July 7, 2012

Cracking the Code of Clever & Catchy Chromatic Chops 02

In one of my posts from last week,  I have written about creating interesting chromatic lines in a riff. I have included an example with TAB and mp3 from a song called Golden Sun, and provided a detailed analysis on the different applications of chromatic passing tones. If you haven't read that post, you may want to read it now, before continuing with this post: http://instrumentalrockguitar.blogspot.com/2012/06/cracking-code-of-clever-catchy.htmlk

Now, let’s take a look at the main solo theme over this riff. As you will see in the TAB, the theme is played by two guitars, harmonized in thirds. I have tabbed out both guitar tracks for you. In the first 2 bars, there aren’t any chromatic notes in the solo theme, so you can concentrate on the technical aspects. This theme is pretty fast, and it has some tricky spots in there: the picking pattern changes from sweep to alternate picking, and there are several position shifts for the left hand to, so you may want to start practicing really slowly and you should only increase the tempo, when you were able to play it perfectly on the slower tempo.

Bar 3 of the theme contains the same chromatic C note as the accompanying riff mentioned above. It serves the same purpose: by using a chromatic passing tone you create a bit of a tension, and it is resolved by the following note, which is in our case a C#. In the second half of this bar, the C#-C-C# line occurs again, this time an octave higher. The second harmony guitar plays an A#-A-A# line here, being a third lower than C#-C-C#.

In the last bar I have tabbed only the long closing notes of the two solo guitars. In the mp3 you can hear some monster combined tapping-sliding-arpeggio-legato licks every four bar, which are always different throughout the song. You can listen to the main theme and you can hear two versions of those licks by clicking here: 

And here is the TAB:

Enjoy, and keep experimenting with chromatic notes. See ya next time, keep on rockin’!

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