LEARN TO PLAY BASS. IT COOLS YOU DOWN !

A couple of days ago a friend of mine whom I play guitar with from time to time showed up at my doorstep with a bass guitar in his hand. I asked him what that is about, and he said, "Well, do you want that bass ? I was given it from another guy I know, but since I don't know how to play, I thought you could probably use it. Probably just some cheap old crap, but maybe it sounds ok with some new strings on it."

 

The first thing I noticed was the WEIGHT of it. I'm sure more than 10 pounds, that thing is solid and heavy. Then I checked the brand....Lado. Lado ? What the hell is that ? I google'd for a while and found out that this beauty is a hand-made bass by a Canadian guy called Lado from 1981, sold on ebay for as much as......US$ 2'500. Holy shit !

 

I've been trying to play bass on my electric guitar, but slapping on that isn't the real thing. It's fun to play a blues solo and throw in some slaps on the bass strings now and then (I can't play with the pick, so my fingers are free to do that), but that's not playing bass. So I plugged that gem into my guitar amp and WOW. What a sound. I went on Youtube and chose "Another one bites the dust" by Queen for a start on bass lines. Easy. Then I chose Jaco Pastorius and .... erm ... ok. No way to even follow that guy with my eyes !

 

Then, I looked for "bass for beginners" videos, found some and had absolutely NO chance to even repeat anything properly. I mean I know the fretboard pretty good from guitar, but the way to pick the strings on bass - nope.

 

So for the moment I just choose songs and play along to them. It sounds ok, but I know that the technical limit is reached pretty fast. Maybe I should leave the slap technique out and concentrate on 4/4 hard rock and blues. That's no problem.....but as a person which is rhythm focused, that's no fun....

 

But I tell you - when you need to come down from a hard day's work or are on your nerves - start to play bass. You cool down in no time and it's healthier than a downer or even a drink or a reefer.

 

2nd publishing due to time limit....please excuse that already existing comments have been lost....

Comments

Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:34am
I fucked around with a cheap Hofner copy in my teenage years, but never picked it back up. One of the biggest regrets of my life. Bass suits my temperament very well, and if I were a player, I would be the dude in the shadows, letting all the attention whores do their thing while I'm laying it all down and pumping it out along with the percussionists. I still flirt with the idea of trying again, but I think that's one trick this increasingly older dog won't learn, lol.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:36am
Michael
 
Do that ! Höfner bass....I think Paul McCartney used to play with one. Funny design !
Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:47am
@ Stone - Yeah, funny, I bought it from somebody for $20. A couple of weeks later, some asshole comes and tells me that I have his bass. I asked him how that was so, and his big brother, a Hell's Angel, told me so, lol (it was stolen by a well-known thief, and in my tender years, dealing with hot merchandise was almost a daily thing). It turned out that we had mutual friends and they weren't interested in kicking my ass. In a weird deal, he took $40 for the bass, and that was that.
Flying Junior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:58am
Bass can be one of the most exciting instruments.  You must be thinking of Christian music.  Congratulations on your unique score Stone.  You deserve it.
 
One time at band practice in about 1975 one of our buddies brought over a Rickenbacker semi-acoustic bass.  It was turquoise and white.  It looked like an old Chevy Bel-Air.  That's probably the last time I ever cradled a bass guitar.  It felt pretty good.  I guess Lennon and Harrison had Rickenbacker electrics at one time back in the day.

Flying Junior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:00am
I think that Paul had a Höfner bass for his latest photo to promote his new tour.



Flying Junior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:02am
It looks like a typical design for the high-end basses produced by independent companies in the late 1970s in particular Carvin.
Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:07am
@ Stone - This was the last song I tried to cover, the great Tony Levin playing, with no success, lol:
 
"Exposure" - Peter Gabriel:
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITsdkbfQQus
 
And the Stick part from this one from the early 80's King Crimson, "Sartori in Tangiers":
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3WO_dS7ti64
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:18am
FJ
 
Christian music ? LOL Hm....I guess at that time there were only Fender and Gibson guitars en vogue. With basses....well, as I said I never really cared to play bass until Funk came up. There's nothing more boring than playing a C,F,G blues in 4/4 (or a comparable pop song) ;-)
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:35am
Michael B-
i've never played bass, but as noted on SEFa's other thread, i do have 3 favorite bass songs, as i found the bass lines in each of them to be excellent:
"Closer to Home"(aka "I'm Your Captain") by Grand Funk Railroad
"Pinball Wizard," by The Who
"Ramble On,' by Led Zep.
 
There is a website called faststrings.com where i often snag instructional videos(there's another one called "guitara1.com," but it's rarely updated any more).  Basically, you dl them in sections, then re-assemble them, usually with winrar, before you can play them.
 
Also, there's a great program called "VLC media player," which can be dl'd free from dozens of websites; once it's dl'd and run, if you look in the upper toolbar, you'll find a tab called "View."  Click on that, and in the drop-down menu, click "advanced controls," and you'll be able to not only play any dl'd vid(i get a lot from youtube, as well), but you can slow the video down to as much as 1/4 speed while retaining the original pitch, AND you can loop any particular section you wish. 
 
For example, there's a song by ELP called "From the Beginning" that has a speedy lead run on the low E which prefaces both the guitar and synth solos that NO ONE @ youtube covered - but by looping that one section and replaying it slowly, i was able to find the notes; after that, it was just a matter of working on the speed.
 
But for bass, my favorite kinds of notes played on them involve sliding and holding;  on "Pinball Wizard," that song is almost unlistenable without the powerful, hi-volume bass notes which support the tune.
 
The first time i learned that song well enough to perform it, i went to an open mic, where i approached 3 different bass players about accompanying me - they all replied with variations on "Entwhistle?  That guy's  GENIUS!  I can't cover HIM!"  Either that, or they just didn't like me enough to try.
 
Subsequently, i've found a few who'd play it with me, but none willing to crank up the volume enough to demonstrate the sheer POWER of that song...except one.
 
There was a band that had an interesting premise; they call themselves the "Hairy Karaoke" band, and hand out a list of songs to the audience, all of which they can play; you pick your song, get on the list, and they'll play it for you while you sing - or in my case, sing and play - that bass player was RIGHT on time AND with power.  It felt awesome.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:36am
There's some bass goodies here
 
Level 42 - Love Games
 
https://youtu.be/SpsOE48fjb0 (almost like a guitar solo....that's what I talk about the picking technique. I could play that as a guitar solo, but if you don't master that pickin' on the bass, no way ! I'm gonna be 80 once I can do that LOL
 
John Entwhistle (the first rock basstst that could do MORE than rock
 
Billy Sheehan ..... influenced by John Entwhistle
 
I wonder how many years it takes to do this....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:44am
Face
 
Thanks for posting it again ! That's what I do usually too. I look for Karaoke stuff where the instrument is cut out I wanna play. Like Gary Moore stuff without his guitar :-) Then I can jerk off to it LOL
opher goodwin Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:00am
I am sure that you are right Stone. I'd love to be able to play an instrument. I can imagine those deep bass notes would flow through you and jiggle up your cells into a soothing relaxation.
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:02am
SEFa-
That is an awesome-looking bass; were you able to get replacement strings for it, yet?
 
And it was interesting that the value of it far exceeded that which your friend thought, as well.  Hope it plays as beautifully as it looks.
 
But you may also wish to consider at least visiting a few pawn-shops/music stores to try out some amps that are specifically for the bass, and maybe a couple of pedals, as well.
 
There's a song by The Band called "Up on Cripple Creek," which has a very "growly" sound to the bass which i really liked; i have NO idea how that bass player GOT that sound, but it seemed possible to me that he was feeding through a Crybaby or other Wah-wah set "just right" in order to get that sound.  (Personally, i learned that song[on guitar] in self-defense; everyone and their brother plays The Band's "The Weight," usually poorly-to-horribly, so i wanted to know how to play an alternative song of theirs, and excellently.)
Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:27am
@ Facepalm - Could you repeat that? I had an egg frying, lol. I think I covered the topic somewhat in my post about Power Trios. You sound like you're making a deal with the Devil, trying to exploit modern technology to compensate for years of practice, practice, and practice, like these idiotic rappers and others, who sample and sample, and dub and dub.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:36am
Oph
 
Very good description. That's exactly what happens !
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:40am
No, even by using technology, i still have to practice to get the muscle memory together, and that ain't easy, at least at first.
 
i started playing guitar over 40 years ago, and discovered youtube about 5 years ago; when i looked up the songs i knew, i discovered that i'd been playing them wrong for more than 30 years, in most cases.  So, i re-learned them.  It's not easy; it's humbling.  But as i honor the Truth, the truth was that i'd not been playing them right, so i chose to NOT keep making the same mistakes.
 
i don't think this is a deal with the devil, at all; did you ever see the 60 minutes interview with Robert Zimmerman?  Now, THERE's a guy who DID make such a deal.  Probably accounts for his lousy attitude, especially these days, as his time on earth grows shorter and shorter.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:41am
Face
 
I sure will check that and show it to a friend who has a small insider shop for guitars in Winterthur. I'm sure he can tell me more about the thing and sell me some strings, although so far they keep the tune. I listened to your link, but to me that rhythm is a bit "hesitant", if you know what I mean. I kind of like the more "driving" tunes. As in disco (sorry, Michael LOL) or better, funk. Kind of an easy flow that makes appetite to drive with 150 mph :-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:47am
BTW Oph
 
You say you'd like to play an instrument. Do it, start it ! The advantage in music is that you don't have to be an athlete to play, and you can even play in a wheelchair. And if your right hand happens to have Parkinson - imagine how fast you can play. Almost like Billy Sheehan LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:51am
The Time - Jerk out
 
This is a good example of exc ellent guitar work and cool bass. Take your bass, stand in the corner and groove :-)
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:52am
Yep, "Up on Cripple Creek" is somewhat syncopated, but that's part of it's charm!  Different strokes for different folks, though.
Might be interesting to play the song for your friend in Winterthur, to see if he has any idea how to get that "growly" sound...well, assuming you liked it, that is.  For me, there's no sense learning anything you don't like.  Why bother, if you're not going to incorporate it somehow?
 
But did you look up the other 3 songs, yet, and if so, any of 'em you like?
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:59am
Bass licks can define a whole song, as heard here:
 
Gap Band - Early in the morning
 
Wings - Silly Love songs
 
It doesn't have to be complicated. Like the "Smoke on the water" guitar riff :-)
Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:08am
This is almost as bad as it gets - James Brown dance moves, lol:
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OkRvO43rgj0
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:18am
Michael
 
That's another thing......like Michael Jackson. The first black man who wanted to be a white woman LOL
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:26am
Stone-
Did you hear about the black guy who wanted to be white? 
He had his skin lightened, his hair straightened...and his dick shortened.
Women are Inferior Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:33am
@ Stone - "That's another thing......like Michael Jackson. The first black man who wanted to be a white woman LOL"
 
Stone, you lost me on that one. However, when I said "bad", in this context, "bad" is "good". Truth be told, I wish James Brown was my father, lol.
 
 
opher goodwin Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:35am
Stone - I have tried. It appears that I am tone deaf and cannot control my fingers - I'm a writer who is a one-finger typist!
One has to know ones limitations. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 7:15am
Face LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 7:16am
Michael
 
Nothing against James Brown, it's just kinda before my time. But with his Sex Machine he earned my respect :-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 7:18am
Oph
 
That's ok. Good to know one's limitations, a lot of people don't know them. But then....often one finds out that by trying and keeping on it those limitations finally are getting un-limited LOL
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 9:06am
Opher-
i've often taught people how to play, and this is how i start:
 
"The first thing you'll need to do is remember that you need to turn your dumb, weak, uncoordinated and stupid fingers into smart, strong, clever, and obedient fingers."
 
When i started, i literally had to force my fingers into the chord positions.  Then, once they're IN position, a practice routine i developed was to squeeze the chord as hard as i could, then relax and remove it, then try to put it back exactly where it was before.  i still use this technique today with that mandolin i just got.
 
The object of this exercise is to be able to THINK a chord and have your fingers jump there immediately.
 
It takes awhile, at a minimum a month, but as long as a year before you can switch chords easily and confidently(and have them sound good).  This is why most people give up; although professionals make it LOOK easy, it is NOT easy, otherwise everyone would do it.
 
Bass is a little easier, because there you just need to memorize individual note patterns, along with a few other things like slides, bends, hammers, pull-offs, and tremelo...but that's just on the fretting hand; there are a lot of different ways to play with your picking hand, as well; you can use your finger, your thumb, both together, more than one finger, slap the strings...but it's fun(eventually), and as you note(no pun intended), will let the music flow through you, reflect your mood, INFLUENCE your mood, or whatever.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 10:16am
Face
 
Spot on!
 
It took my about two years of autopractising without a teacher to get to a niveau of playing guitar that I would have achieved with a teacher in three months.
 
But that wasn't my main goal. I just had fun trying and seeing my slow progress. Just like I've started now on the bass. I know that I will also never be able to follow "the right way" on how to play properly, this finger here and that finger there. But I don't care. If it sounds good it's ok. I just made a small video where I played with the Gap Band and The Time, and a friend said: Well you got that pretty good already.
 
Hey that's encouraging :-)
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 10:55am
Even after i'd been playing TWO YEARS, my younger brother would complain, "Everything you play sounds the same!"  It was maybe 2 months later that i "got rhythm."  i don't know any other way to explain it.
 
What helped a lot in my case was learning how to palm mute the strings; that provided a natural "percussive effect" that vastly improved my listenability, so to speak.  Even so, it was YEARS after that before i dared to play on-stage. 
 
