ok, so i consider myself a pretty good rhythm guitarist. i can play a lot of difficult stuff like Dream theater and whatnot, and i am good at listening to rhythm parts and playing them on guitar. I taught myself to play, and i can read music fairly well. one thing i cannot do is solo worth anything. my fingers just don't seem fast enough, and i just dont know any patterns to finger. what are some tips to learning how to begin to solo? should i learn arpeggios and scales? what is a good way to build up speed with my fingering hand? any help would be great.
Speed isn't whats needed to solo, a good start would be scales and learn some blues, a pentatonic licks over simple blues track will start you on soloing

speed comes from just playing
Last edited by NokturnalRedEyz at Nov 4, 2007,
learn the pentatonic scale, practice it til you can play it well enough to improvise with it well enough, move onto more scales maybe

learn some easy solos, you'll also learn the techniques in them while you learn a cool solo

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The best way I've found to build speed is to just do a chromatic fingering all the way up and down the neck

-----------------------------------1-2-3-4------------------------------------5-4-3-2------------------------------------ etc.

As for the actual improving part, start with arpeggios and the notes in the chord, then start to venture outside of the scale. Learn what notes fit in what chords. Knowing how chords are built helps. Just keep building arpeggios, then start in the scales, and just play around. The best way to learn how to improvise is to just do it and learn the hard way.
Backing tracks, backing tracks.

Anyone know where to find some good ones over the web?

All my backing tracks are on cassettes.

Guitars -
ESP V-500 w/EMG 81/85
Jackson Mark Morton Signature Primer

Amps -
Marshall JCM 2000 TSL 60 Head
Marshall MS-2 Mini-Amp

Pedals -
Line 6 PodXT Live
Blackstart HT-Dual Valve Distortion