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  • Improvisation...????????

    So what do you expert improvisers do to improve that skill and what scales/arps.whatever else do you base it on...???

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  • #2
    Well I learned all the major/minorscales variations, and the basis of those two forms!
    Plus all the various pentascales, arpeggios and chordstructures.
    Basic progressions and such. learned it all and then I promtly forgot about them and went on doing my own thing.
    But the basics are good tools to learn, and above else, dig melodies.
    And rhythms, actually dig those alot.


    • #3
      I don't worry about scales and stuff like that. It's more important
      to listen to what your band mates are doing,And work with them.
      For me it's all about thinking on your feet,And paying attention. I just listen for someone to start a motif or phrase and work with it
      untill I start to develope my own idea. Then Interject that into the jam. Hopefully your band mates pickup on it and start to work
      with you,Then ya just volley back and forth. Well that's my Idea
      of a improvised jam. Easier say than done


      • #4
        learn all the theory you can, then throw it out the window when with the band.

        I use tons of harmonic minor to piss off the catholic church.

        harm. major
        major/minor scales (all patterns for all scales)

        mix all these together ...

        add some 'right' notes

        make up cords


        • #5
          i don't worry bout scales.....i know some but i feel more free to just use my ears and plus i can keep up with key changes seamlessly....
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          • #6
            I use tons of scales all the time...get a good book of bebop chord progressions, and loop those chords. Practice playing overtop.

            There is no easy way to learn to improvise. Be around someone who is great at it...listen to the greats all the time. Learn all the scales you can, so your notes are a *choice* not a limitation. In other words, play the notes you mean to play.
            Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan


            • #7
              And listen too as much Larry Carlton as possible.....that man has the lines from beyond.


              • #8
                I just play what I feel fits based off of scales in the same key and the background music. I get some awesome resultsthat way, and it fits even if I am playing 32nd notes.
                ScreamingDaisy: I don't do sympathy. If you want sympathy, it can be found in the dictionary between sh*t and syphilis.


                • #9
                  Let me preface by saying that I'm no expert, and don't usually post in the tips section.

                  But, I think it's really important to build up a "vocabulary" of short phrases and turnarounds. Listen to your favorite guitar heroes (mine are all bluesmen) and you can hear that certain licks pop up over and over in their solos (esp. in jazz, blues, rock and roll). Once you get some of these standard licks down you can begin to worry about shaping your solo (stringing phrases together) rather than what note to play next.

                  Hope that helps.

                  ps. scales help so that you know what notes will sound "right" or at least traditional in a particular key. You can solo for like 45 minutes straight just on a blues scale up and down the fretboard and have it sounding sweet.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Rid
                    And listen too as much Larry Carlton as possible.....that man has the lines from beyond.
                    Word. If you become half as good as Larry Carlton, you'll be kicking guitar player ass everywhere.

                    Here's the main scales I use:
                    Blues (duh!)
                    Hungarian Minor
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                    "Anything worth living for is worth suffering for."


                    • #11
                      biu, think thats enough? lol

                      also, its very important if you improvising with a band to listen to what they are doing.
                      also, when improvising, let it flow. dont be uptight. if you mess up, change what your doing or just fix it. in the world of improvising, nothing is incorrect.
                      also, listen to a lot of jam bands. my fav., the allman brothers. oo man, listen to fillmore east, the atlanta pop festival, basically anything by them. man, you will be living large after an edu. by the bro's.
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                      • #12
                        Scales are very important.
                        The most important thing though is that you know how EACH one of em sounds before you play it.

                        I can tell the difference between mixolydian and ionian, between aeolian and dorian, between phrygian and locrian. However I still didn't learn where the roots, 3rds, 5ths, and 7ths are in every scale.

                        The scales required to play jazz are: The major scale and its modes, the melodic minor and its modes, harmonic minor, diminished, augmented, and wholetone. Its also important to know maj7, min7, dom7, and min7b5 arpeggios all over the neck.

                        I use lots of books.
                        THey include :
                        The complete jazz guitar method by Jody Fisher.
                        Jazz Skills - Jody Fisher.
                        Guitar Chords Encyclopedia - Alfred
                        Jazz Chops - Buck Brown
                        The Real Book
                        Guitar Chords - Joe Pass

                        and various songbooks.

                        Vids include:
                        Scott Henderson - Melodic Phrasing, Jazz Improvisation. Eric Johnson, Joe Pass - Hot Licks, John Petrucci - Rock Discipline, Van Halen guitar method, and many many concerts.
                        my youtubes Instagram Medium blog
                        A few original tunes: "The Grand Eclipse" and "Timeless Moments"


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bad Luck
                          But, I think it's really important to build up a "vocabulary" of short phrases and turnarounds.
                          I'll agree with this statement... You can then throw your favorites phrase in anywhere and start mixing them up....