As long as i can remember, i had terrible stage fright, but one day in my 50's, i said "You know, i'm old enough that i should be OVER this by now!  So i started hitting the open mics, and i kept going no matter how many times i screwed up, until i convinced my subconscious that it was ok, and nothing bad was going to happen, and that people WANT to hear me play and sing right.  I'd say i'm probably 95-98% over it by now, so there's still a ways to go, but i'm MUCH better than when i'd forget the lyrics, stop, give up, and walk offstage...etc.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 11:10am
Face
 
Stage fright - ooooh yes. In our first band I played piano (s small Korg in the corner....) until I was getting jealous of our guitarist, and I started lead guitar. But then I was afraid to stand in front of the people and play and thought: Let's have a drink first. 2 liters of beer and everything went well. But then ... we had a pretty big gig, there were about 500 people (warm-up for a local band), and we had only 3 songs....instrumental ones, something between Jazz and Rock, our keyboarder made most songs.
 
We extended those 3 songs to 15 minutes each with improvisations for each of us (we were 18 years, by the way), and people were just standing there. Shiver.......No applause, just YAWN by the public. Then we had to fill another 15 minutes, and I took the guitar from our guitarist and played a Chic-style riff. I was pretty drunk and therefore courageous, and started to rap to it, in Swiss German and English, just what came in mind.
 
It wasn't a SONG, but people liked it and started to move and dance ! I couldn't believe it. The first 3 songs were excellent songs in matter of arrangement and playing, and nobody noticed. But a 2-chord funk lick with no preparation made them freak out....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 11:50am
All
 
Since Christmas is not far away, allow me to wish you a nice party with as many kisses, hugs, drugs and irritations :-)
 
Leo - Last Christmas
ChetDude Added Dec 7, 2018 - 2:17pm
Great bass players (I've seen most of them): 
Jack Bruce (Cream)
Jack Cassidy (Jefferson Airplane)
Entwhistle, of course
James Jamerson (THE sound of Motown - the "Hook")
Bootsie Collins
Stanley Clarke
Charles Mingus
 
And more recent, my trio of bass gods!
Michael Manring (great soloist)
Victor Wooten (GAK!)
and the amazing upright player: Edgar Meyer.  His work on "Hop, Skip and Wobble" with Russ Berrenberg on guitar and Jerry Douglas on dobro is mind-blowing.  I got to watch them play a set from about 10 feet away back in the 90s...
 
As the best bass teacher I ever had told me, "Real bass players play 3rds and 7ths!"  Work your way up from 1, 4, 5 to grab those 3rds and 7ths.
 
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 2:28pm
Chet
 
Work your way up from 1, 4, 5 to grab those 3rds and 7ths.
 
Sorry, I have no idea about what that means. I can't read notes (except basics on the piano), so I'm lost. I listen - and play. That's all I can. Not very professional, but I still managed to do songs in an amateur way.
 
Stone - Hello
 
No bass yet, sorry. And since I've been influenced by the Beatles in my youth, you might pardon that this is not Funki LOL
 
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 2:49pm
Piano song
 
I love piano for making songs. Maybe one day I arrive to play piano, voice, guitar AND bass and mix it together LOL
Wendy Bugliari Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:40pm
NOPE
But will escort you on that rig for some Bass fishing!
Cheers,
Buggy
Neil Lock Added Dec 7, 2018 - 3:58pm
Stone-Eater: I envy you for being able to make such a loud bass sound with an instrument that weighs only 10 pounds. The marvels of acoustic technology. My "bass" hunk of metal (tuba) must weigh at least 3 times that...
 
And yes, I have played "Pinball Wizard," and it's fun. But not nearly as spectacular a sound as an electric bass, of course.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:04pm
Neil
 
There is no bass in any of the recording links I put here. That was my electric guitar LOL
 
BTW: Maybe the bass is heavier. It is just a guess....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:05pm
Buggie
 
I'm ready LOL
Ryan Messano Added Dec 7, 2018 - 4:36pm
King Saul needed music too, it calmed him down when he lost his mind.
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 5:10pm
Stone-
The "1, 4, 5" refers to a standard progression in blues.
 
Lets say you are playing blues in E; the E would be the 1 - count up 4 steps from there, and you have the 4 chord, the A, and the 5 chord would be the B.  In the key of E, the 3 would be the G, and the 7 would be the C, i think.  But i don't really know what Chet means by reaching for those notes(or chords), either, to be honest.
 
That song you linked to - "Hello, Here I Am" - sounded good, but to my ear, much more like Supertramp than the Beatles; also the balance was off.  Should've been more vocals and less keys, volume-wise, but again, maybe that's just me.  Nothing a good sound engineer couldn't fix in a few shakes.
 
i'm of the opinion that all instruments should support the vocals, not drown them out, except maybe on rare occasions...like when there are no lyrics being sung...
 
*grin*
 
Was the video accompanying the song shot out the window of a train?
 
If you like incorporating video in your music, you may greatly benefit from getting a copy of the "$30 Film School," by Michael W. Dean, which teaches a lot of things about how to make videos, especially inexpensively.
ChetDude Added Dec 7, 2018 - 7:15pm
Thanks, Face.
 
Yep, the numbering system refers to the cords related to the notes in the Harmonic Major Scale.
 
In ANY key, the "standard" progression that stays within the scale of that key is from 1 (Major Chord), 2 (minor), 3 (minor), 4 (major), 5 (7th or dominant), 6 (minor), 7 (dim) and back to 1 an octave higher.
 
So, if you're playing in "A" (major), the 1 chord is "A", the 4 chord "D" the 5 chord "E" and the 6 chord is "F#m". 
 
(HINT: The Tricky, hard to find chord you often hear is the 2 chord!)
 
I learned the above from the best guitar teacher I ever had, Marc Bonilla -- whose excellent guitar work is featured in the series "Justified".  It was funny, he told me on the phone (in '83) that he would teach me "everything I need to know about playing lead guitar in 10 lessons". 
And he did. 
Then I spent 2 years of lessons with him before it began to sink in.
And I've been refining it ever since.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marc_Bonilla
-----------------------------------
Many call this numbering system the Nashville Method - it's what the heavy hitters in the studios in Nashville use to communicate chord progressions...often using the fingers on one hand...(finger(s) UP for major chord, DOWN for minor chord)...
 
I also use it in my head because I don't have to care what key I'm in as long as I know which chord number in the progression I am supposed to be playing -- which I can do now on the fly by ear most of the time with most folks.
 
I can change the key and I'm NOT thinking
A, D, E, F#m (key of A) or
C, F, G, Am (Key of C) or
E, A, B7, C#m (Key of E) --
but 1, 4, 5, 6 in every case and my fingers know where to go.
 
Now it gets a little harder when you're playing bass. 
 
I decided that I was bored with my bass playing about 10 years ago and found a great teacher named Jerry Ptak (alas, no longer with us).  Jerry primarily was a jazz guy and thus his comment that "Real bass players play 3rds and 7ths."  You can "get by" with just playing the root and 5th note for each chord in the scale on bass and if you get fancy, some passing notes within the scale from chord to chord.
 
(Thus the old story, "How many bass players does it take to change a light bulb?  Ans: 1-5-1-5)
 
But the 3rd and 7th note that WORKS and relates to whatever chord in the progression you are currently playing often moves!  It sometimes moves depending upon whether you're ascending or descending the scale moving to another chord but mainly the 3rd is different depending upon whether you're playing a major or minor chord in the progression. 
 
And the 7th is kind of binary -- it either sounds awful or great depending on what else is going on...so ya' gotta pick your spots.
 
But the main thing as Mark used to tell me is to HAVE FUN AND TRUST YOUR EARS!  So, HAVE FUN and TRUST YOUR EARS, GUYS!
ChetDude Added Dec 7, 2018 - 7:21pm
To reiterate (or beat the horse more thoroughly):
 
In ANY key, the "standard" progression of chords with notes that stay within the scale of THAT KEY is from the 1 (Major Chord), 2 (minor), 3 (minor), 4 (major), 5 (7th or dominant), 6 (minor), 7 (dim) and back to 1 an octave higher.
 
To run a complete progression of chords in a key that you may recognize - in the key of E:
 
1. E
2. F#m
3. G#m
4. A
5. B (or usually B7)
6. C#m
7. D#dim
8. E - an octave higher.
 
Enjoy...
ChetDude Added Dec 7, 2018 - 8:40pm
My favorite bass recording was this one I composed and recorded in 1992:
 
Sweet For Bass
 
Enjoy!
Koshersalaami Added Dec 7, 2018 - 10:20pm
I never put much time into bass. In the seventies I co-owned a stereo Rickenbacker with a friend. 
 
The advantage of bass over guitar is that all the intervals are the same no matter where you go. If you’re playing guitar - lead more than chording, where you just memorize positions - you have to remember that there is this slightly short interval between the G and B strings, a major third rather than a fourth. But bass is all fourths. The same things work everywhere as long as the strings aren’t open. 
 
One thing this means is that if you’re playing a pattern or lick on fewer than four adjacent strings, let’s say E A and D (I haven’t played five string so I think in four string, though I doubt adding the fifth would be that difficult), and you want to jump to your four chord, you just move your hand up a string (up in pitch, not space - in space, it’s actually down a string, but music works better if we talk in pitch) and do the exact same thing. It’s already under your hand. You don’t have to move up or down the neck, you just stay put. If you have to go to five, move up two frets and you’re done. 
 
FP, if you’re in E, the 3 would be G# assuming you’re in major and the 7 would be D. 
 
I’m primarily a piano player. One of the advantages of being familiar with piano is that you always know the name of the note you’re playing. On guitar and bass, you don’t have to, you just have to know how far you’re jumping from where you are; without open strings, key doesn’t matter. Another related advantage is you know what notes go into chords because you can’t play them without seeing that. 
Bill H. Added Dec 7, 2018 - 11:05pm
SVT
FacePalm Added Dec 7, 2018 - 11:59pm
Chet, KS-
Sorry, guys, ya lost me.  My music theory pretty-much stops with knowing how to find the notes, not memorizing them throughout the fingerboard.  Based on what Chet wrote, i'm guessing that the key of E has 4# notes, but....
 
When i first started guitar, long, long ago, now, i spent maybe a couple of weeks with a John Prine book, trying to figure out how to play various songs, working with the G clef, memorizing "Every Good Boy Deserves Favor/FACE and all that crap.  i figured out pretty early that there's a LOT of different notes in different positions with the same damn name, and i had NO idea what fret they were referring to when they put a note on the scale.  Then, i realized there was the OTHER clef, and figured out that was referring mostly to the 3 lowest-pitched strings and said "FUCK THIS!  I'm learning by ear(and eye)."  So i sought out people who could play and asked them to teach me stuff(with limited success); i'd find a hot guitarist with some fast licks and say "Can you show me that?"  Most of 'em would say, "Sure," but refused to slow 'em down, giving me the excuse that they COULDN'T slow 'em down(which i knew instinctively was a steenkin' pile of lying shit).
 
Hence now, my reliance on the VLC and patience.  And repetition.
 
i learned the whole lead to Led Zep's "Stairway," as well as to Toto's "Africa," Queen's "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," and so on, and i play 'em all on acoustic-electric.  i always thought i'd like to play electric, and i've got a couple of 'em i never play; takes too damn long to set 'em up and tear 'em down, turning on and off this pedal and that amp, etc.  When i want to play or practice, i just pick up the acoustic and "voila!"  Besides, the "feel" you need to play electric well, i just ain't got.  Currently, i've almost got "Fool & Me"(Robin Trower) down, but i hope to shortly work on the leads for the ZZ Top medley "Waitin' on the Bus"/"Jesus Just Left Chicago."  i've got the chording and the melodies down for those; performed 'em a couple of weeks ago, now, same day i picked up the mandolin.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:44am
FacePalm,
Don’t bother trying to learn all the notes by finger position. You’ll go stark raving nuts because the same note has too many damned addresses. Particularly if you can play by ear, which you clearly can, learn intervals - being able to recognize them even unconsciously is the only way you can play by ear and even the only way you can sing - and work from the notes you know. You can think of intervals either by hand position or by ear.
 
On another site (actually two but one of those is gone now), I once wrote a series of posts on theory for musicians who don’t read. The series doesn’t get you to do this stuff so much as explain how it works. If you want to get good at it, that’s up to you. How I organized it was I wrote an index post, a sort of table of contents with descriptions of the lesson posts and links to all of them. There are I think five in this series. Might be six, I’d have to go look. None of them are long, none of them have links sending you to anywhere else, none of them (believe it or not) require specific listening assignments. 
 
Here:
http://oursalon.ning.com/profiles/blogs/basic-theory-for-musicians-who-don-t-read-contents-links
 
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 2:06am
KS-
Don’t bother trying to learn all the notes by finger position. You’ll go stark raving nuts because the same note has too many damned addresses.
 
Hence my frustration and unwillingness to stick with reading music from the staffs...nevertheless, several of the instructional vids i have speak to the value of learning note positions, mainly(i think) for being able to (relatively) swiftly determine where harmonious notes might be found for various lead runs.  i'm basically(when i think of it) just doing octaves right now - like if i'm playing an A bar chord, i'll know where all the A's are in that position, as well as above and below that bar chord position.
 
Thanks for the link; looks like it may prove to be of interest and have value.  i appreciate your taking the time to a) put it together and b) post it!
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:30am
Face
 
I know nada of musical theory, all I know are the keys on the keyboard, not on guitar.......never cared for it LOL But you're right, that video is a train ride in Switzerland close to where I live.
 
