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Bongo Boy
01-04-2003, 11:35 PM
As a beginner I find that most every book I pick up entitled "Beginning Guitar", "Yes, You Can Play Guitar", "Guitar for Total Idiots", "Guitar for the Million", etc., generally has a raft-load of scales in it. In every case the book shows the fretboard pattern for some particular C maj or E min pentatonic scale etc.

None of this changes the fact that there are many places and patterns on the fretboard to play any given scale, and I guess the number of 'patterns' and their starting points seems endless. It's clear to me that, at least for ME, it's unlikely I'm going to memorize all this AND be able to use it when I need it.

So...question is, how have you guys learned to be comfortable with the fretboard...to know your way around it, so to speak. I'm thinking this is the No. 1 obstacle to learning guitar. It's a pain in the *** compared to say, woodwinds or hell, even brass.

I'm thinking that all of you had to deal with this impasse at some point--the seemingly overwhelming options of the guitar fretboard. Any advice, wizards?

Bongo Boy
01-04-2003, 11:40 PM
Here's a somewhat related question, posed in my characteristically weird, and long-winded way.

If I were to randomly stick my finger on any selected string and fret of your guitar, how long would you have to think about what note that represented, or, what steps (if any) would you have to mentally run thru to get the answer?

szulc
01-04-2003, 11:40 PM
http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=180&highlight=mnemonic

This is one way I am sure I posted more about this.

Bizarro
01-05-2003, 12:08 AM
Hmmm...

First you should start to memorize the notes on the fretboard. This might take awhile (flashcards and so on might help), so work on the next points in parallel.

Second, I would learn the diatonic scale patterns in one key really well. I generally think of them in 7 different patterns that I wrote out fingerings for a very long time ago.

Third, figure out the diatonic chords (start with I, IV, V) that you can play in each of the scale patterns you wrote out. This will give you some idea of how to actually use the notes and give you another point of reference.

Fourth, play over a I-IV-V progression and try play through all the various scale patterns. Try connect the various patterns in every way you can think of, and keep moving between the patterns until you can move fluidly between them.

Lastly, try apply this in every key... and add the other diatonic chords when you're ready, one or two add a time.

This is one way to go about it. I've attached an example in A major, starting at the 9th fret.

Guni
01-05-2003, 12:16 AM
Very good question Bongo. Answer: Time and Practice (well, yeah duh!!!)

Seriously, I think it's great that you mention this about the books. This was bothering me a hell lot in the beginning. Ya just get a bit familiar with one position and then they make you move on.

This helped me:
1) learn all the interval shapes in a give position (and apply this to the patterns)
2) do a lot of sightreading in this position
[3) patience]

in another dimension: there should be a book, actually 12 books (as there are 12 positions) - each book should cover material for one year....

12 years!!! ... erm

Ok, this is a bit over the top and sounds pretty scary. I can't tell you exactly how long it took me to break up the fretboard but it for sure involved years of intensive studies.

Guni

Bongo Boy
01-05-2003, 12:32 AM
Originally posted by Guni
Time and Practice (well, yeah duh!!!)Did I mention how much I HATE this answer? :D It's funny--at 15 I'd have hated the answer because "I don't have the time". At 50 I hate the answer for the same reason. Ain't life ironic? Jeeeee...wish I'd asked the question when I was 15.


learn all the interval shapes in a give position (and apply this to the patterns)That's a bit cryptic. Can you expound on that a bit?


12 years!!! ... ermI'm sorry. I want a direct brain-audio interface. I hear the riff in my head, it happens. What's so hard about that? Is there a good reason that I need to train this dumb body to play this dumb instrument in order to make this happen? :)

EricV
01-05-2003, 01:12 AM
Originally posted by Bongo Boy
Did I mention how much I HATE this answer? :D It's funny--at 15 I'd have hated the answer because "I don't have the time". At 50 I hate the answer for the same reason.
Well, I think I learned to turn it around... instead of letting that kinda answer frustrate me, I let it motivate me. Like, when I was just starting out, I got frustrated when I saw someone play some mind-boggling stuff. Soon, I changed my attitude ( the olī"positive motivation vs. negative motivation" thing I mentioned before ) and went like "YEAH ! I wanna learn that. Canīt wait to get home to my guitar to work on it"




Is there a good reason that I need to train this dumb body to play this dumb instrument in order to make this happen?
The smiley indicates that youīre kinda kidding. But seriously. I recently read some quote by some composer ( donīt remember the name, and Iīm quoting from memory here ) who said something like "Technical abilities are a tool that enables you to bring out what you hear in your mind a bit better"

I mean, you could just say "Thatīs enough. I donīt wanna sit down and practise and learn those mechanical exercises anymore. Iīm gonna stay like this and try to get my point across"

But itīs kinda limiting. If you hear something that you like and you wanna play, it should be motivating enough to make you sit down and work on it.
If you have a song in your head, and you wanna play it, you might need to practise a bit to do so.
If you i.e. listen to those fast licks in the soundfile I posted last week at the forums... the "Rannoch Jam"... A few years ago I listened to players who did similar stuff and I was like "Hey ! I wanna be able to do that. Thatīs really cool stuff, and I wanna use it in my music". So I sat down and worked on it.
It sure might be enough to slowly strum three chords to write a song, but what if the song in your mind requires some serious comping, or a fast melody, or...

