#1
I`d like to get some of you theory nuts feedback.

Ok, so i've been fartin around here for awhile and some of you know theory like the guy in Good Will Hunting. I thought I knew a little and the little turned to even less after awhile. I've been playing for 25 years now on and off. Sometimes I don't even own a axe and I used to lose interest for months. For years I only played acoustic because I couldn't afford gear or I just didn't have much drive. Usually if I didn't have anyone to jam with, that's when the passion died off.

A couple years ago, I got myself out of a bad situation and renewed my interest in playing electric guitar with a vengeance(probably because I had someone to jam with once in awhile so I had something to practice for). I'd sit at home teaching myself Megadeth songs off a little CD player I had. I was proficient enough, from my teens, to even teach myself some pretty good solos after awhile. Some I'd learn with tab, some by ear or both. I always seemed to have to learn leads note by note though. I could never just play my own variation of a particular lick in a solo, like improvise.

So I started working on learning this Box pattern and how I could associate it with the key the rhythm was in. I knew that if the rhythm was in E that I could use that pattern at the 12th fret which is an E also. I also knew that even though there are 12 dots in that pattern that there was only 5 notes, they just keep repeating in higher octaves. So I started playing little licks in that box against a rhythm in E, and eventually started to use this Box (ignore the letters, just the shape), which I guess is called the blues box, that 1 extra note (in 2 places)giving it that bluesy flavor.
So taking that into consideration, I knew that if the rhythm was in G, i could move that box to the 15th fret and that it would sound "right". And a rhythm in A would move the box to the 17th fret OR the 5th fret, and so on.

So eventually I started piecing together all the other places on the neck that this Box could be found until it eventually looked Like This. The original box(not the bluesy one) in this example would be found at the 5th fret (A). So if you have a rhythm in A you could fool around in that pattern up and down the neck, and you would be in key, as long as you don`t end your licks and bends on the odd notes. (The notes that sound like they want to go somewhere, as i've heard it described).

Next, I got a poster from my buddy that had all these modes and box patterns on it, and I noticed that one of them had This box pattern. I noticed that it was almost like the first one but with 2 extra notes. The first one had 5 notes, and 12 dots, this one had 7 notes, so 17 dots to complete the "box". The first one seemed to go well with rhythms in a major chord, and this one seemed to go with rhythms in a minor chord. So for the longest time i called these 2 patterns a major scale and a minor scale. Obviously there's more too it than that, i guess.
So after i added those 2 notes everywhere else I ended up with This pattern. The blue dots being that second box at the 5th fret, A again (notice how the yello dots starting on the left hand side, 5th string open, resemble the same pattern as the blue until it gets to the b string, and the yellow dots starting at the 12th fret, 5th string, A again?)

Still with me? Ok, so that's all my theory in a nutshell. Not much right? It's gotten me to a point though where I can comfortably and confidently jump into a jam in any key and be able to come up with some little solos though, so it's made me happy and satistfied. Now that you guys know that I don't know squat about theory I'd like your oppinions on some bluesy lead shit that I just improvised one day over a blues backing track in G using these methods. I like to know if anyone here can tell me what i'm doing right theoretically (because I really don't have a damn clue), and what i'm doing wrong also, because i'm getting to a point where i'd like to grow as a musician a little, not just a guitarist.

Can anyone who knows how to analyze shit give it a listen? It's the only recording I have right now and it's recorded with a webcam so it sounds like crap, i know. It's kinda slow until the 2:11 mark where I turn on the overdrive and try to shoot me wad so skip to there if you wanna hear those 2 patterns being played interchangeably.

The tune.....http://profile.ultimate-guitar.com/JudgeDrey/music/original/

Skanks alot, Drey

ps: and no Sean, i don't want to subscribe to your online course lol, though i'm sure it's plenty informative, but i'd like to hear what you (and others) can break down/critique from that, ya freak just kidding don't hit me.
#2
Quote by JudgeDrey
I`d like to get some of you theory nuts feedback.

