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View Full Version : alternative mode for hotel california



deckers
11-16-2004, 06:32 PM
does anyone know of an alternative scale for hotel california. i would try to find one myself but i am only just starting to learn theory and i'm not really that good. the normal scale is b minor i think.
Thanks ppl
Deckers

C#Dave
11-17-2004, 09:24 AM
Are you trying to get it in your vocal range?

Dave
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ULTIMATE FIGHTERS (http://ultimatefighters.org/)

deckers
11-17-2004, 05:27 PM
nah, i'm trying to make it sound better on guitar, bminor is limited.

jgregson
11-17-2004, 06:55 PM
Hmmm, from what I remember about Hotel California from when I used to play it at gigs, it's generally B natural minor (Aeolian), but I tend to switch modes for most of the chords (as smoothly as possible, of course!) - so for the progression, I might play:
Bm - B Aeolian
F#7 - B harmonic minor
A - B Aeolian
E - B Mixolydian
G - B Aeolian (implying G lydian)
D - B Aeolian
Em - B Aeolian
F#7 - B harmonic minor

You might visualise the modes differently from what I've written, but that's how I view them when soloing [actually I tend to think Bminor with extra notes in the heat of the moment, but it helps for me to actually know what the extra note are!]. By using these modes, you're following the changes, but you're also keeping in with the overall tonality of Bminor, which helps keep unity in your soloing. Does that help?
John.

debaser
11-17-2004, 07:04 PM
nah, i'm trying to make it sound better on guitar, bminor is limited.


There's really no reason why using only one scale should be limiting to you, considering the combinations of rhythmic and melodic options that are available. A lot of people have come up with some pretty amazing stuff with pentatonics(including Don Felder and Joe Walsh), and that would be 2 less notes than B natural minor offers(although the tune definitely uses a V7 chord, suggesting harmonic minor). However, if it's that boring for you, I would suggest learning the arpeggios for the chords and using approach tones with those in your soloing.

Los Boleros
11-18-2004, 12:28 AM
nah, i'm trying to make it sound better on guitar, bminor is limited.With the exeption of open notes on your guitar, there should be no difference in playing in in Bm or Cm or Dm or Em etc..... The scale examples given above should give you the firepower you need to come up with something interesting. Other than that, I don't know what to say. Try playin' it in F#Dim7 maybe:cool:

SeattleRuss
11-18-2004, 01:57 AM
As far as the idea of using one scale for this song - the presence of an E major chord and an E minor chord is a big red flag that that approach won't work very well.

First 2 chords are easy: for the Bm, play an idea with B natural minor or B minor pentatonic and for the F#7, continue your idea by playing the same thing or a slight variation, making heavy usage of the natural 7 in B harmonic minor, which just so happens to be the 3rd of the F#7.

Next we see:
A - E
Try using chord tones or each chords respective major pentatonic. Whip out the cliched country licks!

For the G -D:
Same approach as the A -E

For the Em - F#7
Same approach as the first 2 chords in the tune.

I don't think this song lends itself well to much "outside" playing. Any chromatic stuff should mostly be limited to passing tones, depending on what your ears can stomach.

debaser
11-18-2004, 02:29 PM
As far as the idea of using one scale for this song - the presence of an E major chord and an E minor chord is a big red flag that that approach won't work very well.

That's a good point. I should have read through the chords more carefully before responding.



I don't think this song lends itself well to much "outside" playing. Any chromatic stuff should mostly be limited to passing tones, depending on what your ears can stomach.

This is kind of what I was trying to say(badly). Obviously, you want to target notes from the harmony that exists(ie. chord tones), but in general the song really calls for something inside and melodic which, to me, would suggest keeping things as scalar as possible.