Statement of the Obvious about EVH

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rsvmarkrsvmark Frets: 996
In that he was a genius.

My latest project to learn theory and technique is ‘Top of the world’ from F.U.C.K. 

Several challenging phrases (well for me anyway) but good god, there are so many imaginative components in there.

The basic chord structure is so simple and generally diatonic E major stuff. But the actual guitar parts are epic. 

Intro- simple melody (developed from solo outro of Jump) with e pedal note
Verse- hybrid picking thing with pedal open strings but with amazing feel (swing) and using simple melody lines using the 7th
Chords- sus 4s everywhere 
Chorus- same base chords as verse but different voicing (A is a root and major 3 as opposed to root and 5 in the verse)
Liberal use of over dubbed tapped harmonics (haven’t figured this out yet) but it sounds lovely
Break down- there is a arpegiated chord section starting B, C, D just before the solo which is nice but bloody hell, the rhythm is hard to get. Nowhere near the beat
Solo- very tasteful and melodic. A slow wah part, picked arpeggios, and a couple of quick runs (which I haven’t analysed as yet from a theory perspective but is adding a few outside notes that aren’t in the major scale)

all up it’s been a very enjoyable song to learn.

Genius.... but that’s a statement of the obvious and you already knew that right?
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Comments

  • axisusaxisus Frets: 20775
    Way beyond my learning capability, but I have always marvelled over EVHs guitar playing, so much going on all the time, great, interesting and varied rhythm playing and sensational solos. As well as all that, he seemed so un-self indulgent.

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  • stratcatstratcat Frets: 47
    Absolutely, everyone bangs on about his solo playing but it's his rhythm and general tasteful accompaniment that does it for me. I'm certain his piano playing chops helped with his ability to play for the song rather than for the limelight.

    For me, no one after him has done anything significantly new in rock and pop guitar.
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  • rsvmarkrsvmark Frets: 996
    Question for the theory chaps.

    the final solo legato run is 4 5 b7 root 2 b3 4 5 5 6 b7 root 2 b3 2 root b7 then bent up to the root

    By my reckoning that’s an E natural minor in a song that’s in E major. While that’s outside traditional diatonic convention, it sounds well - is this because the run is so fast, the notes are effectively’passing notes’ so it ‘doesn’t matter’

    Hows my analysis on this? Ok or utter bs?
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  • rsvmark said:
    Question for the theory chaps.

    the final solo legato run is 4 5 b7 root 2 b3 4 5 5 6 b7 root 2 b3 2 root b7 then bent up to the root

    By my reckoning that’s an E natural minor in a song that’s in E major. While that’s outside traditional diatonic convention, it sounds well - is this because the run is so fast, the notes are effectively’passing notes’ so it ‘doesn’t matter’

    Hows my analysis on this? Ok or utter bs?
    I don't know the song, but, as is not unusual from the theoretical point of view, individual notes can be given a number of descriptions. So your Flat 3 could be a Sharp 9, and similarly the Flat 7 could be a Sharp 6/13. Then all the other notes would fit E Major. The addition of  Sharpened 9th's, 11th's, and 13th's usually fit fine as extensions to Major Chords.
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  • mudslide73mudslide73 Frets: 2357
    I went through "Runaround" with my guitar teacher around the time of release and your breakdown here could almost be applied to that too. There are so many cool little sections it's insane.
    "A city star won’t shine too far"


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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 6957
    edited February 21
    Eddy didn't give a shit about the theory behind the notes, he just used the same pattern across the strings and if it went out of key then that was fine. You can hear this on Jump, Ice cream man, Hot for Teacher and many, many more. Basically he picks a pattern and uses the same pattern for every string regardless of the notes. 

    Knowing theory actually slowed me down learning VH solo's because I was always trying to play his solo's and stay in key, when in fact I should have just used the same pattern across the strings like he does. It's basically almost Bebop 
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 20775
    Danny1969 said:
    Eddy didn't give a shit about the theory behind the notes, he just used the same pattern across the strings and if it went out of key then that was fine. You can hear this on Jump, Ice cream man, Hot for Teacher and many, many more. Basically he picks a pattern and uses the same pattern for every string regardless of the notes. 

