Ska Continuation

Now that you have learned a simple ska rythm in the previous lesson, this follow up can introduce you to ska on a level where your whole band can play. I shall go into more complex rythms, how ska is played live, lead guitar in ska and how ska bass is played. Enjoy.

8
Now that you have seen the very basics (ka chords, the offbeat rythm and barre chords), I will show you some slightly more complex techniques. Using Different Rythms In Ska: The very basic ska beat is played like this:
e x5x5x5x5x7x7x7x7x3x3x3x3x5x5x5x5
B x5x5x5x5x8x8x8x8x3x3x3x3x5x5x5x5
G x5x5x5x5x7x7x7x7x4x4x4x4x5x5x5x5
A
E
This rythm above is very simple, and normally has 3 chords returing to chord 1 for the end. However, you can use several different rythms to get a more interesting sound:
Rancid- Time Bomb
-----------x-------x-------x-------4---4---x---4---x---4---x---4
---3---3---x---3---x---3---x---3---5---5---x---5---x---5---x---5
---4---4---x---4---x---4---x---4---4---4---x---4---x---4---x---4
---4---4---x---4---x---4---x---4--------------------------------
---2---2---x---2---x---2---x---2--------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------------
although it is still very simple, you can use the technique of 2 chords to quicken thwe tempo. Another example of this is Take Warning by operation ivy
E|-----x---------------x--------x-------x----------------------||
B|---5-x-5-----------5-x-5----4-x-4---4-x-4--------------------||
G|---6-x-6-----------6-x-6----4-x-4---4-x-4--------------------||
D|---6-x-6-----------6-x-6----4-x-4---4-x-4--------------------||
A|-4-4-x-4---------4-4-x-4--2-2-x-2-2-2-x-2--------------------||
E|-----x---------------x--------x-------x----------------------||
However, this uses single notes instead of chords. Another technique that is not only used in ska is double scratching. For example:
E --x-x-1---x---1---x-x-1---x---1-----------|
B|--x-x-1---x---1---x-x-1---x---1-----------|
G|--x-x-2---x---2---x-x-2---x---2-----------|
D|--x-x-3---x---3---x-x-3---x---3-----------|
A|------------------------------------------|
E|------------------------------------------|
The first scratch is on the downstroke, the next on the upstroke. Lead Guitar: Although ska is more well known for the rythm part, lead guitar does exist. Many off the riffs and solos are just interprataions of blues scales. For example:
Bad Fish- Sublime:
E|------------------------------------------------------|
B|------------------------------------------------------|
G|-2ZYABLA~HUYABLAZYABLA~HUYABLA2-2/4--------2-4--1h2p1-------------------------|
D|--------------2h4-------------2-2/4-------------------|
A|-------------------------------------2p0-2h4ZYABLA~HUYABLAZYABLA~HUYABLA------|
E|------------------------------------------------------|

E|---------------------------5----------------|
B|-----------------------------7--------------|
G|--------------2p1--------------6-4-2h4-2ZYABLA~HUYABLA~-|
D|-----2h4-4-2------2-2h4---------------------|
A|-2h4----------------------------------------|
E|--------------------------------------------|
fairly easy, but sounds good.

Freeze Up- Operation Ivy Solo:
E-----5-5-----5-5-----5-5-----5------------------------------------
B-----5-5-----5-5-----5-5-----5------------------------------------
G---------7b9-----7b9-----7b9----7-5-3vib.-------------------------
D------------------------------------------------------------------
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------

E-----------8-8-------8-8-------8-----------10-10------------------
B-----------8-8-------8-8-------8-----------10-10------------------
G-----10b12-----10b12-----10b12-------------------12-10------------
D-------------------------------------------------------12vib.-----
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------

E----------------------------------------------------------------
B----------------------------------------------------------------
G-----7b9-7b9-7b9-7p5vib.---5b7-5b7-5b7-5p3vib.------------------
D----------------------------------------------------------------
A----------------------------------------------------------------
E----------------------------------------------------------------

E----------------------------------------------------------------
B----------------------------------------------------------------
G-----------------5-5-5h7----------------------------------------
D-----------5-7s8------------------------------------------------
A-----3-5s7------------------------------------------------------
E----------------------------------------------------------------
For writing your own solo, I would recommend using the key you are ins pentatonic scale, and just improvising, play around with it and and some pitch bends. If you are in a ska band, and you have a trombone player, get them to play the scales and you can work it over the chords. Bass Ska bass is easily recognisable. It often uses the walking bass line style, and rarely uses root notes. To play a walking bass line, imagine a jazz style bass. Find the chords that are being played by the guitarist, and work around the root notes playing little patterns. If the chords you werre using were a minor d minor and g minor something like this:
E
B
G
D      553                 2
A 003h5   532     455555553       3543333
E            304h5           32552         

|G|----------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|D|----------------------------------2-2-4-4-5-5-4-4-----------------2-2-4-4-5-5-4-4-|
|A|--0-0-2-2-3-3-0-0-2-2-4-4-5-5-4-4-----------------0-0-2-2-3-3-5-5-----------------|
|E|----------------------------------------------------------------------------------|

This riff is from Superman by Goldfinger. 

Some scales to base solos around:
|15---------------------------------|---------------------------------17|
|---17-15---------------------------|---------------------------17-20---|
|---------16-14---------------------|---------------------16-19---------|
|---------------17-14---------------|---------------17-19---------------|
|---------------------17-14---------|---------17-19---------------------|
|---------------------------17-15-12|15-17-19---------------------------|
based around e minor
--------------------------------5--8----
--------------------------5--8-----------
-------------------5--7------------------
-------------5--7------------------------
------5--7-------------------------------
-5-8------------------------------------- 
or starting from 17t fret (1 octave higher) a minor pentatonic
Ska Live: Ska is always entertaining and fun 2 watch live. Instead of mosh pits and circle pits you get at punk, metl and rock gigs, the norml dancing is "skanking".skanking invloves moving along with nthe beat, swaying your feet and arms. It is difficult to describe, but prety easy 2 pick up. Anyway enjoy, hope this was helpful 4 you, leave a comment if you want me 2 edit ny of it.

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comments policy
    afropunkx
    yeh i might consider doing a bass lesson coz unfortunately the stuff i wrote here is a bit crap on the bass :S. i would disagree about the minor chords, ska can sound right with that, but the majority of the more upbeat feeling perhaps more reggae ska will be major chords, and probably a major, e major and d major. but hey.
    negativcreep187
    nice job, no real flaws. although, i suggest that you should have mentioned in one of your lessons that the chords used tend to be major chords. using minor chords just doesn't seem to sound "right", but thats really all in the eye of the beholder. I also think that you should consider making the bass section a seperate leson.