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Suhr Mega Jam

The Suhr Mega Jam takes place over a typical fusion progression exploiting various non diatonic
changes.

Gm7 Bbm7 Gm7 Bbm7 Gm7 Bbm7 C#7 F7sus(Eb/F) Ab7sus(Gb/Ab) D7alt

The opening repetition of Gm7 to Bbm7 (m7 chords moving up in b3rds) is a very common
movement in fusion progressions and relatively simple to solo over, opting for a Dorian scale from
the root of each chord

The above shapes demonstrate both scales in one area of the neck (using CAGED), but of course you
should be able to play these scales in all positions using both the CAGED and 3 notes per string
system.

Other common scale choices for our Gm7 are

Gm pentatonic
G Melodic minor
Gm6 pentatonic
Dm pentatonic
Am pentatonic
Of course there are plenty of other options to experiment with; which (when moved up a b3) cover
your Bbm7 chord too.

For the C#7 you may be tempted to play C# Mixolydian, but as this is a non resolving dominant chord
(one that doesnt move up a 4th or down a 5th to the tonic) the more fusion choice would be mode 4
of the melodic minor scale C# Lydian Dominant

As for the following two 7sus chords you could opt for the Mixolydian scale, or using the slash chord
approach you could play ideas based on the correct triad. F7sus is an Ebmaj triad with an F in the
bass, so any Eb major idea will complement the harmony nicely.

The last chord is our resolving dominant chord, so as this is fusion we add as many alterations
(b9,#9,b5,#5) as possible. Try:

Fm pentatonic (#9,b5,#5,b7,b9)
D superlocrian/Eb melodic minor (R,b9,#9,3,b5,#5,b7)
D half whole diminished (R,b9,#9,3,b5,5,6,b7)
D Phrygian dominant (R,b9,3,4,5,#5,b7)
D Whole tone (R,9,3,b5,#5,b7)

Most importantly... get creative!


Tom Quayle

Toms solo opens with a pickup bar where he implies a D7#5b9 chord which resolves to our tonic
Gm7.

From here Tom uses notes from Gdorian (using a G#/Ab chromatic passing tone in bar 5) to outline
the Gm7 chord this idea modulates smoothly to the Bbm7 chord by targeting the b3 (one of the
chords guide tones). There is a lot more chromaticism included over the Bbm7 but there is no doubt
that it comes in the form of chromatic passing tones contained within the Bbdorian scale Try the
legato lick in bar 8 which Tom resolves by sliding up to a position 4 Fm7 arpeggio (another common
substitution that implies a Bbm9 sound).

Resolving back to Gm7 Tom moves quickly to a slippery chromatic idea (bar 11) then mixes scale
steps and interval skips and a fluid legato sound that moves seamlessly through the key change to
Bbm7, a definite sax influence!

Tom then moves to something a little more guitaristic, punctuating Pat Metheny bebop style lines
with bold staccato notes then moving rhythmically down a chromatic scale (starting on the Eb in bar
16).

For the next Gm7 chord Tom plays some sweet diatonic 6th intervals ascending up the neck. A simple
idea like this can breathe a breath of fresh air to a solo that could lose interest if you were to just
play a stream of notes for 32 bars. To offset the idea a little further Tom climbs the guitar using
triplets, another effective tool that can grab the listeners ear again.

In bar 20 Tom plays some rhythmically displaced descending arpeggios (blending chromaticism
and colour tones) but you should be able to break these down to Gm7, Bbmaj and Fmaj7. The
descending Fmaj7 idea in bar 21 could be very awkward to execute in standard tuning, another pro
to Toms new standard EADGCF tuning.

In bar 24 Tom begins a terrifying legato run that Michael Brecker would be proud of! Take this one
VERY slowly and try to visualise exactly how the various chromatic notes fit between scale tones.

In bar 29 Tom has a real nod to the blues by playing the b3 over the chord with a blues curl at the
end; though you wouldnt normally expect a blues player to descend downwards into the fantastic
chromatic legato idea in bar 31...

Tom ties his solo off with a sophisticated D superlocrian line in what is fast becoming his trademark
legato style.
Andy Wood

Andys solo is a complete departure from Toms blending the most modern shred techniques with
more traditional country picking and bending ideas that have shaped his shredneck style.

The solo opens with some huge bends, the highlight being at the end of bar 2 where Andy bends and
slides down into 2 more bends, this is deceptively hard to do but sounds immense.

The following 16th note run is more a pentatonic scale with a colour tone (the 9th) added than a full
on Dorian scale, it moves down then up before bending up to the b3rd of the next Bbm7 chord.

The same hip bending lick reappears at this point (though we cant seem to fix the midi!) before
moving to another run of 16th notes loosely based on the Bb blues scale (position 4)

In bar 9 Andy rips out a more traditional country clich, sliding into three fast notes on one string
then punctuating it with a melody note on a higher string, very Jerry Reed. Andy moves this up the
neck before resolving the idea by sliding into a big bend in bar 11.

Over the next 5 bars Andy tears through the changes with a constant run of 16th notes, as with any
line like this one try to understand the scales and shapes hes using and try to find as many ways as
possible to move around within them.