I recorded first keyboard and voice with my dullphone, then played that back on my amp and added guitar by recording that again. So this is a one-track-recording. That's why the quality is shit, but I don't have any proper equipment, and I don't master all those mixing programs DJ's use....;-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:31am
BTW: I like Supertramp ;-)
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:34am
Supertramp...I listened to Breakfast in America recently for the first time in many years. I forgot what a good album that was.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:36am
Chet
 
Interesting but way above my knowledge. I play by ear, and after 40 years I know where to get which tune, fortunately ;-) Yesterday I was on YT and played to all the discofunk tunes I could find - from Chic to Gap Band to whatever. A lot of fun, really. I didn't know that playing bass is so cool, really :-)
 
Of course I have to stick to stuff which is not too complicated at the beginning.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:40am
BTW: That recording is nice ! I'm used to play together with drums, a good drummer is very important in a band. When he's got no drive, nothing works out. The bands I played with always had problems with the drummer. either he was more soloeing than playing straight, or he couldn't keep the rhythm.....
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:00am
I drive by a pawn shop almost every day, and still have an idea to walk in and buy a beat-up old P-Bass knockoff and a little practice amp. At a bare minimum, I can annoy some of my more annoying neighbors, lol.
Flying Junior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:09am
Drums and bass is the whole thing.  I was actually telling Michael B. that he must have been thinking of Christian music if he thought that the bass player was just part of the background.  Mike Huckabee can play that shit.
 
Once James Brown, Sly Stone, Chaka Khan, Stevie Wonder, Stanley Clarke et al exploded the whole funk thing, bass would never be the same.  It's fuckin bitchen.  It makes people wanna dance.
 
Best bass ostinato?
 
Pali Gap recorded in Hawaii.  But that just makes you want to light up another bowl.





Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:38am
Michael
 
Do that !
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:38am
FJ
 
I looked for Pali Gap but there seem to be only covers on YT.
Minister Peaceful Poet Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:42am
I tried to play a guitar once.  I just couldn't get my wrist around it.  So I gave the guitar to my younger brother when I went off into the Navy, as you know, he learned to play it very well. 
Flying Junior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:51am
Hendrix is still copyright protected.  You have to either buy Rainbow Bridge or pay for iTunes or Spotify.

Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:52am
Shep
 
Yep. Say hello to Rich from me !
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:52am
@ FJ - Christmas music? Here are my all-time favorite fucking Christmas songs, by fucking far, lol:
 
A good one:
 
Fear - Fuck Christmas:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbTULjLtKP4
 
 
An even better one:
 
The Rugburns - I hate Fuckin' Christmas:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiF8wKobF68
 
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:56am
Michael
 
Good Christmas songs. Unfortunately I have to stay in Switzerland for Shitmas, wish I'd be in Muslim Senegal where this is no subject at all LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:57am
FJ
 
Ah ok. Then I have to visit my favorite torrent site LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:58am
BTW: I don't like streaming stuff, and iTunes is for iShit people LOL
Flying Junior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:59am
I resisted Spotify after it kept trying to install Googol Chrome.  But I ended up installing it a second time for Thanksgiving to make our daughter happy.
 
I listened to about one hour of Hendrix.  It felt good.  Keep on Straight Ahead!  I haven't had that much fun since I listened to Douggie's licensed copy of Tommy.  I am saving Voodoo Chile Slight Return for a special occasion.  I haven't heard it played right since my little buddy showed it to me on his Marshall stacks before band practice in 1977.
 
I can't just listen to it any time I want.  I have media skirmishes with the wife.  She prefers movies.  But she likes loud music too.  lolz
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:02am
FJ
 
LOL That's why my wife and me live in separate households. Our interests are too different. Hm......I remember when I was starting to play guitar. All I wanted to be able to do was playing the Hendrix' Foxy Lady riff !
opher goodwin Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:03am
Stone - when I was at college I roomed with a mate who was an excellent guitarist. He tried to teach me. I spent 6 months and I really worked at it. But I still couldn't do it.
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:08am
Someone asked Eddie Van Halen what happened between the first time he picked up a guitar, and "Eruption". His answer was something along the lines of "Practice, practice, practice. Alex [his brother, in case you didn't know] would go out and party, and I would be locked up in my room playing." But then again, their father was a musician, so it was clearly in their genes.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:11am
Hm....I was never too disciplined, that's why I haven't gotten further. Also I'm the only one in the family that has an interest in music and playing. I had a grandmother who played piano, but that's about it. Even my kids have no interest in it, although I've tried.
Flying Junior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:22am
Fuck man!  My favorite barber shop is in East Oceanside.
 
You must have been at that perfect moment for the real punk thing around 1980.  My album buddies by that time were all acid-heads.  FFS I was a music student, I couldn't waste my time listening to punk rock.  MY professors gave me shit for being into Reggae.  We were into Zappa, Beefheart and Dylan.  I missed out on the whole fucker.  The only time I heard any real punk was on KPFK Los Angeles every Saturday night.  I somehow missed out on the Agent Orange and Dead Kennedies.  Too much time at the beach, I guess.
 
But the Rugburns are pretty fucking funny!  Merry Christmas all of you sick puppies.  Dick's Automotive is a scream.

Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:36am
@ FJ - I actually fucked a chick with Dick's Automotive playing in the background, lol.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:09am
FJ
 
You must have been at that perfect moment for the real punk thing around 1980
 
1980 ??? LOL
 
Punk started well before, about 1974 with the New York Dolls, in 1975 with the Ramones, and, actually, weren't the Stooges Punk already in 1970 ? Anyway, it caught on here in Europe in 1976 by the Sex Pistols, the Damned, Sham 69 and others, but very soon it was no more than a "brand" to sell safety pins and metal chains....marketing destroyed it pretty fast. 
 
1980 pop punk started to become big, nice clean pop-punk of the Blink 182 or Green Day sort. That was way out of what Punk's first intention was: Getting music back to the people, don't leave it to the ones only that are capable to play "Close to the Edge"....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:14am
For our younger readers:
 
Yes - Close to the edge 1973
 
Not everybody can play that. It's good, but....
 
Sex Pistols - Holidays in the sun 1977
 
Everybody can play that after a few months of practising
 
And which is more fun ? ;-)
Flying Junior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:44am
The Los Angeles punk scene was still happening 1980-1987.  Moshing was still going on in the early 1990s.  Shit, in 1974, rocknroll had barely had enough time to die yet.
 
Rock and Roll saved my soul.  That's why I'm here today.
 
Punk was never about commercial success.  It was a music club scene. That and certain really cool radio stations.
 
I totally missed the Rugburns.  I thought they must have been a band from way back in the day.  lolz
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:55am
FJ
 
The Los Angeles punk scene was still happening 1980-1987.
 
Is that so ? Ok. But what is Rock'n'Roll to you ? Elvis Presley or Guns'n'Roses ? Here we call the first Rock'n'Roll. I remember when I was a kid there was only Rock'n'Roll and Beat (from the Beatles), as we called it. Then came Progressive Rock, then Hard Rock, then Heavy Metal, and now we have n specifications in popular music from Goa Trance and Trip Hop (an insult to the lovely Goa in India) to Brutal Death Metal to Djent or Mathcore. What-the-Hell LOL
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:09am
@ Stone - A few months ago, I shamelessly promoted a rockumentary about The Mentors. I cracked up at one of the interviewees in that masterpiece of film-making in the way he described the hostile early world of punk, metal, and everything in between. The Metalheads hated Punks because the Punks were playing nothing but noise, they couldn't play, etc etc, while the Punks were saying the Metalheads were all commercial posuers, big-ass fucking hair-do's, chicks with dicks, etc, etc.
 
Holy Fuck! I was just inspired! That's what I LOVE about YouTube, in that it brings back LA bands from my early teen years, like Kommunity FK, Sacharrine Trust, and The Fiends.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:14am
Michael
 
The Punks were right. Look at these bands from Twisted Sister to Mötley Crüe (fuck them, they pirated the ö from Motörhead) to Kansas to Journey etc. Hairdresser bands LOL
 
....gotta check the ones out you noted, thanx :-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:16am
BTW: Chicks with dicks LOOL
 
Gotta keep that one :-)
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:28am
@ Stone - listen to this one, lol:
 
The Mentors - "Chicks With Dicks":
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVkY6KTCMxc
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:32am
Stone-
"Close to the Edge" was always my favorite trippin' music!  i could play parts of "And You and I," which is great fun to do on the 12-string...but 12-string is like dessert; awesome, in small doses, but you don't want to make a meal of it. 
i was surprised to discover that Dave Mason had played the 12-string rhythm for Hendrix's "All Along the Watchtower," imo THE best remake EVER.
i can do tolerable versions of his "Purple Haze," "The Wind Cries, Mary," and "Castles Made of Sand," and a few others, like "Wait 'til Tomorrow."  There are lots more of his on my "one day" list, like "If 6 was 9," "Bold As Love," and etc., and most recently, i worked on "Foxy Lady."  The intro and outro trills, with the volume control and judicious feedback use, are the most fascinating parts, to me, but it's tough for me to play the strange chord he uses, there at the intro to the lyrics.  My favorite album of his was released posthumously, entitled "Cry of Love."  There's a couple of really cool songs on it i'd like to learn, assuming my memory's still intact: "Belly Button Window" and "My Friend," i think it's called - both of those are in a semi-talking-blues style that i really like.  Some lyrics from the latter go, "i'm riding - through L.A. - on a bi-sickle made for fools - when i see one o' my old buddies, he say "You don't look the way you used to do."  I said, "Well, some people look like a coinbox," and he says "Well, looks like you ain't got no coins to spare..."
 
You know how you know when a drummer's knocking at your door?  First, the knocking speeds up, then it slows down, then it speeds up, then it slows down...
 
So i'm playing on the street one day, and this cop comes up and threatens to arrest me!  "For what?!" i ask.  "Pretty sure i saw you fingering a minor, there, boy," he replied.
++++++++++++++++++++++
 
Michael B-
"Breakfast in America" was when Supertramp started to go commercial and away from their semi-protest song roots, and i lost interest(though a keyboardist friend of mine wanted to do "Take the Long Way Home," so i spent a couple of weeks figuring out the harmonica part).  My fave's of theirs were "Crisis?  What Crisis?"  "Crime of the Century," and "Even in the Quietest Moments."  Another great 12-string song is the medley "Easy Does it/Sister Moonshine,"(off Crisis, if memory serves) and i've performed it a couple of times, even though it's right at the extreme end of my upper range near the end of the song, and i've gotten feedback that i suck when trying for those notes.  Doesn't stop me, though...hey, it's an open mic.  If they don't like it, they can always get their money back ... oh, wait...
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:42am
Face
 
So i'm playing on the street one day, and this cop comes up and threatens to arrest me!  "For what?!" i ask.  "Pretty sure i saw you fingering a minor, there, boy," he replied.
 
LOOL
 
About Supertramp: When I was 16, I heard "Crime of the century" for the first time and it blew me away. "School" and "Rudy" as well as "Hide in your shell". I started piano at 12, but gave it up after 2 weeks because my teacher wanted me to play songs I couldn't stand. Up to today I've never tried to cover a song. I prefer to create songs myself and not cover other people's. I just don't want to waste energy in doing something that doesn't come from ME.
 
Some might say that's arrogant, but that's ok LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:44am
Michael
 
Just listening to "Up the dose" from the Mentors. Pretty good guitar there :-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:52am
HEY that Mentor's stuff is great ! I'm freaking out LOL
Women are Inferior Added Dec 8, 2018 - 8:27am
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 8:36am
Most politically incorrect. And today impossible due to shaving practices....;-)
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 9:05am
I like Close to the Edge and And You And I. Not to play, to listen to. In terms of Supertramp, I think the unison bass and xylophone minor arpeggios on School are just so cool. 
 
I also like Bloody Well Right, even though I really think it’s two songs that don’t belong together. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 9:22am
Kosh
 
I always had problems with songs that go on for 20 minutes or so. They always seemed to be multiple songs but labeled as one. Take Supper's Ready from Genesis for example (although I think that "Selling England by the pound" is one of the most remarkable albums of all time - to me), Echoes or Atom Heart Mother from Floyd etc. 
 
Yes is a band I never really understood. Roundabout was ok, Sound Chaser as well,  and "Soon", the last part from that long "Gates of Delirium" one can match "Starless" from King Crimson in feeling no problem.
 
But Jon Anderson's singing always reminded me of a castrate LOL
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 9:32am
Stone-
KS's article is of some interest to me, but in order to comment on it at the link, i'd need to sign up - and i'd prefer not to, if i can avoid it, so would it be ok to ask KS questions about them as i go through it HERE?  Don't want to take your comment string too much off-topic without your permission, first, but i'm going to ask a couple questions of him, now:
 
KosherSalaami-
i've made it through the first chapter of your instruction; i have a background in electronics, so i was already aware of A440 and frequencies, but other stuff i wasn't aware of so much, though i was hip to the accidentals and the difference between the black and white keys, as well as the half-steps between E&F, B&C.
 
However, at the end you provided a glossary of key terms for review, and as best i could tell, "diatonic" was not referenced directly in the article...and i still don't know what it is.
 
