#1
Eric Clapton, Pros and Cons of Hitchiking:

 
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
B|-----------8vvvv------------------------------------------------------------|
G|------------------9\7---5-----5---7FB(9)--5---------------------------------|
D|-----7/9-------------------7-----------------7vvvv-------5--5vvvv-------5--5|
A|----------------------------------------------------5H7------------5/7------|
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|


E|-------------8vvvv----------------------------------------------------------|
B|--------------------8HB(9)--8--5--------------------------------------------|
G|-------7/9------------------------7FB(9)--5-----5H7P5-------7vvvv--9FB(10)--|
D|vvvv-----------------------------------------7---------7/9------------------|
A|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
 
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
B|----------------10------10------10------10------10-------------------8---8--|
G|-9FB(10)-9FB(10)-9FB(10)-9FB(10)-9FB(10)-9FB(10)-9FB(10)R(9)P7---7/9---9----|
D|---------------------------------------------------------------9------------|
A|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|


E|---------------10-----------------------------------------------------------|
B|-10FB(12)[hold]--R-10FB--8-----8vvvv\---------------------------------------|
G|----------------------------9-----------------------------------------------|
D|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------|


Now I am just awful when it comes to actually knowing scales / music theory. I just jam along in pentatonic minor and If i can figure out what key a song is in, I'm happy. Recently I wanted to expand my horizons and play along in a more Clapton-style solo. Based off this one. Thing is, at first i thought it was in A minor, but it sounds like the root note is a G? I have no clue.

If anyone can tell me what key / what scale is being used here, I'd buy them dinner.
Cort KX1Q w/ Seymour Duncan Jazz/JB
Fender Standard Stratocaster Plus Top - Aged Cherry Burst with Maple Fingerboard
Epiphone Les Paul Standard Florentine PRO Hollowbody - Faded Cherry Sunburst w/ Seymour Duncan SH-55's

Mesa Boogie Mark V 35 Head
Orange PPC112 - 60W 1x12" V30 Cabinet
Two Notes Torpedo Live
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus Universal Power Supply

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner -> Whirlwind Red Box Compressor -> Hardwire CM-2 Tube Overdrive -> MXR Custom Badass '78 Distortion -> Vick Audio '73 Ram's Head -> loop -> Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser -> Mooer Eleclady Flanger -> Strymon Flint Tremolo and Reverb -> MXR Carbon Copy Delay -> MXR 10-Band EQ
Last edited by thundermonty at Apr 1, 2017,
#2


The key of a song is all about harmony, so you should listen to the chords and not just look at the notes that the guitarist chooses to play in his solo.

The chords behind the intro solo are Am G7 C Am D G (and then the verse starts with Dm chord).

Why G may sound like the root note is because the last chord behind the solo is G, and the second last chord is D major - the dominant of G major. You could see the ending as a visit to G major, but the key of the song is C major. Notice the feeling of resolution after the G7 (second chord) resolves to C major. It sounds like we have come home. This progression may be a bit tricky because as I said, it also visits the key of G major (that's where the D major chord comes from), and it's really not until the chorus when the tension actually resolves. Before that there are no particularly strong cadences (sure, there is a V7-I, but it's in the middle of the progression and doesn't get much emphasis because of that), and the time spent on the tonic chord is pretty short.

Listen to how the verse ends with a G major chord and the chorus starts with C major. That's the first strong cadence, and you can clearly hear the release of tension. Here is when you can clearly hear that the song is in C major. Then again, even the chorus is kind of ambiguous at some places. It first alternates between C and Em chords (Em doesn't really have a strong function in C major) and then ends with D major and G major. So it kind of switches back and forth between C major and G major keys. But I would say C major is the main key of the song. It just always feels like the G major still has a dominant function, even though all of the sections end with a V-I in G major.

The song doesn't give much emphasis on the tonic chord which may be why it's hard to figure out what key it is in.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#6
Thanks everyone for the very useful information! 
Cort KX1Q w/ Seymour Duncan Jazz/JB
Fender Standard Stratocaster Plus Top - Aged Cherry Burst with Maple Fingerboard
Epiphone Les Paul Standard Florentine PRO Hollowbody - Faded Cherry Sunburst w/ Seymour Duncan SH-55's

Mesa Boogie Mark V 35 Head
Orange PPC112 - 60W 1x12" V30 Cabinet
Two Notes Torpedo Live
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus Universal Power Supply

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner -> Whirlwind Red Box Compressor -> Hardwire CM-2 Tube Overdrive -> MXR Custom Badass '78 Distortion -> Vick Audio '73 Ram's Head -> loop -> Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser -> Mooer Eleclady Flanger -> Strymon Flint Tremolo and Reverb -> MXR Carbon Copy Delay -> MXR 10-Band EQ
#7
MaggaraMarine 

Whats V-1 and V7-1?
Cort KX1Q w/ Seymour Duncan Jazz/JB
Fender Standard Stratocaster Plus Top - Aged Cherry Burst with Maple Fingerboard
Epiphone Les Paul Standard Florentine PRO Hollowbody - Faded Cherry Sunburst w/ Seymour Duncan SH-55's

Mesa Boogie Mark V 35 Head
Orange PPC112 - 60W 1x12" V30 Cabinet
Two Notes Torpedo Live
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus Universal Power Supply

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner -> Whirlwind Red Box Compressor -> Hardwire CM-2 Tube Overdrive -> MXR Custom Badass '78 Distortion -> Vick Audio '73 Ram's Head -> loop -> Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser -> Mooer Eleclady Flanger -> Strymon Flint Tremolo and Reverb -> MXR Carbon Copy Delay -> MXR 10-Band EQ
Last edited by thundermonty at Apr 2, 2017,
#8
Quote by thundermonty

Whats V-1?

