Anchor Key For Solo

Discussion in 'SWS Questions' started by leedove, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. leedove

    leedove Guest

    I understand about moving the solos around into different keys but I have a simple naming convention question. Well I least I hope it is simple.

    Anchor is 3rd finger second string so Fret 8 is G or Fret 11 is B flat.

    Why is it G and not F which is the lowest note in the phrases?  Chords are named after he lowest note ( I think) so it seemed to make sense to me for this to be the same here.
     
  2. Jon3b

    Jon3b Blues Newbie

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    The lowest note in a phrase is simply that, the lowest note. I'm not familiar with the SWS course itself, so I'm making an educated guess that that anchor tone, G, is the key you're in. The F note is the flatted 7th of the G7 chord.
    In a blues, the G7 is the I (one) chord, C7 is the IV (four), and D7 the V (five) chord. The I chord will always share the same name as the Key and also names the root or anchor tone.

    I'm no music major, but hopefully that helps.  [smiley=beer.gif]
     
  3. MikeS

    MikeS Moderator... Another Man In Black.
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    Ok, I'm no expert, but I think you have some incorrect assumptions.
    1) "Chords are named for the lowest note". this isn't necessarily true. Chords are named for their root note which may or may not be the lowest note. For instance; you can play an open C chord and allow the low E to ring and it's still a C chord.
    2) Solo's don't HAVE to start on the root note.

    I'm sure there are people that can give you the technical explanation as to why this is so, but that's not me.
    Ok maybe a little: in the case of a Major chord let's say C
    the chord is built from a root, a 3rd and a 5th. I'll highlight them:
    CDEFGAB

    So as long as you are playing those notes, regardless of the order, they are a C Major chord.

    I hope this helps.
     
  4. Lame_Pinkey

    Lame_Pinkey Guest

    well the ryhthm is in G so therefore we are in that key

    LP
     
  5. Griff

    Griff Chief Cook And Bottle Washer
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    It's a VERY common misconception that the lowest note is the root. And as Mike and Jon said, it's not always the case... in fact - not even close. That's why I had to specify which note of the pattern was the root.

    Hopefully that clear it up, but if not, let us know.
    Griff
     
  6. leedove

    leedove Guest

    Thanks .  So I how do I know which note is the Root in a solo phrase that is not an SWS solo ?  Is it just the one that matches the required Key ? 

    Am I asking to many unneeded questions ?  :)
     
  7. leedove

    leedove Guest

    In the short time I have been here this is the sort of response I expected from you.  :(

    Maybe Wayne was right . :-[
     
  8. MikeS

    MikeS Moderator... Another Man In Black.
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    I'm not sure why you take issue with his response. It is short, but accurate. If the chord progression starts on a G chord, then the root note is G and you are in a key of G. Am I misunderstanding your question?
     
  9. leedove

    leedove Guest

    I think you are. Maybe I am asking wrong or am just to stupid to understand.

    I know the Key is G and that is why the solo is rooted at G. What I can't work out is why those solo phrases are rooted in G.

    His response read to me "It is G that is why it is G" and not useful at all.
     
  10. MikeS

    MikeS Moderator... Another Man In Black.
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    No, you're not too stupid to understand at all. it's just the nature of trying to express a musical question and answer in textual format.
    If you are asking why the solo starts on something other than a G (root), as Griff said:
    Now I'm trying to remember the solo because I'm away from home right now, but if I remember correctly the root note is actually the 2nd (or maybe 3rd) note in the solo. The fact is that you are playing notes from the G scale over a G chord and it doesn't matter much which note in the scale comes first. This is soloing without scales, but all the notes come from a scale all the same.
    Sorry if this too basic or if I'm not addressing your issue.
     
  11. leedove

    leedove Guest

    I think I may have got it now :)

    1. So we are playing in the Key of G - check
    2. All the notes in the solo are in the G scale - check.
    3. The Anchor for the solo is the G wherever it is - check ??
     
