#1
Do the lead guitar and rhythm guitar play the same thing at times during a song? For example, we cover teen spirit. Now I know that kurt cobain was the only guitarist in the band and during that solo, they just looped the rhythm in the background. In my band however, i play lead and our singer plays rhythm, so during the chorus, should we both be playing the chord progression? What does the lead guitarist do when the rhythm is jamming out? It sounds pretty crappy when we both play the same chords but maybe thats a problem with matching the tones? I dont know, can someone shed come light on this? thanks
#2
Do you have a bassist?
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#4
Alright I'm just throwing this out there but try the rhythm guitar doubling the bass. That's the best solution I could think of in the 3 minutes I have seen this thread.
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#5
so do i as the lead guitarist just not play anything until the solo comes or whatever my notes be for a particular song? Whenever i see a band cover a song I know how to play, it seems like theyre both playing the same thing or maybe just jumping around giving the impression they are? haha
#6
You can play the same thing. If you can't get that to sound good than you just need more practice playing as a band. You're not "tight" enough as it is.
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#7
you might play fragments of the chords a beat before or behind the chord to create some rhythmic tension..try inversions of the chords also that may fatten up the richness of the chords...if you know your diatonic harmony fairly well you could try mini chord runs...if the chord to be played is Ami7..you could try Ami7 Bmi7 C6...if it fits the progressions structure...

lots of harmonic/melodic exchange to be found with two guitars..experiment

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#9
Lead guitarists aren't constantly soloing, are they?
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#10
on most songs the guitarists play the same thing except on certain parts. if ya'll aren't sounding good together make sure you're perfectly in tune and work on fitting together as a band better. ya'll aren't 'tight' yet. after playing with them for a while you will begin to see how the other members react and such.

do ya'll have a drummer? the drummer is really the one keeping the rhythm, you have to pay attention to him for the timing. if you think it's supposed to be different it doesn't matter. if you try to doing something other than what he's doing it'll sound off. then when ya'll stop playing mention that part to him and figure out who's right / which way ya'll are gonna do it.
#11
Quote by mchnhd4
Do the lead guitar and rhythm guitar play the same thing at times during a song?


It does happen, but it sounds pretty redundant. Even if you're covering a song, you could improvise a melody whilst your rhythm guitarist is doing his thing. That's what I would do.

Quote by mchnhd4
should we both be playing the chord progression? What does the lead guitarist do when the rhythm is jamming out?


You could and improvising here wouldn't sound too nice because of the vocals, unless you know how to improvise without clashing with the vocals (fills).
Anyway, you could play the progression too, but this would take some practise to get on time. Else it will sound crappy.
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#12
Yes...ultimately it's all just playing the guitar.
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#13
Not playing anything is also an option.
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#14
Well I guess a number of things could contribute to why it sounds like just a bunch of noise when we both play. I have a new tube amp with a pedal board processor and running thru a maximizer so my sound is very punchy. Meanwhile, hes using a crappy $100 pedal board about 10yrs old running thru a keyboard amp. His amp basically has no high mid or highs. His sound sucks bad, so Im sure that would have to contribute to his sound not being very clear. I think he may also have the strumming pattern wrong on a couple parts.
#15
Quote by mchnhd4
Well I guess a number of things could contribute to why it sounds like just a bunch of noise when we both play. I have a new tube amp with a pedal board processor and running thru a maximizer so my sound is very punchy. Meanwhile, hes using a crappy $100 pedal board about 10yrs old running thru a keyboard amp. His amp basically has no high mid or highs. His sound sucks bad, so Im sure that would have to contribute to his sound not being very clear. I think he may also have the strumming pattern wrong on a couple parts.


Where are you practicing?

Acoustics are massively important, and alot of people don't realize it. If you play in a crappy room, the sound naturally won't be as good, and it will cause you to not be able to hear as well, which will make your playing go down.
#16
ya we practice in a fairly small room. His tone is much more muffled probably because of the type of amp hes using.
#17
Quote by mchnhd4
ya we practice in a fairly small room. His tone is much more muffled probably because of the type of amp hes using.


