How to find small fills or riffs over chords?


bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
01/31/2020 12:50 am

New here so my first post. Hi you all.

If this don't make any sense just tell me and I will try to be more desrciptive with what I struggle with. As I don't know any musical theory it can be a challenge even to try to describe what I wish to achieve or what I need help and pointers for. Then there is the language barrier as I live in a non-english speaking country so my english is not really that good.

[br]Been playing for a little over a year and there are so much to learn. Not the mention all the theory. Sigh.

[br]So I was told to learn a new song before next practice session and the chord progression is as follows.

[br]Verse is like this

Am - G - C - F - C - F - G

[br]Chorus like this:

Dm - C - G - C – F - Dm - C - G - F

Also, because this song is relativly slow tempo at 98 BPM I feel this could maybe also be a song I could try to put my scale practicing into play. Any solos will be for my pleasure(!) only as I am only rhythm at practice. My understanding so far is that if this song was written with say a C major key signature, I could practice Am pentatonic over the song without too much worry about chord changes. Will that also work for this song? Can I do A minor pentatonic over this song regarding the chord changes or only at the Am chords?

[br]I've been playing only rhythm guitar so far, but I really like this new song and I feel I should find a way to make my part more - I guess interesting. I don't expect anyone to to fix this but I do hope some one can give me ideas to what I can start to look at to venture into putting my stink onto the song. I am really new to this so any pointers will be well recieved and I will do my best to dig into it and try to understand how all this works.

[br]I've have no idea where to start or even what notes to target. But I feel I need to start someday so why not with this song that I do love and make this song a turning point where I can do more with the gutiar then just plain strumming.

[br]I did try both google and youtube but the amount of info is overwhelming so I don't really know where to start or where to stop and for the past week I've been jumping from video to video and sometimes even forgetting why I went to youtube in the first place.


# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,408
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,408
01/31/2020 1:12 pm

Hey & welcome to GT!

Originally Posted by: bouncee

As I don't know any musical theory it can be a challenge even to try to describe what I wish to achieve or what I need help and pointers for.[/quote]

Normally I encourage students to work through one of the guided courses. Either the Fundamentals or the Styles courses.

https://www.guitartricks.com/experienced.php

Those are great places to start because they will teach you skills along with the appropriate amount of theory when you need it. So, you should find the right one according to your current skill level & work through them!

But you seem to already have some skills & more importantly have a very specific goal you are working on. So I'm going to directly address your question.

Originally Posted by: bounceeSo I was told to learn a new song before next practice session and the chord progression is as follows.

[br]Verse is like this

Am - G - C - F - C - F - G

[br]Chorus like this:

Dm - C - G - C – F - Dm - C - G - F

[p]Before you start trying to play scales, you should consider that you can just play some interesting voicings of the chords. For example, most beginners would simply play open chords or barre chord voicings of those chords. But once you understand chord triads & inversions you could play something like this for the verse chords.

|--5----7----8----8------8----8----10------------------------|[br]|--5----8----8----10----8----10----12-----------------------|[br]|--5----7----9----10----9----10----12-----------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

Notice all the notes go up in pitch, the voices gradually move in one direction through the chords. Instead, or the second time through the verse chords, you could go down in pitch for variety!

|--12----10----8----5----3----5----3------------------------|[br]|--13----12----8----6----5----6----3------------------------|[br]|--14----12----9----5----5----5----4------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

You could play them in different rhythms or arpeggiate them! The point is that there are so many creative things to do with chords once you understand a little music theory.

This tutorial is an intro to chord voicings.

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=148

And this collection of tutorials systematically covers all possible major & minor chords triads & inversions across the guitar.

https://www.guitartricks.com/collection/triads-and-inversions

[quote=bouncee]Also, because this song is relativly slow tempo at 98 BPM I feel this could maybe also be a song I could try to put my scale practicing into play. Any solos will be for my pleasure(!) only as I am only rhythm at practice. My understanding so far is that if this song was written with say a C major key signature, I could practice Am pentatonic over the song without too much worry about chord changes. Will that also work for this song? Can I do A minor pentatonic over this song regarding the chord changes or only at the Am chords?

