#1
I'm the lead guitarist for my band, and our new singer/rhythm player would like to do some solos himself. I have no problem with it, the only problem is that he's absolutely horrid at improvising in key and his phrasing is less than inspiring.

He's a good, practiced rhythm player and a phoenominal vocalist however, and brings an energy into the band that we didn't have before. I just don't really think it would be best for the songs for him to be soloing in them.

There are two obvious things I could do:
1) Deny him solo work, he may possibly quit the band

2) Give him minimal solos to make him happy and write the solo with him so I know it's good

I obviously want to do #2, but if you guys have any other ideas that would be good.

I am not being egotistical and don't want to share solo work; he just simply needs a lot of work with his technique and phrasing.
#2
Tell him to improve, show him some cool tricks, give him time.
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#4
I agree with Geezus, simply say "hey bro, if you want to do lead stuff then maybe you should do some of these exercises with me" then show him some of the exercises that YOU used to learn what you know and do it with him. Teach him so that in the end your really helping yourself in refining your playing, teaching him some new stuff, and making your overall band that much better. :]
#6
Quote by MosesThoukwho
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#7
myles kennedy of alter bridge does some solos, and he is play with tremonti.
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#8
Quote by MosesThoukwho
Singer+rhythm guitarist+lead guitar???....

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I suggest you #2. Teach him something to get better. tell him to learn some songs (to learn licks) and teach him some theory, and write the solos with him until he gets his style and plays things right.
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Last edited by ldnovelo at Sep 1, 2009,
#9
Sounds like he needs some practice, but that's cool. Although I'm the lead guitarist for my band, that doesn't mean that the rhythm guy, bassist and drummer can't have some solos every now and then. Everyone likes to solo

Sounds like he needs some practice though - go with option number 2.
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#10
Maybe do a harmony.
Like, write the solo and let him do the same thing but like 8 notes higher or lower?
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#11
I'm quite suprised that you didnt mention if you had taught him anything already. If your that boss hog on lead, show him a few things, bring him along. My bassist is a better gutarist than I am, and we sepnd hours going over stuff. Being in a band can be a great "Learning" experiance if people use it for that.

Show this guys the ropes. Im sure that Kirk Hammit didnt get butt hurt when James did the solo work on "Whiskey in the Jar". The point I'm making is, you should help out your band mate, and not deny him the opportunity to improve/have some fun. Even if his solos are out of phrase, slower, not as good, etc... The crowd will see the versitility of your band and love it.

Show him what you now. Give him the keys to the kingdom and dont hold any secrets back, he is your bandmate after all.
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#12
Quote by itstheman
I'm the lead guitarist for my band, and our new singer/rhythm player would like to do some solos himself. I have no problem with it, the only problem is that he's absolutely horrid at improvising in key and his phrasing is less than inspiring.

He's a good, practiced rhythm player and a phoenominal vocalist however, and brings an energy into the band that we didn't have before. I just don't really think it would be best for the songs for him to be soloing in them.

There are two obvious things I could do:
1) Deny him solo work, he may possibly quit the band

2) Give him minimal solos to make him happy and write the solo with him so I know it's good

I obviously want to do #2, but if you guys have any other ideas that would be good.

I am not being egotistical and don't want to share solo work; he just simply needs a lot of work with his technique and phrasing.


Exactly. Just because you are better at something, it doesn't mean you are egotistical or anything by doing lead guitar work. I'm having the same problem at the moment, just about songwriting. Some people just need to do everything, but it's perfectly fine for you to handle lead work if you are better than them, as it will make the band sound better. Vocals and rhythm guitar should be plenty for now.

If you want to include him in lead work, what you need is harmonies. If he can play any kind of lead at all, write harmonies yourself, show him how to play them, and tell him to keep improvisation to a minimum. Maybe I'm just biased because I love harmonies, and if it sounds good and he can do them well, go for it. You don't have to be an amazing guitarist to pull off a harmony, for example Zacky V from A7X. He's not amazing but can pull off harmonies well with Syn. Just do as Syn does and handle all full soloing yourself, and use simple harmony parts that he can handle.

However, if he's really terrible at lead playing, just be blunt with him, tell him he's not a good lead player, but compliment his rhythm skills and singing, that way you get what you want and shouldn't hurt his feelings too much.
Last edited by SilentHeaven109 at Sep 1, 2009,
#13
You shouldn't limit each other to lead and rhythem.
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#14
Quote by itstheman

2) Give him minimal solos to make him happy and write the solo with him so I know it's good.


You answered your own question.

