#1
ive been trying to steer clear of just using my ear and remembering solo's and phrasing, and sitting down and working through theory of what will work etc.

but im finding it hard to know what scales to use, and how to find the key the progression is in and all that.

if somebody could help explain how to find the key and appropriate scales this will help alot, so i can follow on other progressions later.

my progression is: F#m, D, A, E in a 16th beat at a medium tempo.

cheers.
#2
Aren't feeling and phrasing the 2 biggest factors in writing a solo? Knowing theory is great, but it's useless if it doesn't sound inspired or melodic.
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#3
yeah sure, my feel and phrasing isnt too bad, however i want to learn my scales in a practical way, not just playing a scale over and over, to actually learn it while using it if ya know what i mean, but i get stuck trying to fit scales over progressions on purpose.
#4
Just string together a load of bland arpeggios and sweep them all. That's worked for Malmstien for years :P
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#5
Well, you could try the blues scale in F#m.
Now it depends on how fast you can play, for if you play fast it's a little easyer: You just do some bends and rings now and then, if they fit (e. g. if the chord's an A you ring an A) and except that you just play the notes on the scale up and down.
But if you can't play that fast, you gotta play more concentrated, because every single note has got to fit. But don't think to much about it.
I had some troubles with scales too and wanna know what I did?
I just met with some friend, told him which chords he gotta play, then we smoked some pot (which really helps great) and I just played some kick-ass solo while he played the chords.
Just follow these Instructions and you're about to be a great solist.
#6
Although it's hard to tell what chord your progression resolves to, the song is either in F# minor or A major. This means that you can use the F# minor or A major scales when improvising over the progression. Luckily for you, these scales are relative to eachother and share the same notes. Do not start thinking they are the same thing - they most definately are not, as they resolve to different notes. But it'll take some of the guess work out for you.

Now what many people forget about solos is that they are COMPLEMENTARY MELODIES to the song. So absolutely against what janley suggests, you don't just play random notes really fast and settle for that. You utilise the scales to create a melody that furthers the song.
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#7
Quote by AlanHB
Do not start thinking they are the same thing - they most definately are not, as they resolve to different notes.


If he's already got the chord progression figured out, what relevance does this have to coming up with a solo? Is there a better way to say "use the notes A B C# D E F# and G#", or do we have to constantly have to talk about all the implications of referring to it as minor or the relative major?
#8
Quote by AlanHB
Now what many people forget about solos is that they are COMPLEMENTARY MELODIES to the song. So absolutely against what janley suggests, you don't just play random notes really fast and settle for that. You utilise the scales to create a melody that furthers the song.

Sigged.

And yeah, F# minor or A major should do the trick.
And take chord tones into consideration.
A nice-sounding thing you can do is, in the end, when it "loops" (assuming it does), E - F#m, play E-F-F#. That F (Should it be call it E# in this context?) isn't part of the scale but it sounds great as a transition note.
Last edited by sickman411 at Jul 21, 2010,
#9
Quote by HKSR33
yeah sure, my feel and phrasing isnt too bad, however i want to learn my scales in a practical way, not just playing a scale over and over, to actually learn it while using it if ya know what i mean, but i get stuck trying to fit scales over progressions on purpose.

In this instance of what you mention here... I'd highly recommend you get Carl Verheyen's book or dvd of "Intervallic Rock"

http://www.amazon.com/Carl-Verheyyen-Intervallic-Rock-Verheyen/dp/0739045083

Prepare to poop in your pants.
#10
Quote by Meurglys3
If he's already got the chord progression figured out, what relevance does this have to coming up with a solo? Is there a better way to say "use the notes A B C# D E F# and G#", or do we have to constantly have to talk about all the implications of referring to it as minor or the relative major?


To avoid confusion in the future, and perhaps to suggest possible notes for the solo to start and end on.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#11
cheers for all the tips guys.

so am i right in assuming because the progression starts on F#m that i can use scales in that key? im still at the beginning of my theory so still quite a noob.

and sickman, cheers for the loop tip. sounds good.
#12
Quote by AlanHB

Now what many people forget about solos is that they are COMPLEMENTARY MELODIES to the song. So absolutely against what janley suggests, you don't just play random notes really fast and settle for that. You utilise the scales to create a melody that furthers the song.



I'm pretty sure that everyone has their own definition of what a solo should be.
#13
Quote by HKSR33
cheers for all the tips guys.

so am i right in assuming because the progression starts on F#m that i can use scales in that key? im still at the beginning of my theory so still quite a noob.

and sickman, cheers for the loop tip. sounds good.

You're welcome.

And the starting chord is definitely the first thing you should try, especially if you're inexperienced with chord progressions. Starting with the root chord (I or i) is the most common strategy in rock music (and pop in general).

But starting with a different chord (and, therefore, the scale not "matching" the first chord) is also done frequently.

You should look into stuff about tension and resolution.

Quote by Nilpferdkoenig
I'm pretty sure that everyone has their own definition of what a solo should be.


Actually, after my previous post, I started to wonder: Is there really such a thing as an actual solo? It would be foolish to say that the harmony isn't as much part of the solo than the melody. Without the rest of the instruments providing harmony and, to an extent, rhythm, the solo would usually sound like crap.
Plus, is a regular verse or chorus, in a song with vocals, a vocal solo?
And why do some songwriters treat guitars (in a solo context) so differently from vocals? I expect a guitar solo to be appealing and/or catchy, just like vocals. And sometimes, they're just conceived/played with no sense of melody at all.