Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #11800  by b weird
 Sat Jan 13, 2007 2:20 pm
Hey does anyone know the key and scales for this song? I was looking in the Keys and Scales page but I couldn't find anything. Thanks in advance. :lol: P.S. Can anyone help with the solos also. Thanks again.

 #11802  by BlobWeird
 Sat Jan 13, 2007 11:23 pm
Well to start I wanna say that the thing ive noticed about Jerry is scales mean nothing to him because in any given song he will use so many chromatics and such that he never sticks to the notes in a scale. But with that said I would say use the corresponding pentatonics over the changes. Thats how I play it. As for We bid ya goodnight I dunno never tried to play along with that one.

 #11803  by tigerstrat
 Sun Jan 14, 2007 12:30 pm
Blob, to say that the presence of chromatics in JG's playing is evidence that "scales meant nothing to him" is to not really be hearing the scales as he was using them; he put in personal practice time like a madman to learn scale knowledge up and down and backwards and forwards. He was quoted saying how he had begun to see all the scales on the fretboard and how they overlapped and interlaced or conflicted, and indeed seemed to see each note of the greater melody as a birthplace for a new, either closely or distantly-related melody. Et cetera...

Sure, there are space freakout episodes that make little obvious harmonic sense, but even in most of these instances, he (they) would be fitting these little fragmentary chromatic licks (like the last note of a phrase f'rinstance) into the ensemble sound in a way that either comes out agreeing with a deviations of another player (leading to a segue jam into the next song?) or intentionally adds or maintains tension to the overall scalar scenario...

The point I guess is know the rules as well as you possibly can, THEN bend them and break them at will ... but by design (or at least learned instinct).

 #11809  by BlobWeird
 Sun Jan 14, 2007 5:03 pm
Tigerstrat I didnt really mean it literally just sayin that Ive noticed him in any given song use all 12 notes on the guitar. I know he knew his scales like the palm of his hand. I consider myself alright at solo'in to a song but stickin to the scale. I cant, however, figure when to throw in notes not in the scale and when to use a note not in the scale and hammer into one that is. In a song I will rarely hit a note outside the scale. Any advice on learnin chromatics and when they are used?

 #11812  by Rev_Roach
 Sun Jan 14, 2007 7:01 pm
"You gotta know the rules so you can know how to break them."

Blob, a good place to introduce chromatics into your leads is anytime the chord you're playing over contains chromatics, going out of the scale themselves.

Think of the verses of Deal, the D chord in China Cat when you hit F# for the first time instead of playing F natural, a blues pattern when every chord is a dominant 7th, any time where chord movement moves by a half step twice such as C-C#-D (ex. Casey Jones verse "Trouble a head, OH, lady in red")
 #11831  by dahmbomb
 Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:56 pm
Playing w/ the changes is great, but for simplicity sake you can play E major.

 #12064  by jonpaul
 Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:18 am
Don't quote me directly on this, but I read an article in Rolling Stone commemorating the ten year anniversary of Jerry's death, and it quoted him from a previous article where he answered a similar questions. He said something along the lines of "I may play half of an ascending minor pentatonic and then descend along a Locrian but I'm not thinking about it while I'm doing it. What is important is the note itself." Like I said, that's not direct, but those were the points he was stressing during the interview.

I think that, from this style's perspective, the advantage of learning all of the various scales and modes by rote is that when you are "freaking out" or just in a groove, you will know exactly what note to play next. The different modes and scales translate into specific moods that, when memorized, are at your every disposal. I know at first memorizing all of that seems daunting, but if you think about it, you'll be playing (hopefully) your whole life, so you have plenty of time to learn and expand.

That story about Jerry seeing the scales on the frets is awesome. When I picture that, it's like each scale is laid out on the board in a different glowing color, twisted and braided. Granted, knowing Jerry, that could have very well been what he saw :)

 #14806  by JudgeDecreedIt
 Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:09 am
A good example of a part chromatic run over a key change is morning dew where you are going to the F chord from the D chord. You can run a 5step run from CDD#EF over that change. It's sweet.

 #14807  by spilly
 Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:24 am
I actually see the scales myself, as I look at the neck. It's like a a map made of lights. Like previously stated, it almost glows. not that I'm trying to compare myself to Jerry, but when you practice long and hard enough it'll happen for you also. If you know the rules inside out, it's alot easier to break them and get away with it.

I play Bid you good night in my E penatonic with an added A when the change hits, just to answer the actual question

 #14822  by b weird
 Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:43 pm
Thanks for all the help guys. Much appreciated. :D