In bar 17 Andy starts the (by far) coolest lick of the solo. Its a legato passage using stretched 3 note
per string, string skipped pentatonic shapes which moves on to an ascending 4 note per string (with
tapped notes) Gm pentatonic line, after tapping and sliding on the high string Andy resolves the
shred lick from hell with a country pedal steel lick then taps a bent note ala Van Halen... so cool it
hurts!

Bar 21 sees another long run of 16th notes based loosely on Bb Dorian with chromatic passing tones,
as always take note of where Andy plays these chromatic colour tones and experiment with it.

For the C#7 chord Andy plays a simple repeating arpeggio motif, but as suggested in the intro
includes the #11 for that fusion quality.

In bar 31 Andy takes off, playing a traditional 3 note per string pattern and moving it around
chromatically, this is a great way to create tension over an altered chord, rather than focusing on
specific altered tones you can just put the pedal to the metal and go as chromatic as you like. The
listener wont hear each note, only the idea as a whole and the effect it creates... just make sure you
resolve it well!
Martin Miller

Martins solo is a much more text book example of a fusion solo, rhythmically very precise with
structured ideas so look into each idea individually and try to bring them into your own solos.

The goal in this solo is clearly to build to a climax, so Martin opens with slow phrasing nailing the
changes by resolving to b3rd of Bbm7 with the whammy bar and a bend.

In bar 7 Martin moves into a descending Kotzen style legato pattern mixing Bb Dorian and Bb
Melodic minor, take it slow as the pull off from the little finger to the first is generally a weakness for
most players.

In bar 9 Martin begins with the same melodic motif first seen in bar 7, this moves up the pentatonic
scale on 2 strings and finished with a cool lick in position 1 G Dorian.

Bar 12 is one or Martins favourite licks. Moving around the neck with diatonic 6ths played
melodically; note how when he gets to the Bbm7 chord his perception of the intervals changes
drawing his new notes from Bb Dorian.

Bar 15 is Paul Gilbert alternate picking territory, but the note choice it a lot more fusion mixing
chromatic passing tones with diatonic 4ths.

Bar 18 see Martin exploiting his understanding of intervals even further, employing descending
diatonic 5ths, this intervallic approach is a staple of fusion as a rock or shred player would probably
opt for a more step wise approach.

In bar 23 Martin takes this intervallic approach even further into the realms of Carl Verheyen; mixing
various intervals to create very unique lines. A close analysis will reveal everything from ascending
b2s (C Db) to a descending compound 5th (Ab Db).

For the C#7 Martin changes the pace a little with a sustained melody and use of triplets, this really
helps to stress the change before moving into another idea based on 6ths for the F7sus chord.

Over the Ab7sus chord we have a very simple rhythmic displacement idea, a 3 note motif played at
constant 16th notes, this adds interest as there is always a new note on the downbeat.

Over the altered chord Martin plays a R,b9,4,5 arpeggio in octaves before resolving the line with a
bluesy G blues idea resting on the b3rd.
Rick Graham

Ricks solo has a lot of unique flavours about it (he opens with a rest for a start!) and Rick displays his
mastery of time feel by freely pushing and pulling with the pulse playing notes with both a rushed
and lazy feel, this is far from an accident! This is so effective in this case because the three players
before him have had such pure precision that Ricks more free form intro jumps out and gives him
his own character. You can follow the notation exactly to get a rough idea but the idea is to feel it.

In bar 10 Rick kicks his solo up a gear with a bebop influenced 16th note line in G Dorian (position 4),
pay attention to how the line is constructed, the combination of scalar ideas, chromaticism and
interval skips.

Bar 15 sees a more traditional shred influenced sweep picking line; first outlining a Bbm then an
Abmaj arpeggio. Superimposing the diatonic arpeggios from any key is a great tool for an improviser
this Abmaj arpeggio against out Bb bass note gives us the b7,9 and 11.

Bar 17 sees Rick unleashing his inner speed demon with a lightning quick legato idea but unlike a
shred lick this run ends with a cool pedal steel style bending lick which resolves by sliding down
chromatically to the b7 of Bbm7.

Bar 21 has another quite scary legato run, ideas like this are executed as fast as the hands can
muster, but dont hope to reach Rick speed on the first attempt!

For the C#7 chord Rick plays a beautiful melody opening with a slippery chromatic descent resting on
the #11, from here Rick plays around with an embellished C#7 arpeggio resting on the b7.

For the Eb/F chord Rick uses an F7 arpeggio, note the chromatic passing note (E) taking the root
down to the b7, as we have mentioned, chromatic passing notes are encouraged in this style, so
experiment.

Over the D7alt Rick begins with a highly chromaticised lick in Dm pentatonic (position 5) before
sliding up to a Dm Blues scale in position one, showing that to sound hip over the altered chord you
dont need to use any fancy scales if you can play pentatonic.

Rick also has the cadenza over the last 4 bars, this is just a stretched Gm pentatonic extended
position one lick that rapidly moves down the positions before sliding back to the root.

Good luck with this, you can find out more about the artist involved by visiting

www.leviclay.com

www.tomquayle.co.uk

www.myspace.com/awoodshreds

www.martinmillerguitar.com

www.rick-graham.co.uk