Guitar Solo
The guitar takes the lead while other instruments are reduced to accompaniment.


(permanent link) added: 2011-04-18 19:12:20 sponsor: jaytee (last reply: 2011-09-11 00:29:48)

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Needs a Better Description, Needs More Examples, Needs a Better Title, Rolling Updates

Is this getting close to launch? Do we want to wait to add more examples? Or should we axe the example list altogether? Can anyone think of any more In-Universe examples?

You're onstage, shredding the guitar and rocking the crowd's face off. You just finished the second chorus, the audience is pumped; where do you take the song from here?

Guitar Solo.

You've probably heard one before. You already know what it is. The lead singer steps back from the mic while the bass and drums lock into a pattern. The guitarist takes center stage and lets loose the fury of hell.

Guitar solos are one of the most common tropes in rock music and are considered mandatory in certain subgenres. The guitar solo isn't limited to rock music or even electric guitars either; it can be heard in innumerable forms and in almost every modern popular music style.

Guitar solos come in all different forms. It is fairly common for the guitarist to improvise some or all of his solo. This is taken to its logical end by jam bands like The Grateful Dead, whose live performances can include incredibly long, fully improvised solos. On the other side of the spectrum, we have pop songs with 100% composed guitar solos, sometimes simply repeating the vocal melody on guitar.

The guitar solo can also reflect all different levels of difficulty and skill. Some punk bands, from time to time, will have an "anti-solo" consisting of one note. However, guitarists confident in their skill will take the opportunity to show how Bad Ass they are and unleash something truly impressive.

Related to Epic Riff, Epic Rocking.

Because this is an Omnipresent Trope, Real Life (or Music) examples are not neccesary unless they notably play with the trope.


Examples

In-work

Aversions/subversions in Music
  • Many of The Grateful Dead's studio albums (especially American Beauty) focus far more on traditional pop song structure than the lengthy guitar solos their live shows are known for.
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Generic Blues" guitar solo (introduced with "Make it talk, son. Make it talk.") consists of two alternating notes. Rhythm goes from slow to fast and back, but it's just the same two notes. The solo ends with Al suggesting, "Okay. Now make it shut up."
    • Another subversion, also by Weird Al: in the video for "You Don't Love Me Anymore", during one of the musical interludes Al picks up a guitar and spends a few seconds adjusting it in his hands, puts his fingers on the strings and prepares to play... then just sets it back down and goes back to singing.
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