Have you ever heard of the "Sofeggio frequencies"?  Allegedly, most music was "de-tuned" from them at some point in the past, in order to prevent their beneficial effects.  What i've read is that if you scatter iron filings on a table and run standard musical frequencies through them, the patterns formed are chaotic, at best, but those of the Solfeggio range form beautiful and geometrical designs akin to snowflakes or etc..  At any rate, the Solf freq's are not far away from standard tuning - something like 8hz or so, as best i recall - so at some point, i'd like to get a better tuner and tune all the instruments in the band to those frequencies, if for nothing else than to experiment with their effect upon audiences.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:10am
FacePalm,
I should start off by saying I don’t read fluently outside of first position, where I do. At this point it depends what you want to do with your reading. If you want to figure out a line to play and practice as opposed to being able to sightread in real time up the neck, that can be done without trying to become fluent at reading in all positions. 
 
You don’t have to learn the notes by finger position if you learn the intervals by finger position. That entails really knowing your intervals and intuitively getting what they are, which is frankly what you really do when you play by ear anyway, you’re just not used to naming them. Let’s assume you know all the notes on the E strings, because you have to know them somewhere, and it helps to know all the notes in first position on all strings, again because again you have to know them somewhere. You’ll know all the notes on the twelfth fret because they’re all octaves of the open strings. So you have a number of reference points. 
 
Now you learn a couple of scales, not necessarily note name by note name but position by position. I’ll give you an example. There’s a minor pentatonic scale that’s commonly used for blues. Using guitar fingering convention of 1-4 (as opposed to piano which is 1-5 because we use thumbs), so 4 is pinkie, and assigning one finger per adjacent fret, play 4 on your twelfth (octave) fret on your top string, which gives you an E. Leaving your hand in exactly the same place and playing the scale down, it’s 
E string 4/E 2/D
B string 4/B 2/A
G string 4/G 1/E
D string 4/D 1/B
A string 4/A 2/G
E string of course 4/E 2/D
The scale itself is E G A B D ascending, repeat.
 
Some players don’t like to use the fourth finger for lead work so you could use the third finger and just stretch where necessary, but by presenting it like I just did it’s easy to figure out quicker where everything is. 
 
You could add notes as needed for any given melody. If you added a second, for example, which would be
G string 3/F#, A string 1/F#, you’d now be able to play the basic riff from Layla, though I don’t know what key the original is in so we might be in the wrong key. More on that in a minute. (Melodies aren’t dependent on key, any melody can be transposed, but key becomes important if you’re playing with other people or singing.)
 
Let me rename what’s going on as intervals from E, which we’re treating as root/One/tonic. Intervals are labeled up from wherever the next lower tonic would be. 
 
E string 4/tonic 2/minor seventh
B string 4/fifth 2/fourth
G string 4/minor third 1/tonic
D string 4/minor seventh 1/fifth
A string 4/fourth 2/minor third
E string 4/tonic 2/minor seventh
 
The advantage to understanding this in intervals is that it now works anywhere on the neck, just like bar chords do. 
 
Let’s say instead of wanting to play this in E you want to play in C. Move your hand down four frets. Your fourth finger is now on C.  Now the scale itself is 
C Eb F G Bb ascending. If you’re used to the scale enough to know where your fifths are, you now know where your G’s are. So, in order to find your G’s, you didn’t have to memorize their addresses on the fretboard, you just had to know how to get there from a reference point. 
 
This approach of course works with any scale pattern that you can move around the neck. There is, for example, a major scale you can play without moving your hand position at all - it’s all under your hand where you are. Let’s do this one ascending from the bass E string, by interval:
 
E(6) string: 2/tonic 4/second
A string:  1/third 2/fourth 4/fifth
D string: 1/sixth 3/seventh 4/tonic (octave)
G string: 1/second 3/third 4/fourth
B string 2/fifth 4/sixth
E(1) string: 1/seventh 2/tonic (and 4/second)
 
Wherever you put your second finger on either E string is the name of the major scale. Using that fingering, all the sharps and flats you need to get that major scale will automatically fall into place. This is the advantage of guitar over piano. For me to play a major scale on keys, I have to know all the accidentals. On guitar, if I know the position, I don’t, because the position automatically does the transposing for me, just like a capo does. However, if you’re reading, it will help to know the accidentals in case the music throws you any curves. 
 
I hope that helps. Someone. Anyone. 
 
 
 
 
 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:15am
OK, in case someone wants to play Layla, 
I’ll give you the notes in E. I do not know if this is how Clapton fingers it, I’d have to go look. If you want to play it in another key, move your hand so your fourth finger is on the key you want to play on an E string, and the same finger sequence will work. All notes are on the D, G, and B strings. Start on D string:
 
BDEGEDE
A G F# D E
BDEGEDE
B (higher, on B string) A F# D E
 
There it is
 
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:36am
Holy shit guys I'm impressed :-) Although I have no idea what you're talking about (Kosh and Face), I like a lot that finally a thread that is NOT about political bashing gets so much attention.
 
Thanks for the good discussion.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:38am
...and here is why I don't like Charts Cut'n'paste. We all here could do better. Anyone remembers the underrated band 10cc with Lol Creme ?
 
https://youtu.be/5pidokakU4I
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:46am
Here's some 10cc for the ones who don't know this band:
 
https://youtu.be/2jFJcJlwCbs
 
No, it's not "I'm not in love"....but you have to admit the composition is outstanding for a popsong....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:50am
And here is my absolute favorite of a folk song:
 
Family - My friend the Sun
 
If you're not touched by that song, you have a problem :-)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:52am
BTW: Note that the bass also plays a prominent role. Even when it's the guitar which plays the bass structure at times.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 11:36am
I was writing my long comments when FacePalm asked questions. I don’t know about the Solfeggio frequencies. Diatonic is in there, in fact in bold, but it’s not that important. A diatonic scale is a seven note per octave scale, like a major or minor. Most people just say major or minor and don’t worry about it. 
 
I don’t know if this site does Private Message. Maybe what I should do in a couple of days is repost the index page here. That wouldn’t let anyone not signed in comment on the individual posts but it would give one thread for questions. 
 
S-E,
I agree about Selling England. I was kind of following Genesis before that, in fact I saw them once, doing material like Watcher of the Skies, and I kept hearing their albums and thinking “not quite, they’re not quite there yet,” even with drumming like that, and when Selling England came out it was Finally. They reached potential. And then came the opening to Lamb Lies Down, which was so damned cool, 
 
and then Peter Gabriel left. Phil Collins has a voice that sounds a lot like Gabriel but his delivery didn’t at the time, so the live version of Lamb Lies Down is too cheerful. No, No, No. If he sang it like some of his later somber solo stuff it would have worked. 
 
I’m sorry, I was a Yes fan, particularly until Bill Bruford left (who remains my favorite rock drummer of all time, and Tales of Topographic Oceans as a followup to Close to the Edge was horrific), but there is no way Soon holds a candle to Starless. Fripp’s amazingly legato guitar is just gorgeous. I saw Crimson live during that period, Fripp/Bruford/Wetton, at Kennedy Center unfortunately because they were insanely loud for an already live room and I didn’t have hearing protection with me, but watching Bruford do all that delicate percussion stuff was just great. 
 
Oddly, I like Owner of the Lonely Heart. That sort of neo-Latin synth work is both fun and inventive. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 11:41am
And I agree about Anderson’s voice. There’s nothing masculine about it, and that is not a function of range. Ask Steve Tyler or Robert Plant. 
Wendy Bugliari Added Dec 8, 2018 - 11:52am
OK,
Cant play or sing but my ears can hear greatness!
https://binged.it/2BXXZhX
Rock Hall of Fame tribute "My Guitar Gently Weeps" Solo Prince
Orgasmic
Cheers,
~Buggie~
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:08pm
S-E,
Anything I’m writing about guitar scales translates to four string bass by simply subtracting the two high strings. The advantage to bass is that it’s easier to get around because it doesn’t matter what string you’re on, going from one string to another always does the same thing. (That’s also true of five string.)
Wendy Bugliari Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:11pm
Is it?
https://youtu.be/3uneA-cstZs
WTF happening here?
Let's "Go Fish" anyway Fredo
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:17pm
Kosh
 
Tales of Topographic Oceans
 
This is about the most terrible album I ever heard. 4 songs - each 20 minutes long and absolutely boring. I was relieved when Relayer came out LOL
 
And please do NOT compare Robert Plant to Steven Tyler. Plant would be Jupiter and Tyler an asteroid. If you like Zep, I have a new band for you.....
 
Greta Van Fleet
 
The guy sings like Plant - and they are about 20 years old !
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:20pm
If you want to know what FP and I are talking about, go look at the link: http://oursalon.ning.com/profiles/blogs/basic-theory-for-musicians-who-don-t-read-contents-links
 
I wrote this on another couple of sites a while back. When in my old Temple, I got into a conversation with the rabbi’s teenaged son who was about to audition for his high school jazz band on guitar without being able to read. That’s basically hopeless, but I talked to him for 45 minutes or so giving him the basics so he wouldn’t be completely at sea. It probably didn’t help, but it got me thinking. I played at the time (and do again, since I moved 2 1/2 years ago) with a lot of musicians who don’t read music and whose knowledge of theory is limited enough that a bit of improvement would be useful. So, being a compulsive teacher, I wrote a series of posts. Six of them. And I published another post, linked above, that’s a sort of table of contents to the series, with descriptions of each post and active links to each. It’s not a post that teaches you how to read, though there’s enough information there to teach yourself but there are better ways. It teaches how reading works. What are you looking at, what does it tell you, how does it tell you that, and what are the basic ground rules for the system you’re using so that you can navigate it decently? There’s stuff about how pitch is written, how time is written, the basics of how scales work, the basics of how chords work, the basics of how keys work. Plus I threw in a chapter about some of the physics of sound and music, which is actually the coolest chapter if you’re not interested in the theory per se. All chapters are a couple of pages at most, none contain any links so you don’t have to go anywhere else to look at anything or listen to anything, they’re self contained explanations. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:23pm
Greta van Fleet
 
That one is better. Man, I listen to these kids and feel 40 years younger LOL
Wendy Bugliari Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:27pm
CCR https://youtu.be/ec0XKhAHR5I
So is this "White Rabbit" just easy play?
https://youtu.be/RdoLcgxvf98
Jefferson Starship
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:56pm
CCR was great, Buggie. I loved Proud Mary when it came out and hit no. 1 in Switzerland in 1968, I was 10.
 
But Grace Slick and that stuff - no. I never really liked that West Coast stuff from Airplane, the Dead or others. I liked their attitude, but not really their music..
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 1:08pm
Kosh
 
Thanks - I'll look into it. But I'm not expecting too much. Why ? Once a lady of about 50 told me when I was playing at a benefiz thing:. "You do good songs. You don't interpret them perfectly, but that's ok. We feel that they're yours and you love them, and we like them too, maybe for that reason. Your give us the feeling that we could make stuff like that too, and we don't need to study music for that, as you dind't. After all, we don't want to beat world records in anything but just have a good time."
 
So you see - that's what motivates me. When I can touch people with my music, that's ok. If there's a false note here and there, who cares ? LOL
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 1:38pm
It’s not about false notes. Plenty of musicians who are great don’t read. That’s not the point. It just improves your understanding of what you’re doing and also improves communication about it. 
 
I have never understood musical illiteracy. It’s not like learning a language. It’s so much faster and easier.  I could teach you how music notation basically works - not make you fluent in it, but make you understand it - teach you a fair amount about how chords work, what the basic ones are named and what goes into them, how basic scales work, how keys work,  in under an hour. It’s too easy to learn for it to make sense for musicians not to at least go that far. If they want to go further, easy enough; if they don’t, there’s a lot they at least get. There’s no reason if you’re a musician not to know what a major chord really is or how to build one. 
 
Several years ago I got a cheap mandolin. I read some chords but most chords I taught myself, not by watching anyone but by calculating them. I know what the open strings are, I know the notes in the chord, I know how many frets up I’ve got to go to find one of those notes, and I’m done. You don’t need years to do this. You don’t need hours to do this. The system is very logical and very predictable. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 1:40pm
West Coast stuff? The best thing to come out of the Bay Area was Santana. What I’ve discovered about the Dead over time is that they’re more fun to play than to listen to.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 1:48pm
Kosh
 
As I said I don't need that anymore after 40 years of playing. WHAT I lack it the technique to play faster. I know where every single tone sits on the fretboard or on the piano and what effect each has, but my fingers never developed a technique to follow what I already know "in mind".
 
I play guitar solos with the index finger only - UP movements, down is impossible. But in all those years I've developed a technique to HOLD a tone until I move to another. Take Gary Moore. He plays very slow solos - and then there is some fast bursts in between. I've learned through the years to play with SILENCE. And that way my deficiency in speed doesn't show. Once you know when to accentuate a note and when not is half the rent.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 1:57pm
Kosh
 
Santana ? The Mexican guy who never stops to play the same solo since 1972 ? Ok. Then I prefer the Dead Kennedys LOL No, joke aside, I have no idea which artist comes from where in the US. But since the Ramones I can't remember any new good (original) music which came out of the US. We here in Europe are flooded by autotune bullshit à la Rihanna, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga (Gaga means mentally retarded in German LOL), Katy Perry, Pink and all those chicks who are jus poster girls. Or that absolutely disposable rap and Hiphop bullshit. Where the fuck is REAL American music played by real people with real instruments without cut'n'paste and remix and "featuring DJ MFGHP"?
 
