Guitar Lesson for Intermediate Players: How To Develop Your Solos–Phrasing–

For this article a short sample of a phrase, including a chordsequence, which you can use for your own playing.
Last week I wrote about phrasing as well, some of the ideas mentioned in that previous blog can be used for the guitar lesson of this blog.

We will create a solo (or rather, you will create) out of four given notes. The notes are G  C  D and F, all four notes are being used to create one phrase. Play the phrase with the following timing: One full beat for the G and the C D and F are played with triplet feel.  This will give you two beats in four/four. Play the idea twice and you will be playing the phrase for a full bar.

Underneath the phrase you can play the following chords:

        Gm          Gm         C          Bb  Gm

      /  /  / /     / / / /     / / / /      //    //

Each  chord lasts for a bar, the last bar contains Bb and Gm.  The  same phrase can be played over all four bars.

Once you get the feel for things you can change the phrase on the C and the Bb, since this will give you a different sound. Each of those chords beg for a different note. You notice I am running ahead here, let me first talk you through to how to approach the whole idea:

Get comfortable with the phrase first, give the chords a feel which fits the rhythm of the phrase. The four strums per bar are only for indication, find a feel you like and fits with the phrase. Record the chordsequence on a loop pedal or recorder, now you have the ability to play the phrase over those chords.

         Where Should I Play the Phrase?:

Anywhere where you can play those notes.  Here three tabs as example where you play those notes:

     E  ———————————

     B  ——————————–

     G ——————————-
     D  ———————3——–

     A  ———3—–5————–

     E  –3—————————–

To get smooth feel, play the D as a hammered on note before you land on the F.
As you can see the phrase is played in position using the low strings.

Here same phrase, now with notes being played on the higher strings using the open G as starting note:

   E  —————————————–1—

   B —————————1—–3———–

   G —————–0—————————

  D  ———————————————-

  A ———————————————–

  E  ———————————————–

Don’t worry about notation, the phrase still starts on beat One and is being played twice to cover one bar. The tab. suggests that phrase comes in half way in the bar, this is just how I have notated it here.

Now same phrase being played over the high E string:

E ——–3——–8—–10——-13——

Observe the Hammer on being used all throughout each example. The phrase is the same, but the position is different.

                 Once You Can Play Phrase Start Experimenting With…:     

Once you are comfortable with the notes break away from them: You can still play the same notes but add other notes at the end of the bar. Maybe play phrase only once in one bar and add lib. for the  next two beats.

No need to stick to the positions I have given, find your own positions where the phrase feels comfortable. Each position will open up new opportunities for you to use various techniques to add lib. with the phrase.

Next to the phrase you can add lib. with the scale of Gm Pentatonic or Bb major (the relative major scale of the key of Gm)

Incorporate string bending and more hammer-ons (and pull-offs) in your add lib. to make it sound more authentic and less like an excercise.

The next thing to do it to develop more melodic ideas out of the given phrase. Try to create a full solo where you play similar ideas each time you play over the chords.

I hope to get a video made soon where I will demonstrate how I approach the phrase, hopefully this will give you some ideas to carry on playing with the idea.

Next few blogs will have more articles about the Ibanez TS 808, The Boss OD-1 and the SD-1
Stay tuned and hope to catch you soon again,