same key, just maybe in a different scale than you think. The whole point of a solo is to play over the key of the song. But sometimes bands like to throw in random key changes for solos or interludes, in that case, just figure out what key theyre playing in for that phrase. Easy nuff.
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#8
Literally, go up and down open to fret 12 til it sounds right, then play a scale, if a major scale sounds right, but the scale is minor, roll back 3 frets
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#9
Whatever sounds good.

I've learned solos from, particularly Alive by Pearl Jam, have a different solo key than song key


I can tell you that it's probably not a different key, but a different mode.

Do some research on mode's. They take some getting your head round though.

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

Might be a good place to start..
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#10
there playing the notes/root note of the chords there playing over. sounds a lot better that way. you can be playing in the correct key, but it will always sound better to hit notes/root note that are in the chords you are playing over.
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#11
I remember my Orchestra teacher telling me its either the first note played by the lead or the root of the first chord played.
#13
Yea. Wow.
Im depressed by the answers sometimes.

You could, I dunno, like, learn theory or something?
You know, keys, modes, relatives, progressions, and then you'll have a WHOLE new list of techniques.
Like, Escape tones, Appogitura (spelled horribly), passings tones and such?

Saying Am, G, F doesnt necessarily mean a minor. Most Ionian or Aeolian chord progressions dont go i, VII, VI. Granted, you were making an example, it was just a wierd one.
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#14
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Is there some sort of rule of thumb for soloing or should I just play whatever sounds good?

It's called music theory.


There is no way I can give a real answer to that. You can use different scales for soloing in the same key.
For example in a regular twelve bar blues (I7,IV7,V7)
you could play in i blues over the entire thing, you could play I dorian over the entire thing, you could play in I mixo for the I7 chords, IV mixo for the IV7 chords , V mixo for the V chords, you could play I dorian b5 for the entire thing.

Al right here is a little rule of thumb if your playing in pentatonics whivh I'm guessing you are. For any minor key i(or major key III), you can play the minor pentatonic for the root, the fourth and the fifth without a lot of tension
Last edited by Tommy Walker at Jan 6, 2009,
#15
yeah, theres no simple answer to that mate.... go sign up for some lessons and start learning your modes etc
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#16
Heres the rule of thumb I learned with.

Find the first chord or note in the song. Thats generally the key its in.
Next find it on the fretboard on your big E. Lets use the note E on the twelfth Fret of that string . Bow move three frets back to C#. You can play C#minor over E major.

Use the minor pentatonic or natural minor and have fun. Moving three frets back from any note will give you the minor key of it. While three frets forward on the A string will lend you the minor key.

Dont simply learn this though. Begin to learn theory and modes so you can solo all over the fretboard. This is just a starter point.
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