Australians and the UK are way ahead ;)
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 2:46pm
KS-
I asked what a diatonic scale was, and you went into something i'm completely unfamiliar with, and i frankly don't know what you're trying to illustrate.  Best i can recall, the "dia" part means "two," and the "tonic" part means "tone," so diatonic would mean "two tone," like Tommy TuTone, who came up with "867-5309" back in the day(which i can also play/sing).
 
i know how to play the Am pentatonic scale, which starts with the A note on the low(thickest) E string 5th fret, then the C note on the E string(3 frets up at the 8th fret), then jumps over to the A string, where you first play a D note(5th fret, then an E(7th fret);
Next, you jump to the D string and play a G note(5th fret), then an A(7th fret);
Next, you jump to the G string and play a C note(5th fret), then a D(7th fret);
Next, you jump to the B string and play an E note(5th fret), then a G(8th fret)
Finally, you jump to the Hi E string, the thinnest one, and play an A note, ending with a C note(8th fret).  All of these notes can be bent, hammered, pulled, trilled, slid into or out of, and tremelo'd, too, as well as being played forward, backward, and picked out at random, where they generally always sound good together.
 
The blues scale for that position is a bit more complicated, but essentially it adds just two notes, "flatted 5ths,"(aka "passing notes") from what i've read, but i have no idea what they are, and don't need to know.  Those notes would be added on the A string at the 6th fret, and the G string at the 8th fret, to the pattern as laid out above.
 
Both scales(Am pentatonic and Am blues) can be moved into any position on the fretboard, from open strings to the key of F(first fret), to F#(2nd fret), to G, to G#, to A, to A#. and all the way up to the 12th fret, where the E pentatonic can be played an octave higher than the open position, then as high as you can go before you run out of frets.
 
As to Layla, i can play both the original electric version as well as the acoustic version Clapton put out later, but i have NO idea what your meaning or intention is in this:  BDEGEDE, etc., because the way the electric version is played, you hammer on to the C note(then pull off) from the A string before you move over to the open D and hammer on to the F note/pull off and hit the C note on the A again, then the D open, and etc.
 
Stone-
I've never played together with a bass player on a regular basis, but if i ever do find a good one, i understand i'd be well-advised to concentrate my energies on the higher notes, and depend on the bass to fill in, like Billy Gibbons relies on Dusty Hill(and every other 3-pc band) - otherwise, you're being redundant, both playing the same notes.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 2:52pm
Face
 
Don't concentate on the notes, you'll find them. The drums provide the beat, and the bass the fond. If you can HEAR the music and the rhythm, you'll get it - whether you can read notes or not !
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:30pm
Stone-eater:
I hope this post isn't TOO far away from yours...
I only play by ear. But I do know my way around a guitar and bass using the note names and chord names.
 
What I was describing were the CHORDS in the harmonic major scale that helps one understand the "Nashville" chord numbering system that frees one from having to care about what key you're in.
 
The other major breakthrough concept that Marc Bonilla taught me was that there's really only ONE SCALE that one really needs to play great lead guitar or Bass. That's the Major Scale. Knowing the finger positions for the major scale no matter where you are on the neck -- seeing the PATTERNS on the fretboard/fingerboard -- is essential.

The Minor Scale is merely the Major Scale for the related Major Key for that Minor Key -- for example: To play scales/leads in Am, use notes in the C Major Scale!
 
Wow, drummers. I have been blessed in my 57 year of playing on stage and in recording studios by being able to play with 2 great drummers (David Rokeach!!! and an anonymous drummer at a weekend recording session at Fantasy Records) and about a half dozen good ones.
http://davidrokeach.com/
 
Among the worst was a passive-aggressive drummer in a Rock and Blues cover band I was in about 15 years ago in S.F. who couldn't handle the fact that none of the rest of us played ANYTHING "like the record" and whose response was to SLOW DOWN THE TEMPO when he got frustrated.
 
The rest -- GAWD. In fact, last Wed. I went to my favorite club up in town to sit in on lead guitar with the local Old Pro who plays the Happy Hour and kick off the Open Mic. Alas, during the open mic there was a guy sitting behind the drums who even though I asked him NOT TO PLAY, ended up totally f*cking up my set! I'd rather play with NO drummer than a bad one and luckily for most of my career haven't had to play with drummers.
 
Aw, gee, Stone-Eater. As I was lead guitar player in an acid rock band in S.F. in '68, your comment about "West Coast" S.F. bands cut me to the quick! ;-)
 
PS: The absolute BEST live performances I saw in S.F. were by Moby Grape at the original, old Fillmore Auditorium! They got screwed but they were the best!

Kosher: I have to say that the sooner one learns to use the little finger on the fingering hand the BETTER!
 
Another wonderful thing about a 5 string bass (and 6 and 7 string basses) vs. a 4 string is that one can play in any key and rarely have to move the fingering hand - especially by using ALL 4 fingers...One mainly just shifts strings.
 
And one doesn't have to be a sight-reader to know music theory and how it all works. ;-)

Wendy: That Prince solo on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is probably the best I've ever seen/heard. The story I heard was that he didn't expose it much during rehearsal but saved it for the performance and blew EVERYONE'S mind. Check out the grin on George Harrison's son's face!
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:33pm
That Prince solo on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is probably the best I've ever seen/heard. 
 
There we can fully agree. The rest of the band were mere statists LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:34pm
Bill H. Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:36pm
I'm an Analog Man (sorry, Joe).
Autotune is the worst thing to ever infiltrate music. Who would have thought that even country artists would have adapted and overused it?
Can't get enough of Jeff Beck accompanied by the young prodigy Tal Wilkenfeld. What a team!
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:40pm
BTW Chet:
 
The way that Prince mastered his guitar is absolutely amazing. He never even seemed to even had to LOOK at the instrument to play it while he was moving in around.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:44pm
Bill
 
Autotune creates one singer: Beyondgagaspearskaty. Then take the chords C, F, G, A minor (ok, Kosh and Chet, I guess) and you have a hit. About as much cultural value as a McDonald's hamburger.
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:44pm
Wendy-
i can play and sing White Rabbit, and like it; compared to many lead runs i'm aware of, that one's pretty easy, but still no slouch.  Took me about a week to get it, and maybe a month to memorize it.  To do it right, though, a bass is imperative, because the guitar notes just don't get down that low, especially for the intro; when i play it, i just mute the strings and do a "scratch" where the low note's supposed to go.
 
Bill-
I read that Beck went to see Hendrix, and was so blown away that he gave up playing for about a year or so, before he decided to concentrate on his own style and technique, which is in a class all it's own, now, and has been for many years.
 
Stone-
i saw earlier where you were writing about not having the speed you wish, yet; curiously, on the page you linked there was another vid which describes quite well how to do so.  This is it.  Looks like you do a chromatic run up 4 notes on each string before going to the next - and that guy showed blistering speed, way past my skill level right now!  That just means i know what to add to my practice schedule.
 
Ever since i heard of Alice in Chains, i've been a fan(except for that "Jesus Christ, deny your Maker" song), and was just playing "Nutshell."  i really like the lead run, and maybe after i practice the technique as outlined in the link, i'll be able to pull it off, as i know the main riff already.  Their harmonies are weird but excellent, too, like many of Nirvana's, but their own style.  IOW, i like 'em.
 
ChetDude-
i looked up the D# dim chord, and most of the examples just looked like normal D# chords.  What is it about them that makes them diminished? (if you know.)
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:01pm
Ok, Wendy-
Now, i checked out that White Rabbit solo on the Winterland version - ok, it's a lot tougher than the original.  Not impossible, just too much trouble for one song, IMO.
 
The thing about CCR is that one guitar would often be tuned down a full step - that is, instead of standard tuning (in E), it'd be dropped down a full step to a D - while the other guitar would stay in standard tuning.  This helped give them their unique sound and style.  "Fortunate Son" is one example of this style, and i learned the song awhile back, but it's a 2-guitar song, not too suitable for me...yet, anyhow.  If i find another guitarist that likes what i like, we can try it and see how it goes.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:04pm
Face
 
there was another vid which describes quite well how to do so.
 
I know that. But I can't play with a pick, which means I can't make the up-down movement. I play with the nail of my index (is it that one ? The next from the thumb) finger, always up, and often I use the thumb (like a bass player) for the bass strings. I know it's not a technique that suits for speed....some homemade stuff, but that's why I said I concentrate on the timing on how long I keep a note going, and the sustain helps me on that. The example I give is Gary Moore on "Still got the blues". He goes on slow and has a fast solo part in the short breaks. That method suits me well. 
 
On bass - now - I'm really freaking about the funk stuff. I can use my knowledge of guitar on bass as well and put some short bass solos in between the rhythm parts. Lots of fun !
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:09pm
BTW: Tuning to C D or E or whatever....I do that all the time when I play along with some YT stuff, because it's always different. But on  guitar it's no problem for solos.....one check and you get the key and play. For chords it's another thing....unless you play, like me, mostly barré chords. Then you just move up or down on the fret a bit LOL
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:25pm
Face: Some of the coolest playing I've ever done is with two fingerpicked acoustic guitars with capo at different positions.  It's like a 12-string on steroids.
 
For instance, one person playing no capo in "A" with the other playing Capo-2 in "G".  Of course, since I was usually playing the 2nd guitar part following the singer's chords, I had to learn to transpose on sight -- thus the Nashville Numbering System that made it much easier.
 
Stone: Carlos Santana was born in Jalisco but spent most of his life as a "San Franciscan".  And you might say Jimi Hendrix had one solo that he played over and over, too. :-)
 
It's never too late to learn to play with a pick or any change in style of playing.  For instance, I used a plastic thumb pick and steel finger picks to fingerpick guitar from the early 60s until about 5 years ago and finally (gratefully) weaned myself off of the picks and play with thumb nail and fingers now for fingerpicked songs.  Also about 30 years ago I began working on playing with a flat pick and two fingers as well - starting to really get it down now.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:40pm
All
 
Off topic but...since you're all here: I'd like to present to you the most underrated pop band of all time: The Raspberries.
 
The Raspberries - Ecstacy
 
That band has been on my side all my life since I was 16, and now I'm 60. Their song "On the beach" is an all-time classic to me. And listen to the linked song. Hear the drummer ? He's fantastic. Eric Carmen, the singer, wrote classics like "I can remember". I mean, even though I'm now a fan of Progressive Metal (without growling, that is), such songs are hardly to be topped....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:49pm
Chet
 
Carlos Santana was born in Jalisco but spent most of his life as a "San Franciscan".
 
I mean I like him. He made Peter Green's Black Magic Woman to a hit...and Soul Sacrifice was cool. But.....he never progressed. He keeps on playing the same stuff, same style, same licks, ok, he gets money for it, but.....
 
If Hendrix would be alive today I'm sure he'd play Jazz or Fusion by now.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 5:58pm
Stone trying LOL
 
It's not easy to play and sing at the same time. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:09pm
....sorry, the lyrics are nonsense. I can write poems but have problems with song texts. It's just to sing words. Nobody likes to hear Swiss German LOL
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:12pm
Stone-
If you're totally against learning how to use a pick, you may still be able to vastly increase your speed by using the thumb, index and middle fingers, flamenco-style, to up it.  i've tried it, and it's a lot of trouble for me; one of the "daily practices" i learned off an instructional vid called "hands of steel" long ago simply said that you should spend at least 30 seconds a day just doing the up-down alternate picking technique to build up speed(i've also learned that slanting the pick helps with speed, too).  i've gotten much faster, but i have to keep slowing myself back down because when i go for speed, i get sloppy.  i'm pretty sure it's related to getting tense as the speed picks up.  It's a difficult balance, to be able to hold on to the pick tightly enough so it doesn't slip out of your fingers while keeping it loose enough to get speed and clean notes while semi-relaxed.  Some say to pick from the wrist; others say from your elbow; i say "experiment til you find what works for you."
 
The way i understand the aforementioned "flamenco technique," what you do is pluck the string in question - say, the D string - with your thumb, then index, then middle, then repeat - same string - and as you get faster, try to incorporate your left-hand fingers/thumb to play the individual notes on that string, whether an ascending or a descending run.  Once you've gained some dexterity that way, move to your next string and etc.  It just takes time and patience.
 
BTW, i admire your decision to play what YOU like, and not do covers.  Also helps with your songwriting, i would imagine.  Me, i try to pick up various things from every different cover i do, and since i like pop, am hoping to program my brain to the point that when i do MORE original stuff(i've got maybe 5 or so songs down, now, with bits and pieces of others "in progress") the years of "pop song" mental training may give me a hit.
 
A guy only needs ONE to be set for life.
 
For example, i read that if you/your band gets booked on one of the late-nite comedy shows, you get maybe 150 bux from that show - but because it's broadcast to so many affiliates, they ALSO have to pay that amount.  If you're talking 5k affiliates or more, you're talking some real dough, real quick...like 75k for a 5 minute song (although there are many associated expenses getting to and from the gig, of course, the net will be very good).
 
It's just been my observation that "nothing succeeds like success."  IOW, you can work for years and years and Years and YEARS, and then you have a hit record(or album), then "everybody wants you"(to cite Billy Squier), and things snowball, FAST.  One needs to prepare in advance, say by finding out what it would cost to ramp up production of everything on your merch tables to "Yuuge" levels very swiftly, in anticipation of demand skyrocketing - while not getting TOO much, for just as "every generation throws a hero up the pop charts,"(Paul Simon) they fall like shooting stars just as often, too.  Lots of leftover merch in warehouses will drain your bottom line, as well.
 
IOW, if/when you get your shot, you need to be prepared to make the most of it while your window is open...as well as being prepared to sue the many leeches which will come a-swarming out of the woodwork trying to run scams.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:27pm
Face
 
Holy shit, a long comment, thanks !
 
