In this final section, we will take all of the new Dorian ideas and apply them to this extremely cool Santana solo! The solo is quick and moves up and down the fretboard from lick to lick, so take your time with it and be sure to understand what you are playing!
This solo brings together all of our favourite parts of Santana's playing with our favourite Santana-style backing track. The track is based around just two chords in the key of A Dorian. This means we can use the A Dorian scale, combined with the pentatonic scale, through the entire tune. We will go through that in more detail in the following lessons, but for now please watch and listen to the solo a few times to absorb it, before moving on.
Let's go over the first two licks in this solo. To begin with, let's put ourselves in the correct key, which is A Dorian. This is basically the equivalent of the G major scale, but we specifically think in A Dorian and use the shapes we have learnt previously. For these two licks, we are using the following shape found in the fretboard diagrams.
Licks 3 and 4 introduce some classic Santana usage of pull-offs and alternate picking. Lick 3 stays in the shapes we saw in the previous licks, whilst lick 4 moves up into the pentatonic shape 2. Shape 2 is shown in the fretboard diagrams. Also, look out for that little rake through an A minor chord at the start of lick 4 as this can be a tricky technique to master!
Lick 5 is by far the hardest lick in the solo as you need to be able to nail both legato playing and tremolo picking! The hammer-ons and pull-offs at the start of the lick are based in Dorian shape 4, whilst the long tremolo run takes you through shape 5 and 1. The shapes are shown in the fretboard diagrams.
It can be very tempting to rush this lick, throw in loads of gain and get something similar to what is being played. However, like all tricky techniques you need to develop it over time. If you can't play the legato section at speed then don't! Play it as fast as you personally can ensuring that each note stays clear. The speed will come by itself! The same advice is true for the tremolo picking - Make sure the plectrum is leaning correctly and the picking hand positioned well, then gradually get up to speed.
Lick 6 has a clear blues influence to it which we can see from the quarter-note bends. The lick is in A Minor Pentatonic shape 3, as shown in the fretboard diagrams. The final lick is the 'head' of the piece, which basically means the riff that the whole band play in unison. The riff uses A Dorian shape 3 as well as the shape 1 again to finish the entire solo off. All the shapes are shown in the fretboard diagrams.
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