Modes! Before you ask...
Okay, recently we've had some kind of modal plague. It's getting on our tits quite frankly.
The main problem is that people without solid foundations try to build on them and then they ask questions which are impossible to answer helpfully.
Before you ask anything about modes, you must be absolutely stone cold certain about -
Intervals (names and sounds)
Relative major and minor keys
Chord progressions and how they create and resolve tension
... and how the above apply to the fretboard and playing.
Once you have that down, check out these threads -
2014 AlanHB Edit
There has been some debate over the validity of some of the original threads in this list. These two threads have appeared recently to help address both the development and traditional use of modes, in addition to common modern uses of modes.
First up, Jazz_Rock_Feel addresses the development and traditional use of modes.
Jet Penguin picks up where Jazz left, talking about common contemporary uses of modes.
I also wrote a blog post years ago addressing the wide categories of ways that modes can be validly used here http://profile.ultimate-guitar.com/AlanHB/blog/100719/
The combination of these three articles really do address everything you need to know about modes. If you don't understand them, go back to working on the things that Freepower mentioned above.
If YOUR version of modes does not co-exist peacefully with the concepts put forward by Jet and Jazz above, this is because:
(a) you are playing the major or minor scale, and nothing more; and/or
(b) your song is in a key, not a mode. It is not modal.
Finally, the amount of mis-information about modes on the internet is really quite amazing. Trust your ears. If it sounds like the major or minor scale, it probably is just the major or minor scale. It will continue to be the major or minor scale irrespective of what shape you use, what note you start on, or what fantastic name you give it.
End AlanHB edit
The big daddy - Corwinoid on modes - http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/foru...ad.php?t=187159
Colohue also did a wordy but pretty good series on modes starting here - http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/colu..._backstory.html
Darren with some fairly easy to follow mode lessons with examples so that you can hear the results -
And finally, here's a really great site with lots of modal licks to really get the sounds of each mode into your head - http://www.guitarshredshow.com/
Okay! Now, if people just try to jump in at the deep end with these mode things, tbh, if you can't even play a few solid major key progressions and explain why they're solid - I'm just gonna close the thread with a "you're not ready for modes" and a :).
Glad we understand each other, peace out.
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