Blah Blah...
Eric

szulc
01-05-2003, 02:13 AM
Learn different mappings for the fingerboard, ones based on easy patterns like the octave types. Learn three note per string forms, learn caged forms, learn two note per string forms, learn 4 note per string forms. Do all of this in the key of C. Then just transpose it to the other keys, via the easy way or the hard way.
The easy way is just to move the patterns up or down on the neck by the interval away from C. The hard way, which is more correct in the long run, is to use the Cycle to tell you which tones to alter to change keys. Flat the seventh tone to go down a fifth, raise the 4th tone to go up a fifth. ( See 'speaking in toungues for more of this). Learn the scale by scale degree to make this easier.
A good bit of it is just memorization, learn patterns that are easy to recognize.

Chim_Chim
01-05-2003, 09:30 AM
Know all twelve basic intervals from the root . Move this pattern as you would move a chord shape.

A root is a root is a root get it? This is no more difficult than learning or memorizing one pattern of the chromatic scale.

If you can slide the minor pentatonic pattern you can slide the chromatic pattern.And what's the difference if that chromatic pattern is on a piece of paper as little black dots or numbers that tell you what the intervals are? You can both see scale and chord shapes or paterns while simultaneously having the pertinent interval information including scale tones and chord tones.

To learn the notes you should first make a fretboard grid up to the 12th fret and make a note chart.

Then Map all twelve keys.Just fill in the notes one string at a time.Just filling in the notes will help you learn the notes on the fretboard.

You can map the chromatic intervals in the same way.You only need to do this once and just apply the proper root note for whatever the situation calls for to your interval map that spans 12 non specific frets from non specific root to octave.

Chim_Chim
01-05-2003, 09:39 AM
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
learn all the interval shapes in a give position (and apply this to the patterns)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now does this make sense ?

Chim_Chim
01-05-2003, 09:55 AM
I'm sorry. I want a direct brain-audio interface. I hear the riff in my head, it happens. What's so hard about that? Is there a good reason that I need to train this dumb body to play this dumb instrument in order to make this happen?

YES! there is...

It's good that you can hear music in your head but it takes alot of training until you'll be able to play anything beyond just basic stuff you are hearing.What I mean is you won't be able to translate everything you hear because your hands and fingers aren't there yet.You might be able to sing what you hear or whistle what you hear,but I doubt you'll be able to translate large works or complicated bits without putting in the necessary work learning your instrument and traingin your hands etc.

If you are hearing good **** then I suggest you whistle or hum or sing your ideas into a tape recorder and save them until you physically catch up to what you're brain is hearing or playing.

This is the brain-audio interface but you're fingers,hands and playing skill have to catch up first so you might want to save those good ideas by singing or scatting them into a tape recorder and save them until you can eventually play them.

Bongo Boy
01-05-2003, 05:41 PM
Originally posted by EricV If you hear something that you like and you wanna play, it should be motivating enough to make you sit down and work on it.Yes, I was kidding around! I DO see it as challenge and I started out on this 'project' with the view of it being a lifetime thing.

Right now though, even with very familiar tunes that I can hum, sing or whistle--I sometimes can't find it on the guitar. It would astound you. Ear training may help I suppose.

szulc
01-09-2003, 02:56 AM
Sleep with your guitar! Never let it out of yiur hands, play it constantly.

szulc
01-11-2003, 04:17 PM
Remember the Dumb Tune Game?

Bizarro
01-11-2003, 04:48 PM
Exactly!

I try learn every single melody that pops into my head, no matter if it is "twinkle twinkle little star" or the Cliffs of Dover main melody.

If you've it in your head, and you've taken the time to get it into your fingers, then you are one step closer to being able to play whatever you want. It's not easy to build up a huge catalog, but it gets easier every time you work on it.

This might be the single most important thing that I've learned. I can usually "fake" solos that I've heard a couple of times because I've worked on this technique for so long.

Bongo Boy
01-11-2003, 06:18 PM
My head's in the game, I'm on board, and I'm with the program. :D

Bongo Boy
01-24-2003, 11:00 PM
Originally posted by Chim_Chim
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
learn all the interval shapes in a give position (and apply this to the patterns)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now does this make sense ? Probably not--let me check.

