When you try to create new guitar solos, do your solos always sound fresh, and inspiring? .. Or do they more resembble the same general sound of every other solo you have ever played? If you are like most guitar players, then you struggle to incorporate new ideas into your lead guitar playing. At best, you end up soloing with a sound which is very similar to all the guitarists you've heard before. Why does this happen?
The answer lies in the fact that guitar players often end up choosing the same process for creating their guitar solos and improvisations.
The majority of guitar players approach lead guitar by listening to the chords or riffs they are supposed to play over, and then improvise some melodies until something feels right. This process continues until the guitar solo is complete.
Although this approach is a legitimate way to approach soloing on guitar, you need to realize that every time you use it, you are relying on the same guitar soloing process as most other guitarists. As a result, the guitar melodies you create will have the same (or very similar) sound to other musicians you know.
Before I explain a new and very innovative way for you to solo, I'd like to further illustrate my point above with an example of a popular guitar player by the name of Yngwie Malmsteen. Yngwie has a career spanning several decades, which he has built on his reputation as an incredible lead guitar player. I bring this up to point out that he is an example of a guitarist who frequently uses the exact same approach to his guitar solos. I am not saying this in order to criticize him (in fact I love his guitar playing myself), but rather to point out what I have overlooked. The fact is, Yngwie is very content with his guitar playing, and his approach to creating music obviously works for him. However, if you find yourself frequently happy with the way your guitar melodies sound similar to one another then a change needs to be made.
So what is a good way to solve this issue? Here is one of the methods that I have found to work with great success.
You are going to make your guitar soloing center around a melody sung by your favorite singer. There are several ways to use this idea on guitar. I'm going to talk about one way right now (and show you a video demonstration of it as well).
Step # 1: Pick one of the vocal lines that your chosen singer sings in a song.
Step # 2: Focus on playing that vocal line (on guitar) in the same way that the singer sings it. Go much deeper than simply 'playing the notes' of the melody and mimic the actual 'phrasing' of HOW the notes are played. Be very careful here, and pay attention to detail in your guitar playing.
Step # 3: Figure out the strongest notes which make up the vocal line, and remember these notes. Take out a pencil and write these notes on a piece of paper. You can also use tab, or (if you are comfortable with it) staff paper.
Step # 4: Cut out all of the 'non essential' pitches, leaving only the most important notes of the melody.
Step # 5: Now that you have created a foundation for your new guitar solo, you can start to get creative. Keep the main pitches that you've selected, and fill the space in between them with new guitar licks centered around those pitches.
When you practice using the information in this article, you will start to develop some seriously melodic guitar solos. By combining the power of your favorite singer's vocals with your guitar playing, you can stop making guitar solos that sound like every other solo, and start making highly unique guitar phrasing that really stands out.
The more you practice the method described in this article, the better you will get at playing melodic guitar solos whenever you want. You will see great improvement as your guitar solos stop sounding like all the other solos you've already heard, and start to take on their own distinct sound.