    Knowing theory actually slowed me down learning VH solo's because I was always trying to play his solo's and stay in key, when in fact I should have just used the same pattern across the strings like he does. It's basically almost Bebop 
    I'm thick when it comes to this sort of thing, but I'm a bit confused by what you are saying there? 
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  • mudslide73mudslide73 Frets: 2357
    axisus said:
    Danny1969 said:
    Eddy didn't give a shit about the theory behind the notes, he just used the same pattern across the strings and if it went out of key then that was fine. You can hear this on Jump, Ice cream man, Hot for Teacher and many, many more. Basically he picks a pattern and uses the same pattern for every string regardless of the notes. 

    Knowing theory actually slowed me down learning VH solo's because I was always trying to play his solo's and stay in key, when in fact I should have just used the same pattern across the strings like he does. It's basically almost Bebop 
    I'm thick when it comes to this sort of thing, but I'm a bit confused by what you are saying there? 
    Symmetrical shapes across all the strings rather than playing conventional scales.
    "A city star won’t shine too far"


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  • BradBrad Frets: 397
    rsvmark said:
    Question for the theory chaps.

    the final solo legato run is 4 5 b7 root 2 b3 4 5 5 6 b7 root 2 b3 2 root b7 then bent up to the root

    By my reckoning that’s an E natural minor in a song that’s in E major. While that’s outside traditional diatonic convention, it sounds well - is this because the run is so fast, the notes are effectively’passing notes’ so it ‘doesn’t matter’

    Hows my analysis on this? Ok or utter bs?

    The solo changes key, but as it is predominantly power chords there's a fair bit of 'overhang' in the ear so to speak.

    That legato run is over Bsus (i think!), or a B5 at least. To my ears that section is in D (typical rock bIIV IV I thing), it looks like he used B Natural minor (same pool of notes as D major) for the final legato line. It doesn't matter that he plays a C# in the line despite the C chord in the previous set chords. The ear accepts it as we're hearing D as home and that ambiguous B chord which our ear hears as the relative minor (but actually throws us back to the key of E). Plus the speed he plays it helps too.

    I agree with what @Danny1969 says, I doubt he would have thought too hard about the notes, just using his ears and a scale shape that works. Although I disagree that it's almost basically Bebop :wink:


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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 20775
    axisus said:
    Danny1969 said:
    Eddy didn't give a shit about the theory behind the notes, he just used the same pattern across the strings and if it went out of key then that was fine. You can hear this on Jump, Ice cream man, Hot for Teacher and many, many more. Basically he picks a pattern and uses the same pattern for every string regardless of the notes. 

    Knowing theory actually slowed me down learning VH solo's because I was always trying to play his solo's and stay in key, when in fact I should have just used the same pattern across the strings like he does. It's basically almost Bebop 
    I'm thick when it comes to this sort of thing, but I'm a bit confused by what you are saying there? 
    Symmetrical shapes across all the strings rather than playing conventional scales.
    So .... playing the 'wrong notes' at times? I can't quite get how that would work and sound right.
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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 6957
    axisus said:
    axisus said:
    Danny1969 said:
    Eddy didn't give a shit about the theory behind the notes, he just used the same pattern across the strings and if it went out of key then that was fine. You can hear this on Jump, Ice cream man, Hot for Teacher and many, many more. Basically he picks a pattern and uses the same pattern for every string regardless of the notes. 

    Knowing theory actually slowed me down learning VH solo's because I was always trying to play his solo's and stay in key, when in fact I should have just used the same pattern across the strings like he does. It's basically almost Bebop 
    I'm thick when it comes to this sort of thing, but I'm a bit confused by what you are saying there? 
    Symmetrical shapes across all the strings rather than playing conventional scales.
    So .... playing the 'wrong notes' at times? I can't quite get how that would work and sound right.
    Well in a typical rock solo you have "hang notes" .. which are left hanging and they will almost always be diatonic  in key, typically root, third, fifth or seventh and "passing notes" which pass quickly so don't jar the senses but add spice to the solo. VH uses a lot of passing notes but generally starts on a diatonic note and ends on one. In his own words "falling down the stairs and landing on your feet" 

    Almost all rock solo's have some kind of passing note which isn't technically in key. You can describe it as modal and in some cases it intentionally is ... in other cases it's not totally intentional but the result of a pattern on the guitar that's comfortable to play. 
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 20775
    @Danny1969 Thanks for the explanation. Most interesting! 
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