Starting solos

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So I have been playing 2 years now and I can play rhythm parts of songs quite easily and a few simple solos but need to develop that side of my playing. I find it really difficult to play solos due to speed and technique so wanted some advice on where to start to develop the skills and what to do?

Anyone care to offer any advice on how to tackle this?

Cheers
Chris
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  • RolandRoland Frets: 4396
    edited December 2019
    Learn to play other people’s solos. Get some slow-down software, or run YouTube at 75% speed, to help learn them. Learn them in sections. Don’t try to work out and memorise a whole solo in one go. Once you’ve learned the notes and positions you can work them up to speed over a number of weeks. 
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  • the_butlerthe_butler Frets: 107
    edited January 1
    Learn your scales.

    Play them in 4 note fragments ie play the first 4 notes, then return to the 2nd note you played & play the next 4 notes, then play the 2nd note of those 4 notes & again play the next 4 notes & so on.

    So if you're playing a C major scale play from the lowest C:

     C,D,E,F,   then D,E,F,G then E,F,G,A etc all the way across the strings then do the same thing but backwards descending. 
    C.B,A,G...B,A.G,F.....A,G,F,E etc

    Do the same thing with 3 note fragments 

    Practice with a metronome & slowly (60 bpm) build speed, this is a sure fire way to build speed & dexterity, you'll see results inside a week or two if you do it for 30 minutes every day.

    Then learn your arpeggios major minor & sevenths this book is a valuable resource

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fluid-Soloing-Arpegios-Guitar-University/dp/0786672757

    in fact the whole series is very good.

    This advice only really applies to getting your technique better however. it won't help give your solos 'style'

    good luck
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  • ClarkyClarky Frets: 3247
    Roland said:
    Learn to play other people’s solos. Get some slow-down software, or run YouTube at 75% speed, to help learn them. Learn them in sections. Don’t try to work out and memorise a whole solo in one go. Once you’ve learned the notes and positions you can work them up to speed over a number of weeks. 
    this..

    and to add.. once you've learned a solo, pick a lick you like from it and experiment with it..
    change it's phrasing, change some notes.. modify and evolve it.. try to make 3 or 4 new licks from it..
    by doing this you'll also be flexing creative muscle too..
    play every note as if it were your first
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  • Hydra19Hydra19 Frets: 173
    Learn the pentatonic scale, which is pretty easy and just experiment with that, playing the scale the song is in. That is how I learned and found out it was what a lot of the musicians I was listening to where doing at some point, so I felt like I was on the right track.
    What helped me was playing along with simple stuff like Neil Young, something like Drive Back, the song riff is like the start of a solo and when he does, it's the pentatonic in A.

    I later learned to develop my own style by learning the Ventures songs, you can look at their playing like one long solo, at least the lead guitar. That was the music I loved at the time and I tried to learn one song a day. I progressed over the years to be able to play along to the Ventures live in Japan. If you listen to their version of pink panther it's got a lot of things in there that are useful for any style.
    This freed me up to be able to move around the fretboard and know what sounds good where, practice makes perfect, take it nice and slow, one step at a time. The more you learn, the more you'll enjoy and pretty soon you'll be able to wail effortlessly 
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  • pintspillerpintspiller Frets: 912
    I was playing for two years, self taught. Then had lessons on lead guitar. He taught me pentatonic minor. One lesson a week for four months. They I taught myself boxes of major scales. Modes. Kind of CAGED before CAGED.
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  • uncledickuncledick Frets: 374
    Although I've been playing on and off for 50 years, I've never had a lesson and have certainly not learnt any scales.  I have tried a few times but just find myself 'boxed in'.  A tip for learning covers is to find a video of the track being performed live.  In comparison with the studio version, they're usually much simplified,  We occasionally play Mr Brightside and could never get back to the intro riff quickly enough after the first chorus.  Watch the Killers live and they don't do it either.

    Another thing to remember is that about 90% of the Tabs found online are just plain wrong.

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  • BellycasterBellycaster Frets: 4258
    Good advice here. Also be mindful that it's handy to acknowledge the chords that a solo is going to be played over. When I first started I was surprised to realise that all chord progressions don't stay in the same key and sometimes they throw in borrowed chords which had me scratching my head as to why my scale didn't sound right over "that bit".

    I'd advise not to go to Youtube just to learn random licks. Licks are no good until you know the context of why they are being played and where to put them.

    I'm not a theory genius, but I can't emphasise enough how much your playing will open up by learning some theory, you can make great solos without being impressively fast or flashy.

    JustinGuitar (Justin Sandercoe) website is basically free step by step lessons and will have videos dedicated to:

    Chord Structure
    Intervals of Chords
    Relationship between Major Scale and Minor Scale
    Relationship between Pentatonic Scales and Major & Minor Scales.

    Sounds daunting..............It isn't though, just a little patience and then it's enjoyable.

    As has already been said, Internet TAB is shit and Youtube slow down feature is your friend. Always better to use your ears. You can get some good stuff for just wanting to know the chords to a song on sites such as Ultimate Guitar, but they're not always 100% right either.
    Before you point the Finger, make sure that you Hands are clean
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