EX­AM­PLE zz TO P STYLE solo study

Guitar Techniques - - Lesson: Blues -

[Bars 0- 8] Our open­ing boo­gie-blues phrase in the key of A mixes both Mi­nor Pen­ta­tonic (AC D E G) and Mixoly­dian mode (A B C# D E F# G) against the un­der­ly­ing A7 tonal­ity (A C# E G). There’s noth­ing tricky from a tech­ni­cal per­spec­tive here, but in­ter­est comes from all the slick bends, slides and other ex­pres­sive de­vices of which Gib­bons is a master. There is a lit­tle bit of chro­matic mo­tion too, although it’s likely that Billy would view this as a ‘filled-in’ Pen­ta­tonic idea as so many blues play­ers do - BB, Clap­ton, Hen­drix etc. Es­sen­tially you can bridge any of the two-fret gaps with the semi­tone pass­ing tone found ly­ing be­tween. So long as you keep go­ing the ear will com­pletely buy into this move, ir­re­spec­tive of the dis­so­nance that this new in­ter­val might cause if used in­de­pen­dently and not sur­rounded by its neigh­bour­ing sta­ble tones. The in­ter­val­lic string skips in bar 5 are rem­i­nis­cent of the great Al­bert King. [Bars 9-12] Our turn­around fea­tures yet more in­ter­val skips which you could tackle with a purely plec­trum based ap­proach or with a com­bi­na­tion of pick and fin­gers. The clos­ing phrase in bars 11-12 re­quires two notes at once on non-ad­ja­cent strings, so hy­brid pick­ing makes per­fect sense, rather than switch­ing to fin­gers only, not only be­cause it’s faster to make the tran­si­tion but the tone will be more stri­dent with over­drive - and eas­ier to con­trol mut­ing. Plus it puts you in the right frame of mind for the licks that follow.

cd track 42

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