Guitar Lessons Outline



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Lesson 8: Major Scales

First Position Major

Whether you intend to play lead guitar or would just like to develop your guitar skills, I recommend practicing the following scales. You will use all four of your fingers when you practice. Let’s start with the first position major scale in the key of G. Note that you start on the 6th string at the 3rd fret, which is the G note:

2 4 1 2 4 1 3 4 1 3 4 2 4 1 2

E +------------------------------------------2—-3--------+

B |------------------------------------3--5--------------|

G |---------------------------2--4--5--------------------|

D |------------------2--4--5-----------------------------|

A |---------2--3--5--------------------------------------|



E +---3--5-----------------------------------------------+
The notes in bold are the tonic note G, so this fingering gives you a two-octave scale within four frets. If you play this fingering with the fingers listed above, there will be little movement in your hand position and you will strengthen your seldom used 4th finger! Practice playing this scale forwards and backwards to gain strength and muscle memory. Below is another graphic to emphasize the fingering of the scale:



1

F

A#

D#

G#

C

F




F#

B

E

A

C#

F#

3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B


Second Position Major

Still in the key of G, the second position major scale starts with the second note of the G major scale, A. Notice that the second position scale overlaps some of the notes from the first position scale. Again, the notes in bold are the tonic note G.


1 3 4 1 3 1 2 4 1 2 4 1 3 4 1 3 4

E +------------------------------------------—--5--7--8--+

B |------------------------------------5--7--8-----------|

G |---------------------------4--5--7--------------------|

D |------------------4--5--7-----------------------------|

A |------------5--7--------------------------------------|

E +---5--7--8--------------------------------------------+
Below is another graphic to emphasize the fingering of the second position scale:


3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#

Third Position Major

The third position major scale starts with the third note of the G major scale, B. Notice that the third position scale overlaps some of the notes from the second position scale. Again, the notes in bold are the tonic note G.

1 2 4 1 3 4 1 2 4 1 3 1 2 4 1 2 4

E +----------------------------------------—-----7--8--10+

B |-------------------------------------7--8--10---------|

G |-------------------------------7--9-------------------|

D |---------------------7--9--10-------------------------|

A |-----------7--9--10-----------------------------------|

E +-7--8—-10---------------------------------------------+
Below is another graphic to emphasize the fingering of the second position scale:





A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#




D

G

C

F

A

D

11

D#

G#

C#

F#

A#

D#

The scales above are for the key of G; however you can use these fingerings for any key by changing the tonic note and following the same patterns. For example, the first position major scale in the key of A will start on the 5th fret and follow the same pattern as the first position major scale previously shown.


Key of G: First Position Key of A: First Position


1

F

A#

D#

G#

C

F




F#

B

E

A

C#

F#

3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#



When the 1st, 2nd and 3rd position scales are shown above each other, you can easily see how the scales overlap each other.


Key of G:

First
Position


1

F

A#

D#

G#

C

F




F#

B

E

A

C#

F#

3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B

1

F

A#

D#

G#

C

F




F#

B

E

A

C#

F#

3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#




D

G

C

F

A

D

11

D#

G#

C#

F#

A#

D#




Key of G:

Second Position

3

G

C

F

A#

D

G




G#

C#

F#

B

D#

G#

5

A

D

G

C

E

A




A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#

Key of G:

Third
Position





A#

D#

G#

C#

F

A#

7

B

E

A

D

F#

B




C

F

A#

D#

G

C

9

C#

F#

B

E

G#

C#




D

G

C

F

A

D

11

D#

G#

C#

F#

A#

D#

Lesson 9: Transposing

Transposing the key of a song can be accomplished through two methods. The easiest way to transpose the chords of a song is to use a capo. For example, a song that you have learned to play in the key of C may have the following chord progression: C, F, C, G, C, Bm, C, which can easily be changed to the key of D by placing the capo across the 2nd fret and playing the same chord formations. However, since you have raised the pitch one whole note with the capo, the chords are actually D, G, D, A, D, C#m, D. Below is a picture of a Kyser Quick Change capo (like the one I use) placed on the 3rd fret to raise the pitch 1 ½ notes.



The second method of transposing the key of a song requires more work. As you can see from the example above, if you wanted to transpose a chord progression from the key of C to the key of D, you would simply raise all chords one whole note or two frets. Notice in the example above that all major chords remain major and all minor chords remain minor. Another way to think of transposing the key is to look at the relative scales of the keys you are using. As an example, let’s change the chord progression above from the key of C to the key of G. First, write out the notes of the keys of C and G like this:


Root

2

3

4

5

6

7

Octave

C

D

E

F

G

A

B

C

G

A

B

C

D

E

F#

G

Then, simply match the chords with the corresponding position of the new key. The progression C, F, C, G, C, Bm, C, in the key of C becomes G, C, G, D, G, F#m, G in the key of G.


Lesson 10: Chord Progressions

I consider chord progressions to be the unifying theory of learning to play rhythm guitar. First, let’s take an easy key like C major. The notes in the C Major Scale are C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C. Now take the degrees of these notes and write them out.




1

2

3

4

5

6

7

C

D

E

F

G

A

B

Major

Minor

Minor

Major

Major

Minor

Minor

It is important to remember that the 1st, 4th and 5th degrees or notes of the C major scale will produce major chords: C major, F major and G major respectively. It is also important to remember that the 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th degrees or notes will produce minor chords: D minor, E minor, A minor and B minor respectively.


Of course, we are not limited to playing only major and minor chords and we have already learned how to produce seventh chords, minor sevenths and major seventh chords. The guiding principle to remember is that certain chords in the key of C should always be major or minor depending on the degree from which they are taken. For example, if you hear a G chord in the key of C major, it will likely be a G, a G7 or a Gmaj7, but not a G minor. Likewise, a D chord in the key of C major will likely be a D minor or a Dm7, but not a D major.
Now you are ready to discover the basic chord progressions in all the major keys. Start with the most often used keys of C, D, E, G & A and write out the chords found in each of these keys:


1

2

3

4

5

6

7

C

Dm, Dm7

Em, Em7

F,F7, Fmaj7

G, G7, Gmaj7

Am, Am7

Bm, Bm7

D



















E



















F



















G



















Major

Minor

Minor

Major

Major

Minor

Minor

Websites
For more info, visit:


http://www.guitarlessonworld.com/
http://www.supersonic.net/guitar/lessons.htm
http://guitar.about.com/library/weekly/aa071200a.htm

Guitar Chord Graphics


http://hatbox.lib.virginia.edu/text/gtrchord/






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