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The Single String Approach?
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 2:43 pm    Post subject: The Single String Approach? Reply with quote

Hello,

I'm interested in learning the single string approach that Henderson uses when he plays. Where you picture each string like a row of tangents on a piano. I feel that I'm not getting anywhere with just learning every scale and memorizing them, it doesn't feel like playing music just like I'm following some sort of roadmap and not actually playing the stuff (notes) I would like to hear in my head.

Everytime I listen to a song or some backing track I instantly get cool ideas in my head but I can't get it out through my fingers. I'm sure alot of people feel that way too and I don't seem to be getting any closer to actually getting them out.

So where do I start? Just take a simple backing and play over it on one string trying to really focus on what interval I'm on and such?

Any help is appreciated!

Embarassed
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pas77



Joined: 18 May 2007
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 4:18 am    Post subject: Re: The Single String Approach? Reply with quote

Slabbefusk wrote:
Everytime I listen to a song or some backing track I instantly get cool ideas in my head but I can't get it out through my fingers. I'm sure alot of people feel that way too and I don't seem to be getting any closer to actually getting them out.


dont worry if you cant get it out yet, it'll take time, whenever you think of something cool, try to repeat it again2 and again in your head and then slow it down (still in your head) while you're "looking" for the notes in the fretboard, the important one is obviously the starting note, once you got that note work your way through your idea slowly, also try to sing your idea while you're looking for those notes, it'll help......just keep doing it and soon it'll take less and less time.....unfortunately there's no shortcut, and just like everything else, what you put in is what you get

another good way to practice is to play a backing track, and instead of improvise randomly....(try to navigate the chords...the appregio...the scales and such).....try to sing what you want to play....so for example, play your backing track and sing (either in your head or sing out loud) the solo as you hear it in your head and memorize it, now to memorize the whole 32 bar would be troublesome, so break it apart, say, only play the backing track for the first 4 bar or so, and try to improvise in your head and memorize it (dont play your guitar yet), once you've done that then transpose from your head to your fretboard......if it doesnt sounds good with the backing track....well....it may due to the chords, and you're not use to it, so while keeping with the same ideas you've transposed to your fret, try to move the starting note, "what if it starts on the third of the chord instead of 1?" etc etc, modify that ideas untill it fits in the chord progression.....and just keep doing that

i dont think playing in one string will do anything to get those ideas out of your head to your finger

also dont abandon those scales practice......it'll help you develop ideas
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 27
Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try recording a simple chord progression to practice over. Record about 5 minutes of it.

Start on any single string, and play 1 note over every chord in the progression. Start at the nut, or lowest pitch of the string, that has a chord tone. Work your way to the top of the fretboard, and then work your way back down.

EX. Over this progression Em7 Am7 D7 GM7

I'll "play" this all on the skinny E string.

Chord tones:

Em7 = E G B D

Am7 = A C E G

D7 = D F# A C

GM7 = G B D F#

Single String Chord Tone Exercise
Playing chord tones over the changes, 1 note per chord.

Working up a single string, and then back down.

--0---|-3---|-5----|-7----|-10---|-12---|-14---|-15---|-19---|-20---|-17----
-------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|-------
-------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|-------
-------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|-------
-------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|-------
-------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|-------
Em7 Am7 D7 GM7 Em7 Am7 D7 GM7 Em7 Am7 D7

-|-15---|-12---|-8----|-5----|-3----|-0----|----------------------------------
-|------|------|------|------|------|------|----------------------------------
-|------|------|------|------|------|------|----------------------------------
-|------|------|------|------|------|------|----------------------------------
-|------|------|------|------|------|------|----------------------------------
-|------|------|------|------|------|------|----------------------------------
GM7 Em7 Am7 D7 GM7 Em7 etc.
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 27
Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 4:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know why, but the chord names didn't line up with the bar lines and tab. But, each chord has 1 note played over it. So, you should be able to figure out which note goes with which chord. They're all in the same order.
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks man! Smile
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
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Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you like it. Let me know, how it works for you.

