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daveinspain

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When I do a solo my fingers seem limited to pretty basic melodies and usually in the pentatonic scales. I can play all the major and minor scales in all the modes without much problem but I can't just play the melodies I hear in my head. My fingers aren't linked to my brain yet. I can hear a killer solo in my head and sing it and not hit a bad note on the fly. I can't do that with my fingers. I hear the melody in my head and then have to work it out. I'm wondering if I will ever get to the point where I can just play what I feel...

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I remember that happening, but I don't remember how long I'd been playing when it happened. I couldn't have been more than 4 years. I do remember the frustration of having to settle for what came out instead of what was actually in my head. Now, for the most part, it's like whistling. What's in my head comes out of my fingers, except maybe really fast runs. Sometimes they come out a little off the mark and take a little working out.

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Maybe try just playing by ear for like a week. You can only be fluent in so much at once. The more your brain is filled up with too many modes of too many scales at too many positions, the less fluent you will be.

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... I'm wondering if I will ever get to the point where I can just play what I feel...

 

Yes, you will. For some this happens quickly (I hate them) for others it takes years (I'm included in this latter group). Patience, grasshopper. [biggrin]

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Yes, you will. For some this happens quickly (I hate them) for others it takes years (I'm included in this latter group). Patience, grasshopper. [biggrin]

 

Thanks Surf, that encouraging.... [thumbup]

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Surf has the right of it. It's different for everyone. As you become more familiar with the notes and where they are on the fretboard you'll notice you have to search less. And by notes, I'm refering more to the sounds than the actual note itself, or at least that's how it works for me. I still struggle sometimes fidning where I need to go, but for the most part my fingers just seem to go there on their own.

 

 

Keep doing what you're doing and it will come sir!

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When I do a solo my fingers seem limited to pretty basic melodies and usually in the pentatonic scales. I can play all the major and minor scales in all the modes

 

I think this is a key for me. I don't concern myself with what certain notes are up and down the fret board. I mean I could figure it out if I had to but I do know the fret intervals. Maybe its from years of improvising and jamming plus I think you really have to develop certain "go to" riffs and phrasing that help you connect the different stages of your solo. That's just me though. I'm sure everyone's approach is different.

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When I do a solo my fingers seem limited to pretty basic melodies and usually in the pentatonic scales. I can play all the major and minor scales in all the modes without much problem but I can't just play the melodies I hear in my head. My fingers aren't linked to my brain yet. I can hear a killer solo in my head and sing it and not hit a bad note on the fly. I can't do that with my fingers. I hear the melody in my head and then have to work it out. I'm wondering if I will ever get to the point where I can just play what I feel...

 

If possible, sign up for an improv class. I took one for two years when playing trumpet many moons ago and it's something you can transfer over to all instruments. Also ear training is a biggy as well. Being able to sing all scales without a piano in key is a big plus. In other words, being able to read a musical piece that you have never heard before, and being able to sing the notes acapella is a huge plus.

 

Most of your jazz musicians are some the best soloist around, because of their training and total dedication, (tons of work).... Listen to this example of this jazz guitar player guitar solo (1:20 mark).... This is a perfect example of knowing your instrument.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7dg8vRDM68&feature=related

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When I do a solo my fingers seem limited to pretty basic melodies and usually in the pentatonic scales. I can play all the major and minor scales in all the modes without much problem but I can't just play the melodies I hear in my head. My fingers aren't linked to my brain yet. I can hear a killer solo in my head and sing it and not hit a bad note on the fly. I can't do that with my fingers. I hear the melody in my head and then have to work it out. I'm wondering if I will ever get to the point where I can just play what I feel...

Ive been like that for many many years.. I was always mainly a rhythm player and just dabbeled in a little lead using a few tricks id had picked up.. I will TRY and explain.. maybe it will help you (Im not always good at exlaining this sort of thing)

 

For many years I stuck to one or two scales trying to learn them to the point where I could do really fast runs but that never really happened. However recently I made a breakthrough and it was amazing as it just happened without me even thinking about it... I had recently been trying to learn a few new scales and licks to try and break the habbit im now in and was undetrstanding more about where to start the scale at the key the chord is in and then all of a sudden I saw it..

