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admin's picture
Aug 2014
1 week ago

do the chord progresions under solos need to match with the solo or vis versa? or can it just be like a palm muted open 6th string at a resonable speed?

hot_rats!'s picture
richmond, virginia
Oct 2002
3 years ago

hmm, anyone can tell you it doesnt have to go together at all. the ones that sound "good" go together. similar chord tones in the lead, junk like that.

so your sayin like i gotta play chords on like the same scale, like just repeating a riff like for the whole solo, just like how many times im sayin like in this post

orpheus_2's picture
Jun 2004
2 years ago

you should have the same key as whatever the lead plays but that's saddeling a horse from behind ,usually the lead player has to play in the key of the rhythm .
chromatics and other things usually work well but a whole solo just without a scale might sound strange unless you really know what your doing and that's at least viewed from adistance a combination of scales,because any series of notes already tend to sound like or are a certain scale .
and of course you can change keys as often as you please or as much as your ear allows you.



Zack_Relidge's picture
Killgary, Hellberta
Sep 2004
12 years ago

Don't ask me...I'm one of those guys that thinks a one or two note riff is perfect under a solo.

Speed makes up for so much.

More like you've been Thunderstruck!!!

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noisegrade's picture
Apr 2003
9 years ago

Depending on your creativity and imagination, you can do whatever you want.

You can solo over a complete riff. Harmonize the riff, then ascend the scale and let it rip.

Solo over a pedal tone (one note, palm mute if you wish). This offers you a lot of freedom. If you connect notes of a chord together over the pedal tone, it will sound nice, and everything will agree. If you use notes that clash with the pedal tone, it will sound dissonant, angry, deranged even. Try dissonant intervals like minor 2nds (E pedal tone with an F in the lead, for example)

Solo over a chord progression. This gives you less flexibility, but perhaps more melodic possibilities. You can outline the chords by playing the notes contained in them (arpeggios), run scales, play singable tunes, the possibilites are endless.

Make noise. Who says you have to play conventional "lead" guitar? Sometimes the right sound effect or screeching noise is just right for what the song needs.


j_stashko's picture
Alberta, Canada
Oct 2002
10 years ago

You can chug away on the low e and still do a solo, but unless the solo is varied alot it might get boring fast. A chord progression adds some melodic texture which gives the solo more feel or "soul". Take the solo from whiplash by metallica, it's mostly palm mutes on the low e, except for a few chords, and then I think just one fast chord. Chugging on the low e is okay, but maybe throw in a fast chord/note or two for a little texture. If it is going to be a short fast solo, then just the low e should be fine.

"Five good reasons not to practice: 1. There 2. Are 3. No 4. Good 5. Reasons"- Steve Vai

sir_flexalot's picture
Catacombs of the Opéra Populaire
Jul 2004
8 years ago

The number of notes, repetitions, etc. changes for any song. To get an idea of how far you can take it, listen to some Jazz, i.e. the Les Paul Trio. 1) Les Paul can play the hell out of the guitar, 2) as with most jazz, practically whole songs are one long solo with extremely complex chord progressions behind them. As soon as you are using an exact model, your songs are just going to sound "produced". For example, if you were to figure out that metallica does 4-measure solos 2 verses in, and changes chords like XYZ, etc. whatever, then as soon as you wrote a song that fit in there, it would sound like metallica. WHen I say "sound like", i don't really mean in a good way... you'd sound like a "rip off" of metallica. Of course, how much of a rip off depends on your lyrics, tone, and other stuff like that.

In other words: do what you think sounds good, and don't worry how many chord changes there are.

sir_flexalot: Fine Artist, O.G.
R.I.P. Dimebag Darrell

thanks guys, I got a solo made now, its pretty cool. I made the chords first then I did the solo, like your supposed to do.

treardet's picture
Springfield, MA
Sep 2004
3 years ago

listen to solos you like, what happens underneath them
do that

some people solo amazingly over one riff
solos also sound amazing over a great chord progression

don't do it the same everytime
almost anything can work

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