solo

1 of 4

noun

so·​lo ˈsō-(ˌ)lō How to pronounce solo (audio)
plural solos
1
or plural soli ˈsō-(ˌ)lē How to pronounce solo (audio)
a
: a musical composition for a single voice or instrument with or without accompaniment
b
: the featured part of a concerto or similar work
2
: a performance in which the performer has no partner or associate : something undertaken or done alone
a student pilot's first solo
3
: any of several card games in which a player elects to play without a partner against the other players

solo

2 of 4

adverb

: without a companion : alone
fly solo

solo

3 of 4

adjective

1
: accommodating one person
a solo canoe
2
: of, relating to, or being a solo
a solo performance
a solo flight
3
: hit with no runners on base
a solo home run

solo

4 of 4

verb

soloed; soloing ˈsō-(ˌ)lō-iŋ How to pronounce solo (audio)
-lə-wiŋ

intransitive verb

: to perform by oneself: such as
a
: to perform a musical solo
b
: to fly an airplane without one's instructor on board

transitive verb

1
: to fly (an aircraft) alone
2
: to climb (something, such as a mountain) alone

Examples of solo in a Sentence

Noun She is learning to fly and she flew her first solo yesterday. Adjective a student pilot's first solo flight She left the band last year and started a solo career. He just issued his first solo album. Verb The guitarist solos on practically every song. She soloed for the first time yesterday.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The Sonic Youth founding guitarist has officially announced his ninth solo album, Flow Critical Lucidity. Maya Georgi, Rolling Stone, 20 June 2024 The Sonic Youth co-founder will release his ninth solo studio album, Flow Critical Lucidity, on September 20 via Daydream Library Series. Matthew Strauss, Pitchfork, 20 June 2024
Adverb
Beau, who was shown standing solo in the second photo, kept it casual with a pair of Nike joggers and an oversized green shirt. Raven Brunner, Peoplemag, 9 June 2024 Moore then took Bertrand, solo with his guitar, on a tour of Europe to open for his band. Andres Viglucci, Miami Herald, 9 June 2024
Adjective
Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Brad Hall's Relationship Timeline After graduating from college, Henry decided to become a solo artist and released his full-length debut album, Neato, in 2020. Jacklyn Krol, Peoplemag, 10 June 2024 Michaels will be on tour with his solo band throughout the summer and then into December. Spin Staff, SPIN, 9 June 2024
Verb
The world has never been more accommodating to solo travelers—we’re constantly hearing about new meet-up apps to combat loneliness and safety measures to address discomfort (so long, catcalling). Caitlin Morton, Condé Nast Traveler, 26 Dec. 2023 Nor is Pratt the only world-class performer on the Annapolis Symphony’s schedule this season; the Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Montero soloed with the symphony in September, and the legendary Spanish guitarist Pepe Romero took the stage in November. Mary Carole McCauley, Baltimore Sun, 11 Apr. 2024 See all Example Sentences for solo 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'solo.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Italian, from solo alone, from Latin solus

First Known Use

Noun

1695, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

1712, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1774, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1886, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of solo was in 1695

Dictionary Entries Near solo

Cite this Entry

“Solo.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/solo. Accessed 24 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

solo

1 of 3 noun
so·​lo ˈsō-lō How to pronounce solo (audio)
plural solos
1
or plural soli ˈsō-lē How to pronounce solo (audio) : a piece of music written to be performed by one voice or one instrument
2
: an action in which there is only one performer

solo

2 of 3 adverb or adjective
: without a companion : alone

solo

3 of 3 verb
soloed; soloing
-(ˌ)lō-iŋ,
-lə-wiŋ
: to perform by oneself
especially : to fly an airplane without one's instructor
Etymology

Noun

from Italian solo "a part in music performed without accompaniment," from solo (adjective) "alone," from Latin solus "alone" — related to desolate, sole entry 4, solitude

More from Merriam-Webster on solo

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!