Major/Major Pent memorized. What next?

Jchrisf

Member
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1,976
I just memorized the Major Scale and Major Pentatonic scale in G along with the three note per string Major scale in G. What should be my next step? I've never had a good instructor so I'm hoping you all might have some great suggestions.
 

coltranemi2012

Silver Supporting Member
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5,564
Seriously...learn song solos and songs from records..by ear. See how they are using those scales
 

Megatron

Member
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1,633
Just like coltranemi2012 said. Transcribe a lot of your favorite licks and solos.

Also, jump into improv. Don't worry, just do your best. I use to use my favorite albums as backing tracks(many, many years ago). You could also use backing tracks off of Y/T or the radio.

Also, learn a lot of sequences, they'll work for all those scales. 3's, 4's, 3rd's, 2nd's and any others you'd like to try. Depending on what style you like I got a lot of ideas from Paul Gilbert's first instructional video. they might feel like exercises at first but if you use them well they'll give you ideas in any key, anywhere on the fingerboard.

Just a few things that had helped me.
 

stevel

Member
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15,077
"in G"? No, you just memorized them in every key. If you don't understand why, THAT is your next step.

Then your next step is not to memorize, but to KNOW your scales. There's a difference.

And go back and read the 2nd post. There's your next steps for the rest of your life.

Best,
Steve
 

guitarjazz

Gold Supporting Member
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22,631
Seriously...learn song solos and songs from records..by ear. See how they are using those scales
and join a band. Learn all about chords and rhythm and phrasing. Listen blues, Bartok, and bluegrass. Wake up to The Night Has Thousand Eyes blasting. Read some poetry. Write some lyrics. Learn piano. ....
 

PatrickE_FenderADV

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
27,886
Did you learn all 5 positions in EVERY key or just in G? Once you get that done, then work on connecting the boxes beyond two notes per string so you can play three or four notes per string in a run. Also, as Steve says you need to know the scales, not just memorize the boxes.

Come back when all that's done and TGP will collectively give you your next assignment... See you in about 2 years. :sarcasm
 
Last edited:

Axis29

Member
Messages
3,566
Stop learning scales and learn how to play rhythm.

Learn how to be a musician and support other musicians. Learning to wank away on scales or even learning tasty little rhythm fills is nice, but make sure your timing is good and you know chords. You'll use rhythm playing 95% of the time when making music with other people....


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Jchrisf

Member
Messages
1,976
Thanks for the great advice. I have "NO" natural musical talent but love the guitar especially and music in general. Learning to play songs by ear seems very hard.. seems like it would be a very slow process but I guess that is how it has to be. Is there anything that will help the process like some software or just get some headphones and get after it?

Any suggestions on which chords to focus on? I have a chord book with 1000 chords in it so it would take me forever to get through all the C chords it has in it.
 

BigDipper15

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
479
work on two note per string pentatonics up and down the neck. Do it in A since you know G. Same shapes just different placement on the neck.

Also go learn the You Shook Me all night long solo. Not hard and a perfect mix of major and minor pent. Then go learn the Crossroads solo. Perfect minor pent solo. Try to learn them by ear and then go to youtube to see if you got it right.
 

Bagatell

Member
Messages
142
Is there anything that will help the process like some software or just get some headphones and get after it?
Nothing beats having a guitar in your hands.

Any suggestions on which chords to focus on? I have a chord book with 1000 chords in it so it would take me forever to get through all the C chords it has in it.
Chord books are generally a waste of time (chord programs are better in as as much as they're quicker) but you need to know how to build chords yourself. Start with "shell voicings" and "double stops".
 

never2late

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
26
Thanks for the great advice. I have "NO" natural musical talent but love the guitar especially and music in general. Learning to play songs by ear seems very hard.. seems like it would be a very slow process but I guess that is how it has to be. Is there anything that will help the process like some software or just get some headphones and get after it?



I was in the same spot,and started taking piano lessons.Very helpful to me.Music makes more sense on the piano to me.I was able to take what I learned from the piano and apply it to the Guitar. Now my play of the piano or guitar isn't the best but my understanding is much better. I am truly enjoying just being a student of music.
 

Jeremy_Green

Member
Messages
1,154
Don't add anything yet. Stay where you are and learn a lot of songs, paying close attention to how these scales are used. Learn them in every key, from every starting note on every string. Play them up and down the length of the neck on string pairs. Do string skipping with them. Diagonally - every imaginable permutation that you can think of.

Far too many people move on too early. Having them memorized is only the very beginning of the process. Now you are getting into the real work with them.
 

aiq

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
10,720
Whatever you do, don't develop an instantly identifiable style.

It's so boring...
 

Hotspur

Member
Messages
375
I just memorized the Major Scale and Major Pentatonic scale in G along with the three note per string Major scale in G. What should be my next step? I've never had a good instructor so I'm hoping you all might have some great suggestions.
As has been pointed out, you need to learn how to transpose this into other keys. This is really really easy, but crucial.

That being said, I want to strongly encourage you to NOT turn around and think now its time to learn other scales and other scale patterns. There is a time for that, yes, but the most important thing now is for you to practice USING the scales you know.