Does this mean that I could (conceptually, if not practically) choose just 11 fretboard patterns corresponding to 11 interval patterns (7 for the majors and natural minors, 2 for harmonic and melodic, 2 for maj and min pentatonic) that can be played from any position on the fretboard?

szulc
01-26-2003, 04:07 AM
Does this mean that I could (conceptually, if not practically) choose just 11 fretboard patterns corresponding to 11 interval patterns (7 for the majors and natural minors, 2 for harmonic and melodic, 2 for maj and min pentatonic) that can be played from any position on the fretboard?
Sort of. Learn 7 patterns for each of the Major HM and MM and 5 for the Pentatonic (Pick one major or minor, I would choose minor). So 21 + 5, 26. The real point is learn the intervals of the major scale from any root in any position on any string. Then Apply the ideas in "Speaking in Tonges" to be able to alter any number of notes to create any other key by raising or lowering the correct scale degrees. Then learn the relationship between the HM and Major and MM and Major scales (What notes to lower or raise and what note becomes the root). This only becomes possible when you know the interval (scale degree) of every note in any given position of a major scale, and the understanding of the cycle in 1st order (1 accidental) and above (More than 1 accidental) relationships.

http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=867
Read the reply to this thread called "Speaking in Tonges"

Bongo Boy
01-26-2003, 06:06 AM
Thanks James. I shall embark on this journey in the morning.

I can't believe that one of the first comments I got on this site was to the effect of how 'accessible' this instrument is--it's a freaking nightmare. Great fun, though :)

Alex Pires
03-01-2003, 04:15 AM
Well...i did a cool exercice from Mick Goodrick for getting a good vision of the fretboard...

To get out of those boxes...try to improvise using only one string ,maybe two(Like e,B; maybe B,G of some string skipping ones like D B, or A,B)......and then spend some time doing that with as many keys as you can...I used to do that when i start to study some jazz standarts (this give you a real headache but it works)

Try that aproach...I found it more "musical" than the others that i always ever heard... And you are improvising putting your brain into business

Oceano
03-12-2003, 06:03 PM
OK, here is a simple way that helped me.

1-Memorize the 7 three note per string patterns in a key, let's say C Major, and know where the root notes are.

2- Once memorized, you now know the C Major scale, plus the A minor scale. A minor is the relative minor of the C Major, and they are the "same thing". The way you can do this, is by counting six scale degrees up from C (includin the C), you arrive at A. This is the same for any other notes.

3-Those patterns you memorized for C, are all the same for the other scales, and when you play the patterns in other places on the neck, just remember wich notes are your root notes, and that's the scale you are playing.

Anyway, there is more to it than this, but this is just something that worked for me.

Chim_Chim
03-14-2003, 10:18 AM
for instance:

"A Aeolian" (root note in bold)
-----------------------------------5-7-8-
----------------------------5-6-8--------
---------------------4-5-7---------------
---------------5--7----------------------
--------5-7-8----------------------------
-5-7-8-----------------------------------


"C Ionian"(same pattern but the root note is now C)
-----------------------------------5-7-8-
----------------------------5-6-8--------
---------------------4-5-7---------------
---------------5--7----------------------
--------5-7-8----------------------------
-5-7-8-----------------------------------


same principle applies to the other modes too:

"D Dorian"
-----------------------------------------------------10-12-13-
-----------------------------------------10-12-13-------------
-------------------------------9-10-12------------------------
--------------------9-10-12-----------------------------------
------------10-12---------------------------------------------
-10-12-13-----------------------------------------------------

"F Lydian"
-----------------------------------------------------10-12-13-
-----------------------------------------10-12-13-------------
-------------------------------9-10-12------------------------
--------------------9-10-12-----------------------------------
------------10-12---------------------------------------------
-10-12-13-----------------------------------------------------


"E Phrygian"
---------------------------------------------------12-13-15-
-----------------------------------------12-13-15-----------
---------------------------------12-14-----------------------
----------------------12-14-15------------------------------
-----------12-14-15-----------------------------------------
-12-13-15---------------------------------------------------

"G Mixolydian"
---------------------------------------------------12-13-15-
-----------------------------------------12-13-15-----------
---------------------------------12-14-----------------------
----------------------12-14-15------------------------------
-----------12-14-15-----------------------------------------
-12-13-15---------------------------------------------------


the minor/major pentatonic can be found within each pattern too!


"minor pent" shape "major pent" shape
-x----x -x----x
-x----x -x----x
-x--x -x--x
-x--x -x--x
-x--x -x--x
-x----x -x----x

szulc
03-14-2003, 01:58 PM
It is cool to use the fact that just moving patterns around on the fingerboard changes your key, but this is a double edged sword.
The problem is you will never learn all of the proper names for every note on every string in every position. You will also not know the scale degree names for each position.
You will be better served in the long run by learning the major scale framework as a reference. Learn at least 7 positions of C Major, then make sure you can solfege the note names or at least scale degree names for each position. Once you can do this in your sleep, start altering this scale one note at a time to produce the C Melodic, D melodic, A Harmonic, F major and G Major scales. These are your first order relationships. When you Play F Major, Flat the 7th tone of the C Major Position, don't just cop out and move the whole pattern up 5 or down 7 frets. The same for the other first order relationships. After you have this down, work on Second order relationships (Where two notes are altered). If you want to be able to be a good jazz player this is going to get you much more mileage than moving you patterns around.

Bongo Boy
03-26-2003, 03:52 AM
Thanks james...that's a real help. I've been doing such stupid things lately...such as taking a nice major scale pattern and just playing it all over the fingerboard without a care in the world as to what scale I'm playing. Sounds good, it's fun, but to what end? Ah...finger training, maybe.