Published on November 24th, 2014 | by Sam0
Keith Urban Cop Car Solo
Most country guitar articles and lessons on this site are about the chicken pickin’ and older country styles. I’m going to be putting out a few on some of the more modern, rock-country solos in the next few weeks and months. This lesson is based on Keith Urban’s Cop Car solo. Let me know in the comments if you’re enjoying the more modern take on this stuff!
Keith Urban has been one of the great country guitarists since his debut in 1999. His tone is a combination of the country twang with modern rock and even a twist of Mark Knopfler’s Strat tone. This is the transcription from his fall 2014 hit, “Cop Car” solo.
The solo is entirely in the Db/C# major pentatonic. The Cop Car solo starts out with some huge bends – up to a minor third on some of them. He starts the solo by moving up the pentatonic scale, bending the previous note up to the next one. He starts on the sixth of the scale and bends it up to the root – a minor third bend. The pattern continues up to the 5th.
One key to getting the huge minor third bends to happen is to use momentum. Instead of trying harder to push the bend up, start the bend with a lot of energy, moving it up quicker. This helps to get the bend to the desired note without straining your fingers.
Keith Urban’s Cop Car solo is very melodic. The solo itself fits perfectly in the track and really helps to move the song forward. He likens it to solos done by the Cars in some of their hits from the 1980s – “Here’s the solo, done, moving onto the next thing.”
When playing Cop Car live, Keith uses a combination of a Dumble and vintage Fender Twin. This particular solo sounds like it’s either a strat or tele, with a fair amount of drive. The delays are all subtle enough to give the solo some width and space, but hardly noticeable at all. Check out my performance below as well.