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> Riffs And Rhythm
steve25
post Apr 4 2008, 03:31 PM
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Hey guys, so there's a lot of topics on leads and solos and stuff but not a lot of rhythm playing i noticed. I was just wondering how you guys came up with your riffs when making songs and stuff? Is it the same deal for you when you make up solos or different? Do you just use the chords and scales you know and hope for the best or do you try and imagine it first or just mess about until you come up with something? What do you do to try and make better riffs? I've noticed all the instructor riffs are very well made and i want to improve on my rhythm part but don't really know how to i've not really come up with riffs that i'm happy with yet.
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skennington
post Apr 4 2008, 03:57 PM
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Good question Steve. Seems everyone is more into soloing. I had an idea about someone doing a collaboration only in reverse order. Found here:

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=13816

I would really like to hear various chord progressions from members here at GMC to give me some other ideas.

After all, you need rhythm to solo over smile.gif

I usually just start with a certain drum pattern and go until I find a certain riff I like. Then i'll fool around with it in different keys.

Heres one I came up with on mine and smells collab.

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...ost&id=4705



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Nemanja Filipovi...
post Apr 4 2008, 05:13 PM
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all tough I am not guitarist..I wrote many riffs for my band....I always sing it in my head(or to my guitarist)...first we make the scelet(basic melody)...and then latter we upgrade it to our satisfaction....

for that a bout making a better riffs..well listening to a lot of music(different kinds) can give you inspiration...not copying the riffs or melody,or using some part of it..but atmosphere and the vibe can give very good results...


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ztevie
post Apr 4 2008, 07:26 PM
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I often fall into the trap of making things too complicated. If it's too simple I often hear some other song in the riff, so I tend to use very unusual chords and patterns, which of course make the riff sound a bit constructed... So even if it sounds nice to myself at first, it is not "hit"- material, as AC/DC, Judas Priest kind of thing which is very simple and basic, and other people than guitarists can not see any beauty in these riffs...
I often fill in spaces with notes and chords, and the riff would, when looking at it afterwards, benefit from those spaces. Altugh I must say I have come up with some very cool things this way. My advice is, feel free to experiment with different approaches and try to go out of the normal, and out of the usual scale, but keep it simple...


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Robin
post Apr 4 2008, 07:35 PM
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i pretty much randomly jam and try to make cool riffs, or i hear a riff in my head and i try to play it.
i always try to make variations of chords, also power chords.

i suppose this didnt help anyone, but thought i'd share how i did it anyway.


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Robin
post Apr 4 2008, 07:39 PM
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QUOTE (Nemanja @ Apr 4 2008, 05:13 PM) *
all tough I am not guitarist..I wrote many riffs for my band....I always sing it in my head(or to my guitarist)...

the drummer in my band also does that alot biggrin.gif



QUOTE (Nemanja @ Apr 4 2008, 05:13 PM) *
for that a bout making a better riffs..well listening to a lot of music(different kinds) can give you inspiration...

I definitely agree!!


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Bogdan Radovic
post Apr 4 2008, 10:40 PM
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You may find cool riffs when jamming and than when you do , just play around them and try to enhance if they need it..
Also like Nemanja said, you can sing the riff first and than try to play the same thing on guitar, you could make something what you wouldn't normally make when jamming. smile.gif


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Pablo Vazquez
post Apr 5 2008, 01:46 AM
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QUOTE (Bogdan @ Apr 4 2008, 06:40 PM) *
You may find cool riffs when jamming and than when you do , just play around them and try to enhance if they need it..
Also like Nemanja said, you can sing the riff first and than try to play the same thing on guitar, you could make something what you wouldn't normally make when jamming. smile.gif

+1 wink.gif


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skennington
post Apr 5 2008, 02:45 AM
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QUOTE (Pablo Vazquez @ Apr 4 2008, 08:46 PM) *
+1 wink.gif


Uh Oh, Pablo, the +1 police are going to be on ya! laugh.gif

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=13653


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Daniel Robinson
post Apr 5 2008, 10:34 AM
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Most often when i am coming up with a rhythm riff i have a melody in mind...just a basic framework anyway. I try to find the basic chords that fit the melody i am imagining. I then start singing nonsense lyrics and try to find a groove to the syllables. Alot of times this does the trick. Not only does it bring out new material but it helps with the lyrics writing as well because now i have a rhythm set for the melody.


Everyone has their own angle when it comes to rhythm and song writing in general. For instance alot of people try to play "Happy" or "Sad" or "angry"

Me personally i am weird i guess but i like my playing to be more elemental in nature. I might be staring out the window watching the wind blow things around. I try to write "The wind" or i might find a rhythm in rain drops falling on my roof during a summer storm.

I like to try to connect to more abstract things then happy or sad.


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Nemanja Filipovi...
post Apr 5 2008, 11:46 AM
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QUOTE (D.Robinson @ Apr 5 2008, 11:34 AM) *
I then start singing nonsense lyrics and try to find a groove to the syllables.

yep,I do the same thing..some times I do not have the whole lyrics for a month...but song is build on that nonsense lyrics..
so,I can relax after..and focus all my time on the lyrics that are left to be written ....


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erik
post Apr 8 2008, 11:38 AM
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I just play whatever comes to mind.. And if it's good or has potential, I play alot around it and try to come up with improvements and such. I don't really use theory consciously when I'm making riffs. I just kind of have some theory in the back of my mind, and I just use that as a 'guide' of how the riff can be improved.