To help him you might also want to find some examples of simple but effective solos in songs for him to listen to.
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#15
Quote by SilentHeaven109
Exactly. Just because you are better at something, it doesn't mean you are egotistical or anything by doing lead guitar work. I'm having the same problem at the moment, just about songwriting. Some people just need to do everything, but it's perfectly fine for you to handle lead work if you are better than them, as it will make the band sound better. Vocals and rhythm guitar should be plenty for now.

If you want to include him in lead work, what you need is harmonies. If he can play any kind of lead at all, write harmonies yourself, show him how to play them, and tell him to keep improvisation to a minimum. Maybe I'm just biased because I love harmonies, and if it sounds good and he can do them well, go for it. You don't have to be an amazing guitarist to pull off a harmony, for example Zacky V from A7X. He's not amazing but can pull off harmonies well with Syn. Just do as Syn does and handle all full soloing yourself, and use simple harmony parts that he can handle.

However, if he's really terrible at lead playing, just be blunt with him, tell him he's not a good lead player, but compliment his rhythm skills and singing, that way you get what you want and shouldn't hurt his feelings too much.


Wow this is horrible advice right here.

Paragraph 1 = I am better than you at guitar, so I should play the hard stuff. You play the easy stuff k? Aren't vocals gettin' you down?

Paragraph 2 = I can't play rhythm, so share the solo with me. I'll write all your parts and everything!

Paragraph 3 = If you can't play harmonies, you just suck. Stick to your day job!

It's no biggie giving a solo to someone else. Just do it.
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#16
Let me clarify some things.

By saying I'm the "lead player," I mean I play guitar solo parts. Doesn't mean I don't also do the rhythm work when I'm not soloing, not only would that look awful but we'd sound nowhere near as full as possible.

Anyone who's written a song knows a song is like your child. I couldn't be happy unless I know it's the best it could be for the song.

I'm considering giving him solos to work on with him without the band, but until then I'll be playing them until I know he has a handle on them. What do you think?
#17
Quote by AlanHB
Wow this is horrible advice right here.

Paragraph 1 = I am better than you at guitar, so I should play the hard stuff. You play the easy stuff k? Aren't vocals gettin' you down?

Paragraph 2 = I can't play rhythm, so share the solo with me. I'll write all your parts and everything!

Paragraph 3 = If you can't play harmonies, you just suck. Stick to your day job!

It's no biggie giving a solo to someone else. Just do it.


Paragraph 1 - Its f***ing common sense that the better guitarist plays the more difficult parts.

Paragraph 2 - The other guitarist obviously wants some lead work, and harmonies are a good way to do this.

Paragraph 3 - If he can't play leads, then there is no point in letting him think he can, just tell him to stick to rhythm.

"It's no biggie giving a solo to someone else. Just do it." How f***ing ignorant are you? He has already said that the other guitarist is not a good lead player. How would letting a below average lead player play a solo help anyone?
#18
you can out do him when he tries to do improve if you are truely better, or you could say you want to do saome singing whenever he mentions himself wanting to solo (turn it around on him)
#19
Quote by SilentHeaven109
Paragraph 1 - Its f***ing common sense that the better guitarist plays the more difficult parts.

Paragraph 2 - The other guitarist obviously wants some lead work, and harmonies are a good way to do this.

Paragraph 3 - If he can't play leads, then there is no point in letting him think he can, just tell him to stick to rhythm.

"It's no biggie giving a solo to someone else. Just do it." How f***ing ignorant are you? He has already said that the other guitarist is not a good lead player. How would letting a below average lead player play a solo help anyone?


Paragraph 1 - This isn't about more difficult parts, it's about soloing. A solo can be hard or easy.

Paragraph 2 - Harmonies are an intermediate to advanced technique. It requires two guitars being exactly in time, regardless of how hard it is. The guy is a beginner. The best way to give him lead work is to give him solos by himself, otherwise you'll get very dodgy sounding harmonies. Additionally he wants the spotlight to be on him for the solo, not the "lead" guitarist.

Paragraph 3 - Everyone can play leads, they can just be simple ones for a beginner.

Letting the guy have a below average solo is important because he's asking for it. If you don't he'll go to a band which will let him do it. As you said, it's no biggie giving a solo to someone else, but to deny a band member's request to have 1 of your 13 solos during a set is poor form. It will lead to rifts within the band.
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#20
Quote by AlanHB
Paragraph 1 - This isn't about more difficult parts, it's about soloing. A solo can be hard or easy.

Paragraph 2 - Harmonies are an intermediate to advanced technique. It requires two guitars being exactly in time, regardless of how hard it is. The guy is a beginner. The best way to give him lead work is to give him solos by himself, otherwise you'll get very dodgy sounding harmonies. Additionally he wants the spotlight to be on him for the solo, not the "lead" guitarist.

Paragraph 3 - Everyone can play leads, they can just be simple ones for a beginner.

