#1
I've heard a lot of really great, powerful guitar licks and usually I see people mention that it's so good because the lead is played over the chords/in the same key/something like that. What exactly does this mean... in not-so sophisticated terms? Like, the way I've gone about experimenting and trying to learn how to play over chords/in key/etc is like this:

Assuming this is the Rhythm's part:

G|------------------2~~~-5~~~-
D|-2~~~-5~~~-2~~~-5~~~-
A|-2~~~-5~~~-0~~~-3~~~-
E|-0~~~-3~~~------------------

I would try to play something that uses the notes that make up those chords. So over the 022XXX I'd play around with (E:0,7,12) (A:2,7) (D:2) since those would be all the notes that go into the chord (I think...), And I'm assuming you can figure out what I'd play in for the other 3 chords as well. Basically, in my head I construct miniature Scales and say "Okay, this is the Chord so I can only fiddle around in these frets".

Is this the correct way to go about playing over Chords? I know I can just go Dimebag and kick Theory out the window, but I'd like to know these things ^^; Been playing without much/any Theory knowledge for pretty much my whole time as a guitarist, and I'd like to tackle new things.
#2
I would look at it this way. Those chords form an Emin scale. You can play any note in Emin. If I felt like focusing on chord notes I would think about the chords as triads (root, 3rd, 5th) instead of power chords (root, 5th). This would give me E minor (E, G, B), G major (G, B, D), A minor (A, C, E) and C major (C, E, G).

EDIT: If you don't know what I mean by 3rd and 5th, look up a lesson on note intervals.
Last edited by Macabre_Turtle at Oct 28, 2011,
#4
If you wanna approach soloing from a chord tone perspective (kinda like what you described, mainly using the notes of the chord to make melodies) then you are going to need to us more than powerchords. You will need at least triads or 7th chords, and to work these out you should have an understanding of the major scale and how to harmonise it. You can then use the notes of the chord individually (ie arpeggios) to make melodies. This is a different approach to using just scales, but the best approach is to use scales and chord tones.


You should read these articles http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/columns/general_music/the_crusade_part_i.html

You should learn the notes on the fretboard, the chromatic scale and how to construct the major scale.

You should learn how to harmonise the major scale.

You should learn how to work out and form scales anywhere on the fretbaord and understand that scales =/= fingering patterns. Learn various common scale and arpeggio fingerings but understand that these things are simply a sequence of notes and that you can form scales and arps in many ways on the fretboard.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Oct 28, 2011,
#5
Quote by Macabre_Turtle
I would look at it this way. Those chords form an Emin scale. You can play any note in Emin. If I felt like focusing on chord notes I would think about the chords as triads (root, 3rd, 5th) instead of power chords (root, 5th). This would give me E minor (E, G, B), G major (G, B, D), A minor (A, C, E) and C major (C, E, G).

EDIT: If you don't know what I mean by 3rd and 5th, look up a lesson on note intervals.

This. Also don't be afraid to use non-chord tones too. Just make sure you don't stay on them too long

Ex:

G|-----------------------------------
D|-9--9-7-5------------------------------
A|-----------------------------------
E|-----------------------------------

G|-----------------
D|-2~~~---5~~~-
A|-2~~~---5~~~-
E|-0~~~---3~~~-

The lead notes are B---B-A-G
The B is a chord tone. The A is played briefly to transition to the G note, which sounds smoother than just jumping straight to the G (the G note should line up with the G chord in the example)
Last edited by 37 Narwhals at Oct 28, 2011,
#6
You're describing chord tone soloing, which is a common technique, but somewhat limited, particularly when you're first starting out. It also involves a lot of understanding of the fretboard, which is probably beyond you at this point (you need to be able to instantly find the chord tones you need without thinking).

Start simpler.

The first scale you should learn is the minor pentatonic. This is one of the best scales to learn to solo with because it's hard to go wrong.

The minor pentatonic, in E, is E, G, A, B, and D. Use those notes. Experiment with them over e major and e minor chords.

In tab, the Em pentatonic, high to low, is:

0-3
0-3
0-2
0-2
0-2
0-3

Where zeroes are open strings and numbers are frets. You can move this shape to another key just by moving that low open E to whatever note you want to be in the key in, and using the same shape relative to that note.

Before you start diving into a bunch of crazy scales and theory, just spend some time playing with the minor pentatonic over a variety of major and minor chord progressions. Get a sense of how it feels, learn to start expressing yourself with it -

- and only then add the full major and minor scales. Usually, when somebody says a song is in a given key, they're soloing mostly over the relevant major or minor scale - but it's easy to get lost in them so start with the pentatonic (which is just a subset of the minor scale anyway).

Chord tone soloing uses the subsets of the scale that represent the chords you're using. While it can be highly melodic, it can also be very limiting because of the lack of dissonance. So start with the pentatonic scale for a while.