Snow Patrol

by Gabriel Leopardi

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    THE PROFESSOR In this rockin’ lesson from Gabriel, you will learn how to take the Ionian Mode and apply it to a classic chord progression in order to dig into the Alternative Rock stylings of Snow Patrol and their Alt Rock compatriots. 

    Learning how to play, build and apply the Ionian Mode, as well as understanding the I vi IV V chord progression and it’s role in modern music, will both come together to give you the background information needed to dive deep into Snow Patrol’s playng and writing style. 

    Hi GMC!

    Welcome to my new lesson covering the style of Snow Patrol, a Northern Irish/Scottish Alternative Rock formed in 1991 by Gary Lightbody (vocals, guitar), Jonny Quinn (drums), Nathan Connolly (guitar, backing vocals), Paul Wilson (bass guitar, backing vocals) and Johnny McDaid (piano, guitar, backing vocals).

    Music Style:
    This band is usually defined as a combination of Alternative Rock, Power Pop, Post-Britpop and Indie Rock. You will find a big connection between this band and other bands that I’ve already covered like Coldplay, Muse and Explosions in the sky. Their music combines clean/chorus guitar atmospheres (post-rock influences) and pop music vocal melodies (Britpop influences). In this lesson I tried to re-create their ballad side inspired by songs like “Chasing cars”, “Run” and “Open your eyes”.

    Tonality, Chord Progression & Scales:
    This tune is in A major and the progression used is one of the most often used in Pop Music. If you didn’t, you can check my lesson Picnic Panic to learn more about Pop Chord Progressions. Most of their songs are in Major but they also use minor tonalities in their saddest songs. As you can note in the tabs and main video, the chord progression is all the time the same: A – E – F#m – D, and the evolution is done with some arrangements and guitar sounds that generate textures and different dynamics.

    Techniques:
    This is not a tricky lesson since Snow Patrol, as many Pop Rock bands aren’t based on difficult playing, they create nice tunes based on simple melodies. We will use techniques such as strumming, alternate picking and only down strokes.

    Sound:
    You will find that I used two different sounds in this lesson. In the first part I used a clean guitar sound based on Fender combo amps with 1x12 Cabinets. The distorted sound is a combination of the same amp with more drive and a Gibson combo emulation.

    Click HERE to download my POD HD500 Patches.

    Clean tone FXs settings:


    Tuning: Standard 440

    Tempo: 100 BPM

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