1.) Say I had a chord progression in C major that consisted of some major and some minor chords. Normally, one would solo over this using the C major scale (Ionian mode, i think?). Is the idea of modes the idea that you can use some other position of C major as the root (i.e. so that you use Dorian mode but with it's root on the 8th fret), or is a mode simply a classical way of saying what position you're in/what note you're starting from? That was probably confusing.

2.) Is this another application of modes? Say I have a riff that goes: 1, perfect 2, M3, 4 (whole-whole-half steps). If I wanted to move this to a different mode, I'm still staying in the key with my root at 1, but I'm moving the pattern so that it begins at 2 while staying in key, with the new riff being perfect 2, M3, 4, perfect 5 (w-h-w steps) ?

Sorry if this was a very confusing post! Any help is appreciated.
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Nah man the C major scale covers the entire fretboard.

Modes are not positions on the fretboard. The same position can be any of the seven modes and each of the modes covers the entire fretboard.

As for your next question a second is NOT a perfect interval it is a major interval. The perfect intervals are 1 4 5 8. The 2 3 6 7 are major/minor intervals.

So the riff would be 1 Maj2 or just 2 since it is assumed major unless otherwise stated.
So your "riff" is 1 2 3 4.
Then you're playing the same thing up a step - 2 3 4 5. This is not another use of modes since as you say your root note is still 1. All you are doing is repeating a sequence starting on the second degree.

You can see something similar in...

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
1 1 5 5 6 6 5
4 4 3 3 2 2 1

5 5 4 4 3 3 2
5 5 4 4 3 3 2

1 1 5 5 6 6 5
4 4 3 3 2 2 1

The sequence in the second line which descends diatonically from 4 to the tonic over the words "How I wonder what you are" is repeated one step higher in the third line which descends diatonically from the 5th to the 2nd with the lyrics "Up above the world so high".

This is not modal in anyway. It is a standard melodic device called a sequence.

I have some posts on modes somwhere.

EDIT: Here have a read of this -
Modes part 1 (link)
Modes part 2

Does that clear anything up for you?
Last edited by 20Tigers at Jul 3, 2009,
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