Have you heard about chord functions?

The point behind chord functions is that the same chord has a different function in a different key. For example Dm chord has a different function in the key of Dm than in the key of Am. On the other hand, Dm chord in the key of Dm and Am chord in the key of Am have the same function. What does this mean? It means that a chord progression like F-G-C in the key of C major and D-E-A in the key of A major sound the same because the progressions have the same function in those keys. And this is why we need chord functions. It helps you with understanding chord progressions.

People usually use roman numerals to refer to chord functions. Each chord in a key can be given its own roman numeral. For example the diatonic chords in the key of C major are C Dm Em F G Am Bdim. Because we are in the key of C major, C is the "one chord" or the I chord. And when you count up from C, G is the "five chord" or the V chord (Dm would be the ii chord, Em would be the iii chord, F would be the IV chord, etc - people usually use lowercase to refer to minor chords and CAPS to refer to major chords). The V-I progression sounds the same in every key.

If we take a look at the progression behind the solo and analyze it with chord functions, it would be vi-V7-I in C major (Am-G7-C), ii-V-I in G major (Am-D-G). Notice how the Am chord can have two different functions, depending on the key. It can be the vi chord in the key of C or the ii chord in the key of G.

But as I said, I don't hear the G as the tonic. It's more of a temporary visit to G major - this is called "tonicization". Why G major? Because D major is not a diatonic chord in the key of C major - it has F# instead of F natural. And because the D major chord is followed by a G major chord, we hear it as functioning as the dominant (the V chord) of G major. Dominant (V) to tonic (I) is a very strong progression and it's the basis of tonal music.

Maybe a better way to analyze the progression would be not to use key changes. So we would mark it as vi-V7-I-vi-V/V-V (or vi-V7-I-[ii-V]/V-V) - V/V means that the D major chord is functioning as the V chord of the V chord - the V chord is G major so V/V means the V of G major. And the V of G major is D major.

If chord functions are new to you, I would start with a song that is a bit simpler to analyze and doesn't use non-diatonic chords (chords that use notes outside of the key signature). After you understand how diatonic harmony works, it's much easier to understand non-diatonic chords.


So why are chord functions important? Because they are a way of making sense of chord progressions. They are also a great way of learning to recognize chord progressions by ear. This way you don't need to memorize how chord progressions sound like in all 24 keys. You can just learn to recognize chord functions that are the same in all keys. A ii-V-I sounds the same regardless of the key we are in. It can be Em7-A7-D or Bbm7-Eb7-Ab or C#m7-F#7-B. All of those are ii-V-I progressions in different keys. Try them and you will hear that they all sound the same.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#9
MaggaraMarine 

Your understanding of this is WAY past mine. I literally know the notes on the E and A strings, the blues scale in one position, and some chords. 

I've played for 10 years so I'm not bad at all when I learn a song, but trying to improvise is near impossible for me at the moment - never had the patience to learn all the theory and scales. 

Thank you for all your time and effort replying though. Super informative stuff. Reminds me why I'm always so apprehensive about it! :P
Cort KX1Q w/ Seymour Duncan Jazz/JB
Fender Standard Stratocaster Plus Top - Aged Cherry Burst with Maple Fingerboard
Epiphone Les Paul Standard Florentine PRO Hollowbody - Faded Cherry Sunburst w/ Seymour Duncan SH-55's

Mesa Boogie Mark V 35 Head
Orange PPC112 - 60W 1x12" V30 Cabinet
Two Notes Torpedo Live
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus Universal Power Supply

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner -> Whirlwind Red Box Compressor -> Hardwire CM-2 Tube Overdrive -> MXR Custom Badass '78 Distortion -> Vick Audio '73 Ram's Head -> loop -> Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser -> Mooer Eleclady Flanger -> Strymon Flint Tremolo and Reverb -> MXR Carbon Copy Delay -> MXR 10-Band EQ
#10
thundermonty

Well, if you want to learn to improvise, learning at least some basics is going to help. Though improvisation is a lot about having a good ear, so I would also suggest learning songs by ear.

Since you have been playing for such a long time, your ears are most likely already familiar with all the theoretic concepts. Learning the theory behind those sounds shouldn't be difficult because you already know the sounds. You just need to find names/explanations for them (and that's really what theory is all about). Just start with the basics. Learn how to build the major scale, learn about intervals, learn about chord construction. All of that will make sense pretty fast if you just start learning about it. It would be much more difficult for a beginner.

Whenever you learn something new about theory, remember to listen to the sound. That's really the only way of making sense of theory.


BTW, I'm studying music pedagogy in a university and I'm going to become a music theory teacher.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Apr 2, 2017,
#11
MaggaraMarine 

Thats awesome! I'm sure I could learn a lot from you. I think over the summer I might spend some time getting into it more.
Cort KX1Q w/ Seymour Duncan Jazz/JB
Fender Standard Stratocaster Plus Top - Aged Cherry Burst with Maple Fingerboard
Epiphone Les Paul Standard Florentine PRO Hollowbody - Faded Cherry Sunburst w/ Seymour Duncan SH-55's

Mesa Boogie Mark V 35 Head
Orange PPC112 - 60W 1x12" V30 Cabinet
Two Notes Torpedo Live
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus Universal Power Supply

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner -> Whirlwind Red Box Compressor -> Hardwire CM-2 Tube Overdrive -> MXR Custom Badass '78 Distortion -> Vick Audio '73 Ram's Head -> loop -> Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser -> Mooer Eleclady Flanger -> Strymon Flint Tremolo and Reverb -> MXR Carbon Copy Delay -> MXR 10-Band EQ