#1
I have been trying to improvise my own solo lately, and i am using Highway to hell as a base.

How do i solo such that it sounds "part of the song" and not alien?
The studio version of Highway to Hell has a solo that just feels part of/very suited to the song.. I hope you know what i mean.
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#2
Try following the chord progression and then like find the key notes of it and emphasize those or possibly arpegiate some of the main chords in it or find like the perfect fifths of the chord your over and find some of the main notes in that chord or like just find the harmonic minor or harmonic major and it could give a good feeling of fitness but like try follow the mood of the song with the note durations and such like drag the notes out if the moods kind of in a sad part or for a fast part do some arppegios and some hammer ons and pull offs.. hope this helps.
#3
Make sure you're using the appropriate scale in the appropriate key - Highway to Hell is A minor pentatonic all the way
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#4
^ above comment about Highway to Hell solo being completely A minor penta is a perfect example of how people (especially those who rely more on theory then practice, subtle dig jump to conclusions - they think AC/DC and they start thinking minor pentatonic ...

There's lots of "outside" notes in that solo. It's a good example of how solos (in rock, at least) are often best understood as a string of licks, one quickly following the other, rather then trying to say "this solo is from the _ scale". Those licks may or may not all be from one scale. Sometimes they're even difficult to pigeonhole into any one scale.

examples from that solo, in approx. order

--------------------
--7b+r-------5---7-5-
--7b+r-------5---7-5-
-------------7------
--------------------
--------------------

above are "double-stops", very common in blues and rock, often associated with minor penta scale, but as you can see, the seventh fret second string is obviously not part of the minor penta scale...


--------------------
--------------------
--------------------
-4b+r---2-----------
----------3b--0--0--
--------------------

sixth degree of scale bent up a half step, followed by b3 bent up a half step, this is more of a hybrid blues scale sort of feel... think main riff to Rock and Roll, Pride and Joy, etc


------5-------------
--------5-----------
-4b-------4r--2-----
--------------------
--------------------
--------------------

barre pinky over top two strings, bend third string up a whole step (or as close to it as you can -- ouch!) -- this is more of a major penta type lick
#5
Quote by guitarviz
Sometimes they're even difficult to pigeonhole into any one scale.


Nope, I can tell you now that all of those licks fit perfectly into the A Dorian mode with some bends that western notation doesn't cater for. Microtonality FTW!
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#7
i dont know what skill level you are but if you are not very good at solos (fingers arent fast enough) just play the pentatonic scales over and over and over and over. that is what i did and if it wasnt for that i would still be back at square one.

also, i am not very good at improvision so i just mess around with some notes and start mixing and i play generally the same type of music so it always fits the song or is at least close to something that would be on the original recording. then when i find something i like i just add it to my solo. then i can compile a bunch of different sounds that i like and mix them to make my own solo
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#8
I know there's notes outside the scale, but the scale that predominates through the Highway to Hell solo is A minor pent. The TS asked the specific question

"How do i solo such that it sounds "part of the song" and not alien?"

And that answer to that is, initially, to stick with the scale. I know that's playing it safe but it's the best way to go initially. Once you're comfrotable with the scale as your "base" you can then get brave and nip outside the scale to make things more interesting, but you still need to have got to that point...it's the old learn the rules before you break them adage.

Telling someone to pop outside the scale is all well and good, but he needs to be at the point where he's using a scale comfortably in the first place to do that.
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#9
Quote by steven seagull
Telling someone to pop outside the scale is all well and good, but he needs to be at the point where he's using a scale comfortably in the first place to do that.


True, good point.
#10
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
Nope, I can tell you now that all of those licks fit perfectly into the A Dorian mode with some bends that western notation doesn't cater for. Microtonality FTW!


Nonsense. The bend from B to C# on the third string (and release from C# back to B). That is a major scale sound (however briefly), not minor.

And besides, if you accused Angus of soloing in dorian mode he'd probably piss on your shoe.
#11
Quote by guitarviz
Nonsense. The bend from B to C# on the third string (and release from C# back to B). That is a major scale sound (however briefly), not minor.

And besides, if you accused Angus of soloing in dorian mode he'd probably piss on your shoe.


Well it is predominantly Dorian, outside notes aside, I don't care what Angus would say to my telling him it's dorian because it is; the C# is a passing tone so it's still minor and the major 6 clinches the deal. Steven Seagull is right though; it is minor pentatonic based, it's just got added notes because Angus knew what he was doing to make the song sound right.

Angus may have objected in whatever way he liked because he's not a theory player but whether he knows or cares or not: it is.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

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#12
Modes are a perfect examples of the old saying "give a man a hammer and everything starts looking like a nail."

You are making the common mistake of simply looking at the notes the player is using, and attempting to derive a mode from them, to make the generalization that "this solo is in __ mode". Lots of times you can learn more by looking at the individual licks, this gives you better insight into where the player's head is at. And isn't that what it's really all about, to learn from the great players?

Take a closer look at the three licks I tabbed in my earlier post:

1. the first lick I tabbed off the top of my head, from memory, and it was slightly incorrect, I went back and listened to it more carefully, and it should be like this:

----------------------
--7b+r-------5--------
--7b+r-------5---7-5b-
---------------7------
----------------------
----------------------


that C note on the third string (fifth fret) is being bent slightly, from C to close to C#.

2. the second lick, the C note on fifth string (third fret) is bent, from C to C#

3. the third lick, which I described at top of this message, again he is bending up to C#

Three different occasions where the b3 (C) is being bent up to a major third (C#). This is a trademark of blues solos, and what is loosely referred to as the hybrid blues scale. As a matter of fact that is so common in blues and blues/rock (e.g. Led Zep) that some people say the blues scale should really include the major third as well as the b3. But that's a topic for another post...

If you really feel the overwhelming compulsion to try and pigeonhole this solo into being in any one mode or scale, the hybrid blues scale would be a better choice. Dorian mode is a minor scale sound. It has the b3, not the major third. This solo is not in dorian mode.
#13
Quote by Logz
work on learning your modes.


it's either that or learn the triad for every chord in it's chord progression
#14
Quote by guitarviz
If you really feel the overwhelming compulsion to try and pigeonhole this solo into being in any one mode or scale, the hybrid blues scale would be a better choice. Dorian mode is a minor scale sound. It has the b3, not the major third. This solo is not in dorian mode.


Well if you're going to start talking about hammers and nails let's bring in microtonality shall we? Give a man a 12 note scale and everything start to look like on of the 12. The bends are more than likely not bent in semitones but microtones giving the solo it's bluesy feel, seeing as how Angus was using the minor pentatonic plus blue notes that means it's a definite minor flavour with microtones added in and then the major six makes: Dorian.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


Album.
Legion.
#15
Quote by steven seagull
I know there's notes outside the scale, but the scale that predominates through the Highway to Hell solo is A minor pent. The TS asked the specific question

"How do i solo such that it sounds "part of the song" and not alien?"

And that answer to that is, initially, to stick with the scale. I know that's playing it safe but it's the best way to go initially. Once you're comfrotable with the scale as your "base" you can then get brave and nip outside the scale to make things more interesting, but you still need to have got to that point...it's the old learn the rules before you break them adage.

Telling someone to pop outside the scale is all well and good, but he needs to be at the point where he's using a scale comfortably in the first place to do that.



and once again^^

your a funny guy indeed i think we should meet i´m really interested in how you are in rl
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#16
Quote by Tigri
and once again^^

your a funny guy indeed i think we should meet i´m really interested in how you are in rl

The word your looking for is "helpful"
Actually called Mark!

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