#1
So i want to start trying to master the major scale but I'm not sure If I should go with the five pattern "CAGED" aproach: http://www.justinguitar.com/en/SC-001-TheMajorScale.php

or the seven pattern approach: http://www.myguitarsolo.com/sc_major.htm

The 5 pattern looks easier, but the 7 looks like it would allow me to see the modes more easily, which may be important..? Can I get some oppinions on this matter?

Thanks!
"Good and evil lay side by side as electric love penetrates the sky"
#2
I'd save the patterns for until you learn the backbone of scales. Patterns are more for making your life easier, not to learn something new.

Learn what note's where on the fretboard, and learn how the scales are constructed. That way you will be able to play them in any position or pattern you wish, once you do that, then look up patterns to save the brainwork during practical use.
#3
I base my patterns around chords. This is somehow easier for me because I can associate each fret with both a note and an interval. I guess it's sort of similar to the caged approach.

That doesn't seem very possible with the seven pattern approach.
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#4
The 5 positions pattern is easier to finger because it tends to use the 1 finger = 1
fret rule. The 7 position pattern requires getting very good with 2 whole steps on
1 string under a variety of circumstances.

But, IMO, that's the ONLY real advantage to the 5 position. The 7 position, 3 note
per string I've found to have many more benefits -- regular picking pattern, ease of
movable patterns anywhere, highly compatible with economy picking, just about
any theory concept will have a regular pattern on the fretboard, and it will save
huge amounts of time memorizing and learning fingerings.

You'll pay for some initial, up front, higher difficulty with 7 positions, but it's payed
back many times over in the long run.

EDIT: oh, it's not really any sort of help with modes. I'd not look at it that way.
Last edited by edg at Jan 24, 2009,
#5
Quote by pwrmax
I'd save the patterns for until you learn the backbone of scales. Patterns are more for making your life easier, not to learn something new.

Learn what note's where on the fretboard, and learn how the scales are constructed. That way you will be able to play them in any position or pattern you wish, once you do that, then look up patterns to save the brainwork during practical use.


Good advice, but I already know the thinking part of it. Ive been playin close to 3 years and I know how chords and scales are made, how to make my own patterns, and harmonize. I just want to be able to view the neck as one big major scale pattern in order to make it faster and easier.

Thanks for help guys!
"Good and evil lay side by side as electric love penetrates the sky"
#6
Either or. I find CAGED good for associating different chord and root shapes with scales in different places around the fretboard.

I have found 3nps pretty straight forward and seems to be a favourite for a lot of shredders.

It's only really to break down the major scale into manageable chunks to give you a starting point though. Once you've got the positions down and start putting them together they all melt in and become one big pattern anyway.

Just do it.
Si
#7
Save modes until you learn the major scale and its functions inside out. You could figure the patterns out yourself if you really wanted to afterward. I sort of used both methods then noticed the chord shapes within the scale patterns. Then it all came together at the same time. I probably didn't learn it the most efficient way, but whatever, it worked.
#8
^I was thinking "what the hell does modes have to do with this"? Then I saw this
Quote by GuitarNinja12
but the 7 looks like it would allow me to see the modes more easily, which may be important..? Can I get some oppinions on this matter?

No the 7 positions doesn't help you understand or see modes more easily. I have found through my experience with people that have learned the 3nps as so called "Modal" patterns that they often come out with a misunderstanding of modes because of how the modal names are used to describe patterns.

It is my opinion (take it for what it is) that this is not a positive feature of the way many people are taught the 3nps system. It tends to confuse people about what modes actually are, how to use them or even how to use the scale patterns properly.

Anyway which ever way you go. Best of Luck.
Si
#9
Quote by 20Tigers

No the 7 positions doesn't help you understand or see modes more easily. I have found through my experience with people that have learned the 3nps as so called "Modal" patterns that they often come out with a misunderstanding of modes because of how the modal names are used to describe patterns.

It is my opinion (take it for what it is) that this is not a positive feature of the way many people are taught the 3nps system. It tends to confuse people about what modes actually are, how to use them or even how to use the scale patterns properly.

Anyway which ever way you go. Best of Luck.


This. I got caught in that trap, too, when I was first learning. It took a bit more time and research to correct that. I see a lot of people doing it as well, so try to be an exception, TS.
#10
One very good measure of how good a fingering system is, is how well it will allow you to transcend the separated positions and see the whole fretboard, but you really have to look at what "see the whole fretboard" actually means. Does, it mean you simply see 1 large pattern? I don't think so -- it doesn't take into account how your brain visualizes or the focus of your attention when you're actually playing. What it really means is, you can be focused on 1 area of the fretboard and move to any other without getting lost.

