Month: September 2013



I have come up with the idea of turning a vocal melody of a song into a guitar solo to introduce interpretation into my piece. I have tried this with the song Paradise by Coldplay by using the technique learning by ear while playing along to a karaoke version of the song. i did this in order to enhance my ear for music and help me to be able to hear what sounds write with a song and not just learn what is theoretically right.

However, I felt that this was not enough, therefore, I decided to use a loop pedal to create all the music myself with no backing track. I also had the idea of doing this with the song with or without you by U2, yet I did this making all the music myself with just a guitar and a ME-70 multi-effects pedal. in order to do this i learnt all of the parts and simply played them one by one recording each one at a time. the reason i did this was to create a new and individual sound that will intrigue people  and make them want to hear more as it is something that they may not have heard before.

I decided to workout the melody to the song Shadows by Lindsey Stirling to try as one of my solos; however I couldn’t see how I could interpret this song as it is already pretty individual. I feel that the only way to change this song is to add in my own solo or improvise a different melody. I will also try to add more guitar effects into this song to give it a whole new feel. i will do this by experimenting with my pedal and seeing what works. i will do this as it will give the song a new ‘electronic’ feel that will hopefully create suspense and achieve a whole new sound for the genre.


Playing to a Metronome


I have been playing the song Skyfall by Adele a lot recently on piano; however I felt that I could do with making the chords / melody a little more in time. I did this by turning a metronome to 50 BPM and attempting to play this with no mistakes, as soon as I had mastered it at this speed I decided to add on another 5 BPM to get to 55 BPM. I continued to do this until I reached the original speed of 80 BMP; however I did feel that I could challenge myself more and go faster. I then turned it up to around 90 BMP to try and master the song at this speed.

I did this as it helped me to play the song more in time. It also helped me learn the song a lot faster and with fewer mistakes each time I play it. This was because i was practicing it  as slower speeds and matching every change up with the click on a metronome.

Warm ups


before I start playing I always try to warm up to avoid injury; I begin by going up in a chromatic scale of four notes (keeping my hand still by using every finger on a different fret) across every string, as I get to the bottom I then reverse it entirely and go back across the neck going down the frets. After I have finishing doing this as fast as I can and as far as I can, I then do the same exercise but add in some string skipping of 2 strings each time. Finally I then add in bigger skips by going from the sixth string to the first, to the fifth, to the second and so on.

Doing this warm up can help improve the stamina of your playing; it can also help with the practice of string skipping with both hands. As the warm ups build up slowly and get gradually harder you can challenge yourself to see how far you can get, maybe try to speed it up to challenge yourself by playing to a metronome. Doing this could also help to train your ears to play in time with songs and keep a steady tempo.