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What you can work on right now to improve your guitar solos as a beginner
Have you ever thought about what you need to do to improve your guitar solos as a beginner guitar player? Are you wondering what you are doing that is different to a professional guitar player when it comes to your solos?
There are some key mistakes that a lot of beginner guitar players make. Have a read below and make sure that you are working on these to improve your guitar solos.
Getting your bends in tune
Sometimes when I hear people do a bend, it can sound like a dying cat.
When you are playing your guitar solos, you want to nail your bends so you sound more professional. Now to do this, you have to make sure you are bending to a note in the scale and key of the piece you are playing in. Otherwise, then it can sound out of tune.
If you are unsure what it means to be in the scale or in the key, then ask your guitar teacher to find out what you need to do.
To get lots and lots of practise doing this, use a tuner when you are bending so that you can see what note you are bending to. Repeat this 500 times for different intervals to improve your bending.
Gaps in between the notes is not always appropriate
When you first start learning how to play the guitar, it takes time to get your brain and your hands working together. Before you improve the synchronisation, the sound of your guitar notes can sound a little staccato. Staccto means that your notes sound pointy. Now sometimes you want to accent notes this way. However, in the majority of solos, you want it to sound fluent and smooth.
Otherwise constantly having notes that are separate can sound very much like an amateur playing.
Get your phrases to start at different places within the bars
Often when beginners do their solos, they will play their phrase always on the first beat of a bar. To add some variety, come in on a different beat. Or perhaps even half a beat before the bar. Having your phrasing start at different beats of the bar will add a lot more interest in your solo.
Get practising at this to make sure when you are improvising that you can do this comfortably to ensure you have nice variety in your guitar solo.
Including space in your solos
With a lot of beginner guitarists, they don't leave gaps in their phrases on the guitar. If you don't know what a phrase is, this is a musical sentence. So when we speak, we leave space in between our sentences. This is the same on the guitar. You don't want your solo to be a continuous blur of notes. Try thinking of it like you are speaking, include pauses in between your musical sentences or phrases.
Having spaces in between your phrases can help to add emotion and tension into your guitar solos.
Try having variation of rhythm in your guitar solo
When beginner guitar players solo, they often put similar rhythms into their playing and their phrases. Some repetition is good for having a hook or a theme to the solo. However, if it's constant, then it can get a bit boring. You want to add more changes and difference length of notes to keep it interesting.
When you are practising your solos, make sure you are practising each element individually so that you are creating a story with your musical sentences. All of these items will help to make your guitar solos sound a lot more professional by adding variety and that extra level of interest.
It just takes practise to get good at improvisation. It may seem scary, but over time, with effort and practise, you can get there.
I hope you have found this article helpful. There are many other things that you can work on to improve your solos, just remember that this is a unique journey for you and everyone develops differently. However, getting these basics right is essential to getting your solos noticed.
About the author: Darryl Powis, a guitar school owner and instruction from London, England. If you are interested in Guitar Lessons in London for electric or acoustic guitar, then get in contact with us via our website.