Role of the Rythym Guitarist

Rhythm guitar is the use of most commonly an electric guitar or sometimes an acoustic guitar to provide rhythmic chordal accompaniment for a singer or other instruments in an ensemble. In rock, blues, or metal bands, the guitarist playing rhythm guitar supports the melodic lines and improvised solos played by the guitarist performing the lead guitar part.
In popular music and rock, the role of rhythm guitar is to provide the pulse or rhythm for a song along with the other rhythm section instruments (electric bass and drums). As well, the rhythm guitarist plays chords or arpeggios which outline the chord changes that supports the melodic lines performed by the other instruments or voices. In contrast, the lead guitarist performs melodies, countermelodies, and solo improvisations. The rhythm guitarist, bass guitarist, and drummer usually constitute the rhythm section in a rock band.

In rock music, the rhythm guitarist is typically expected to play a sequence of chords, called a chord progression, around which the song is constructed. The most typical ways to perform the chords is to play triads (which consist of the root, third, and fifth note of the chord), or four-note chords (which add the sixth, seventh, or ninth note of the chord). In some cases, the chord progression is implied with a simplified sequence of two or three notes, sometimes called a "riff", that is repeated throughout the song.

In metal music, this is typically extended to more complex sequences consisting of a combination of chords, single notes and palm muted parts, while the more technical bands often play riffs which may use lead guitar techniques. In jazz or swing music, the rhythm guitarist may also integrate a walking bass line or a counter-melody.

In some bands with two guitars, the two guitarists may exchange roles in different songs or sections. In bands with a single guitarist, the guitarist may play lead and rhythm at different times. The rhythm guitarist may also sing backing vocals or lead vocals.
Source: Wikipedia

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