Yes, but you might want to consider using the entire A diatonic minor scale since some of the chords have notes that are not in just the pentatonic version of the scale.

The point is that you figure out which single note lines, melodies, or solo licks to play based on 3 things:

1. The key of the song.

2. Targeting chord tones as they happen.

3. Creating melodies.

I cover the basics of this in this tutorial.

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=876

And this collection of tutorials covers this concept in depth.

https://www.guitartricks.com/collection/learning-to-improvise

Hope that helps! Please ask more if necessary & have fun!


Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

Christopher Schlegel Lesson Directory
# 2
bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
01/31/2020 1:59 pm

EDIT: Sorry I didn't remember to refresh page before posting, so I didn't read your answer before actually posting. Thank you for taking the time to anwser me. Much obliged and I will start working on that immidiatly. Verry nice to see I by pure luck stumbled onto the same thing you suggested in your post. Next time maybe I will try a little more googling and youtube before posting a question. Thx again for taking the time and thanks for pointing me to the appropriate guitartricks library. I got my weekend planned now :D

Btw I didn't even know there where different scales *blushing firesly* Will look into that other scales you mention.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi. Came across triads today. Triads seems more like what I am actually looking for. I guess riffs are more of a contstruction that requires some sort of creative mind.

Triads seems like I can learn and memorize the shapes and just replace some chords in the progression with a triad shape. And from what I understand now, I can use triads and inversions at will or whenever I feel I get "enough time" between chord changes to venture into new terrirorry.

Here is the video I found today. Do you think triads can help me rhythm playing be less monotone?

I am still stuck regarding what pentatonic scale to experiment with for these chords.

Btw, is there a way to embed the video onto the page for viewing directly?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O09gzk-UfiU


# 3
bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
bouncee
Registered User
Joined: 01/18/20
Posts: 26
01/31/2020 11:54 pm
Originally Posted by: ChristopherSchlegel

Hey & welcome to GT!

Originally Posted by: bouncee

As I don't know any musical theory it can be a challenge even to try to describe what I wish to achieve or what I need help and pointers for.[/quote]

Normally I encourage students to work through one of the guided courses. Either the Fundamentals or the Styles courses.

https://www.guitartricks.com/experienced.php

Those are great places to start because they will teach you skills along with the appropriate amount of theory when you need it. So, you should find the right one according to your current skill level & work through them!

But you seem to already have some skills & more importantly have a very specific goal you are working on. So I'm going to directly address your question.

Originally Posted by: bounceeSo I was told to learn a new song before next practice session and the chord progression is as follows.

[br]Verse is like this

Am - G - C - F - C - F - G

[br]Chorus like this:

Dm - C - G - C – F - Dm - C - G - F

[p]Before you start trying to play scales, you should consider that you can just play some interesting voicings of the chords. For example, most beginners would simply play open chords or barre chord voicings of those chords. But once you understand chord triads & inversions you could play something like this for the verse chords.

|--5----7----8----8------8----8----10------------------------|[br]|--5----8----8----10----8----10----12-----------------------|[br]|--5----7----9----10----9----10----12-----------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

Notice all the notes go up in pitch, the voices gradually move in one direction through the chords. Instead, or the second time through the verse chords, you could go down in pitch for variety!

|--12----10----8----5----3----5----3------------------------|[br]|--13----12----8----6----5----6----3------------------------|[br]|--14----12----9----5----5----5----4------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

You could play them in different rhythms or arpeggiate them! The point is that there are so many creative things to do with chords once you understand a little music theory.

This tutorial is an intro to chord voicings.

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=148

And this collection of tutorials systematically covers all possible major & minor chords triads & inversions across the guitar.

https://www.guitartricks.com/collection/triads-and-inversions

[quote=bouncee]Also, because this song is relativly slow tempo at 98 BPM I feel this could maybe also be a song I could try to put my scale practicing into play. Any solos will be for my pleasure(!) only as I am only rhythm at practice. My understanding so far is that if this song was written with say a C major key signature, I could practice Am pentatonic over the song without too much worry about chord changes. Will that also work for this song? Can I do A minor pentatonic over this song regarding the chord changes or only at the Am chords?