Next step: Repeat this on each string, over the same chord changes.


Then: 2 chord tones per measure/chord. Then 3, then 4.

Once you can comfortably play 4 note per measure/chord, move to 2 chords per measure, and start over.

Still, stay on 1 string, at a time. Once you feel really comfortable on single strings, over MANY chord progressions, then move to 2 string playing. And repeat.
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What about "in-between" notes? Should I wait with throwing those in before I'm comfortable with chord tones only?
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
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Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No. N=It's probably better to get the chord-tones down. But, you should add some slides, hammers, etc. to grease it up!
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2007 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sweet. Thanks for helping out! I haven't had any time to record yet but I'll try to get some stuff down starting next week Smile .
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 27
Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Slabbefusk wrote:
Sweet. Thanks for helping out! I haven't had any time to record yet but I'll try to get some stuff down starting next week Smile .




Here's a good resource:

http://www.guitarbt.com/


It has a LOT of FREE backing tracks, you can download. Great for playing-along to. Just figure out the chords to the verse, or the chorus. Then, try the exercise over those chords. You don't have to use the progression, I posted.

Anyway, check ot out. It's a pretty cool site!
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah I'm already a member there.
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 27
Location: N Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

See, I often find myself "noodling" through chord changes. Playing scalar runs, etc.

But, you need to form melodic "lines", and get to a point. So, chord-tones are a great way to develop a melodic direction.

Call and response type playing. Finishing a phrase on a scale tone that's not a chord-tone will usually sound un-resolved. Finishing on a chord-tone, usually sounds like a resolution.

By eliminating all non-chord-tones, you start to "hear" and "see", the choice "target" notes. (Please excuse my over use of quotation marks!).

This is much more challenging, for me. So, I've incorporated these types of exercises into my practice sessions. Sometimes, it actually comes out in my playing, without my trying. Those are nice moments. Eventually, I'd love to be able to naturally do this.

Still working on it, though! Laughing
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Slabbefusk



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2007 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is exactly what I want to achieve! I want it sound like I'm following the music and not just noodling around trying to make it sound cool while the stuff I'm playing is "irrelevant" to the music. And just like you said, get to a point, I never feel that I'm going anywhere when I'm improvising.

Of course I want it to sound good but I'd rather play a line that complements the tune and is interesting rather than just fooling around.
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Budda



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 3:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How's it coming? Still plugging away?
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timmirth



Joined: 25 Jan 2005
Posts: 11
Location: us

PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2009 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There was a really good lesson/exercise a teacher gave me a long time ago with reference to single string playing. This is not music, but it forces you to know the notes well, and to learn the chords inside and out.

Basically you take a chord, say a Cmaj7 chord and it's extensions. You go to each string and play whatever pitch is the lowest on that string and go up the string and back, in order of chord tones then extension (I'll show below), then you go to the second lowest note and repeat. Do this for each string and each chord type, and extensions, and you'll really be cooking.

Here's an example.

Cmajor7 (C E G B, ext D F# A)

On the low E string (First run) E is the lowest note so you would play up the string...

E(0) G(3) B(7) D(10) F#(14) A(17) C (20) and back down.

2nd run, you go to the next lowest pitch, in this case "F#"

So now its:

F#(2) A(5) C(Cool E(12) G(15) B(19) etc... and back down.

You would do this on all the strings, and also do it with all chords.

Here is a list of chords and their extensions.

Maj7th (R, 3, 5, 7 : 9 #11 13)
Min7th (R, b3, 5, b7 : 9 11 13)
Dom7th(R, 3, 5, b7 : 9 #11 13)
Alt7th (R, 3, b7 : b9, #9, #11, b13)

And there's many more but you get the point. Just doing the above would be a great study. It forces you to really know what you're doing. Also remember to do it in every key.

So I wonder what the math behind that is...6 strings, 2 ways each, 4 chords (from above, though there's more) and 12 keys = 576 possibilities, not to bad, at least it's not infinity. Embarassed

Cheers,

Tim
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