Friday, April 3, 2009

A technique which has not been widely duplicated.

Actually, I know of no other guitarist besides Pat Metheny who uses this technique and it's one that I really struggled to figure out, as it demands attention and a lot of practice. For my part I have been running this over different scales and on different string sets. One unique aspect of this technique is the way Pat changes positions with a hammer on. It's kind of like a musical long jump or triple jump. It's athletic. The second half demonstrates a kind of hammer-on tumbling, if you will. The idea of using hammer-ons in this way is one which will yield a lot of melodic inspiration if practiced properly. It is very economical and you need that at fast tempos. Pat's technique has obviously served him very well. There aren't any other guitar players I can think of who play 3 hour sets night after night, year after year. He's doing a lot of things right and we've have been listening. Hope you enjoy and watch the video on YouTube of "The Real Pat Metheny Lick".

Hello and welcome!

This is my first foray into the digital domain and I am excited to be able to share what is my greatest passion, namely playing guitar. I have played guitar for 18 years now and am only just beginning to feel confident in my knowledge and application of the instrument. It has been great fun and a lot of work to achieve this sense of purpose. Here, I am going to talk about jazz guitar as it stands in the present. I will reflect on lessons from the past and I will certainly entertain notions of the future. A lot of this will be musing but I intend to provide thoughtful content in support of it. Here's a lick from John Scofield. I forget where I heard it exactly but it was on the A Go Go album somewhere. It's kind of a nice collection of notes and it rolls off the fingers in a way that is natural and supportive of good rhythm. I suppose this same lick could work over an G7#9, or a C9#5, but John put it here on a Bb7#9. It covers a lot of range very quickly. Sco's got a great feel for the guitar. When I met him at a CD signing after a concert in Vancouver, I told him that he wrote great idiomatic stuff for the 335 he plays. (I know it's an Ibanez.) He gave me a kind disparaging look, as if to tell me the word sounded too much like idiotic. Well, I meant what I said. He gets the goods out of his instrument on every song. I love that. The sound of a guitar, his guitar in this case is a major feature and it's exciting to hear its contribution to his tunes. They wouldn't come off as well on any other instrument. Perhaps "idiomatic" was not the correct term. It just doesn't sound right. Like the Freddie Green rhythm guitar I used to play on my Stratocaster in high school. Check out this bitchin' lick!