One of the most common traps guitarists fall into when learning to solo is that they end up constraining themselves to the “box shape.” While the “boxes” are a great learning tool to start familiarizing yourself with your fret board, I have noticed a lot of my students starting to rely too much on this visual technique when soloing.
One key to becoming a more versatile blues soloist is learning to combine the minor pentatonic and major pentatonic scales to create guitar lines that go beyond the minor pentatonic scale. As a prerequisite to this lesson, you should have a basic understanding of the finger positionings for the minor pentatonic and major pentatonic scales, particularly the first and second positions of both scales.
For many guitarists learning to play solos, it can be easy to fall into a rut based on a certain hand position of a scale, and in doing so forget to play melodically. In this lesson, we will focus on learning to effectively incorporate melody into a solo. After all, iconic melodies are what set great guitar solos apart in many instances.
Being a guitarist involves pushing your boundaries with the instrument. Many players find themselves struggling to develop the physical abilities needed to play like their heroes, and they never settle on a consistent set of exercises because they find themselves drowning in so many different suggestions. In this column, I discuss some essential practice techniques you can work into a simple, short daily routine.