If you're totally against learning how to use a pick,
 
I'm not against it, but there's something that refuses to be between my fingers and the instrument....I've tried it several times, but it just don't work. My right hand is clumsy on the guitar. I play solos on  guitar with the left hand no problem. I move fast. Then I sit on the piano and I play solos with the RIGHT hand, the left can't do it, only chords.....isn't that crazy...?
 
I'm too old to make a career in music LOL. Actually I never wanted to make a "career". I was always too lazy to work my ass off for a boss or for the prospect to be able to buy a nice car or some other stuff. I found my sense of life in Africa with my people there which happen to make music as well. Check out Salif Keita, Fodé Baro, Oumou Sangaré or Angelique Kidjo - excellent African musicians I had the honor to make friends with.
 
You see, I can't change 40 years of non-conformist playing anymore. I'm prety cool with what I can do - and now the bass is something new and fascinating that keeps me occupied. I'll never be a Stanley Clarke, but that's ok.
 
My daughter is 15 and says hey pops you're a freak. All my friends dads are serious and have money, and you fuck around Africa and play music like a kid.
 
....but I love you.
 
What else is more to expect from life ?
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:29pm
ChetDude-
i love a 12-string, and have had one most of my life.  My latest(and probably last) is a black cutaway Oscar Schmidt, with lots of bells'n'whistles on the preamp.
 
But for a regular 6-string acoustic, i broke a pick many years ago now, and kept playing with it anyway - and noticed something.  The way it broke, it had 2 points on the picking end, and if i strummed with the pick slanted, i could get added depth - a "poor man's 12-string," if you will.  i thought this genius idea would be patentable and i'd make a million bux a penny at a time - but no.
 
The idea has been around for God-knows how long.  Some picks were available which had up to FOUR points on them.
 
So despite my disappointment, i routinely get the Goretex(?) picks and carefully notch them with a pair of scissors.  Most regular picks break soon after notching them, but i haven't had that problem with that type of allegedly "unbreakable" pick.
 
i've run across various players who will use two short capos on the same guitar and play pretty unique stuff, as well - but when you've got some cool parallel lead stuff going - like with Thin Lizzy or Allman Brothers-type songs - well, i don't think it gets much better'n that.
 
i do a pretty fair imitation of "Can't Find My Way Home," but have yet to meet anyone who'd like to try Clapton's part.  i can often sing at least most of Winwood's part, even when he goes stratospheric with his vocals...i'm strainin', but i've learned that if i keep after it, my vocal cords will stretch and grow to accommodate the new pitches i'm trying to reach.  For example, when i first learned "Ramble On," i couldn't sing it worth a damn, but now, i can sing at least 3 more notes above the highest in there.  Still can't do ALL of "Stairway" yet, but i'm learning to relax my vocals as i get "up there," and that's getting better, too.
 
Right now, i'm working with my less-than-two-week-old mandolin, and "Battle of Evermore" is also quite the vocal challenge...though i pretty much have the mando part in hand.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:35pm
Salif Keita - Folon
 
I understand some Bambara, this language, because my wife comes from Mali. When I listen to that, I almost cry. Folon = Before (the French came) - Sisàn = today - all has changed....
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:36pm
Oh, and speaking of "Nashville," have you ever heard of "Nashville Tuning?" (you probably have.) 
 
For those who have not, i learned about it from an instructional vid for "Wild Horses"(Rolling Stones).  Apparently, you get some 12-string strings, and put JUST THE HIGH ones on your six-string guitar. 
 
That song uses 3 guitars to do it right, which is why it never sounded "quite right" when i tried to cover it solo.
 
Like "Free Fallin'(Tom Petty), to get that one to sound right, player 1 needs to be capo'd on the first, and player 2 needs to be capo'd on the third, playing parallel parts simultaneously.  If the timing's right, that song sounds awesome, especially if both guitarists can also sing the harmonies.  That's another one that never sounded right solo, until i ran across the right instructional vid.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 8, 2018 - 6:40pm
Fodé Baro - Aventurier
 
Good bass as well. Please excuse my desire to make advertisements for African music.......can't help it !
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:35pm
Face: I played around with trying to hold 2 flat picks together to get that sort of sound.
 
As for capos: I have a cut capo that I'm pretty sure once belonged to David Wilcox (I found it backstage in the green room a couple of days after Wilcox had played that same club - I'll be happy to return it to him if I ever meet him). 
 
It's a regular Keyser capo with the rubber cut away where the outside E-strings would normally be pressed.  With this capo I can get a double-drop-D tuning anywhere on the neck from the 2nd fret up (using a regular capo 2 frets behind for the higher positions).  It gives me a wonderful drone sound - RICH "D" chords - with a huge advantage being that all of the scales for playing lead and arpeggios are the same as standard tuning.  Now that I'm playing Hawai'ian music I can use it to get that slack-key sound without having to "slack" the keys...
 
I hadn't heard of Nashville Tuning before.   Interesting.  I have a Takoma Papoose guitar -- a smaller guitar that's tuned up a 4th to "A".  I sat in with Mitch Woods and the Rocket 88s one time with that guitar and got some smiles from the band when I played a lead high on the neck with a metal slide and hit notes that were close to the upper limits of human hearing...
Koshersalaami Added Dec 8, 2018 - 7:48pm
Diatonic means major or minor. Seven notes per octave until you repeat. Consecutive letter names for the notes before you alter them.
 
The Layla thing I was doing: I didn’t bother to find out what key it was in. Those are the note names if you play it in E. 
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 8:35pm
PS: fingerpicking "Can't Find My Way Home" with my cut capo (double-drop-D) on the guitar is hella-cool!
FacePalm Added Dec 8, 2018 - 9:21pm
ChetDude-
i must've watched and dl'd around 20 covers and/or instructional vids on "Can't Find My Way Home," and kindof cobbled together what i thought was an eclectic version(the best of various ones); i play a single drop-D, and play the G change by using an F shape at the 3rd fret - sortof.  The low E(now a D) is fretted with the ring finger at the 5th, the A string is deadened, and the remaining 3 fingers play the G at the third.
 
i can pick it; i used to fingerpick it, but it lacked the volume, i thought, so i worked on it 'til i got it.  Cool song.
 
Turns out Clapton was sick to death of Baker, no matter how great a drummer he was; saw a documentary called something like "Beware of Mr. Baker," where the reporter interviewing Ginger was attacked on more than one occasion by him at his ranch in S. Africa.  Turns out that Ginger didn't manage his money well, and was pissed that Clapton had sown up the rights to all of his songs and didn't give any residuals to Baker.  Strange; no matter how little or much dough is made, people still squabble over it instead of being grateful.
 
i noticed your posting about your health troubles, and you might want to check out EDTA as a possible solution, maybe even get your doc to prescribe "chelation therapy," as well, as it's approx. 30x more effective than orally, allegedly.
 
Do your own research on it, if interested; some say "works like a roto-rooter for your circulatory system," while others say "pure bunkum, hocus-pocus and snake oil."  i've been taking it for the last couple of years, have had no negative side-effects, and my last physical, got 98% O2 level, whatever that means, but it sounds pretty good.  My dad died of a massive heart attack in his sleep, and i've now outlived him by 7 years; my mom had a stroke before she passed, so i do everything i can to ensure my heart/circulatory systems stay in as good a shape as possible.  i'm one stroke away from turning 44 years of practice into so much wasted time.
 
KS-
Thanks for filling in a few of the many gaps in my education(as opposed to schooling); now i know that "diatonic" means both major and minor scales, which accounts for the "dia" part and the "tonic" part, both.
 
i'm recalling that you had a "relatively" easy way of remembering how to find the relative minor for any key - the way i understand it, if you were playing a lead run in, say, the key of A, all the notes in the minor key relative to A will also work, and i've heard that many people make a quite good living by switching between both major and minor keys when playing a lead run.  If my memory hasn't entirely failed me, you said "2.5 steps below your key is the relative minor for that major key," right?  So that sounds like the relative minor for the key of A would be the Em scale?  If this is true(and it sounds sortof right), are there any exceptions to this "rule"?
The Owl Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:17pm
Thanks for the music lesson; I'll try to adapt it and use it as I practiced.
 
The problem is that !y instrument is not a guitar.  But the instrument has six or eight keyings for most notes on only a three October instrument.
 
I a fit of insanity last year, I made a New Years resolution to learn how to play an instrument that I Ave been increasingly fond of over the year's.  It, along with the clarinet is an instrument of melody in the wind instrument sections of the orchestra.  The dounle-reeded oboe was my choice.
 
Playing by ear seems to be much more productive for my time.  It took time to learn how to control the reeds, and getting the fingers accustomed to covering the holes and fingering the levers took up a great deal of the year.   
 
But every time I take out they keying chart, I sense a panic attack coming on.
 
Perhaps I should dig out my Martin acoustical guitar again and just be content with what soI remember.
 
 
 
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:29pm
Face:  It's even easier than that.
 
The "relative" minor of any key is the 6 chord.  So if you're in A that would be F#m, if in C - Am, E - C#m etc. 
 
The neat thing is that the C major scale IS the A Minor scale!  they are identical notes that start in a different place on the same scale.
 
So when I'm soloing over an Am key, I see the pattern of the notes of the C-Major scale on my fret/fingerboard and know that I'm safe playing ANY note that is included in that pattern (with passing notes OK if they sound good - chromatic runs, etc.)...
 
So, again, the ONLY scales (visual/virtual templates on the guitar or bass fingerboards) that I need to know intimately are the 7 major scales.
 
Of course, for the last 15 years I've finally concentrated on hearing and playing melodies and have gotten better at hearing a line in my head and then playing it on guitar pretty accurately.
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:31pm
And intervals!  Hearing intervals is REALLY useful...
The Owl Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:44pm
Inhate auto fill...
 
Second paragraph should read:
 
My instrument is not a guitrar.  But the instrument has six or eight keyings for most notes on a three-octive rangei instrument
 
 
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 10:51pm
Wow, Owl.  From what I've heard double-reed instruments like the Oboe are NOT for the faint of heart (or short of breath)!
 
I admire anyone who tries one...
FacePalm Added Dec 9, 2018 - 8:06am
Stone-
My apologies for not acknowledging your posts earlier; my excuse is that it seems you were posting while i was writing, and your posts didn't show up until the page was refreshed.  i did follow your links and listened to quite a bit of the various artists you recommended.  Pretty nice stuff, overall first impression.
 
i even liked the 10cc, but i recall very much enjoying the slow-dances to "i'm not in love," though...there was this one red-headed gal, Jean-the-Machine MacKensie...
 
Anyway, saying "i'm too old to change" is a self-defeating tack to take, but it is good for a lazy man like me!  That said, i'm always open to learning things i can incorporate, even if it takes awhile.  i had a HELLUVA time learning how to do Travis (aka "alternating bass") fingerpicking, but with determination and repetition, got it - then, a whole array of songs i couldn't previously play became available, like one of the hardest ever, for me, "Never Going Back Again," by Lindsey Graham, of Fleetwood Mac.  Allegedly, he has monster-size fingers, and there's one chord change in that song that eats my lunch, and has for the last six years or more that i've been practicing it.  But even with that block, i've performed it several times, so i'm getting better at it.
 
ChetDude-
If i don't know the names of all the notes in all the scales, how am i going to know what the 6th is in any one of them?  However, if the answer is framed in terms of steps, i don't think i'd have much trouble.  But was i correct that Em is the relative of the A scale?  Suppose you start out in a minor key, like Am; would the relative scale for that minor be E major?
 
i think that one of my next musical theory goals will be to learn and practice both the major and relative minor scales of each key, so as to develop muscle memory.  Once upon a time, i looked up all of the keys and their relative minors, but never got around to incorporating that bit of precious knowledge into my practice routines, so promptly forgot them.  However, if i know an easy way to recall them, that would be a start.  i've learned and performed hundreds of songs in my day, but too many to practice on any one given day, so i tend to forget how (Pearl Jam's "Better Man" is one such example; another would be Peter Gabriel's "Salisbury Hill"), but refreshing memory is MUCH easier after having performed them at least once prior than is learning from scratch/complete ignorance.
 
i'm getting better not only at leads, but at hearing where they should go (in my head).  The ultimate musical goal, for me, will be to be able to play what i hear and feel in my head and heart.  If i can do that, all the theory won't amount to squat, insofar as my ultimate goal, to make retirement-style money with GOOD original songs.  Just having originals won't cut it, though it's a good start. 
 
An acquaintance of mine gave me a massive compendium of Bob Dylan songs awhile back, and when thumbing through it, recognized hardly any.  Seems like many originals must be written and performed before some gems emerge from the detritus, some diamonds from the rough, as it were.
FacePalm Added Dec 9, 2018 - 8:27am
Chet-
Ok, nevermind; if i'd just READ what you WROTE, i'd know that the F#m is the relative minor of A.  Sorry.  Is the reverse true, as well?  That is, that the F# would be the relative of the Am scale?
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:51am
FP,
The relative minor of any major is 1 1/2 steps down, two letters. That means the scales for the two are identical except for the fact that you typically start them on different notes. The way it reverses is you can take any minor, go a step and a half up, two letters, and be at its relative major. 
 
By “two letters” I mean that black notes have two names and all major and minor scales use sequential letter names. So let’s go to your example of A major. The relative minor is F# minor; what I’m trying to tell you by “two letters” is that the relative minor is not Gb minor, even though F# and Gb are physically the same note. 
 
They don’t reverse because relative minor is always a step and a half below major. So the relative minor of F# major would be D# minor. 
 