Ok, so i've been fartin around here for awhile and some of you know theory like the guy in Good Will Hunting. :


That is hella funny my evil twin brother.......
1. The SG stands for “solid guitar.”
#3
uhhh
what?
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#5
Dont bother with learning box patterns all over the neck. Learn all your major and minor scales and the notes in those scales. Then learn all the notes on your fretboard. Its much easier than learning a million boxes.
#6
Thats pretty cool - you've taken the first position of the minor pentatonic scale (your first box shape) and used other bits of info to expand it all over the neck, and convert it into a blues scale and the natural minor scale.

The minor pentatonic is the natural minor scale with the 2nd and 6th scale degrees omitted - so thats what those two notes were you added back in.

If I was you I'd start on the major scale and major pentatonic now, then look at how thats related to the minor scales. Might be worth looking at them in terms of steps and intervals too, so you can add that undertanding to your patterns.

The major scale in steps is WWHWWWH - where H is a half step (one fret) and W is a whole step (2 frets) - so you should be able to play it on one string from that

The major scale in intervals is Root, Maj 2nd, Maj 3rd, perfect 4th, perfect 5th, maj 6th, maj 7th - or R 2 3 4 5 6 7 - which should help you work it out across the neck. If nothing else you know what 5ths look like from playing power chords.

If you map out the major scale on a diagram using steps and intervals then compare it to your minor scale digs it should all start falling into place.
#7
Quote by griffRG7321
Dont bother with learning box patterns all over the neck.
Well it's a little late for that. They are engrained in the membrain now.

Quote by griffRG7321
Learn all your major and minor scales and the notes in those scales. Then learn all the notes on your fretboard. Its much easier than learning a million boxes.

Even if I knew what the difference was, what will that do for me at this point?(serious question)
I usually know what note i'm playing on the fretboard by now, mostly. And it's 5 boxes not a million, just 5.

Quote by zhilla
The minor pentatonic is the natural minor scale with the 2nd and 6th scale degrees omitted - so thats what those two notes were you added back in.

So This box is "The minor pentatonic" and This box is "natural minor scale"? Why's it called a minor pentatonic?

See, I don't know shit. Just how to play it.
Last edited by JudgeDrey at Dec 9, 2009,
#8
That improv sounds pretty cool - although I couldn't really hear the backing track. Not helped by laptop speakers and the fact my flatmate is asleep lol

Box patterns are great if you understand where they come from - and as you worked them out for yourself you must have a prety good understanding of them, even if you aren't calling things by their formal names I say if it works for you go for it. But also learn how scales are constructed in terms of steps and intervals when you get chance, as that gives you different ways of looking at them, makes it easier to form other types of scales from them, and makes it much easier to form chords from them.
#9
Quote by JudgeDrey
Well it's a little late for that. They are engrained in the membrain now.


Even if I knew what the difference was, what will that do for me at this point?(serious question)
I usually know what note i'm playing on the fretboard by now, mostly. And it's 5 boxes not a million, just 5.



he's spouting off nonsense that he's heard before. no matter how you learn your scales you're going to remember patterns.

but it sounds like you've learned the minor pentatonic, then the blues scale (same thing with an added tritone), and then the minor scale, which is the parent scale to both of those.

next I'd learn the major scale shapes and how the minor scale relates to the major, and learn the intervals that those boxes are made of. In my sig is a lesson I made on the major and minor box patterns, and I've labeled each of the spots with what degree of the scale it is.

when you understand the intervals and scale degrees and learn about how scales are formed you can start learning how to construct chords, and figuring out chords so that when you're soloing over a progression you can follow the chord tones.


edit:
Quote by JudgeDrey
So This box is "The minor pentatonic" and This box is "natural minor scale"? Why's it called a minor pentatonic?

See, I don't know shit. Just how to play it.


that's correct. the reason it's called minor pentatonic is because it's based on the minor scale, but it's taken out two notes, which makes it a 5 note scale, thus - pentatonic.
Last edited by The4thHorsemen at Dec 9, 2009,
#10
Quote by JudgeDrey
Well it's a little late for that. They are engrained in the membrain now.


