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Michael Johnson >> Grunge-Alternative >>


Michael: this lesson covers content from the "Lick of the Day," we're covering Grunge style, here's the first jam track:



espbanez: what would that be like? what band?

Anthony21: Someone help me what is the difference between grunge and alternative

Michael: Grunge has more Punk influence, it has a more raw sound and alternative has more of a new wave influence, but with a different edge.





Michael: this has a unique eastern sound and uses drone notes

Michael: make sure you practice to the Looping jam track, it's the E Phrygian Dominate scale, the notes are .....

E, F, G#, A, B. C, D

Murray: noodling around with A pent to this pattern works too

Michael: that will work, here's the scale on the little E string



Michael: these are very unique sounding scale, here's the next lick:





Murray: I like the E# and E dissonance of the first two diads :)

Michael: players like the Smashing Pumpkins use these modes to create a unique sound, can you compare these licks with any other alternative/grunge bands?

Skedo: Nirvana

Skedo: STP

Michael: Nirvana is a great example, STP very cool

Skedo: My fav: Soundgarden

Michael: now you can use these licks to help create your own songs

Dano: what's your fav kinda guitar?

Michael: depends on the sound I want to get, they each have a unique personality, here's the next lick:







Michael: notice how I alternate the picking pattern

espbanez: ones the picking hand, the others the fretting

espbanez: but the same lick

Michael: notice the last two licks use the same notes only pick different

espbanez: yeah.. one note at a time

Michael: the next lick I play up the E Phrygian Dominate scale:





Michael: it's an easy scale to play, all you have to do is use your first and second fingers

Dano: all ur doin is making it an octave higher right?

Michael: yes I am

eddie: does the scale contain the open high e for the riff

Michael: yes Eddie that's the "drone" note I mentioned earlier,: this is upper beginner to intermediate level

eddie: could you please give the chords that correspond the the base track

Michael: it's E,D,G,A,B, here's the next tab:



Chris: what exactly do i practice for so long

John: everything and anything

espbanez: well... half the time im practicing just for fun... i hate it when someone says "if you don't know this you'll never be good."

eddie: is there any chord progression basics for grunge/alternative

espbanez: not everyone knew scales before they soloed.... ive got a friend that wishes he knew scales 4 years ago... but either way has been soloing for a while and it was cause he practiced anything... not just what was supposed to be the best

Michael: grunge style uses mostly 5 chords, or otherwise called "Power Chords" do you all know what they are?

AScriabin: drop d tuning too

eddie: why five? in each key?

espbanez: i know what power chords are.... but what's that tabs for those specific ones?

eddie: oh, do you mean fifth chords

Michael: well it's the 1st and 5th note of a scale played at the same time

Lyle1: uses the 1 and the 5 of the major scale

Michael: yes, I'll send you another lick in the meantime

Lyle1: or the minor. same note







eddie: Am I correct to think that fifth chords in a scale sound similar to the major of each chord since the 3rd is left out

Michael: yes, you have it, leave out the 3rd note of the scale

Lyle1: minor and major chords both contain the fifth note

Michael: yes the are the same, it's the 3rd note of a chord/scale that makes it a major or minor chord

Lyle1: you flat the 3 note for a minor sound

Michael: yes Lyle, notice the last lick I sent uses the same notes as the lick before, I change the picking pattern a bit

Michael: ones of the fret hand,  the other of the picking





espbanez: hey teach... i noticed you seem to be using 3 fingers to pick

Michael: At times I use my fingers to pick

eddie: Your bio said you had a unique picking style that requires a lot of drills --- can you give some picking drills, that is one of my weak areas

Michael: I use to practice picking all the time, lot's of up picking and down picking exercises, then I concentrated on alternate picking:

Michael: notice the last lick uses the same scale pattern, but changes the lick towards the end

Dano: can u use them in real life, make any lyrics up & use these licks & use the same notes for bass & u got a song

Michael: you sure can Dano

Lyle1: we should talk about how to make chords from scales and use them.

Michael: Lyle that a good question, let me send out the next lick and we'll do that





eddie: is this scale isolated to the top two strings only

Michael: yes it is eddie

Anthony21: Teach: maybe you can give me examples when you use this type of pattern or a certain group that uses this pattern

Michael: The Smashing Pumkins use that sound

Skedo: Soundgarden used it on the Louder Than Love album a lot

Michael: here are some tips on building a chord, let's use the G major scale, does anybody know the notes in it?

Lyle1: same as C major but with an f sharp

Michael: yes

G Major Scale
Michael: G, A, B, C, D, E, F#

Anthony21: Teach: So I guess we just learn scales here and then either try to listen to the song and mimic it or just get the tab

Michael: the whole idea of the lessons is to help you understand songs and how to pick them up on your own or even write your own

Dano: well if he teaches you the scales you can make up ur own songs and solo's but if he teaches u other songs its a waste of time because u can find em anywhere

Michael: here's the G major scale



Lyle1: I can play fast, but knowing what your doing is more important!

espbanez: the thing is .. no matter what i practice.. i cant get my speed up

Lyle1: watch how you play and watch how people who play fast play

Michael: you use the 1, 3, 5, notes of that scale to make up a chord, G, B, D



Michael: you can use just the G and D and that makes up a Power chord



Michael: here's one last lick for the road







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