What ChetDude meant by sixth is if we look at a major scale in numbers, 1 being the key you’re in:
 
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 (8 or 1) 2 3 4 5 6 7 (8 or 1) with 8 & 1 being two ways of naming the same note, start with 8/1. If you go down two notes you’re at 6. If you’re in a major scale, two notes down from 1 is always 1 1/2 steps. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 10:04am
There’s one thing I want to get straight and it has to do with playing by ear. These days I play rock and roll and though I’m classically trained, the overwhelming majority of what I play is by ear. If I’m playing a song I’ve never heard, someone will shout chords to me or I’ll watch a guitarist’s hands (I’m on keys but I play enough guitar to recognize chords) and I’ll usually get the picture in a verse or two because most music is kind of predictable, and once in a while someone will put chords in front of me but rarely. This theoretical stuff is not an alternative to playing by ear; it helps me understand what’s going on when I play by ear. It also helps me talk about what’s going on to other musicians. 
ChetDude Added Dec 9, 2018 - 2:11pm
Thumbs up on everything Kosher just posted...  :-)
 
A really nice thing about playing lead vs. playing bass is that there's no absolute requirement for the lead player to hit the notes on the downbeat or first beat of a chord change. 
 
So over the last 50 years of often sitting in and playing lead with folks without knowing the songs, I can hear chord changes and rapidly recognize the chord within a 1/16 or 1/8 note and start the next lead phrase once I'm certain of the scale that's appropriate.
 
As you said, Kosher, knowing the usual patterns/chord progressions and changes of the form of music, the vocabulary and syntax of the style you're playing really helps.
 
Of course, I'm in one band where if I say 1 or 4 or 5 or 6 minor -- I get glassy stares...so I have to translate into note names...  :-)
ChetDude Added Dec 9, 2018 - 2:15pm
Face: Thanks, I'll check into EDTA again.  It may be impossible to get where I live but I'll see...
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 4:17pm
“Of course, I'm in one band where if I say 1 or 4 or 5 or 6 minor -- I get glassy stares...so I have to translate into note names...  :-)”
 
Oh God, tell me about it
For years on end. That has a lot to do with why I wrote those posts. Not that the guys necessarily read them. 
In my case, if I’m not playing the song I often forget what key I’m in, or simply don’t know it, and so I have to think in numbers first. 
 
Regarding your “no absolute requirement” about guitarists: This exact issue led me to walk out on a very eminent guitar player. I don’t ordinarily walk out on good players, but I walked out on Roy Buchanan. Normally as a lead player you take a flight away from the beat and go free form and then you after a time you return home to the beat to depart again when it becomes appropriate. His band was in the middle of the fourth song and he hadn’t played a single note on the beat since he started. Drove me too nuts. 
FacePalm Added Dec 9, 2018 - 8:13pm
Kosher-
Thanks for bearing with my ignorance, and helping to fix it!  *grin*
 
That said, i was reading at your blog post(ch. 3), and found the following:
 
Major triad with a major seventh (C E G B), which is called a major seventh chord;
 
It took me awhile to find the notes on my guitar, but as best i can tell, the chord you're describing above is a C6.  The C7 would actually be(on my guitar, anyhow), C E A# C, though i'm sure i could be in error; after all, the A7 has two shapes in the first position, so maybe what you describe is just another version of the C7; i was just always taught that the CEGB was a C6.  i've used it a lot when doing Seals 'n' Crofts' "Summer Breeze," for example, or the Beatles' "Something," which uses a C, C6, and C7 at one point, and in that order.
 
I know a guy who was friendly enough with Danny Gatton that he visited his house/garage on 3 occasions, and he described Buchanan as an alcoholic who picked fights.  i never knew him(either one, actually), and didn't much care for Roy's style of playing, anyhow, but would you say that assessment was accurate?  Do you think it true he hanged himself while in the custody of Arlington cops?
 
But back on topic, more or less; i vaguely recall that the semitone accidentals are sharps when doing an ascending run, and flats when doing a descending one; would that be accurate?
 
FacePalm Added Dec 9, 2018 - 8:17pm
ChetDude-
i had no prob. finding EDTA; got mine from an online source, amermed.com, specifically.  Cutler's website has products with that in it, but they were MUCH more expensive - and unfortunately, i'm about inexpensive by necessity, not choice.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:15pm
FP,
The notes I gave you are accurate. To give you an idea of what a Major 7th chord sound like, think of the first chord in Color My World, though it’s arpeggiated (played one note at a time in sequence instead of all notes at the same time). A C6 would be CEGA. The chord you’re talking about, what you refer to as CEA#C, is most of a C7, which is to say a C dominant seventh chord. The dominant seventh is the most common seventh chord, so much so that it’s the default seventh chord, so if you see a notation like C7, it means C Dominant 7, not C Major 7. 
 
Back to your C7. The nomenclature of sharps vs. flats is not dependent on whether you’re ascending or descending, it’s dependent on what key you’re in. The rule is that in any given major or minor scale, and most chords are derived from scales, you label the letters then alter them as needed with accidentals. So, in C, doesn’t matter if major or minor, forgetting all accidentals for a minute, the notes are
C=1
D=2
E=3
F=4
G=5
A=6
B=7
 
If the scale is C major, there are no accidentals. If it’s C minor, the 3rd (E), 6th (A) and seventh (B) are all flatted. 
No matter how it works, in any kind of C, even C#, because of the letter sequence the 7th has to be some kind of B. So, your seventh is not an A#, it’s a Bb. 
 
And, of course, in a C6, the sixth has to be some form of A. See above. 
 
A seventh chord actually has four notes in it, not counting octaves of the same note. A C7 chord has a C major chord (CEG) and a minor seventh (Bb). It doesn’t matter what order those notes are in and it doesn’t matter how many octaves they show up in, but if it’s going to be a real C7 chord rather than a part of one, it has to include at least one C, one E, one G, and one Bb, and no other notes. In other words, technically your version of C7 is missing its G. It’s sometimes OK to do that because another instrument might be playing the G. 
 
Regarding Something, the chord sequence at the beginning of the sung part is (if it’s in C, which I would have to go check) C, C Major 7, C7, then it goes to an F. There is no C6. 
 
OK, Summer Breeze. This is going to get a little trickier. I’m going to start by teaching you another word: Inversion. An inversion is a chord where the notes show up in a different order but are still the same notes. As an example, a C major chord in Root Position, where the C is the bottom note, is CEG. First inversion uses the E as bottom note: EGC. Second inversion uses the G as bottom note: GCE. On a chord with three notes in it, called a triad (guess why?), you can only have two inversions, because the next possible inversion is back to root position (an octave higher). On a chord with four notes in it, like a sixth or seventh of any sort, you can have three inversions. 
 
These are the inversions of a C6:  CEGA, EGAC, GACE, ACEG. Root, 1st through third inversions in order.
 
And now we run into a weird sort of coincidence that only happens once that I know of in basic chords:
 
If you go to the relative minor key of C, which is A minor, and you play an A minor 7, which is an A minor chord or A minor triad: ACE, along with a minor seven, which is a G. So an A minor seventh is ACEG.
 
The issue here is that C6 and Am7 are actually inversions of each other. This doesn’t normally happen, but in any key a major sixth is an inversion of the minor seventh chord in that key’s relative minor key. 
 
This is a very long way of telling you that if you’re referring to the chord in Summer Breeze I think you are, where the instrumental intro starts, your C6 is actually an Am7 because the bass note, quite possibly in the bass part, is an A. It has the same damned notes as a C6, though, so no notes in your chord are wrong. And you can absolutely play a C6 over an A bass and call it an Am7. But if you found the song in a book somewhere, they’d almost guaranteed call it an Am7, not a C6, because what’s really being played there is an altered A minor chord, not an altered C Major. 
 
Confusing? Sorry. That happens every once in a while. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:23pm
The posts teach some of this stuff in a more sensible order. I don’t know what you’ve gotten to yet. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:44pm
Let me see if I can figure out how to get you to the sounds of each of these chords. The Color My World intro is good for a Major 7. Dominant sevenths are what you hear all through blues. (Again, I give a better explanation of this in the posts.) 
 
Let me try to give you a makeshift tablature A6:
 
E |   | x |
B |   | x |
G |   | x |
D |.  | x |
A. open
E.  open
 
If you wanted to try an E6, play your basic three fingered E chord but add one note: on the B string, put a finger at the second fret. 
 
That’s the sound of a Major 6 chord
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:46pm
Now that I think about it, a G6 is even easier: Bass E string third fret, A string second fret, all other strings open. The open E at the top is your sixth. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:55pm
If you want to get used to the difference in sound between a sixth, dominant seventh, and major seventh chord, the simplest way to do that is to raise the note functioning as the sixth above by a half step (one fret), which would give you a dominant seventh chord. Raise it another half step, so a whole step above the sixth, and you have a Major seventh chord. These aren’t necessarily the forms of those chords I’d recommend playing because there are often easier ways, but in point of comparison:
 
Starting with the A6, the note you have pressed on the high E string, second fret, happens to be an F#. Move that finger up a fret to a G and you have an A7. Move that finger up another fret to a G# and you have an A+7 (one notation for A Major 7:  AM7 also works, so long as the M is capitalized). 
 
On the G chord, for a G6 your high E is open. If you put a finger at the first fret, one half step higher, that gives you an F, and you now have a G7. Move it up another fret/half step to an F# and you now have a GM7. 
 
On the E chord, your sixth is the extra note you’re playing on the B string, second fret, which happens to be a C#. Move it up a fret/half step to a D and you have an E7. Move it up another fret to a D# and you have an EM7. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 9, 2018 - 9:58pm
By the way, if you took any of those major seventh notes and moved it up another half step, you’d be at octave, so you’d have your root note and you’d just be playing a major chord. The beginning of Something does exactly the opposite: It starts with major, drops the octave a half step to M7, then drops it another half step to Dominant 7. Then another half step but the chord changes underneath it. 
FacePalm Added Dec 9, 2018 - 11:56pm
Kosher-
i'll go over it again, but what you wrote made little sense to me at all...yet.
I did websearch the chord i had been calling a C6, and you're right, it's a C7.  i have no clue how the chord i've BEEN calling a C7 is only "part" of a C7, either.  This link shows a pic of the chord i've been calling a C7, and that's what i tried to describe, earlier.  At least, now i know that i was wrong about calling the 2-finger chord a C6, and now know it as the second version of the C7 in the first position, like the 2 versions of the A7 in the first position i mentioned earlier.  As to Summer Breeze, i play the intro with an Em to C a couple times(then the little lead run over the next two repetitions) before i start the lyrics, where i go to an E, then a G, then a D, then an A, back to the E, then a quick jump to the A7, just before the second line of the first verse starts.
 
i'm familiar with inversions, and have an instructional video on the subject, though i haven't practiced it as much as i should have.  The theory looks simple enough; learn the notes in the chord you're playing, change the order around(like w/an Am7), and look for those notes elsewhere on the fingerboard.  i'm also hip to "arpeggiated," as i've been practicing "sweep picking" for awhile now, as well.
 
As to "Color My World," the first chord in that song is an Fmaj7, or that's what i've always called it.  It consists of the F note on the D string, the A note on the G string, the C note on the B string, and the open E...or FACE(sometimes with an additional C on the A string).  i've been playing that song for many years, and performed it maybe 6-odd months ago, albeit sans horn section...
 
Now, i LIKE that E6 chord you described earlier, and it's an essential part (contains the "hook") of the song "In the Summertime," by Mungo Jerry.  Also, it appears easy to change from an E7 to an E6,  G6 to a G7 and back, but changing from an A7 to an A6 doesn't appear to be quite so easy, unless an A6 is all the strings pressed down on the second fret of the G,B,&E strings...changing from a C7 to C6 doesn't seem quite so easy, though, unless a way to play it would be to essentially play an Am, but with a C note in the bass, instead...
 
But i had no idea that there's a difference between a dominant 7th and a major 7th.  What makes a chord dominant as opposed to major?  And i've been confused about suspended chords, too; after all, "suspended" seems to mean a reduction in the number of fingers needed to play it, but instead, as with the Dsus and the Asus, you ADD a note.  What makes an "augmented" chord augmented?  Do you add a note to it, or in keeping with the "suspended" note example, take a finger out of playing it, illogically-but-consistently?  What about "diminished" chords makes them diminished, too?  And from what i vaguely recall reading, many of the "rules" of chords are irrelevant when it comes to diminished chords, as well...at least, assuming that what i've been CALLING a diminished chord actually IS one.
 
One place i use one of the chords i've been calling "diminished" would be in the song "From the Beginning"(ELP).  I usually take my timing cues from the lyrics, so the chord i'm referring to would appear in the chorus between "You were meant to be here....(dim chord arpeggiated)...from the beginning..."  The notes to it would be EBFADE.  Another time i think i'm using a diminished chord would be in the song "Dance With Me," by Orleans; this chord appears in the chorus, in the phrase "Let me take you where you want to go" under the words "want to," and uses these notes: AEA#C#G.  The reason i mention the diminished chords is that the way i recall it, the name of a chord is taken from it's "root tone," which is ordinarily the first note played, like all your major and minor chords; i recall reading that the diminished chords do not follow that rule, and i was wondering first, am i right about that and second, how can i know what chord i'm playing without having to look it up in a chord book?
 
At any rate, i appreciate your patience with this ignorant one who's so ignorant he doesn't yet know what he's ignorant OF.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 10, 2018 - 2:05am
The link shows a chord missing a note. If you follow the link farther down, you’ll notice it lists all the notes in a C7 chord and those notes include a G that isn’t in the chord fingering shown. That’s why it’s incomplete, though it might function just fine. 
 
