By Darryl Powis
Is this something you have thought about with your guitar playing?
Sometimes you may be thinking, “how can I make scales sound good/musical?” The important thing for you is that this is a common challenge for any guitar player who wants to play solos and melodies on the guitar.
How do you define playing melodic?
What does playing more melodic even mean for you? The best way to think about it is to imagine your favourite singer.
When your favourite singer sings, their voice is captivating and often times you can listen to them for hours. On your guitar, you want to try and mimic these kinds of singers because this is the secret to playing more melodic.
When you first learning scales on the guitar, the natural tendency is to just play up and down them and even when you get to the stage of being able to do this, if you try to play these scales to music or with other people, it just sounds like we’re playing a bunch of ‘random’ notes.
Today, you are going to do things differently, you are going to think like a singer. I’m going to give you a few steps for you to follow, which great singers use all the time, and how to apply them to your guitar.
~ Action Steps for you:
Use less notes
Great singers often only sing a few notes at a time. They keep the notes close by in terms of the sound. To do this on your guitar, take a scale you know and pick 3 or 4 notes to play that are close to each other, play them, then pause at the end.
Let notes ring out for longer
One technique singers use all the time is they allow some notes to ring out for longer than others. On the guitar, the best way to practice this is to take the same 3 – 4 note idea that you had from before, and experiment with letting one of the notes in the idea ring out for longer than the others.
Add in phrasing
This is probably one of the most important aspects. Phrasing is HOW the notes sound, not WHAT notes you play. The most common technique singers use is something called vibrato. It’s where you push/pull the string up and down to the floor as the string rings out. This will take some practice. To add this to the two steps above, take the note you’re allowing to ring out and apply this vibrato technique to the note.
Try this in your practice this week. Even if you are focusing on chords in your practising, play a few notes, then integrate it with the chords that you are practising. You can try to make the notes as melodic as possible.
Guitar Tuition East London provides best electric and acoustic guitar lessons for children and adults, helping them to overcome their challenges with learning guitar. So that they can have a fun and enjoyable experience becoming musicians.