In particular, you need to learn how to hear what you're doing. Right away, you need to start working on moving away from thinking of a scale as a shape or pattern on the fretboard and moving towards thinking of it as a collection of sounds.

I'd strongly encourage you to get and use the functional ear trainer, a free download from miles.be. Learn songs. Take the melodies of songs you know by heart and transpose them onto your guitar.
 

Axis29

Member
Messages
3,566
Thanks for the great advice. I have "NO" natural musical talent but love the guitar especially and music in general. Learning to play songs by ear seems very hard.. seems like it would be a very slow process but I guess that is how it has to be. Is there anything that will help the process like some software or just get some headphones and get after it?

Any suggestions on which chords to focus on? I have a chord book with 1000 chords in it so it would take me forever to get through all the C chords it has in it.

Major
Minor
Dominant
Diminished
Augmented

(Basically, all of them! LOL). A lot of guys find the CAGED system helpful for moving stuff around and figuring out how the fretboard 'works'.

In all honesty, I'd start with the Major, Minor and Dominant 7th chords. Figure out what the differences are, why they're different and how to play them with the root notes on different strings. Everyone starts by learning the roots on strings five and six, then they move to the thinner strings.

If you learn what the scale degrees are that make up these chords, it will pay dividends in the long run.... But, you can make so much music without having to memorize this.

Focus on figuring out what I-IV-V means and how to find this in several keys.

Then learn how to change between chords smoothly... SLOWLY a building up speed.


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JonR

Member
Messages
15,270
Thanks for the great advice. I have "NO" natural musical talent but love the guitar especially and music in general. Learning to play songs by ear seems very hard.. seems like it would be a very slow process but I guess that is how it has to be. Is there anything that will help the process like some software or just get some headphones and get after it?

Any suggestions on which chords to focus on? I have a chord book with 1000 chords in it so it would take me forever to get through all the C chords it has in it.
There's various ways of approaching this, but the idea is that all chords spring from a very small number of basic forms and shapes.
Shape-wise, there are just 5 major shapes and 3 minors:
C G D A E, Am Em Dm
7ths, 9ths, sus, add, etc, all derive from those, as do the 7 other major chords and 9 other minor chords (as barre or movable versions of the open "cowboy" shapes).

In terms of chord types, again there's a small selection:
Triads: maj, min, dim, aug. The latter are quite rare, and sus2 and sus4 are probably more common triads in rock.
7ths: SIX types - two built on major triads (7, maj7); two on minor triads (m7, m(maj7)), two on dim triads (dim7, m7b5). You very rarely find the latter in rock.

One good way to build chord knowledge is to work in keys, at least the common guitar keys.
There are potentially 7 chords in each key, but one is almost never used, at least in rock and pop (the vii, or the ii in minor keys), and there's a fair amount of overlap between the others:
Code:
MAJOR KEYS
.
KEY  I   II   III  IV   V    VI   VII
C    C   Dm   Em   F   G(7)  Am    -
G    G   Am   Bm   C   D(7)  Em    -
D    D   Em   F#m  G   A(7)  Bm    -
A    A   Bm   C#m  D   E(7)  F#m   -
E    E   F#m  G#m  A   B(7)  C#m   -
.
MINOR KEYS
Em   Em   -   G   Am   B(7)  C    D
Am   Am   -   C   Dm   E(7)  F    G
Dm   Dm   -   F   Gm   A(7)  Bb   C
That's a grand total of just TWENTY ONE essential chords to cover all those keys (including the optional dom7 versions of the V chords). In alphabetical order:
A Am A7
Bb
B Bm B7
C
C#m
D Dm D7
E Em E7
F
F#m
G Gm G7
G#m

Notice that Bb and G#m only occur once in the above 8 keys. Also, you don't really need the difficult B major barre chord - you can usually use the easier B7 instead/
All the others occur at least twice, many of them three times - obviously the latter are the most important ones.
Also, many of those are the same shapes on different frets. Eg, C#m is Bm 2 frets higher. Gm is F#m 1 fret higher, and G#m is 1 fret above that.

In major keys, a common additional chord is the bVII - but they're still chords in the above 21 (Bb, F, C, G, D).

In terms of which shapes to learn: obviously start with the easiest open shapes, where possible. For the barre chords, think about learning two options: the "E" form and the "A" form (or the "Em" and "Am" forms for minor barres). (Check out the "CAGED"system.)
Eg, an F chord is played as an "E" form on fret 1, or an "A" form on fret 8.
A Bm chord is played as an "Am" form on fret 2, or an "Em" form on fret 7.
But bear in mind for chord changing in sequences, that it's good to keep your shapes nearby on the fretboard as much as you can (that's the advantage of learning more shape options for each chord).

Naturally, none of this is to suggest you don't need to learn any other chords, or any other shapes for the above chords! But that's the foundation to begin from.
The more you understand the basic principles of chord type (eg, all 5 major shapes are the same type), the more you'll make sense of the 1000s of shapes in chord dictionaries, and the more you'll understand how to form your own chord variations and extensions.

Lastly - as the others say - WORK WITH SONGS! They teach you how chords go together in musical sequences, showing the most common changes you need to practice.
 






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