 

I played this riff and then it just came to me how to play the same riff in each key. Try and think of it this way. If you know power chords or barre chords you kind of know where to start the scales. So while you are learning if a chord G is playing, the best place to start is the 3rd fret of the bottom E which is the start of a G chord. If its an A playing then start at the 5th fret on the bottom E and if a B is playing start on the 7th fret etc etc

 

Once you get that down then you can start a solo in the middle of or end of the scale.. But ive found it a really good start to help me understand all of that.

 

On top of that I have found that if you look at the fretboard as blocks it helps. So to play in A your block of frets are between the 5th and 8th fret (pentatonic scales), to play in G its between the 3rd and 6th fret etc etc.. again looking at the fret board like that helps.

http://www.folkblues.com/theory/penta_patterns1.htm

pent_circle2.gif

 

Check this chart to see each note on the fret board. So learn where the notes are and start your scale or riff psoitions on the note of what ever chord is playing. (did any of that even make sense? :P)

guitar-fretboard-4.jpg

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... Listen to this example of this jazz guitar player guitar solo (1:20 mark).... This is a perfect example of knowing your instrument.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7dg8vRDM68&feature=related

 

One of my favorite solos! Even as a high school kid - just starting out - I totally dug that. [thumbup] You can sing it - yet it's got some rippin' parts too.

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If possible, sign up for an improv class. I took one for two years when playing trumpet many moons ago and it's something you can transfer over to all instruments. Also ear training is a biggy as well. Being able to sing all scales without a piano in key is a big plus. In other words, being able to read a musical piece that you have never heard before, and being able to sing the notes acapella is a huge plus.

 

Most of your jazz musicians are some the best soloist around, because of their training and total dedication, (tons of work).... Listen to this example of this jazz guitar player guitar solo (1:20 mark).... This is a perfect example of knowing your instrument.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7dg8vRDM68&feature=related

 

Thanks, hadn't heard that song in years! It ages well.

 

 

Ive been like that for many many years.. I was always mainly a rhythm player and just dabbeled in a little lead using a few tricks id had picked up.. I will TRY and explain.. maybe it will help you (Im not always good at exlaining this sort of thing)

 

For many years I stuck to one or two scales trying to learn them to the point where I could do really fast runs but that never really happened. However recently I made a breakthrough and it was amazing as it just happened without me even thinking about it... I had recently been trying to learn a few new scales and licks to try and break the habbit im now in and was undetrstanding more about where to start the scale at the key the chord is in and then all of a sudden I saw it..

 

I played this riff and then it just came to me how to play the same riff in each key. Try and think of it this way. If you know power chords or barre chords you kind of know where to start the scales. So while you are learning if a chord G is playing, the best place to start is the 3rd fret of the bottom E which is the start of a G chord. If its an A playing then start at the 5th fret on the bottom E and if a B is playing start on the 7th fret etc etc

 

Once you get that down then you can start a solo in the middle of or end of the scale.. But ive found it a really good start to help me understand all of that.

 

On top of that I have found that if you look at the fretboard as blocks it helps. So to play in A your block of frets are between the 5th and 8th fret (pentatonic scales), to play in G its between the 3rd and 6th fret etc etc.. again looking at the fret board like that helps.

http://www.folkblues.com/theory/penta_patterns1.htm

pent_circle2.gif

 

Check this chart to see each note on the fret board. So learn where the notes are and start your scale or riff psoitions on the note of what ever chord is playing. (did any of that even make sense? :P)

guitar-fretboard-4.jpg

Yep, it made sense. "Start at the root note of the chord you're playing over" is essentially what you were saying, and for those of us still working at finding our way around the neck, a good idea to get used to working the scale over the chord.

 

A good book I'm working through right now is "Fretboard Logic", said to be the number one book on guitar on Amazon.com. It's helping me get a much better grasp on things, and so far has taught me quite a bit (didn't realize just how unique the guitar's standard tuning is in the world of music for example). And the whole "C A G E D" thing (mostly played by ear in the past, but felt quite limited by my lack of knowledge of theory- though I did begin exploring the Circle of Fifths some years back, never really hammered that home, intend to do so now).

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Thanks, hadn't heard that song in years! It ages well.

