#1
I have been trying to learn to see scales by learning the notes in the scale and then applying them to the guitar but im finding it hard to actualy visualise the whole scale even though i know the notes both on the guitar and the scales.

What did you do when you started doing this? Any helpful learning techniques would realy be good.


Adam
I will shred in the end!!
#2
you learn patterns? for the major scale it's really easy imo
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#3
Yeh i have learnt the major scale all over the fretboard but dont want to be playing just the shapes. I want to play by notes instead and would like to know how i go about practising this.
I will shred in the end!!
#4
play scales in all positions and keys, saying the note names (maybe even sing them at pitch) as you play them. Do the same for arpeggios.

Try to say the note based on where you're playing on the board instead of what you know comes next


practice sight reading as much as you can.
#5
i'd suggest you learn all the notes on the fretboard and where they are and then look into which notes are in which scales

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#6
I think one of the best things you can do to start visualising scales is to play them on one string at a time. this way you're paying attention to the notes , not just playing patterns you've memorized.

also , get the Berklee book , Modern Method for Guitar , Book I
this is probably the best way to learn to sight read for the non classical guitarist.

even if you worked on this book 15 min. a day , in a year you would be a better reader than 99% of the guitarists you'll meet.
#7
This is actually pretty easy. I can look at one type of scale (such as minor, major, blues, pentonic) and tell you what it is in any of the 12 chromatic notes. Just give me a guitar. For example, the Amin blues scale (1, 3b, 4, 5b, 5, 7, 1 (or 8) ) is A, C, D, D#, E, G, A. Easy. Just remember how the scales are: minor: step, half step, step, step, step, half step, step; maj: step, step, half-step, step, step, step, half step. It also helps knowing up to the twelth fret, because if you know that, you can do the whole fret board, but that isn't that hard either. It took me about a day or two to fully get good at it. From there, you can use those scales to create chords or arpegios. For example, in Abmaj, you can do something like Ab, D#, Bb, Ab (using the bar chords) and use a arpegio pattern like 1, 3, 8, 1, 3, 8, 5, 3, 8. I don't know...just take time and think out of the box. Imagine the scales, then start doing riffs bassed off of those scales/keys. For example:

e t9p7p5-t9p7p5-t9p7p5-t9p7p5-t10p9p7-t10p9p7-t10p9p7-t10p9p7-t10p9p7

This uses the 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the Amaj scale. Just get creative with the notes. I know this is really more explanation than what you needed, but I wanted to show you that it is worth learning scales/keys. Alot of guitarists I know have no idea what they are actually playing and they don't know anything about theory. Playing guitar is about passion and emotion, don't get me wrong, but it is so helpful to actually have a language that really helps translate music. Also, practice ALOT. I used to practice when I began playing about two years ago almost 8-12 hours a day (it was during the summer). It really lets you just examine the guitar and the notes and get you more confortable with notes.

Wow...sorry for the long ramble of music theory.
#8
To be honest, you never really visualize them as notes when you are improvising. You can know what notes are in them, know where the notes are, sure, but you usually just play the frets that you know are in the correct key.

edit: Don't misread that- I'm not saying not to learn notes or anything, I'm saying that when you are playing and are burning up the fret board you aren't thinking "E A B C G D F" in your head, you are looking at the frets that you know are in that key and playing patterns in them.
#9
It's ultimately better IMO to learn intervals rather then patterns. Patterns are fine when you are starting out but to improvise freely knowing the intervals is more useful
#10
You can know all the intervals, but like I said, when you improvise, you don't usually think in terms of notes or intervals. You aren't blazing through a fast run going in your head "A! B! G! D! 1st! Flat 3rd!" You are looking at the fretboard and "seeing" every fret that sounds a note in the correct key.
#11
Quote by CowboyUp
To be honest, you never really visualize them as notes when you are improvising. You can know what notes are in them, know where the notes are, sure, but you usually just play the frets that you know are in the correct key.

edit: Don't misread that- I'm not saying not to learn notes or anything, I'm saying that when you are playing and are burning up the fret board you aren't thinking "E A B C G D F" in your head, you are looking at the frets that you know are in that key and playing patterns in them.



You can't get to far with that approach though


Over fast, complex changes, you actually have to know the note and function and pitch you play as you play it.
#12
Learn the patterns too. After so much experience, you begin to be able to simply hear a chord, and then see a pattern for the chord while improvising. My advice is learn the patterns LAST. If not, you'll just know a bunch of patterns and not know what they do, where they go, or even what notes they are comprised of.
#13
The patterns are good for building finger muscle memory

But if you rely on patterns, you'll sound like you rely on patterns.
#14
I like learning the pattern for a specific type of scale, and then looking at them at all chromatic base notes and learning what notes are in them. For example, you can say that a pentatonic Bmin is 1, 3b, 5, 7b, 8, which is B, D, E, A, and B. Easy. You just have to remember what the pattern is, and you can give the notes. However, using the traditional memorization of notes in the scale (Cmaj=0 sharps Gmaj=F# Dmaj=F# & C#...etc) is also helpful. Learning both is helpful, but I tend to learn faster with patterns and I get a better feel for composition of types of scales.

