Phrasing is the way we will think of how we play the guitar or bass. Its
almost like english class in school, in that we will think of it like the
way we speak. After all, that is what you want to do with your instrument
isn't it? We will learn to express ourselves and our playing using phrasing.
Phrasing terms :
phrase : A phrase is a group of scale notes being played together
to form a musical "idea"
period phrase : A period phrase is a phrase that ends with the
root note. This leaves the listener with a sense that the idea is done or
complete. It has a "finished" sound.
comma phrase : A comma phrase is a phrase ending in a note other
than the root note. This leaves the listener with the feeling there must be
something more to come. The idea does not sound "finished" yet.
phrasing : This would simply be the art of phrasing and using
both comma and period phrases together to form whole solos, etc.
Each lick, riff, or melody you play we will call a phrase. Some phrases are
comma phrases and some are period phrases. When we link comma and period
phrases together we get ideas that are more complete. So a whole entire solo
would be just like a paragraph. Lots of smaller ideas linked together, using
comma and period phrases that kinda make up sentences, and those all put
together will kinda make a paragraph (or for you a solo).
It does not matter what scale note you start a phrase on, only what note the
phrase ends with. This all rests on knowing what key you are playing in. To
be able to hear this comma/period phrasing at work much better, you need to
hear the root note often. Say, if you are playing E pentatonic minor scale
notes it would help to hear an E minor chord (your root) fairly often. Also,
playing with a CD or some song that you know uses your scale would help
tremendously. This allows you to hear the way a phrase ending on a root note
sounds finished, and a phrase ending on a note other than the root note
leaves it sounding like more must be coming.
E pentatonic minor scale
.... behind Improvisations
formerly on RCA Victor Records