Express Guitar - The Ultimate Guitar Learning Kit

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learn guitar  | dire straights | mark knopfler

  

Learn Guitar Online, Dire Straights - Three Tips For Creating The Mark Knopfler Sound 

  

  The unique guitar style of Mark Knopfler is an important part of
  Dire Straights instantly recognizable sound.

  Apart from his work with the group Dire Straights, Mark has
  guested on works by other well-known artists such as Chet Atkins,
  John Fogerty, Bob Dylan and Eric Clapton.

  While Knopfler is known predominantly for his finger style guitar
  playing, during recording sessions Mark uses a pick for the
  rhythm guitar parts to give the guitar more definition.


  Here are three tips to help create that famous Dire Straights
  guitar sound.



  Tip 1: triads played on the 2nd,3rd and 4th strings.

  A significant part of Mark's style revolves around triad playing.
  Triads are simply three note chords, this very basic theoretical
  concept can be found everywhere in keyboard study methods,
  however it's hardly mentioned and certainly not developed to it's
  full potential in mainstream guitar study material.

  The concept is to stack the notes of a scale on top of each
  other, much like a layer cake. By stacking the notes using the
  interval of a third the diatonic scale in the key of C major
  creates the following chords.

  Chord 1 = C major (C-E-G), Chord 2 = D minor (D-F-A), chord 3 = E
  minor (E-G-B), chord four = F major (F-A-C), chord 5 = G major
  (G-B-D), chord 6 = A minor (A-C-E), chord 7 = B diminished (B-D-
  F), chord eight is the same chord as chord one C major (C-E-G),
  only one octave higher.

  If we take these triads and play them on the 2nd,3rd and 4th
  strings of the guitar you will immediately hear how Mark Knopfler
  creates his clear guitar chord style. This triad style of chord
  playing is so clear and defined because there is no note
  duplication of notes in the chord.

  To convert these triads to the 2nd, 3rd and 4th strings we will
  need to invert the chords, this is simply a matter of placing the
  lowest note in each chord at the top of the chord, in other words
  we re-arrange the note sequence in the chord.

  Playing the triads produced from the C major diatonic scale on
  the 2nd,3rd & 4th would produce the following inversions: C major
  (E-G-C), the "E" is played on the fourth string, "G" is played
  third string open and the "C" is played on the second string.


  Preceding to the D minor chord on the same string set we would
  arrive at the following: D minor (F-A-D), "F" played on the
  fourth string, "A" played on the third string and "D" played on
  the second string.



  Tip 2: Harmonic minor scale

  Mark Knopfler favors the harmonic minor scale to produce
  contrast and tension in his playing. The harmonic scale is simply
  the natural minor scale with a sharpened 7th note.

  Here is a quick way to get your head (and fingers) around this
  scale.

  C major = C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C

  has a relative minor scale (the "A" natural minor scale) that
  contains exactly the same notes only in a different order.


  A natural minor = A, B, C, D, E, F, G, A


  to create the "A" harmonic minor scale we only need to sharpen
  the 7th note.


  hence the "A" harmonic scale = A, B, C, D, E, F, G#, A



  Tip 3: learn to recognize chord progressions

  One of the most popular Dire Straights songs would have to be
  "Sultans Of Swing" which is based on the same chord progression
  as "Greensleeves".

  No wonder people like this song, it is because we're comfortable
  with the chord progression, there is something familiar about it.

  The group Metallica use this same chord progression for their
  song "Nothing Else Matters".

  Here is the progression:

  Dm/// | C/Bb/ | A7/// | A7/// ||


 

   

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As a student of Mike Hayes since 1999, I have found his teaching methods and products to be first class. Whatever style or area of music I have been interested in, he has provided me with useful information, advice and study materials. His style of teaching and teaching products enabled me to progress through his guitar course far quicker than I ever imagined. He also helps in teaching yourself to find and develop your own style of music. Mike’s teaching gives his student’s the ability to become useful musicians, not just guitarists.

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Australia

 


 

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