The following content is related to the September 2013 issue of Guitar World. For the full range of interviews, features, tabs and more, pick up the new issue on newsstands now, or in our online store.
For most of the past five decades, British guitarist Eric Clapton has been at the forefront of blues/rock guitar playing. Though he has incorporated many different stylistic elements into his music during his long and very successful career, Clapton’s legacy was forged long ago on his brilliance as a virtuoso soloist, and he will long be remembered as one of the most important and influential guitarists ever.
The blues is a style of music that guitar players have explored extensively for more than a century, and will no doubt continue to explore, expand on and creatively reinvent forever. Though standard blues forms may seem simple, the greatest musicians in virtually every genre have been known to dedicate a great portion of their musical study on a further and deeper understanding of the blues in its many different incarnations. In this edition of In Deep, we’ll focus specifically on the eight-bar, as opposed to the more commonly used 12-bar, blues form.
In last month’s column, we explored a variety of ways to apply a modal approach to improvisation, with specific focus on minor tonalities and building from lines based on the E minor pentatonic scale (E G A B D) to ones based on the E Dorian mode (E Fs G A B Cs D), as well as E Dorian’s “parent” scale, D major (D E Fs G A B Cs).
When Bob Marley brought the Jamaican sounds of reggae to the U.S. in the early Seventies, he created a musical revolution. His first two Island Records releases, Catch a Fire and Burnin’ (both issued in 1973), included the hits “Stir it Up,” “Get Up, Stand Up” and the mega-smash “I Shot the Sheriff,” which when covered in 1974 by Eric Clapton helped catapult Marley to international acclaim.
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Sooner or later, guitarists in every genre of music begin to wonder about the modes: what they are, how best to learn them and how to use them effectively when improvising. In this edition of In Deep, we’ll take a look at the theoretical basis for the modes and cover a few useful ways to apply a modal approach to soloing over commonly used chord vamps.
Nearly half a century has passed since the Allman Brothers Band released their ground-breaking eponymous debut album on Capricorn Records, in 1969. Combining elements of blues, rock, jazz and country, the Brothers forged a unique sound that emphasized virtuoso guitar playing, powerfully emotive vocals, and deft, inspired group interplay and improvisation.