How to Create “SHAKTI” John Mclaughlin Indian/Western Guitar Lines

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How to Create “SHAKTI” John Mclaughlin Indian/Western Guitar Lines

Please watch above video for detailed analysis:

Hi Guys,

Today we will look at how to develop “Shakti” John McLaughlin-esqe Indian raga lines with alternate picking guitar technique.

To begin with we will take this Scale as our Raga Base: [This starts on a “Down” stroke for alternate picking]:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

This base is a sort of Lydian sound with the tonic note as F and the B natural as the #11

In this first example we will employ arpeggios to create a chord pair effect:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Here is the full line: Notice how we go from a “Western” concept of chord pairing to a more non diatonic scalic raga answering phrase

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

The next concept exploits repetition: This is common in raga’s and is very good when alternate picking to get the tempo and rhythmic groove into your right hand picking so that the following phrase will be rhythmical!

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Here is the full Phrase:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

We can now add slurs and slides: “On” the beat:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

“Off” the beat:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Full line/phrase with “Slide”:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Another useful concept is to repeat the semitones in the scale and create a phrase/lick:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

PENTATONIC POWER!

The most common thing found in creating “Raga’s” from a western point of view is the employment of pentatonic scales. In this example we will build up a pentatonic line:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

This time we will start on the 6th guitar string: Notice, the 4 note groupings of 16 notes [Tetrachords]

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

INTERVALS:

In the next example we will start a phrase with the interval of a 4th and a bit of repetition. Again, this is useful in order to set the tempo and prepare the fretting hand fingers to get in position to play a fast phrase rhythmically.

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Here is another example:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

GROUPS OF 5:

Groups of 5 notes create “Odd” patterns when alternate picking. But, 2 groups of 5 will go back to an even pattern, meaning that you will be starting on a down stroke again and back to familiar alternate picking territory.

This exercise works easily because the second group of 5 starts on an upstroke on the first string:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

GROUPS OF SIX [Sextuplets]:

It’s a good idea to barre a chord or an interval group [if possible] when playing 6’s [Sextuplets] as they will be very fast when picking and you will need to be in control of the rhythm. It’s also a good idea to repeat any notes or phrases that are at hand :

Example:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Classic John mcLaughlin Improvisation Tool:

This next concept uses an arpeggio and 4ths. This crops up in lots of Johns improvisations:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

One last concept is that of quoting another melody, phrase, or famous lick into the Raga. Here we will use the old jazz favourite as a reference:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Notice how this weaves back into the Raga:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Finally, in order to create your own raga it’s a good idea to take a form:

In this case we could take a 16 beat cycle and times it by 4 to create a 16 Bar Structure:

how to-createshakti-john-mclaughlin-raga-guitar-lines

Notice the turn around in bar 16: At this point everyone will know where they are in the composition/raga so it can start back to the beginning and repeat itself for improvisation:

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Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Symmetrical Scale Guitar Cross Picking

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Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar Picking

There are 6 “Tetra-tonic” Scales. They all have four notes. Below, is our scale for this blog and video and will be the Tetratonic scale starting on the note B.

Ronert-Fripp-Guitar-Tritone-Lesson
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Picking

Alternate Picking the Scale: Starting on a “Downstroke”

Ronert-Fripp-Guitar-Tritone-Lesson
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar Picking

We will make a short Robert Fripp-esque line from this scale and employ “Cross Picking” Guitar Technique.

Ronert-Fripp-Guitar-Tritone-Lesson
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar

In order to create a line like this it is a good idea to take “Triplets” and make them into chord pairs.

Ronert-Fripp-Guitar-Tritone-chord-pairs
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Tritone chord pairs

Here are the Guitar Picking patterns that I used. They are very Fripp-esque as they employ Alternate picking and Crosspicking.

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Scale-Examples
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Scale-Examples
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Scale-Examples
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Scale and Tritone Guitar

We can also make “Chords” out of this scale.

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Chord-Examples
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Guitar chords

Triplet Chordal/Cross picking Robert Fripp style “Tetratonic” Chords

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Crosspicking
Robert Fripp “Tetratonic” Guitar chords Cross Picking

This next Robert Fripp lick employs “Dyads” which are 2 note chords made from this Tetra-tonic scale.

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- Chord-Examples
Robert Fripp Guitar “Dyads’

Next, we will use alternate picking and play the “Dyads” in a single note fashion:

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Dyads- Tritone-Tetratonic- primary- exercises
Robert Fripp Guitar “Dyads’

Lastly, we will take 2 chords “NOT” from the Tetratonic Scale but a “Tri-tone” apart. These will be B and F.

Descending:

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic- picking
Robert Fripp Tritone Guitar Arpeggios

Ascending:

Ronert- Fripp- Guitar- Tritone-Tetratonic-alternate- picking- exercise
Robert Fripp Tritone Guitar Arpeggios

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John Mclaughlin “Dominant” D7#9 Fusion Guitar Lick analysis

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John Mclaughlin analysis of how to improvise over Dominant chords example

Hi Guys,

Just another “Quick” fire lick today from legendary guitar great John Mclaughlin!

This is a short lick doubled in unison with strings [or synth] and played in double time. It employs strict alternate picking starting on a down stroke. The lick exploits two “Dominant” chords, D7#9 and D7#9#11.

John Mclaughlin Guitar Lick:

John, Mclaughlin, "Dominant", D7#9, Fusion, Guitar, analysis
John Mclaughlin analysis of how to improvise over Dominant chords example

Ascending John employs a simple pentatonic scale that exploits both the #9 [F natural] and the Major 3rd [F#]. Descending he employs the F melodic [jazz] minor scale.This is because the second dominant chord exploits the #11 [Ab]. It also creates an augmented flavour with the #5 [Bb] note]. This finally resolves to GMaj7#11 with an F#m9 arpeggio that finishes on the C# note [#11 of Gmaj7#11].

Although this line follows musical logic it is also slightly ambiguous which in turn creates an interesting and more original sound:

LICK:

John, Mclaughlin, jazz, fusion, guitar,  lesson,
John Mclaughlin “Dominant” Double Time Fusion Guitar Lick

VARIATION with Chromaticism:

John, Mclaughlin, jazz, fusion, guitar,  lesson,
John Mclaughlin “Dominant” Double Time Fusion Guitar Lick

PDF FILE:

PDF 2:

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