Simple Idea for Acoustic Guitar Solo Arrangements

2010 February 12
by tony hogan

This works for me when I want a new tune to play solo on acoustic guitar.

This method is very simple and other players may do it and may not consider it a big deal.
What I’ve noticed over the years is that every now and then we can become a little musically dry, lacking in inspiration.

Here’s what I do to get some new ideas for acoustic guitar arrangements.

  • I’ll take someone else’s written arrangement of a tune, play it through once or twice, get a good idea of their approach and then close the book.
  • I will then write out a rough map of the song,  the chord pattern  and basic structure.
  • Then I’ll play it as I hear it in my head. I find it better to only have the music in front of me for a short period of time, this way my ear takes over and plays what I think it should sound like and not like someone else has felt and played it.
  • Over the months, the tunes develop into to totally new arrangements and only have a hint of what was written in the first place.

By doing this I’m getting the best of both worlds, inspiration from other great players which helps me develop in different areas of my playing and I’m also using my own creativity.

Jeff Traugott Guitar

To check out Jeff Traugotts Guitars, go to Jeff Traugott Guitar Site

4 Responses leave one →
  1. 2010 February 13

    Brilliant stuff Tony – really useful mate.

  2. 2010 February 15

    These are good tips. I’ve always struggled a bit trying to vary my arrangements.

  3. 2010 February 16

    Yes, I agree that’s a good way to personalize your version of the tune. That’s what I do also, but sometimes I feel I’m not being true to the original composition, especially when is a well known standard. For the standards, I need to keep the book open until I’m sure I’ve got all the chord changes and melody line down, so I’ve got an honest and technically complete version. For me, being true to the original composition is a goal worth pursuing, because it makes me feel good when I finally get there.

  4. 2010 March 24

    Great advice, this is excellent when you in a rut for new ideas.
    Plus then you add your own unique touch and create something new altogether

    Nice site to by the way :)

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