| play guitar | Carlos Santana
Learn Guitar: Play Santana Songs On Guitar
Anyone who has tried to play lead guitar in the style of Carlos
Santana will know how difficult it is to duplicate. I am not
referring to copying a Santana solo from a TAB sheet, we're
talking about understanding how Carlos creates his powerful
Santana's powerful solos are a blend of interesting harmonic
textures mixed with traditional earthy scales. Of course, there's
a lot more to Carlos Santana's music than scales and chords,
Carlos is a very definite guitarist, every note he plays is
packed with energy and emotion.
Guitarist's trying to learn Santana's guitar solos often
encounter notes and chords outside the standard guitar resource
material of minor pentatonic scale plus power chord combination.
Here's 5 tips to help guitarist's grasp the concepts behind
1. Learn the Harmonic Minor scale - guitarist's who already know
the natural minor scale can easily create the Harmonic minor
scale by sharpening the seventh note of the natural minor scale.
Let's use the "A" natural minor scale as an example.
The notes in the "A" natural minor are as follows:
A, B, C, D, E, F, G, A.
By sharpening the G we create the "A" harmonic minor scale:
A, B, C, D, E, F, G#, A.
The natural minor scale is also known as the Aeolian mode.
2. Study chords produced from the Harmonic minor scale:
As the name implies the Harmonic minor scale produces as
interesting family of rich sounding chords.
The following chords are created from the "A" harmonic minor
chord 1 = A minor (#7), chord 2 = B minor 7th flat 5, chord 3 = C
major 7th sharp 5, chord 4 = D minor 7th, chord 5 = E dominant
7th, chord 6 = F major 7th, chord 7 = G sharp diminished 7th.
The "A" minor (#7) chord is also known as a minor/major seventh
chord e.g., Am (MAJ7).
The B minor 7th flat 5 chord is also known as a B half diminished
3. Play the standard Harmonic minor chord progressions:
The most common chord progressions are the 2-5-1, 1-4-5, 1-6-2-5,
1-6-4-5 and 1-6-5 progressions.
The following examples are given in the key of A harmonic minor,
notice how the preference is for a straight minor chord for chord
one instead of a minor sharpened seventh.
2-5-1 = B minor seventh flat 5, E dominant seventh, A minor./
1-4-5 = A minor, D minor seventh, E dominant seventh. /1-6-2-5 =
A minor, F major seventh, B minor seventh flat 5, E dominant
seventh. / 1-6-4-5 = A minor, F major seventh, D minor seventh,E
dominant seventh. / 1-6-5 = A minor, F major seventh, E dominant
4. Blues scale played over Harmonic minor chord progressions.
Obviously the harmonic minor scale will work well over the chord
progressions created from that scale. Santana often plays the
blues scale over the harmonic minor chord progressions.
Here is an example, the "A" blues scale consisting of the notes
A,C,D,Eb,E,G can be played over a B minor seventh flat 5, E
dominant seventh and A minor chords progression.
5. Let to play the Dorian Mode:
A number of popular Santana tunes are based on the Dorian mode.
The song "Evil Ways" is in "G" Dorian the notes for G Dorian are:
G,A,Bb,C,D,E,F,G. Whilst the tune "Black Magic Woman" is derived
from the "D" Dorian mode: D,E,F,G,A,B,C,D.
Learning new scales and chords can be very interesting, it is
vitally important to be able to "hear" these new sounds, record
the chord progressions and pay close attention to how each chord
sounds so you can recognize them when you hear them new time.
The Santana style of playing can add a new dimension to your
guitar playing and improve your ability to play guitar by ear,
take your time and enjoy these interesting sounds.
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