Oh, and I do mean intervals, not patterns...wow...I am an idiot. Sorry. In a way, intervals are patterns anyways.
#15
Quote by Nick_
You can't get to far with that approach though


Over fast, complex changes, you actually have to know the note and function and pitch you play as you play it.



You misread me mate. I didn't give a method of anything, I read the threadstarters post like he wanted to be able to think "A! B! G! C!" when he was improvising, but you don't really do that, even if you know all of the notes. You know where the notes are, but when you solo you don't think in terms of notes, you see the whole key laid out and know where the intervals are. When the key changes, you know what places to go to be in key for that. Yes, if you were sitting down and not playing you could say "Yes, the key of C contains the notes C D E F G A B, and they are located in these regions", but when playing, you rarely think in terms other than "fret", "pattern", "region", or "interval" unless you are going to land on a specific note or interval for whatever reason, i.e hitting a major 7th in a minor key song to give a harmonic minor vibe. Even then, you don't think in terms of notes. You look and you think "Ok, major 7th, theres one here, here and there, and I can descend these notes to land on it".

**** I suck, check this out. He says what I have been trying to get across pretty simply.
#16
Thanks for the posts so far. I understand what you mean but what im saying is kind of like, when im playing in the key of C i can see the patterns all over the fretboard fairly easily but i find it very difficult to do this with any other scale that has sharps or flats in. I'll start practising a string at a time like mentioned in a one of the posts.
I will shred in the end!!
#17
personally i think in intervals when i solo as well, i do actually think "1,3,5,7,2,4,1,5" this being the case i don't know why thinking in notes wouldn't be possible.
#18
Quote by CowboyUp
You misread me mate. I didn't give a method of anything, I read the threadstarters post like he wanted to be able to think "A! B! G! C!" when he was improvising, but you don't really do that, even if you know all of the notes. You know where the notes are, but when you solo you don't think in terms of notes, you see the whole key laid out and know where the intervals are. When the key changes, you know what places to go to be in key for that. Yes, if you were sitting down and not playing you could say "Yes, the key of C contains the notes C D E F G A B, and they are located in these regions", but when playing, you rarely think in terms other than "fret", "pattern", "region", or "interval" unless you are going to land on a specific note or interval for whatever reason, i.e hitting a major 7th in a minor key song to give a harmonic minor vibe. Even then, you don't think in terms of notes. You look and you think "Ok, major 7th, theres one here, here and there, and I can descend these notes to land on it".

**** I suck, check this out. He says what I have been trying to get across pretty simply.



That's exactly what I'm saying is that you should think of notes while you play, not just patterns. You should always not only know what note you're playing but also be hearing it (potentially singing it, if it helps).

Don't let your fingers play for you; they're pretty stupid, they'll just do what they have done before.
Last edited by Nick_ at Jun 22, 2007,
#19
I think what CowboyUp is saying is that when you're soloing out of nowhere you don't think in terms of much except for unnamed patterns that you can see or hear. I don't think "A, B, C" ect when I solo, I just listen and if it clicks, then I've done something right.
Cowboy isn't talking about boxed positions, either, he's referring to the whole fretboard I think.
Quote by marmoseti
Mastering your instrument is being able to play whatever you hear in your head, unhindered by inadequate technique. After that, it's all about what you've got to say, so there would be no "best," just a bunch of people saying exactly what they mean.
#20
Quote by Ravenblacktear
For example, the Amin blues scale (1, 3b, 4, 5b, 5, 7, 1 (or 8) ) is A, C, D, D#, E, G, A.


If you're spelling it with a b5, you'd write the scale as A - C - D - Eb - E - G .


Quote by Ravenblacktear
I like learning the pattern for a specific type of scale, and then looking at them at all chromatic base notes and learning what notes are in them. For example, you can say that a pentatonic Bmin is 1, 3b, 5, 7b, 8, which is B, D, E, A, and B. Easy.


The minor pentatonic scale is built 1 - b3 - 4 - 5 - b7 and would be written B - D - E - F# - A.

You only wrote 4 notes - which I assume is just a typo.. but I thought I'd point them out to you..
#21
Quote by MadassAlex
I think what CowboyUp is saying is that when you're soloing out of nowhere you don't think in terms of much except for unnamed patterns that you can see or hear. I don't think "A, B, C" ect when I solo, I just listen and if it clicks, then I've done something right.
Cowboy isn't talking about boxed positions, either, he's referring to the whole fretboard I think.


That's the point

I'm saying that one should think in notes

that I advocate actually thinking while you improvise