Even if I knew what the difference was, what will that do for me at this point?(serious question)
I usually know what note i'm playing on the fretboard by now, mostly. And it's 5 boxes not a million, just 5.


So This box is "The minor pentatonic" and This box is "natural minor scale"? Why's it called a minor pentatonic?

See, I don't know shit. Just how to play it.



It's called the minor pentatonic because it has a flattened 3rd for starters. It's the same scale as the natural minor just without the 2nd and 7th notes. That means that say you are playing the A minor scale:

A B C D E F G

Well this is the minor pentatonic

A C D E G

It is the same but without the B and F. That is because those are the notes with some of the most dissonance.
Quote by Tyler Durden
It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything.

Erowid
#11
is there a TLDR

cause well...... i think that sums it up there....

EDIT: i am not sure what you want it is just a track with you jamming.

it sounds gfine but there is nothing to analyze
song stuck in my head today


Last edited by lbc_sublime at Dec 9, 2009,
#12
The minor scale has a flat 3rd

Major = R 2 3 4 5 6 7

natural minor = R 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7

minor pentatonic = R b3 4 5 b7

The 3rd is what makes the scale (or chord) major or minor.

So if you are in C

C Maj = C D E F G A B

C min = C D Eb F G Ab Bb

C Maj chord = R 3 5 = C E G

C min chord = R b3 5 = C Eb G

Edit: from what you wrote you know a lot of it, you just don't know the standard names for it all yet
Last edited by zhilla at Dec 9, 2009,
#13
The only other pattern i've ever been shown(when I was a teenager, by the local stoner) was this.


e|-----|-----|--o--|--o--|-----|--o--|
B|-----|-----|-----|-----|--o--|--o--|
G|-----|-----|--o--|-----|--o--|--o--|
D|-----|--o--|--o- |-----|--o--|--o--|
A|--o--|-----|--o--|--o--|-----|-----|
E|--o--|-----|--o--|--o--|-----|-----|


I always found it kind of a classical sounding scale, like Malmsteen would play. But god don't ask me what it's called, i can't even find a picture of it.
#14
F harmonic minor - its the same as the F minor scale but with the 7th note raised a semitone. So instead of F minor - which is F G Ab Bb C Db Eb (R 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7) - you get F G Ab Bb C Db E (R 2 b3 4 5 b6 7).

If you superimpose that over your minor scale digs you should find it fits except for one note
#15
if there is no key given that pattern doesn't mean alot to most.....

we got F G Ab Bb C D E F
song stuck in my head today


#16
From what I gather you rely entirely too much on patterns. Did you read the Theory FAQ?

Go here for more help: www.musictheory.net
Quote by Tyler Durden
It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything.

Erowid
#17
Quote by JudgeDrey

ps: and no Sean, i don't want to subscribe to your online course lol, though i'm sure it's plenty informative, but i'd like to hear what you (and others) can break down/critique from that, ya freak just kidding don't hit me.


No worries mate, I'm not bothered in the least. Im still gonna be here to assist where I can, and hopefully the right people will see their way over to me. From there its just word of mouth, just like it has been for years at my shop. I just came here to let people know about it, as an option to shave years of hunting and searching for the very questions people ask in this forum (asking for fish versus giving them the ability to fish for themselves without hours of repetitive brain numbing abstract memorization in chunks....ostensibly taking years before its fully usable. Most people come here looking for answers and learning results in a relatively short period of time) from their guitar playing lives. Ive taken guys who have been playing 30 years and some of the saddest times is when they realize had theyd had me around teaching them 25 years ago, how different their playing history might have been and how much further they might have gone.

However I want to compliment you on your observations and self study and will tell you that more or less when it comes to the ideas you demoed you have it right. You song sounded fine, you were using the notes and as you could hear they all worked. I heard nothing wrong with them note wise. This is what improvisation is about, and sounds like you are on the right track. Keep it up and above all, have fun

Sean
#18
You explained alot earlier with the pentatonic being a 5 note variation of the natural minor. That makes more sense to me now, thanks. Funny i was calling it a major scale because it sounded normal over a major chord rhythm.
Quote by zhilla
F harmonic minor - its the same as the F minor scale but with the 7th note raised a semitone. So instead of F minor - which is F G Ab Bb C Db Eb (R 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7) - you get F G Ab Bb C Db E (R 2 b3 4 5 b6 7).

