Repeat a note to get more mileage in your guitar solo.

Every guitar player wants to fly all around the fret board hitting a bazillion notes. This is cool, but this will get very boring. Most of the amazing guitar solos you hear have fast lines in them, but they sound very fast because they are mixed in well with melodic ideas and concepts that bring in the listener. The whole idea behind creating an awesome guitar solo revolves around the listener. Always ask yourself: if I was listening to this would I like it? Listening to blazing lines all the time will get mundane.

One way you can create a phrase in your guitar solo that allows the listener to catch up with you is to hang on to 1 note for a moment. You may find that play a quarter note triplets using only the G note gives that sound that brings you back to earth. You can vary the rhythm in any way you find that you like. Playing quarter notes of 8th notes with 1 note might sound good to you. You can also vary the length you hold on to the note. Some people hold on to one note longer than others. Use your ear to find what really works well. Your ear won’t lead you wrong.

Another way that this idea can be applied is using a technique called pedal tones. In a pedal tone you have a tone that is repeated while other notes change. For example you play the note G, then you play D, then G, then A, then G. Sometimes pedal tones can be a repeated 2 notes. There is an unlimited amount of things you can do with pedal tones. This is a busier version of the first idea suggested. You have the repeated note; you just add more color to it by adding extra notes.

You don’t want to rely on just one of these techniques. Use them both. The more options you have available to you, the better you will sound in different situations. Each technique is equally valuable, and you may grow to like one more than the other. However, learning to use both will give you more options. Some styles may sound better with pedal tones and another may sound better with just 1 repeated note.

Playing a lot of notes and playing fast is fun, but the listener won’t grasp your story line if you never slow down and lay it out in simple terms. Adding repeated notes can help the listener grasp what you are saying and help them understand it more. Making music accessible is one factor that makes an average musician different from the great musician.  You can repeat one note by itself or repeat notes within a phrase by playing pedal tones. Both will add interest and make it easy to grasp.

About gitguitar

scottstevensguitar.com
Tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*