Ian Crichton of Saga

by Guido Bungenstock

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  • Hi Guys,

    One of my favorite guitar players is Ian Chrichton of Saga. He is known for his precise staccato lines that sometimes sound like Al Di Meola. He and the keyboard player do harmonized solos very often using the question and answer concept.

    Saga are a Canadian rock band, formed in Oakville, Ontario. Jim Crichton and Welsh-born vocalist Michael Sadler have been the principal songwriters for Saga. Ian Crichton is the band's guitarist; apart from his work with Saga, he has recorded several solo albums as well as sessions with Asia. The band's keyboardist, Scottish-born Jim "Daryl" Gilmour, joined Saga in December 1979 after Greg Chadd left the band in August 1979 (Chadd joined Saga in December 1978 after original member Peter Rochon left the band to become a full-time music equipment company executive shortly after the band's first album was released). - Wikipedia

    I made a lesson based on their popular song of the 80's called "On The Loose" which demonstrates the use of staccato lines, syncopated rhythms, some unisono and harmonized lines

    Here are the sections of the song:

    A SECTION 0:00-0:16
    | F/G | % | G | % |
    | F/G | A-/G | G | % |

    B SECTION 0:17-0:44
    | F/G | % | G | % |
    | F/G | A-/G | G | % |

    C SECTION 0:45-1:17
    | F/G | % | G | % |
    | F/G | A-/G | G | % |

    Start really slow and incrase the tempo step by step until you feel comfortable with it!

    Good luck! ;-)

    Final words

    I tried to transcribe as close as possible. Specially in the Guitar Pro 5 you'll find all this little extras!

    Cheers - Guido

    Technical specifications
    Guitar: Music Man Luke II
    Strings: D'Addario NYXL 009
    Audio Interface: Focusrite Saffire PRO 24
    Recording SW: Logic 9, several plugins
    Amp(Only for Monitor): Peavey JSX Top with Marshall 2x12" V30

    Kemper Profiling Amp: Sodariu Hot Rod 50 profile

    This profile is available for purchase here:

    Standard tuning: E, A, D, G, B, E

    Tempo: 138 BPM

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