Sorry if it looked like I was tabbing that on the first fret. I never intended to associate any of those box patterns to a particular note, just the pattern and where if it would go if the first note is the root note.
So basically the natural minor with the 7th note a semitone higher is a harmonic minor. Is there a easy enough explanation why it's called a Harmonic minor?

Quote by zhilla
If you superimpose that over your minor scale digs you should find it fits except for one note
Yea, I understand that, like I said, none of those patterns where ever meant to be on a certain fret or note. I just didn't understand what anything was really called in association with each other.

Quote by Sean0913
I just came here to let people know about it, as an option to shave years of hunting and searching for the very questions people ask in this forum from their guitar playing lives
You are right, there are alot of hunters and searchers. Too many that come on this forum, create a bare minimum profile, start a thread asking for a tab for a hip hop song they want to play on the guitar for some girl at school. Too be honest with you, I was originally put off by the persistent reference to your online seminar. There are so many untrustable people online, it's sad for people who aren't wary of it. I realized quickly that you do have alot to teach and that you're just trying to make a living at something you love. Maybe just stick with the link in your sig and continue to be helpfull(just a suggestion ) and get to know the people in the forum. I hope you do stay on this forum for a long time because you do post usefull, relevent information, even if I don't understand all of it, maybe someday soon I will.
Thanks for the kind words and taking the time to read and listen to my music. You telling me it sounds fine and my note selection works is good to hear. I don't get alot of feedback really, so thanks to all.
#19
I can understand being put off by my approach, and I imagine that a lot of people are. I mean, who wants to deal with someone that comes across as a "know it all".

However, I am passionate, and what is at the source of it, is zeal. Im excited about what I feel is my calling, and I hope that someone out here will begin to cue into that as well, and consider the wild outside possibility that I can truly help them in ways they never imagined.

I did initially come here, solely for the purpose of marketing and letting people know of the online school, because it seems like the most likely candidates for what I teach are those who are lost and asking questions, such as those in this forum. Just bringing what I do to them. No pressure at all, but I truly believe that what I can do to help these guys is significant, so I don't want to soft sole it, otherwise, what would people notice? Not much, it would be like a dim light.

So for now, if all I can do is help and encourage someone along the way by throwing fish, I'll do that too, because I do want to help. But if I don't sign up a single person to study with me, I'm okay, I make a living already doing what I love and am passionate about - I own a Guitar Shop here in Texas, and I own a Guitar Academy with approximately 200 enrolled students.

Like I said in my seminar, it's not about the money - but publishing it in a book wouldn't help anyone. It would be just another book and I know this because I know that the best chance for success is in a graduated format - get one section down and prove that you got it before I move you forward. Its very active and interactive in that way.

Like you, Ive been playing about 25 years, all self taught. Im just here to help, either way.

There's a saying, You can chop a tree down with a spoon if you so insist, and have enough time. I'm just trying to save people time and help them get to self sufficiency in as fast a time as possible, so one passion or hope of mine would be to gently take the spoons out of peoples hands and replace them with a chainsaw.
Last edited by Sean0913 at Dec 9, 2009,
#20
Quote by JudgeDrey
You explained alot earlier with the pentatonic being a 5 note variation of the natural minor. That makes more sense to me now, thanks. Funny i was calling it a major scale because it sounded normal over a major chord rhythm.
Every natural minor scale has a relative major scale, which shares the same notes (but uses them differently) - so if you were using your minor pent shape over the relative major chord, and resolving to the Major root, you were actually using it to play the relative Major. If you work out what the Major scale would look like on the neck (I'd mark which are the root notes too) and compare it to your minor scale digs you'll see how it works.