Forget what I said about Summer Breeze. Wherever you were using what you were calling a sixth, it wasn’t at the beginning. I was talking about where you used the E minor, because the third note in the melody is a minor seventh, a D. 
 
A6 to A7: for the A6 you have to be pressing on 2nd fret of E, B, G, and D strings. To turn it into a seventh, on the E string go up one fret to the third fret. You can also play the G string open if it’s easier - not on the A6 but yes on the A7. 
 
Major vs. Dominant. In this context we mean Major 7 vs. Dominant 7. The seventh is what’s important here. Let me explain how we named them that. 
 
The first thing to understand is what Dominant means when you’re not talking about a seventh. Remember I used the word Tonic to mean the root key? Well, Dominant means the fifth key. So, if we’re in C, the tonic is C and the dominant is G. You might have to visualize a keyboard here. I’m using C because there are no accidentals. If you play a seventh chord in tonic with no accidentals, just staying in your key, you get a Major 7: CEGB. Also, the interval between the C and the B above it is called a Major seventh. The seventh note is a half step below the octave.
 
Now let’s play a seventh chord using a minor triad. There are a few chords that would do this if we’re in C but let’s choose the most obvious one: the relative minor, A. If you play a seventh chord, no accidentals, you’ve got ACEG. The triad the chord is built on is a minor triad and the seventh, the interval from A to G, is a minor seventh. The seventh note is a whole step below the octave. 
 
If you stay in C major and play every seventh chord you can without accidentals, leaving out the B chord for the time being because that one is more dissonant, you get Major sevenths and minor sevenths with one exception. 
C gives you a Major seventh, D and E give you minor sevenths, F gives you a Major seventh, A gives you a minor seventh. You’d have to try this on a keyboard for it to make complete sense. 
 
But G gives you something else. G is the Dominant of C. If you play a seventh chord in the Dominant position, starting on G, what you get is a Major triad with a minor seventh. The seventh note is a whole step below the octave, but the root of the chord is major. This only shows up in Dominant position so it’s called a Dominant Seventh. 
 
The traditional way to use a Dominant seventh chord was to create musical tension for you to resolve by following it with the tonic major chord. But now it has another use: in blues, the dominant seventh chord is used as tonic, as the One chord. By the way, the way you’d notate that using a dominant seventh chord as tonic in music would be to put the accidental in the music itself rather than in the key signature. 
 
Ok, suspensions. You don’t add a note, you move a note. A normal major chord is 1 3 5. The most common suspended chord is 1 4 5.  In C Major that would come out CFG. There’s another less common kind of suspension where you play 1 2 5, or CDG. Like with a dominant seventh chord, that chord has tension and wants to resolve into major by following 1 4 5 with
1 3 5.
 
I can play In The Beginning so I know exactly what chord you’re talking about and I don’t know what the Hell to call it. I probably did once. It’s not a standard diminished chord or diminished seventh, which is more common. A diminished interval goes a half step narrower than more common intervals. If you play a diminished seventh, there are basically three of them; all the others are inversions. I’m going to delineate a diminished seventh chord but, for reasons of convenience, I won’t be a stickler for proper notation. In this case proper notation would lead to more confusion than clarity. So, in C diminished seventh, the notes are 
C Eb, Gb, and A (technically Bbb, yes, B double flat.) But all the intervals in diminished seventh chords are minor thirds, 1 1/2 step intervals. So, in terms of the notes in the chord, C diminished seventh, Eb diminished seventh, Gb diminished seventh, and A diminished seventh are all inversions of each other. No need to worry too much about nomenclature in this case. There are twelve keys per octave, and there are three sets of four diminished seventh chords. So one could say that there are only three diminished seventh chords because past that you’re into inversions, which in this case doesn’t matter much. 
 
 
FacePalm Added Dec 10, 2018 - 2:28pm
KS-
Listen, i appreciate the time you've put in to try answering my questions, but when you write this:
 
The first thing to understand is what Dominant means when you’re not talking about a seventh. Remember I used the word Tonic to mean the root key? Well, Dominant means the fifth key. So, if we’re in C, the tonic is C and the dominant is G. You might have to visualize a keyboard here. I’m using C because there are no accidentals. If you play a seventh chord in tonic with no accidentals, just staying in your key, you get a Major 7: CEGB. Also, the interval between the C and the B above it is called a Major seventh. The seventh note is a half step below the octave.
 
...you lose me, which is another reason why i fucking hate theory.  If you know it but can't explain it so it can be understood, why bother with it at all?  i can't visualize a keyboard.  i don't play a piano.  i asked what the difference is between a dominant 7th and a major 7th, and i get the above?  By "key," in the above paragraph, do you actually mean NOTE?  If i have a key - say, the key of C - i play notes within that key, not keys within that key.
 
*shakes head, walks away muttering*
Koshersalaami Added Dec 10, 2018 - 4:45pm
I’ll make it much easier. And, by the way, if you want to understand this stuff, putting a keyboard diagram in front of you would help because then you can see it. Without that, of course it’s Greek. That’s why in the chapters I sent you the link to, there’s pretty much always a keyboard diagram on the page. You can’t see this stuff on a guitar fingerboard. 
 
Because keyboard is a diagram, if you’re familiar with it it’s much easier to learn other instruments. I’ve played about ten instruments in public well enough not to embarrass myself and the reason I can do it is because my first was keyboard. That diagram is a massively helpful thing for understanding relationships. I’m not saying learn to play it but learn to visualize it. 
 
A dominant seventh is a major chord with a minor seventh on top of it. We normally just call it a 7 chord. C7 means C dominant 7. Unless there’s some other symbol in there somewhere, it always means a dominant 7. 
 
Playing a C chord, because that’s the easiest place to understand what’s going on:  a C7 chord is CEGBb. The interval from C to Bb, not the chord, the interval, the jump, is called a minor seventh. It is one whole step short of an octave. 
 
A C Major 7 is CEGB. The interval from C to B is called a major seventh. It is a half step short of an octave.
 
Just to finish the explanation of seventh chords:
A C minor 7 is a C minor chord with a minor seventh on top of it. The notes are CEbGBb. 
 
If you’re curious why a dominant seventh is called a dominant seventh, and here I won’t mix up key and note:
Dominant is another word for the fifth in a major or minor scale. If you’re in C, the dominant is G. Let’s say while you’re playing a song in C (major), you play a G7 chord, which means that the G chord fits into the C scale because that’s the key you’re in. So, because C Major has all white notes, the G7 is going to have all white notes. That will give you GBDF, in other words a G major chord with a minor seventh on it. If you play a seventh chord starting on any other note in C, you will not get this kind of chord. Because the dominant is the only place you see this chord, it’s called a dominant seventh. 
 
Was that better? 
 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 10, 2018 - 4:58pm
Kosh
 
I agree. I started with keyboard too and then guitar was much easier !
Koshersalaami Added Dec 10, 2018 - 5:45pm
Much. If I don’t know a chord, for example, I can probably puzzle it out just by knowing what has to go into it and knowing how to find the fretboard addresses of the notes I don’t know off the top of my head. I taught myself mandolin at one point and a lot of the chords I learned I figured out myself. OK, I’ve got an instrument in fifth tuning, ascending G D A E opens. I want a G Major chord. G and D are already in it, so leave them open. If I go up from open A, what’s the first note in the chord? B, two frets up because a whole step up. What’s the first note in the chord going up from the open E? G, a step and a half/three frets up. Voila, G chord. What if I want an A chord? One way to find one is to do what I’d do on a guitar, slide up two frets/one step and bar G and D strings at the second fret. Move that up and down and I have a bunch of major chords. I could look some up for convenience but the truth is that those chords all came about by some guy a long time ago doing what I’m doing now. 
 
The big advantage of keyboard in addition to the fact that it’s a functioning real time diagram is that you can’t learn a chord without knowing what notes go into it. You can on guitar. In fact, I think on guitar it’s common. Let me teach you an A minor chord. OK, first fret on B string, second frets on G and D strings. No beginning guitarist is going to know instinctively what notes those are, not if guitar is your first instrument. 
FacePalm Added Dec 10, 2018 - 11:30pm
KS-
i play guitar.
A keyboard diagram won't (and doesn't) do squat for me, because i don't know how it relates to guitar, which is what i play.  Not keyboards.  Guitar.  Calling out letter names of individual notes when various chords apparently have different names isn't helpful, either.  For example, the C7 chord that i'd been calling a C6 in error - now, you call it a Cmaj7?  WTF?  Why not be freakin' consistent instead of changing things up and expecting me to somehow glom onto these moving goalposts?
 
Ah, nevermind.  Fuggetabowdit.  i'll stick with what has worked for me so far until maybe i can find someone who can 'splain it to me...playing by ear, and learning the techniques unique to guitar...the hammers, the pulls, the bends, the slides, the trills - and combining all these into runs up and down the fingerboard.
The Owl Added Dec 10, 2018 - 11:36pm
Oh, thank you all for this discussion.  It's a real help for when I figure out what key(s) play the A and B and the C and the number of ways that the tone can be induced from the tube.
 
The double reed of the oboe is not that strange device once you understand that just blowing on it doesn't help.
 
I suspect that the advice is similar for the clarinet, but one breathes on the oboe reed to get it to vibrate.  Blowing on it might cause it to squeal or just not vibratre a vall.
 
An instructor told me it is like those breathing tests where they ask you to empty your lungs completely.  You blow on a twin read gently from the back of your throat.
 
The reed is naturally capable ot three times, one high, one medium, and one low; .all As, an octive apart.  Key to learn how those tones are achived.  The give you the basis of the three octave range
 
Then you get to play with the seven keys, the pressed keys with open holes and when to close them, and the eight levers all working in combination(s).
 
Like a piano, the options give the oboe lots of places to go with it's notes.   And the biggest hurdle is getting the fat fingers of the blower to move in conformance with musical theory.
 
It might take a while, but I'll get it one of these days.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
B
Stone-Eater Added Dec 11, 2018 - 1:20am
Kosh
 
When I was 12 I learned the basic chords on the keyboard with a teacher, like C D E F G A H C + minors. Then, a couple of years later I figured most of them on the first 3 .... how do you call that ... on the fretboard. Then I learnt barré in order to find myself easier, to play in different keys without thinking too much. Then I broke my wrist in Africa, couldn't get it fixed properly there and started soloing...:)
Koshersalaami Added Dec 11, 2018 - 1:27am
I was consistent. Go back and look. What you were calling a C6 is a C Major7. The chord you were calling a C7 is one, it’s just missing a note and you named a note funny, even though sonically you had the right note. 
 
It might be easier for you to look up a chord chart to find a C6. I could figure one out for you I guess. CEGA. If you barre your third fret, though you’re really only going to need the A and low E strings. Then barre the top four strings (EBGD) with another finger at the fifth fret. That will give you a C6 and, because it’s barred, you actually have a whole bunch of 6th chords with that hand position up and down the neck. You don’t really need to play the low E string; in fact, if you just wanted to play the top four strings and forget everything else, it would technically work. 
 
 
 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 11, 2018 - 8:28am
Owl,
I’ve never played a double reed, except fooling around on a Renaissance capped reed. I never knew how the reed worked. Thanks. I’ve fooled around with a single reed and I play recorders. 
 
SE,
Now I know for sure you’re overseas because we don’t use H here. For us it’s just B and Bb. 
 
FP,
The problem you’ll run into figuring out theory is you don’t have a way to glance at anything to figure out what’s going on harmonically. Sheet music can do it and a keyboard can do it. A fretboard can’t - it can tell you at a glance with common chords what chord you’re playing but it can’t tell you as quickly what notes are in your chord. Having that information helps you on guitar because if you want to make alterations it’s easy to figure out where to make them. Also, if you really get intervals, it becomes easy to figure out what note you’re on even if you’re up the neck and can’t see that. If you’re in, say, an Ab chord, you’d know instantly you’re also playing a C and an Eb, and if you wanted to tell someone you’re playing with what note to alter with you, you can do it by name. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 11, 2018 - 10:04am
Kosh
 
Ah yeah in the US it's different ? Wow !
FacePalm Added Dec 11, 2018 - 10:07am
KS-
One of the very first things i did - over 40 years ago, now - was learn the names of each string, then how to play the notes all the way up to the twelfth fret on each string, whole steps, half steps, sharps, flats, everything.  By doing this, i have no problem finding any note on the guitar at all.  It just takes too much time, and with everything else needful to play guitar, i found out it doesn't really matter all that much.  Most people don't play in sharps or flats, and most songs are in neither sharp nor flat keys.  Pretty much all i needed to remember is that there's a half-step between E&F, same as B&C; consequently, there's no such thing as an E# or an Fb, and neither is there a B# or a Cb.  If you say 'depends on the key you're in' i may have to try to strangle you, as it's both irrelevant to me and a waste of my time.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 11, 2018 - 1:03pm
“Depends on the key you’re in” is relevant if you care what things are called and in anything you play on a guitar you’re never going to run into a B#, Cb, E#, or Fb. 
However, I will tell you that Bb’s are common and A#’s are rare, so chances are if you’re playing that note most people are going to call it a Bb. Theory can get nuts. It is theoretically possible, and I’ve seen it happen in classical music though very, very rarely, to get a double sharp. I just said that to make your head explode, but it’s true. 
 
People don’t generally play in sharps and flats in what you do, at least not in terms of key, but in terms of notes, they play sharps and flats all the time. 
 
That being said, most of the time I just play. 

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