 

 

 

Yep, it made sense. "Start at the root note of the chord you're playing over" is essentially what you were saying, and for those of us still working at finding our way around the neck, a good idea to get used to working the scale over the chord.

 

A good book I'm working through right now is "Fretboard Logic", said to be the number one book on guitar on Amazon.com. It's helping me get a much better grasp on things, and so far has taught me quite a bit (didn't realize just how unique the guitar's standard tuning is in the world of music for example). And the whole "C A G E D" thing (mostly played by ear in the past, but felt quite limited by my lack of knowledge of theory- though I did begin exploring the Circle of Fifths some years back, never really hammered that home, intend to do so now).

I thought this video wasnt bad..

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It does help to remember that we lettered the notes so we could discuss them, nature gave them the tone that they are. So try to think of the notes in relation to the tone they make, not the letter they're designated with.

 

Also, when noodling around with your instrument, don't concern yourself with trying to make songs, chords, or melodies. Just poke around on different frets and try mixing notes from the scales that you know. Just blindly explore the neck like a stoned teenager for a few hours a week.

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Yep, it made sense. "Start at the root note of the chord you're playing over" is essentially what you were saying, and for those of us still working at finding our way around the neck, a good idea to get used to working the scale over the chord.

 

A good book I'm working through right now is "Fretboard Logic", said to be the number one book on guitar on Amazon.com. It's helping me get a much better grasp on things, and so far has taught me quite a bit (didn't realize just how unique the guitar's standard tuning is in the world of music for example). And the whole "C A G E D" thing (mostly played by ear in the past, but felt quite limited by my lack of knowledge of theory- though I did begin exploring the Circle of Fifths some years back, never really hammered that home, intend to do so now).

Heres a vid I made of what I was talking about.. So find a riff and learn to play it in each key.. Its quite good fun actually :o)

(sorry for the crotch shot [unsure] )

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=do0TpmOdOCw

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Wow, there sure has been a lot of great information that came up in this thread, thanks to all who contributed... Nice surprise to see Roger again too. [thumbup]

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Mostly I do fingerpicking as though I were playing a "classical" guitar even if I'm doing blues, Christmas carols, cowboy, country - whatever. So in ways you might suggest I'm really playing keyboard on a guitar.

 

When I was a kid in the '50s there was a song most folks had heard in the US as far as I can tell called "The Lost Chord."

 

I really thing there are some things in one's head that never will happen, but consistently looking for it will bring one continually closer.

 

I don't know another way of putting it.

 

Mastering the fingerboard seems to come more easily to some folks for doing whatever it is they do and/or want to do. It hasn't entirely been the case with me, but then I'm probably trying to do too many things for too many styles of music - and always have. I dunno.

 

m

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Good thread and some really good information but if it hasn't happened yet don't panic especially if your old are brain just like are joints get a little stiffer and a little slower it all still works just not as fast that's who kids that start playing music very young have such an advantage when your a kid your mind is a sponge and you can learn at an incredible rate as you get older it all sows down some you can still learn anything you want it's just not as fast. I remember learning spanish as a child it was a breeze I also remember learning french as and adult and how hard i had to work to get the repletion and memory down to be even moderately fluent.

 

it's not you Dave it's just science and the human mind as it ages keep cranking you'll get there. And for as much as you question your playing your in what a couple bands and playing in public allot so your a lot further along than most people ever get.

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Good thread and some really good information but if it hasn't happened yet don't panic especially if your old are brain just like are joints get a little stiffer and a little slower it all still works just not as fast that's who kids that start playing music very young have such an advantage when your a kid your mind is a sponge and you can learn at an incredible rate as you get older it all sows down some you can still learn anything you want it's just not as fast. I remember learning spanish as a child it was a breeze I also remember learning french as and adult and how hard i had to work to get the repletion and memory down to be even moderately fluent.

 

it's not you Dave it's just science and the human mind as it ages keep cranking you'll get there. And for as much as you question your playing your in what a couple bands and playing in public allot so your a lot further along than most people ever get.

 

I hear you retro... I learned Spanish after I moved to Spain in 93, I never thought I'd get to the point of just saying what I wanted to say without translating it in my head first but I am completely fluent now. I just say what I want in Spanish without giving it a second thought now. Course I still have a heavy American accent... :rolleyes:

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