Chord Tone Soloing

Playing the right scale is not enough! To sound good when you are improvis- ing a solo you need to know how to choose the right notes to play in that scale. Here comes Chord Tone Soloing to the rescue!

The idea of Chord Tone Soloing is simply to put in your improvisation one or more notes of the chord that is playing right now in the backing track (see video below for details). This will make your solo sound “inside” the backing track.

It goes without saying that once you learn how to do that you still have the freedom to sound “outside” (a typical sound in jazz/fusion) by simply doing the opposite than what Chord Tone Soloing suggests. My experience as a teacher shows me that, in fact, it’s much easier to learn how to sound “outside” once you have mastered the “inside sound”.

So the idea is really simple... and yet many guitar players find that doing Chord Note Soloing in practice is not as easy as it seems.

Here are a few problem that people encounter when they try Chord Tone Soloing without the right training.

* “There is too much ‘theory’ to think about, I just want to ‘feel’ it” (once you train correctly you can use Chord Tone Soloing without ‘thinking theory’: it becomes second nature, see the video)
* “I can play the notes, but I can’t make any music with them! They just soundlike... notes”
* “The chord progression goes too fast. What chord am I on now?”

How do we avoid these problems and many others? By training in the right way. Watch the video to see how:

You can learn more about it by taking this free course on Chord Tone Soloing that will train you to make chord tone soloing second nature (course availablefor free for a limited time)

Tommaso Zillio is a professional prog rock/metal guitarist and composer based in Edmonton, AB, Canada.

Tommaso is currently working on an instrumental CD, and an instructional series on fretboard visualization and exotic scales. He is your go-to guy for any and all music theory-related questions.

Tommaso Zillio