Up your game.

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« on: December 16, 2011, 05:15:24 AM »
I've been writing for a while now, im the first to admit that i aren't the greatest when it comes to thinking of solo's and fills during the songs.
I'm into the byrds, stone roses, beatles. jangle style.
Usually i just arpegiated along to the chords and it sounded alright and i could get away with it, (i'm a rythrm player at heart)
I'm good at lead when playing other peoples songs. I recently learnt near wild heaven by REM. this has inspired me to up my game and really learn how to play genuine lead guitar while writing. Any ideas though?
I must admit im struggling at it. rythrm and melody is not a problem. its coming up with real lead that drives the song.
such as near wild heaven, waterfall by the stone roses.
any tips, websites, info would be gratefull.
I can't just arpeggiate forever!!


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« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2011, 06:04:15 PM »
Check out the Lick Library DVDs on soloing. They do "Rock Lead in 8 Weeks" and such sets with weekly licks, fills, scales, etc that gradually build on one another until you can ad lib fairly freely.

The guys that do the DVDs present it in a no nonsense way that's easy to learn from, plus you can pause and rewind to your hearts content, something music teachers don't come equiped with ;)

Other than that, just identify solos you would LOVE to have come up with and learn the hell out of them. Figure out what it is about them that makes them, for you, so great, and try and incorporate these guitar "cliches" into your playing.

This can feel a bit like plagarism, but think of it like martial arts; you do the same drills for different styles as everyone else, but your own fights will all be unique and different!

Everything is easier said than done.

Except talking.

That's about the same.


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« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2011, 06:53:24 PM »
I'm going to be a pain in the arse now. I don't like the phrase 'lead guitar' and I don't think there should be such a thing as a lead or rhythm guitarist. The guitar in pop music is primarily part of the rhythm section. Having said that, it has lots of scope and possibility, and should be explored as fully as the guitarist wants to.

But to my mind the best guitarists are the ones who do both together. People like Johnny Marr, Jeff Buckley, that guy from Muse, the list goes on. Sure, some of them may be able to kick out an over-the-top guitar solo, but to me that's secondary. As a songwriter, the songs have always come first for me, which means finding the guitar part that best suits the song, even if that guitar part is a 3-note repeated arpeggio.

Peter has good advice; learn the guitar parts that turn you on, learn them so well that you understand what makes them tick. Once you understand it, you'll start doing it naturally. There's no secrets, no tricks, just good old-fashioned practice. Lots of practice.

Have fun with it :)
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