Rainbow in the Dark – Ronnie James Dio / Vivian Campbell

Author: Edward Cupler

Holy Diver - Ronnie James DioNotes: This Guitar lesson based on the Ronnie James Dio / Vivian Campbell classic Rainbow in the Dark from the album Holy Diver is in the key of A minor using the Aeolian mode.

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Ronnie James Dio - Vivian Campbell Rainbow in the Dark Tablature

Guitar Solo

Rainbow in the Dark – Guitar Solo

Full Solo:

Guitar Solo Complete

Rhythm Track Without Guitar Solo

Notes: This guitar solo from the Ronnie James Dio / Vivian Campbell classic Rainbow in the Dark from Holy Diver is in the key of A minor. I’ve broken the solo up into 7 smaller examples so you can learn it in smaller digestible chunks. Vivian Campbell’s playing on Dio’s Holy Diver album was very reminiscent of Gary Moore. The solo uses the A minor Aeolian mode (A B C D E F G) but he also adds the flat fifth (D#) in a few spots to add a darker mood to this classic guitar solo. I’ve attempted to make this as close as possible to the original but it’s not an exact duplicate. This is for educational purposes only.

Ex #1

Guitar Solo Example #1

This first example is fairly straightforward. It starts out with a whole step bend on the D string to an A note then makes good use of some open strings.

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rainbow in the dark example 1

Ex #2

Guitar Solo Example #2

This example is an A minor Aeolian mode riff. It travels up and then back down the Aeolian mode position.

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rainbow in the dark example 2

Ex #3

Guitar Solo Example #3

Example #3 uses the E minor Phrygian mode at the 12th fret. Yes it uses the same seven notes as the A minor Aeolian mode we started with but it’s root is an E instead of the A.

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rainbow in the dark example 3

Ex #4

Guitar Solo Example #4

This example starts with a slide up to the 14th fret to an A note then uses some quick alternate picking to go between the A note E note and the some string skipping from the A to another A one octave up. The end is the setup for the next example.

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rainbow in the dark example 4

Ex #5

Guitar Solo Example #5

Repeating guitar licks are part of the foundation of rock & roll, just like lyrics that repeat in the blues. This example features two rapid fire repeating licks that build the intensity of this solo while the addition of the flat 5th in the second half increases the dark mood of the solo.

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rainbow in the dark example 5

Ex #6

Guitar Solo Example #6

This guitar riff uses a series of hammer-ons and pull-offs that proceed chromatically down the A minor scale and ending in a lick in the E minor Phrygian mode. These kind of chromatic hammer-on and pull-off riffs are common in heavy metal. Dave Murray from Iron Maiden often uses this type of lick in his guitar solos.

Audio example:

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rainbow in the dark example 6

Ex #7

Guitar Solo Example #7

Similar to Example #6, this guitar riff also uses a series of hammer-ons and pull-offs that proceed chromatically down the A minor scale and ending in a series of harmonics at the fifth fret. To produce the harmonics, hold you finger lightly over the string directly over the fifth fret and pick the string normally.

Audio example:

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rainbow in the dark example 7

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