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Thread: How to Solo?????

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    Default How to Solo?????

    OK...I've got a pretty good group of people that I rock out with in a regular basis. I am really interested in learning how to solo over someone else playing the rhythm on a guitar or something. I have fretboard roadmaps, but perhaps I am not yet good enough for that section of the book to make sense. Does anyone have any advice for me regarding how I can learn this? I don't say I want to get better because I can't do it at all right now. I am starting from scratch. I would love to be able to just shred kind of how Ben Harper does when he plays "Flake" with Jack Johnson.... I know it'll take years, but- Heck- What else is really going on in my life???? lol.....
    Have a Happy Day, and remember- Take the time to play!!!!

    Youtube Channel: www.youtube.com/richm2778

    Custom Donaldson Concert Uke
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    "Cousin Larry"

    Charango of unknown origins by way of Trujillo, Peru.
    "Lolita"

  2. #2
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    Jul 2010
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    Default

    I'm working on that, too. Having played less than a year, I can't do it yet, either. However, I've picked up one clue that I'm starting with. If I learn the major scales, I know which notes will sound right with each chord. I bought the ebook about playing blues 'ukulele, and it gives some good insight into this.

    So:
    1. Learn the major scales. This teaches which individual notes sound OK with each chord.
    2. Find these notes on the fretboard.
    3. Practice

    Sounds easy, right? Not to me. However, I can see a way to make progress...

    Next, the minor scales, pentatonic scales, et. al. It all seems daunting, but it seems exciting, too. I don't want to learn everything too soon. What would I do then?

  3. #3
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    I really want to be able to do this too, the eleuke makes me want to do it more. I just ordered this book I am hopeful it will help, I will let you know. I am starting from scratch too.

    I see you named your eleuke. How do you like it so far? If you have posted I missed it!

  4. #4
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    Hartselle AL
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    I use the time honored "sing the melody then hunt and peck till you find it method"
    Hint, start on a note contained in the beginning chord and go up or down from there.

  5. #5
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fitncrafty View Post
    I really want to be able to do this too, the eleuke makes me want to do it more. I just ordered this book I am hopeful it will help, I will let you know. I am starting from scratch too.

    I see you named your eleuke. How do you like it so far? If you have posted I missed it!
    I LOVE my Eleuke. This instrument is unbelievable. The possibilities are limitless. I feel like this type of instrument will allow more people to evolve to higher levels of playing. Think about what the electric guitar did for music....I absolutely love it. Money well spent.
    Have a Happy Day, and remember- Take the time to play!!!!

    Youtube Channel: www.youtube.com/richm2778

    Custom Donaldson Concert Uke
    "Hugs & Kisses" Model 1.0
    "Na-ni"

    Lanikai Lu-21C
    "Cousin Larry"

    Charango of unknown origins by way of Trujillo, Peru.
    "Lolita"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    5,662

    Default

    There are a couple chapters in Roadmaps that address this - I don't have my copy with me right now but I think they have to do with "boxes," e.g. Blues Box? But Ingrate has it - it's all about learning the scales.

    I haven't seen it yet myself but I've heard good things about the new 101 Ukulele Licks book, which sounds like it would be useful in learning how to string notes together.

  7. #7
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    http://www.ukulele.nl/
    The best way I suggest to start is by fingering the chord, and instead of strumming along with everyone, you pick out notes within the chord to create a lead. For variation, try playing chords in different positions (higher up on the fretboard) and picking out higher notes. (Bruddah Iz did this really well.)The above link has all the different chord positions, just keep clicking on the chord to see where to put your fingers.

  8. #8
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    Default More ideas

    This way you get started right away without having to learn all the different scales. (Although that is the next step). I would also recommend learning the 3rd and 6ths on the ukulele, as they work really well and are a familiar sound. I know the Daniel Ho and Herb Ohta, Jr. books (Discovering the 'Ukulele and Exploring the 'Ukulele) have really good lists in every key, along with Hawaiian turnarounds. There are also free MP 3s on their websites with all the scales and exercises. I hope this helps!

    http://www.herbohtajr.com/
    http://www.danielho.com/DHC/Home.html

  9. #9
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    If you have a way to record youself, you can lay down you own backing tracks to play along to. Just play the chords on the tracks and jam away with either the scales, as already mentioned, or even play the melody. It works great for times when you can assemble a group to practice with.

  10. #10
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    (Caveat - I don't solo on uke, yet, this comes from experience on guitar, but the principles are the same.)

    1) As someone else has mentioned, learn your scales.
    2) Generally, for rock and blues, you can improvise almost anything in the minor pentatonic scale of the sixth degree of the scale that the song is written in, and it will sound like you kind of know what you're doing. (I.e. for a song in the key of G the sixth is E so you solo using the E minor pentatonic scale.)
    3) If you don't get out of the pentatonic mentioned in 2 above, at least occasionally, your solo will be kind of blah. You need to get at least into the blues scale of the sixth to get really interesting, and when you can solo using the full chromatic scale people will sit up and take notice.
    4) Pay attention to both the melodic and rhythmic parts of the song in your soloing. A lot of otherwise good solos are drakh because the soloist ignored the "feel" being generated by the rhythm and harmony.
    5) Sometimes one note, held soulfully and perhaps bent, is worth ten-thousand notes from a speed demon (of course, for this you need amplification and a bit of feedback to keep the note sustaining, acoustic ukes don't sustain long enough to matter).

    John
    I'm not entirely convinced that it is possible to polish a turd. However, if one were to accomplish that feat one would still have a turd, and one all the more noticeable for being shiny.

    Check out my ukulele-themed "stuff" at http://www.cafepress.com/fivebyfiveukulele - proceeds go to a good cause...UAS treatment!

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