It is enormously gratifying to me that, even now, hardly a week goes by that someone doesn't mention the guitar solo I played on Chuck Mangione's 1978 hit "Feels So Good." I've had people tell me that it made such an impression on them that they vividly remember where they were when they first heard it.
Certainly "the solo" has taken on a life of its own. In answer to numerous requests, here is my transcription which I did not long after the record was released. NOTE: this is the complete album version! The single that was played on the radio was an edited version that married the first half (eight bars) of me playing the melody with the second half of my solo.
And oddly, one of the radio versions was sped up a half step so the record would clock in at a shorter, more radio-friendly playing time; the original version is in the key of F.
One question that always comes up is "How did you do it? Was it improvised in one take, or what?" The answer isn't quite so simple. We went into the studio and did demos of most of the songs on the "Feels So Good" album, just experimenting with the material and trying things out. Then we went on the road for several weeks, all the while listening over and over to those demos, and playing the tunes at night. By the time we got back into the studio to do the final recording, the band was on fire! On several tunes (including "Feels So Good") we had all gotten so into what we had played on the demos that most of us relearned the solos we had previously improvised, and replayed those solos on the final takes. I fixed up a few things I didn't like in my demo solo, and there still were a couple of bars that I didn't have finalized (I improvised something in the studio for those bars on the final take), and that was it. So the final "Feels So Good" solo is actually a combination of improvisation and composition.
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