Wednesday, May 17, 2017
This guitar scale life ain't no illusion
I HAVE A guitar student who went to St. Louis last Friday and saw Joe Walsh and Tom Petty play in St. Louis. He said it was an amazing show, and I regret not getting to check it out.
Joe Walsh is from another planet. By that, I mean NOBODY plays guitar like him. I love his solo stuff because it's not that hard to figure out but it has all kinds of guitar and other parts hemming in and out.
So, this morning, the student and I sat down and learned "Life of Illusion." I remember playing it years ago and figuring out the opening riff. All these years later, I realize I learned it in the wrong key and had no idea what I was doing. Now I have a whole new approach to life and to playing the guitar - Life of Illusion uses a D major scale, and if you practice the scale, you can learn the riff in no time.
Then we listened to "Breakdown" by Tom Petty, and he learned the little solo part. It's the descending Pentatonic scale in A minor. That sounds music-speak and the explanation is a lot longer and harder than it takes to learn.
Wait a second ... am I turning into what I loathe - the music snob?
Nope. I'm just learning and teaching, in that order. And that's not an illusion.