#142884  by kurt eye
 Thu Nov 20, 2014 4:22 am
I'm struggling with jamming a lead on top of the chord progression. I can't seem to find one scale that works throughout the progression. I start out fine with an E major scale through the E Emaj7 chords and the Asus4 and A. Then on the Em I switch to an Em scale, but it doesn't seem to work through the C7 B7.

E Emaj7 Asus4 A Em C7 B7

Can anyone help a noob? :hail:

Thanks

*EDIT - I updated the thread title with song title
Last edited by kurt eye on Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:49 am, edited 2 times in total.
 #142886  by dleonard
 Thu Nov 20, 2014 7:12 am
One of the biggest keys to unlocking Garcia's playing in the beginning is soloing over the chords. Just like you change to the Em scale on the Em chord, do that for all the chords. What works for me is thinking chord shapes/arpeggios and maybe working the scale around the arpeggio. The arpeggio contains the important notes, the notes that a vocalist would sing.

Try playing all of the arpeggios over the chords to see what I mean, and make sure to get those 7ths in over the C7 and B7.
 #142888  by tatittle
 Thu Nov 20, 2014 7:29 am
I am guessing you are talking about Stella Blue from the chords (once again I see no song title in a post re: a specific song). Yes, the song changes key so to speak in the switch to Em.
Been awhile since Ive payed it but I know the switch to Em chord an E Dorian scale can be used for at least that chord...emphasizing the change to minor mood. And then I think I tend to meander around the 4 notes that make up a C7 and B7 (probably C/B mixolydian respectively). I really do play by ear rather than by scales when I play well though which means muscle memory based on certain harmonic ideas for specific chords within/related to a certain key. When I am thinking about scales consciously I tend to not really know where I am going until it happens (as opposed to being a few steps ahead of the game and thinking more completely in melodies). Good improvising to me means getting an idea and then making it work/completing it more than running around scales and listening where to end a phrase nicely (which is maybe what I do when I am nervous or lazy or less inspired). Good things can come from that too no doubt, but it is much more satisfying to be able to think about more complicated or longer ideas and then pull them off for me.

AAHAA! I bet this is posted in a song forum (which I never take note of) :lol:
 #142897  by TI4-1009
 Thu Nov 20, 2014 10:22 am
tatittle wrote:I am guessing you are talking about Stella Blue from the chords (once again I see no song title in a post re: a specific song). .....
AAHAA! I bet this is posted in a song forum (which I never take note of) :lol:
You Betcha:

Board index ‹ Grateful Dead Songs ‹ Stella Blue
 #142912  by kurt eye
 Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:48 am
Thanks for the advice tatittle and dleonard. I definitely need to move beyond the single key major minor scale jamming and re-immerse myself in learning the chord arpeggios. It will definitely help me in playing melodic lick accents to the chord progression, right now my chords and scales are in two separate universes.
 #142913  by tatittle
 Fri Nov 21, 2014 4:05 am
Yeah I know what you mean. Guitar may be particularly susceptible to a natural categorization like that due to patterns and shapes etc, vs. horn players who have to think of chords in terms of individual notes.

The Asus gets Dmajor scale perhaps and the A an Amaj scale. Im not absolutely sure about that, different scales can have only 1 note different...a note I just learn to avoid by ear. But the D is emphasized on the Asus and resolves into the A appregio well.

This is a good song to try and learn to think of the chords when soloing vs. scales because of its slow pace and key changes.
 #142915  by dleonard
 Fri Nov 21, 2014 7:12 am
I really recommend giving the CAGED method a shot. It is very easy and will really open up the fretboard for you. Also very very Jerry. I know what it's like to be a noob and feel overwhelmed. Just keep poking away at it. You'll eventually find that all the technical stuff is pretty basic, it's just how artfully done that will keep you amazed.
 #142917  by TI4-1009
 Fri Nov 21, 2014 9:12 am
Every now and then I'll pick up my CAGED book and give it another shot, but I just can't seem to get over the hump with it? It makes sense, I WANT to like it, but.... What's with that?
 #142943  by kurt eye
 Sat Nov 22, 2014 5:48 am
I started out learning CAGED and arpeggios and then took a detour to the 5 scale positions of the major & minor pentatonic (plus all the filler notes) which got me started on soloing on top of chord progressions that I play into my boss looper pedal. This method has given me a decent mental picture of where the safe notes are up and down the fret board for a given key.

I found with CAGED that I could play the first 8 notes of the scale but got lost trying to conceptualize where the notes are on the fretboard in the next octave
 #144086  by kurt eye
 Sun Jan 18, 2015 5:38 pm
I think I'm good to go now. I play an e major scale and then switch to an e minor scale on the em c7 b7.