Yes, but you might want to consider using the entire A diatonic minor scale since some of the chords have notes that are not in just the pentatonic version of the scale.

The point is that you figure out which single note lines, melodies, or solo licks to play based on 3 things:

1. The key of the song.

2. Targeting chord tones as they happen.

3. Creating melodies.

I cover the basics of this in this tutorial.

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=876

And this collection of tutorials covers this concept in depth.

https://www.guitartricks.com/collection/learning-to-improvise

Hope that helps! Please ask more if necessary & have fun!

Thx. Really indepth answer. To aid my sloppy brain to learn and memorize the diatonic scale I was trying to find the diatonic minor scale in the https://www.guitartricks.com/scalefinderpop.php wich is sad as I see there is even a print function on the scale finder tool.

Google led me to this chart, https://playguitar.com/a-diatonic-minor-scale/ so I will start memorizing the frets and correct finger movements, so that I practice. Finally I get to play with the looper pedal. Lucky fo me it seems my ears work better then my brain sometimes, so if it sounds bad I can target different notes or try those notes on other chords in the progression.

It seems I got plenty to work with here to keep me busy this weekend and far into next week. That chord voicing seems like pure gold for a newbie like me.

Dang what a great start here at the forum and I am happy I signed up @guitartricks.com. What a great rescource. Tons of great videoes and this forum as an added bonus.


# 4
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,408
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,408
02/01/2020 4:26 pm
Originally Posted by: bounceeThx. Really indepth answer.[/quote]

You're welcome!

Originally Posted by: bounceeLucky fo me it seems my ears work better then my brain sometimes, so if it sounds bad I can target different notes or try those notes on other chords in the progression.[/quote]

Yes, you need to rely on your ears for sure! But keep in mind that there will be a reason that your ear prefers one note or line instead of another. And that reason is related to the scale degrees. The reason you might like one particular note instead of another, why it seems to match the chord better is because is is a unique scale degree in the scale along with whatever chord is happening at the time in the music.

And this stuff is knowable. :)

But there are 2 separate steps involved here. You have to have the physical skills to play the notes in time. And you have to know which notes you want to use. And you'll find that you have to go back & forth between those 2 steps quite a bit all through the learning process.

You can learn the diatonic minor scale degrees I mentioned here.

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=445

And then you will be ready for the improv tutorials I mentioned. In particular the beginner one on improv in a minor key will help, because it is in A minor!

https://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=491

[quote=bouncee]It seems I got plenty to work with here to keep me busy this weekend and far into next week. That chord voicing seems like pure gold for a newbie like me.

Good deal! It really is where the concepts of music start to open up the fretboard and turn patterns into musical ideas.

I love discussing theory & even more, how to apply it! For example, you could take one of the examples of voicings I showed you & turn it into a single note melody line.

Take the example of the chords.

|--5----7----8----8------8----8----10------------------------|[br]|--5----8----8----10----8----10----12-----------------------|[br]|--5----7----9----10----9----10----12-----------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

And then isolate each string as a single note melody line as the chords happen.

The E string

|--5----7----8----8------8----8----10------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

Or the B string.

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|--5----8----8----10----8----10----12-----------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

Or the G string.

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|--5----7----9----10----9----10----12-----------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|[br]|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

All of them will work because they are literally notes from the chord progression in the right order as the chords happen.

And then you can get into the improv tutorials & learn how to make whole melodic lines from the scale that target chord tones. :)

[quote=bouncee]Dang what a great start here at the forum and I am happy I signed up @guitartricks.com. What a great rescource. Tons of great videoes and this forum as an added bonus.

Glad you are enjoying it! Best of success!


Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

Christopher Schlegel Lesson Directory
# 5

Please register with a free account to post on the forum.