Now to get to the intervals. The first thing to learn is your half step and whole step. These two intervals in turn can be used as your building blocks. I'll get to that a little later. As for applying these two intervals to the guitar, that is simple. On the guitar, each fret represents a half step. Half Step = 1 half step or fret Whole Step = 2 half steps or frets TIP *The half step is also called a m2 or is 1 semi-tone. *The whole step is commonly called a M2 or is two semi-tones. M=Major m=minor The next two intervals, which are very important, are the major and minor 3rd. These two intervals are great for when you begin chord construction. m3 = 3 half steps or frets M3 = 4 half steps or frets When you get familiar with these two intervals you can apply them to make basic triads. Here are the general "interval formulas" for two of the four common triads. I've also given you the patterns for the Root position on the first 3 strings (G-B-e). If you want some other useful patterns for these two triads and more, then check out my Chord Patterns lesson. Major Triad = Major 3rd + minor 3rd Root Position Shape
A to B= whole B to C= half C to D= whole D to E= whole E to F= half F to G= whole G to A= whole
Minor Triad = minor 3rd + Major 3rd Root Position Shape
e|-5-|---|---| B|---|---|-3-| G|---|---|-R-| D|---|---|---| A|---|---|---| E|---|---|---|
This is one of the many popular uses of 3rds in general. The most popular use for 3rds is for harmonies. Listen to Iron Maiden or the more modern Avenged Sevenfold. They both incorporate harmonies through 3rds and other intervals. Heres a chart to show you the type of interval and the number of half steps each interval has. I've also included some extra info about each interval. *Remember when I mentioned A to C and A to D#. Well those are two examples for intervals. A to C is a m3 and A to D# is a tritone. If your wondering how I knew that then use this chart to help you. If you need a guide use the chromatic scale.
e|-5-|---|---| B|---|-3-|---| G|---|---|-R-| D|---|---|---| A|---|---|---| E|---|---|---|
Well hopefully this little lesson helped you out for the basic content of intervals. If you'd like more for the other intervals (perfect 5 tritone, etc.) I'd be happy to help anyone. This is one of my first lessons so don't be too harsh. -Mike.
Interval Number of Half Steps Perfect Unison 0 m2 (half step) 1 M2 (whole step) 2 m3 3 M3 4 Perfect 4 5 Tritone (#4/b5) 6 *The tritone is also known as the "Devils" note Perfect 5 7 m6 8 M6 9 m7 10 M7 11 Perfect 8 (Octave) 12