In being able to do this easily, there's an overlooked quality to fingering systems that is very important: EXCEPTIONS. To use the CAGED system as an example, it contains 2 exceptions to it's "rules": It uses 3 notes per string EXCEPT when it uses 2, it follows 1 fret = 1 finger EXCEPT when it doesn't. This makes transcending the separate positions a LOT more difficult because the exceptions have to be internalized as well. The 3 NPS has NO exceptions -- 3 notes per string everywhere.

At a personal level, I used CAGED-based system many years. I was never ever quite able to transcend separated positions completely. It wasn't until I started using 3 NPS that I really got over it.

As to the "patterns are only to make your life easier, not learn something new" comment.
I'd say that is a very groundless assertion.
#11
Quote by GuitarNinja12
So i want to start trying to master the major scale but I'm not sure If I should go with the five pattern "CAGED" aproach: http://www.justinguitar.com/en/SC-001-TheMajorScale.php

or the seven pattern approach: http://www.myguitarsolo.com/sc_major.htm

The 5 pattern looks easier, but the 7 looks like it would allow me to see the modes more easily, which may be important..? Can I get some oppinions on this matter?

Thanks!


It doesn't really matter. Just get started with either, and ultimately learn them both.
#13
Thanks for all the replys!

When you guys say 3 nps are you refering to these patterns..?

Because all of those have at least one string with only 2 notes, so its not TRULY 3nps.

I think I'll just continue workin my way through those one at a time. Maybe later on I'll do the CAGED as well.

I think I've cleared up my confusion about modes. The modes are when you change the root note any of the other 6 notes in the major scale and then change the pattern of whole and half steps in order to stay within the same notes of the original scale. So essentially, you can play any mode within any box shape anywhere on the neck. Is this correct..?
"Good and evil lay side by side as electric love penetrates the sky"
#14
Not really - modes have got nothing to do with the shapes on thr fretboard.
Actually called Mark!

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#15
Quote by steven seagull
Not really - modes have got nothing to do with the shapes on thr fretboard.


Well, they have as much to do with shapes on the fretboard as any other scale, chord, interval......ect.

Ninja:

Those patterns don't all have 3 nps. The 3nps patterns will have 3 notes per string, on every string.
#16
No sorry the main two methods I've seen are the CAGED and a different method called 3 notes per string or 3nps for short. I didn't check your links when I replied. I just assumed when you said in your title 5 or 3 you meant the 5 patterns as in CAGED or 3 as in 3nps.

I think CAGED and 3 nps are the two main methods. I find them good in different ways and there are drawbacks of each.

The main drawback of the 3nps method is that it associates modal terms and concepts to scale patterns which can be misleading. The advantage is that it actually has 3 notes per string which facilitates faster more symmetric scalar patterns across all the strings.

The main drawback of the CAGED system is that each pattern has one string that has just two notes. This makes playing sequences and such through the scales less fluid than on the 3nps method. The main advantage is that it associates each pattern strongly on root shapes and chord shapes.

The patterns you show above seem to have the drawbacks of both (associates patterns with modal terms and concepts) while retaining the different number of notes per string making fluid sequences more awkward than the 3 nps method.

I would advise you start with either the 3nps method or the CAGED system.

You aren't learning modes at the moment. You're learning the Major Scale in all it's positions right? So focus on the patterns of the major scale and don't worry about trying to learn more than one thing at the same time. It has the potential to give you a less than flattering understanding of both things rather than a mastery of either.

-----------------------------
This is the 3nps patterns in the key of A major. Don't worry about the modal names too much I would suggest thinking of them numerically. Each pattern is built by taking the using a different scale degree as the lowest note in the pattern. If you look at pattern I the lowest note is the first degree in A major - A then moves up through the scale placing 3 notes on each string. The second pattern II uses the second degree of the major scale as the lowest note and moves up through the major scale 3 notes to each string etc. etc. The focus here is fluidity.


------------------------------
This next image shows the pattern of the CAGED system (Pattern 1 is built off the C shaped chord moved up the fretboard to make an A chord - Pattern 2 is built off A shape -Pattern 3 is built off an open G shape moved to make an A major chord - Pattern 4 is built from an open E shape chord moved up to make an A major chord and Pattern 5 is built from a D shape moved up to make an A major chord). The focus here is associating the pattern with root shapes and chord shapes.
Si
Last edited by 20Tigers at Jan 24, 2009,
#17
Thanks 20tigers! That really clears things up. Im glad you pointed out the flaws of the one I was working on. That saves me headaches in the future.
Oh, and I meant to say 5 vs 7 in the title, as in 7 patterns.
"Good and evil lay side by side as electric love penetrates the sky"
#18
No worries. It is only my opinion though. The main thing of course is that you get the major scale down as best you can in a way that works for you.

Best of luck man.
Si