Quote by JudgeDrey
Sorry if it looked like I was tabbing that on the first fret. I never intended to associate any of those box patterns to a particular note, just the pattern and where if it would go if the first note is the root note.
So basically the natural minor with the 7th note a semitone higher is a harmonic minor. Is there a easy enough explanation why it's called a Harmonic minor?
lol sorry.

I don't know where the name came from, but the harmonic minor scale originated so you could use the 7th as a strong leading tone to lead back to the root. You need someone like 20T - he's like a guru on all this sort of stuff

You won't find much stuff written completely in harmonic minor - normally you'll get a piece written in natural minor, but the 5th chord, which is normally minor in a minor key, will often be made major (or dominant) to give the strong leading tone of the raised 7th, and you'd use harmonic minor over that chord.


The other variation of minor you might have hear of is the melodic minor scale - that has a raised 6th and 7th on the way up. The raised 6th was introduced for vocal lines, to avoid the big 3 semitone jump that the raised 7th introduced. It is normally just played as the natural minor on the way down - becasue you don't need that leading tone if you are going away from the root, and if you don't have the raised 7th there's no big jump to worry about.
#21
Not everyone in forums is wandering in darkness searching for answers. Not everyone here feels the need for a complete restructuring of their theory knowledge. Some people just want to know certain things that pertain to their personal goals. Sure there are some that are looking for exactly what you teach and would respond well to your teaching methods. Imho, it's not the amount of people you might believe it is (and have been advertising to) regarding the regular forum goers around here. I've been in forums enough to know that people usually know what they want and when they're ready, they know where to get it.

I would assume there are alot of people like me also who come on a forum as this one with a common interest, guitar and a little comradery. What's uncommon is the goals and aspirations of most people on this forum. I'm sure you know this yet you decide to throw a fish to people who aren't that hungry and then preach about your fishing technique when there are already thousands of proffesional fisherman everywhere around us.

I'll say this, I wouldn't trade anything for the path I took in learning to play. I've always enjoyed playing the guitar because I felt like I accomplished something when I figured something out by ear myself, I believe it has great value for the rest of my life and I also believe it makes it easier at figure things out in the future.

You know all this, and I know you're not trying to discourage people from learning by ear or figuring out theory on their own, but you seem to be trying to sell your Jehovah's Witness chainsaw to almost everyone you come across without taking the time to know if they want to cut down a tree at all. When I was a kid, I was happy just carving my initials in a tree with a hunting knife i got at the army surplus.

Quote by Sean0913
It is my hope that my approach will eventually revolutionize the way the guitar is taught
I admire your zeal, but come 0n.
btw,I've never seen a group of guys on stage naming chords and notes on the fretboard for a bar full of screaming drunks. Many musicians have proved over many decades that mastering theory is not the only path to greatness or personal satisfaction or great music.
Last edited by JudgeDrey at Dec 10, 2009,
#22
Quote by zhilla
..normally you'll get a piece written in natural minor, but the 5th chord, which is normally minor in a minor key, will often be made major (or dominant) to give the strong leading tone of the raised 7th, and you'd use harmonic minor over that chord.

Can you give me an example of one chord or chord progression suitable?


Quote by zhilla
The other variation of minor you might have hear of is the melodic minor scale - that has a raised 6th and 7th on the way up. The raised 6th was introduced for vocal lines, to avoid the big 3 semitone jump that the raised 7th introduced. It is normally just played as the natural minor on the way down - becasue you don't need that leading tone if you are going away from the root, and if you don't have the raised 7th there's no big jump to worry about.


I'll try reading that again tomorrowmy brIan is tired... lol
#23
Quote by JudgeDrey
Can you give me an example of one chord or chord progression suitable?
Ok - lets go with A minor, as it has no sharps or flats

So an Am progression might be Am-G7-Em-Am (thats i-VII-v-i)

You'd probably use A natural minor or A minor pent over the whole of that.

But if you take the same progression and make the 5 chord major, you get

Am-G7-E7(or E)-Am (i-VII-V-i)

E7 is E G# B D - the G# is the raised 7th from the minor scale

You'd use A natural minor or A minor pent over the Am and G chords, but over the Major E chord you can use A harmonic minor