It's probably a combination of bad acoustics, sloppy playing, bad intonation, and/or bad equipment.
#18
your singer shouldnt be playing guitar until you need a rythm backup in the solo, especially if he sounds crap
#19
I know what you mean about it sounding bad...a number of factors can be at play - what type of music do you play? If it's heavily distorted stuff, two guitars playing the same thing can often sound very muddy, this can also be the case with cleaner stuff but usually less so.

I'd propose three things to try - first, don't try to 'match' the tones - in fact, do the opposite. Try having one guitar on the neck or middle pickup with a good dollop of bass and mid dialled in on the amp, and the other guitar on the bridge pickup with more treble. This way the guitars have their own 'sonic space' and you won't have so many problems with the frequencies cancelling each other out, or whatever it is that happens to make that muddy sound. With some experimentation you can find two tones that really compliment each other.

Second, you can try playing the same chords but with different voicings and inversions. If one guitarist is playing mostly open position chords at the bottom of the neck, try playing those chords further up the neck and perhaps in a different inversion. Probably just the essential three or four notes to the chord too (or even a shell voicing of two notes), rather than full 6 string versions. Again, this will help with giving each guitar its own sonic space and identity.

Thirdly, if all else fails, you can of course just play something different altogether. Doesn't have to be lead as such, just a second part to compliment the rhythm. Or indeed you could play nothing at all at times, but that'd be boring wouldn't it.

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Last edited by Beserker at Nov 20, 2009,
#20
Quote by Laird95
your singer shouldnt be playing guitar until you need a rythm backup in the solo, especially if he sounds crap


i agree with this :P if you had a rhythym guitarist AND a lead guitarist AND a singer and they were all speperate then double the guitar with the bass or both play the same thing, but the singer isnt dormant through the 'non-solo' sections so he can just come in when you need him
#21
Quote by Laird95
your singer shouldnt be playing guitar until you need a rythm backup in the solo, especially if he sounds crap

This is really the only comment that will help.
#22
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This is really the only comment that will help.

I suppose my comment was useless then. And what a load of nonsense, it's so wrong I'm not even going to try to argue. Let me just ask you if you think James Hetfield, Thom Yorke, Michael Akerfeldt, Devin Townsend, Dave Mustaine etc etc etc have got the wrong idea
#23
Quote by mchnhd4
In my band however, i play lead and our singer plays rhythm, so during the chorus, should we both be playing the chord progression? What does the lead guitarist do when the rhythm is jamming out? It sounds pretty crappy when we both play the same chords but maybe thats a problem with matching the tones? I dont know, can someone shed come light on this? thanks

One problem that I had when starting playing in bands (eons ago ;-) was learning how to get really good rhythm sounds and quickly switch to my lead sound for my leads and solos. If you have a good tone to complement the rhythm guitarists sound then doubling up can sound fine and add fullness without muddying up the sounds behind the vocals. But in general, if you are a talented lead guitarist I would encorage you to learn how to "comp the rhythm" player. Listen to VH or similar to see how he often double tracks a rhythm part behind the vocals to make things more musical and more interesting. A lot of that can be as simple as playing chord fragments, intervals or triads with a slightly brighter tone and sometime in a different voicing or different register (octave). Don't sweat simply doubling but if you can create a little distinction between you and the rhythm players chords you can add a lot more depth to the comp'ing of the vocalist. Most importantly though, don't leave you vol level up at soloing volume, don't be disappointed to be in the background adding little fills and comping chords in, it actually adds a lot more than you think even when it's not the main focus of the music.
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#24
when im playing songs with 2 guitar players, i usually try to play something just a little different than the other guitarist. whether i just maybe accent the rhythm a little different, or maybe do some fills, or maybe ill do some inversions or different voicings or add some embelishments to the chords. i would suggest that when you are singing, have the other player doing something like i mentioned. maybe have him play melodies or arpeggios over your basic rhythm. and then when you solo, have him just play basic rhythm.