Letting the guy have a below average solo is important because he's asking for it. If you don't he'll go to a band which will let him do it. As you said, it's no biggie giving a solo to someone else, but to deny a band member's request to have 1 of your 13 solos during a set is poor form. It will lead to rifts within the band.


I understand what you're saying about giving everyone a chance to shine, but you have to take into account the skill levels in the band. If the guy is a beginner, as you thought, then giving him a solo at all seems entirely pointless, and giving him even 1 of 13 solos will just make him look bad if he can't play it as well as the lead guitarist could, and him being singled out on stage as the one who "ruined" a song by not playing the solo well will cause far more rifts, in my experience at least, than denying him the opportunity to play parts that he is not good enough to play. If he's mature, he'll accept that he's not ready for it.
As for the harmonies thing, I'm not talking harmonised sweep picking or anything, just simple minor 3rd or octave harmonies. I tried this with my bands other guitarist, who is mostly an acoustic/chord based player, and he picked it up with a little help.
#21
Quote by soundgarden19
You shouldn't limit each other to lead and rhythem.


i agree. i'm the lead guitarist but sometimes i like to take the bass just 'cos it's so simple and i can jump around
#22
Quote by SilentHeaven109
I understand what you're saying about giving everyone a chance to shine, but you have to take into account the skill levels in the band. If the guy is a beginner, as you thought, then giving him a solo at all seems entirely pointless, and giving him even 1 of 13 solos will just make him look bad if he can't play it as well as the lead guitarist could, and him being singled out on stage as the one who "ruined" a song by not playing the solo well will cause far more rifts, in my experience at least, than denying him the opportunity to play parts that he is not good enough to play. If he's mature, he'll accept that he's not ready for it.
As for the harmonies thing, I'm not talking harmonised sweep picking or anything, just simple minor 3rd or octave harmonies. I tried this with my bands other guitarist, who is mostly an acoustic/chord based player, and he picked it up with a little help.


I don't think a below average solo can ruin a song. Most of the audience are usually non-musicians and they really couldn't tell who is good and bad at soloing, just whether they like the general sound. A tight backing can make a solo sound good, and great vocals make the song. The solo isn't necessary to whether a song is successful or not.

If the guitarist is able to do a harmonised solo, he can do one by himself too. You can write a solo for him or give him a lesson on how to use a scale to make a solo.

You'll find that everyone, as they progress, will want to show off their skills on their instrument. Just because you're "better" than them doesn't mean they can't play. Would you like it if Joe Satriani joined your band and made you play strictly powerchords while he played all the leads? Of course not. But Joe's so nice that he'd let you have the leads on a couple of songs anyway.
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#23
Quote by AlanHB
I don't think a below average solo can ruin a song. Most of the audience are usually non-musicians and they really couldn't tell who is good and bad at soloing, just whether they like the general sound. A tight backing can make a solo sound good, and great vocals make the song. The solo isn't necessary to whether a song is successful or not.

If the guitarist is able to do a harmonised solo, he can do one by himself too. You can write a solo for him or give him a lesson on how to use a scale to make a solo.

You'll find that everyone, as they progress, will want to show off their skills on their instrument. Just because you're "better" than them doesn't mean they can't play. Would you like it if Joe Satriani joined your band and made you play strictly powerchords while he played all the leads? Of course not. But Joe's so nice that he'd let you have the leads on a couple of songs anyway.


Haha, if Joe Satriani joined my band, he could do what the f**k he wanted

I suppose this all depends on the type of solo the other guitarist would play. If it's something really simple it would work, the guy's a beginner soloist after all, but letting him try to do 32nd note sweep tapping, when he's not at that level, just to be nice to him, is not advisable.

And yes, a solo isn't essential to a songs success, but a solo that is played badly, by anyone, certainly doesn't help the song, and even the most musically uneducated member of the audience would know that something was wrong, if it was out of key for example.
#24
Quote by SilentHeaven109
Haha, if Joe Satriani joined my band, he could do what the f**k he wanted

I suppose this all depends on the type of solo the other guitarist would play. If it's something really simple it would work, the guy's a beginner soloist after all, but letting him try to do 32nd note sweep tapping, when he's not at that level, just to be nice to him, is not advisable.

And yes, a solo isn't essential to a songs success, but a solo that is played badly, by anyone, certainly doesn't help the song, and even the most musically uneducated member of the audience would know that something was wrong, if it was out of key for example.


Yes that's definitely right. People should play within their limits. People who play out of key can work sometimes by accident, but not often (eg. if you played a mode of the key accidentially - it happens ).

So the guy just needs a little guidance, give him a chance to do solos in practice and help him get better at them. Not necessarily faster but at least clean and with the appropriate scale.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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