Rookie question

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MikeL
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Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 8:44 pm

Rookie question

Post by MikeL » Fri Oct 10, 2014 12:45 am

Hi all,

I've been fiddling around with strumming the chords for Reverend Gary Davis' "Death Don't Have No Mercy" and wanted to try to throw in a few lead lines but don't really know where to start. The song is in Em (Em, Am, B7, with G, A7, D7 and C). What would be the likely scale to use as a starting point for lead notes?

Thanks!
Mike
Cheers!
Mike

"A broken angel sings
From a guitar"

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12bar
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Re: Rookie question

Post by 12bar » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:04 am

Great song - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AiQfhwWcDkk
Without having a guitar by hand, I'd suggest E minor pentatonic as usual, for the bridge change the lead note to G, the pattern is the same as E minor and G major share the same notes.

MikeL
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 8:44 pm

Re: Rookie question

Post by MikeL » Sat Oct 11, 2014 12:51 am

Thanks Gerd. Em pentatonic is what I've been working on in walk-up or walk-down transitions between Em->Am->Em or Em->B7->Em chord changes but I haven't found any equally pleasing transition for the G/A7/D7 sequence. Are you suggesting the same scale using G as the root? Apologies for my musical ignorance but what's the bridge in this song? :think:
Cheers!
Mike

"A broken angel sings
From a guitar"

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12bar
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Re: Rookie question

Post by 12bar » Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:04 pm

Sorry, forget the bridge - i didn't listen properly and had no guitar :shy:
I thought it was a standard progression with a bridge, but it's a special progression with a chorus (which is not common in Blues).

Anyway, the E minor pentatonic is still OK. I found an other version with some tab:
http://www.kristinhall.org/songbook/Blu ... Mercy.html

For more help I'll need to take my axe while listening to the correct version (there are dozens...) :music1:

MikeL
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 8:44 pm

Re: Rookie question

Post by MikeL » Tue Oct 14, 2014 12:04 am

I found a few tabs for the song on the web. One is a booklet with 14 of Rev. Gary Davis songs as taught by Ernie Hawkins. The others are various Hot Tuna versions (I guess Jorma played it several different ways). The problems with these are, 1) they're a little too challenging for my skill level and 2) my goal is to learn how to improvise within the framework of a particular song; so I don't really want to follow tabs for this.

At any rate, my fretting hand wrist is complaining again so I'm going to have to put down the guitar for a little while. :cry: I'll try to exercise my ears/brain in the mean time since there are a multitude of YouTube versions available.

By the way, my first exposure to this song was on Grateful Dead's "Live Dead" album where it's played as an instrumental. The lyrics are, of course, pretty heavy but the music holds up well on its own.
Cheers!
Mike

"A broken angel sings
From a guitar"

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12bar
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Re: Rookie question

Post by 12bar » Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:27 pm

This song is not the easiest one to start learning how to improvise, because of its non standard chord progression. Not following tabs and training your ear is great :thumbsup: , however not everyone can improvise without any theoretical knowledge about what notes can be played.

But first of all, take care of your wrist!

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