Saturday, 13 July 2013

Confession #26 - One Minute Jam!

Last week's confession, Confession #25 - Fret Hand Muting!, provided the rhythm guitar tab for a track I wrote called One Minute Jam.  The rhythm guitar part illustrated the use of staccato phrasing and string clicks.

One Minute Jam!

Here's an audio-only YouTube video of the recorded track featuring rhythm guitar, lead guitar, bass and drums.  The tempo is approximately 102 beats per minute.

Here's the tab for the lead guitar part:

One Minute Jam - Lead Guitar
(Click to Enlarge)

Almost all the notes for the lead lines are coming from the A minor pentatonic scale (there's one B in there, which belongs to the full A minor scale).  Last week we learned that this song could be in the key of G or the key of D, so why am I using the A minor pentatonic scale?

I didn't put much thought into it at the time I wrote it.  My thinking was that the rhythm guitar is hitting an A major chord on beat 1 of each measure, and that playing a minor pentatonic scale over a major chord is a common rock technique.  From there, I let my ear decide.  If it sounded good, then it that's all that mattered.

Looking at it from a theory perspective, here are the notes of each of the three keys:
  • G - A - B  - C - D - E - F#
  • D - E - F# - G - A - B - C#
  • A - B - C  - D - E - F - G 

Thus, the notes that can cause a conflict are F / F#, and C / C#.

If we avoid the F in the A minor scale (there are no F's in the lead lines), then all we are left to worry about is the C and C# conflict.  And this isn't actually a worry because the C / C# conflict is one of the desirable tensions created by playing A minor pentatonic over an A major chord.

Don't be afraid to try something "outside the box", which in this case happened to be "inside" the A minor pentatonic box.  :-)

Next Week's Confession - Use a Capo!

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