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GMC Forum _ REC _ Poor Man Blues Solo

Posted by: bleez Jun 7 2015, 08:11 PM

Original lesson:

I just wanna highlight a quote from the lesson notes : "I suggest that you give yourself a certain amount of freedom as far as timing goes" :)

Posted by: Gabriel Leopardi Jun 8 2015, 02:48 PM

Hi Bleez! Great to see a new REC from you!

I've been following your progress on this one thanks to our mentoring thread ( and I can say that your progress on different elements is really notorious.

However, there is still room to make this one sound better, and to get the most of it.

This is a blues lesson and this still is most focused on expressing techniques as well as tone. This are clearly your weak points but with hard work you are going on the right direction. This lesson is excellent to work on this so I strongly recommend you to continue practicing but this time re-checking Ivan's playing focusing on one thing at a time:

Bending: Your bends are on pitch but you are still not comfortable with them, this is not a consistent technique. Some bends reach the note too late, while others seem to shyly search for it. You definitely need to work more on this, and pay attention to how Ivan alternates from fast to slow bends to get different feels. I've shared with you exercises that are showing good results, so keep on working on them.

Vibrato: Your vibrato is still weak. Sometimes it's close while other times is not there, it's poor, not regular. I noticed that your tend to forget using the other fingers of your left hand help the one that is pressing the fret. (this is also applicable for bending).

Tone: Your tone improved dramatically compared to previous takes and I know that the main reason is the new gear that you've gotten. Your tone on this one is lacking definition which is commonly called "presence". It will be a great training for you if you try to replicate the tone used by the instructor on this one, mostly regarding EQ. Try adding more presence and see what happens. I also feel that reverb (or maybe short delay) fx is a bit high, that also makes the sound less clear. Reverb usually has its own EQ, so another good idea is to cut low frequencies of it.

Dynamics: Another element to work. Just check both takes at 00:25, that lick will show exactly what you need to work. Your playing keeps with the same intensity, while Ivan accentuates the first notes of that phrase and gives his playing more life. Work on this too.

Ok friend! We've been talking about this things at the mentoring thread but if you have more questions we can continue there. Keep on the hard work! wink.gif

Posted by: Bogdan Radovic Jun 8 2015, 06:30 PM

Hey Bleez - great to see another take from you in the REC zone!

My first impression after checking your take and comparing it in details with instructors playing in the lesson is that you have a very good ear! This lesson is tricky due to all the bends, yet you did it well there in terms of reaching the correct pitch. I'd say that the biggest improvement in this performance can be done in the tone and dynamics areas. This kind of slow blues playing feeds it soul from the dynamics and expressive techniques (bending/vibrato etc). Dynamics are a complex term but the most obvious and first step there is to become aware of playing loud vs quiet notes. Ivan's playing in this lesson is pretty aggressive and you can hear how he picks out certain notes louder than others. I think this is crucial for mastering this lesson. Your solo attitude sounds cool for a slow blues, moody and quiet tune on its own but I think that you have a much higher potential for making this one "scream". For start my advice would be to just concentrate on hearing and identifying which notes Ivan plays really strong and loud and replicating that in your performance. As Gabriel mentioned, bending could feature more control in terms of speed as this will allow you to get those expressive bends this lesson features. The tone you have tweaked is similar in vibe to instructor's in the lesson, try adding a bit more presence (brightness) for start and maybe just a touch of overdrive or gain to match the clean to crunchy when picked hard tone used in the lesson.

Next detail which caught my ear is that you feel much more confident with the first half of the lesson so from 0:50 towards ending phrases start to sound a bit different from the original and there are issue in executing the licks clean.

Overall - this was a very tasty take and I think you are on the edge to perfecting this one as there are no major problems evident which cannot be solved with a bit of practice (as said, your bends for example are on pitch which is awesome).

Keep working on this one as it would be awesome to hear a take from you with more attitude (dynamics) and tweaked guitar tone.

Posted by: Darius Wave Jun 8 2015, 08:11 PM

Not much to add after very complex feedback from Gabriel and Bogdan. Aside from well described pitch issues on bend notes there is something you could try to copy a bit better from original lesson - Gambale likes to call it" chocking the chicken" smile.gif)) In practise it's just a very fast and wide vibrato - very characteristic for blues playing.Ivan does it practicaly on every longer note in his lesson smile.gif

Posted by: Fran Jun 9 2015, 06:54 PM

Almost there, 7

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