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Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Mon Jul 30, 2018 11:29 am
by Gr8fulPickr
Just getting into guitar. I'm still very early, but really want to spend a few days per week just focused on learning songs and solos rather than just doing exercises.

I'm still not smooth switching between chords yet, but seem to do a lot better at solos.

What are some easier Dead songs with relatively easy & fun Jerry solos I should start with?

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Tue Jul 31, 2018 2:59 pm
by MattMan
Franklin's Tower. Two chord song with endless opportunity to learn Jerry style. Here's a great training video. Watch all of his stuff. Great teacher:


Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Wed Aug 01, 2018 10:54 pm
by Incaroads77
MattMan wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 2:59 pm
Franklin's Tower. Two chord song with endless opportunity to learn Jerry style. Here's a great training video. Watch all of his stuff. Great teacher:

This man has to be the best instructor for Jer chops hands down at the moment. He also incorporates a lot of basic theory as you go along. His transcriptions are very good as well. No way i'd have the patience to do what he does creating those videos.

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Thu Aug 02, 2018 8:47 pm
by ShinyAntelope
Another guy does a bunch of lessons for Jerry/Dead tunes and is entertaining is Stichmethod and below he shows a Jerry chord soloing technique.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0XHQfGWhGo

The intro to St Stephen really gives a nice concise bite of Jerry's scale movement to practice and get a feel for. It helped me a lot to understand how he moved when jamming in a scale when I first started. Hope you find those helpful.

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:47 am
by chinacatbundaberg
Amarguitar does a nice job with Deal. The basics of the song are quite playable - the lead guitar studies take a bit more work :)

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:42 am
by strumminsix
Gr8fulPickr wrote:
Mon Jul 30, 2018 11:29 am
Just getting into guitar. I'm still very early, but really want to spend a few days per week just focused on learning songs and solos rather than just doing exercises.

I'm still not smooth switching between chords yet, but seem to do a lot better at solos.

What are some easier Dead songs with relatively easy & fun Jerry solos I should start with?
I'd recommend starting with acoustic and jamming out the Reckoning album.

Classic songs, most have few chords, they'll help your left and right hand coordination.

Regarding solos, Jerry starts from the melody. Those old tunes have that beautifully.

Copy solos are easy. But Jerry played the changes so knowing the changes, the timing, the rhythm of it, when to play some notes and avoid others. Gotta learn your foundation. That's the chords. The shape. The timing. The substitutions. It's a wonderful journey!

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:49 am
by Gr8fulPickr
Thanks guys. Really gr8ful I found this board. So much great info to dive into and I expect to post fairly frequently, so bare with me.

I've tried to learn guitar a few times over the years, but always got frustrated and quit before getting to a place where I felt like I was making headway. I think part of the problem was trying to learn stuff that I like, like bluegrass, but don't love in the same way I love music like The Dead.

This time I am making learning the music I truly love the main priority and I've already managed to make far more progress than in my last two attempts. It really feels like I'm going to get there this time.

I've run across most of these online videos. It's just a challenge to understand which are going to be easy enough for someone at my level.

Had a couple of a-ha moments this weekend and can finally switch between 10-12 chords somewhat smoothly 65% of the time. Going to spend the next few weeks getting that to 90%+.

While I'm doing that, it would be cool to have one or two solo runs that aren't too hard to work on. I haven't started learning about hammer-on's or pull-offs yet.

Any tabs of easy solo segments you can point me to so I have something to pick on when I'm bored with strumming chords?

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Mon Aug 06, 2018 5:57 pm
by gr8fullfred
For the top 5 solos to learn to play,
1)Touch of Grey solo, YouTube lessons are great
2)Box of Rain Solo. (Believe it or not, I think that David Nelson played the solo on the original recording).
3)Bertha
4)Eyes
5)Alabama Getaway

I would also recommend that you study ARPEGGIOS. I think you need them to play like Jerry. And Study the Mixolydian Mode.

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Wed Oct 10, 2018 4:33 am
by Jeff S
Ship of Fools was one of my first guitar solos that I learned. Any version will do but I used the Steal Your Face version. I believe it is out of print. The band hated that album. If you can't get the album, google the show dates and it can be down loaded from bt.etree.org. Also the opening (and repeated) riff from Tennessee Jed is a quick and satisfying first thing to learn.

Re: Top 5 Dead Songs/Solos for Beginners to learn to play

PostPosted:Wed Oct 10, 2018 4:40 am
by Jeff S
gr8fullfred wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 5:57 pm
For the top 5 solos to learn to play,
1)Touch of Grey solo, YouTube lessons are great
2)Box of Rain Solo. (Believe it or not, I think that David Nelson played the solo on the original recording).
3)Bertha
4)Eyes
5)Alabama Getaway

I would also recommend that you study ARPEGGIOS. I think you need them to play like Jerry. And Study the Mixolydian Mode.
Yes. I agree. When people hear the word arpeggio, they often picture some jazz fusion or other virtuoso type stuff. But Jerry used them differently in my opinion. A great (almost all arpeggiated) example of this is Scarlet Begonia'a (any live version) or Touch of Grey. I recommend greatfulguitarlessons.com. Seth is a great teacher and the lessons are dirt cheap. If he goes too fast for you, I recommend a video player that you can slow down the video.