But what was MOST valuable to me, was to learn ALOT of riffs from other bands. My band started out as a cover band (because nobody knew how to make songs) so we learned a lot of riffs and I sort of saw a pattern in many of the riffs. This helps in getting an overall view of how others make their riffs. Don't limit yourself to learning songs from only one band, then your riffs might be very similar to that band. It can even be usefull to learn stuff from other genres, just to get an overall view, and if you find something cool in that genre, it's not impossible to convert it into your own genre, and there you suddenly have your own style.
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Daniel Robinson
post Apr 8 2008, 02:19 PM
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For me personally when i first started out i really really tried to stay away from learning covers and other peoples riffs. It was slow going to say the least but it helped me find myself and my own style alot of faster rather then emulating someone else.

To make a point look at U2 for example. If you listen to early interviews with the band, when they first got together none of them could play well enough to actually do covers. So they had to write songs using what they knew. Because of that they are some of the most unique musicians out there. The Edge is one of the most enigmatic guitar players that i can think of. And he got there by being himself and not trying to emulate anyone else.


My advice to those starting out would be to learn your basics develop your own style and feel for the instrument you might be pleasantly surprised to find you have a unique perspective on guitar. Then after doing that start learning a few covers or licks from other players. Once you have that then put your own unique spin on those ideas. Its really hard as musicians to accept our shortcomings. But you have to embrace that.

I read a quote from a guitarist quite a long time ago i don't even remember who is from but it basically said this.

"If you can learn to embrace the things you hate about your guitar playing you will start to explore the instrument in a way you never thought possible and find your own voice and truth in the music."


Its always hard to accept that we arent Steve Vai or Ynqwie, but don't discount your own musical thoughts. If you wrote a song and Ynqwie covered it he wouldnt be able to capture your essence no matter how hard he tried. He can play the notes but it wouldnt convey the same feelings that you convey when you play it.

Daniel


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Antipolitik
post Apr 10 2008, 03:59 AM
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Hi,

when I make my riffs I often just play to a straight 4 drumbeat. I ALWAYS stand up while I try to find something new.
Sitting down is not good smile.gif not for me anyway. I start at a certain BPM. Let's say 85. If I don't "find" anything on this
BPM I slow it down or speed it up. It depends on what kind of song or riff I am "looking" for. If I haven't found any cool
riff in 15-20 minutes I take a break, grab some coffee and listen to some of my favourite bands.

If I want to make a oldschool metal song I listen to Candlemass. If I want to do heavy drop C I listen to Godsmack
or Disturbed to "get into the groove". Sometimes I also look closer at tabs and timing of their songs.
I try different approaches, powerchord, singlenotes, palmmutes, slides, pinch harmonics and mix these around.

If I don't manage to put down a new riff I start to change the beat around. Only by moving a kick or a snare can have
huge impact on your improvisation. Also if you take the beat and half the tempo of the snare can make you go:
- "Oh shit, this is heavy ..."

A very good help for coming up with new riff ideas is to have Addictive drums or EZDrummer of course. (I prefer AD).
Just hit "play" button and scan thru the presets and move the BMP around. You'll come up with something in the end.
On monday your brain can be empty on 105 BPM but the next day you are full of ideas. Also good to try changing the tempo even if you find a riff. It can sound so much better on just 5 BPM +/-. Also important, your guitar sound/tone can also have huge impact on your imagination. Like when I tried my new guitar at the music store I got like 3-4 new ideas for nice riffs and had to record them on my cellphone in the store haha. smile.gif

Very important. If you are having a bad day and can't "find" anything. Take a BREAK! Don't push it!
Tell your girlfriend to massage your shoulders or something... anyway... Good luck!

/Jonas













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audiopaal
post Apr 14 2008, 12:42 PM
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I just play, and usually the riffs just come singing out of my amp tongue.gif
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superize
post Apr 15 2008, 12:11 AM
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QUOTE (steve25 @ Apr 4 2008, 04:31 PM) *
Hey guys, so there's a lot of topics on leads and solos and stuff but not a lot of rhythm playing i noticed. I was just wondering how you guys came up with your riffs when making songs and stuff? Is it the same deal for you when you make up solos or different? Do you just use the chords and scales you know and hope for the best or do you try and imagine it first or just mess about until you come up with something? What do you do to try and make better riffs? I've noticed all the instructor riffs are very well made and i want to improve on my rhythm part but don't really know how to i've not really come up with riffs that i'm happy with yet.


I play untill i found something i like and then i expand on it and try to add on more stuff that souns good


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JVM
post Apr 15 2008, 12:49 AM
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QUOTE (audiopaal @ Apr 14 2008, 07:42 AM) *
I just play, and usually the riffs just come singing out of my amp tongue.gif


Lucky biggrin.gif

I've tried to go the way Daniel describes. I don't usually learn songs. I know a few that can get me by in a situation where people want to jam to some songs they know but I generally don't learn songs. The riffs I have made myself are decently good I think. I don't consider a riff "finished" unless I suprise myself with it and do something I didn't expect. I've learned that at least early on for me, I would hear riffs in my head that had a lot of basic stuff in them and were often repetitive or similar. In one sense, I don't "work" on riffs, I just let them come to me. Either they do or don't. Sometimes it takes a few weeks.

I like to mix triplet grooves with eighth or sixteenth note grooves. I also try to make riffs that are "modular" in that I can tack on a different ending or something fairly easily for variation.

This post has been edited by JVM: Apr 15 2008, 12:51 AM


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