  12. MikeS

    MikeS Moderator... Another Man In Black.
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    Check!!! I hope it makes sense now.
     
  13. leedove

    leedove Guest

    Yep, Thanks for sticking with me until it sunk in  :cool:
     
  14. Griff

    Griff Chief Cook And Bottle Washer
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    Sounds like you've got it and Mike explained it well.

    I run into this a lot... it's a common point of confusion so don't feel dumb for asking the question. I think the confusion comes when you realize that you really just have to know where the notes are and what key you're in.

    Most of soloing is mental gymnastics. We make a big stink about learning licks and solo fragments and scales and techniques... but the reality is that you can learn 4 notes and a few licks and with some mental gymnastics you can turn that into all the solos you could ever need.

    When I was growing up, at the stage I was at when I was learning to solo I didn't have a teacher. So I did whatever most people in that position do and I learned every scale I could possibly find. I must have played scales for 2-3 hours every day for about 2 years.

    At the end, I couldn't solo any better than when I started. I could play fast, but I didn't know what to play any better than I did before.

    That was a really eye-opening experience. Once I started learning how to use the scales and shape them into what I needed, it all changed very quickly.

    Just remember that the scale patterns usually are nothing until you decide they are. If I really wanted to confuse you I could take that same 4 note Blues Block 1 and show you how to work with every different note being the root. So that same 4 note group could be the minor sound in G minor (the way I teach in SWS) or it could be a major sound in F, or a major sound in Bb, or a minor sound in C. You can actually wrangle it in to all of those.

    But don't try to do that yet, I just wanted to point out that it's really all in how you look at things.

    Okay, I've probably talked too much and confused the issue. You have it... go with it :)
    Griff
     
  15. Jon3b

    Jon3b Blues Newbie

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    hmmm ... that flipped a switch  somewhere..
     
  16. giayank

    giayank Just another day in paradise

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       I have to say at this point with my soloing using SWS and the pentatonic boxes major and minor I feel like if I phrase it right and I time it right I can play from all over the fret board. I started to jam over a slow Bb shuffle today with the solo example #2 and had a blast. Threw in some riffs we have been using from Bgu and a couple runs of the minor and major pentatonic boxes mostly the first three and I think it worked just great. I was getting a little confused with the tonal aspect of the blues boxes forgetting where the root note was. Have to tell you when your playing it comes out.You just hear it .I found myself as i was practicing holding a note for an extra beat cause I started to hear when I needed that note to mesh with what the backing trac was asking me for. This is breakthrough material for me and I'm finding it to be a blast. [smiley=beer.gif]
     
  17. vashondan

    vashondan Blues Doobie

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    Very cool.  Sounds like you be jamming. 
     
  18. Griff

    Griff Chief Cook And Bottle Washer
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    Now that's what we like to hear!

    Also... notice the phrase "I started to jam over a slow Bb shuffle today..." If ever there really was a "key to the highway" then that's it. Turn on those jam tracks and play for at least some time each day. These breakthroughs seem to come a lot more often when you help them along a little bit.

    Griff
     
  19. giayank

    giayank Just another day in paradise

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        Griff is right on the mark when he says turn on a backing trac and play a little each day .When I first started playing I felt I wasn't good enough to play along with a backing trac so I just  did my own thing each and everyday. what happened was my finger dexterity got better but my playing didn't.I could play scales and chords but not do much with them.Now I know the only way for me to improve my playing is to take out my cheat sheets I made. I tabbed out with five licks for each of the five boxes .Nothing real fancy just basic little licks but I have to look at them or I forget to use them when i'm playing. I then put on the backing trac and it gives me focus .What I used to think was hard I find now it helps me .If gives me the beat,cadence,timing,chord changes and tempo. I can just play along instead of having to do all that work by myself.Don't get me wrong there are tons of tracs I can't play along with yet but give me a slow shuffle and I'll give it go. :)
     
  20. TonyS

    TonyS Blues Newbie

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