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> CAGED, Part 2 - The AGED in CAGED
Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 25 2007, 06:17 PM
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CAGED Lesson Part 2


Introduction

This lesson is part 2 of the CAGED series. If you haven't already, I suggest you check here for part 1.

In part 1 we learnt what CAGED stood for, and a little about what it can do for us. In this lesson we will complete the CAGED system with a tour through the remainder of the scales and chords.

The A Shape

In part one, we were looking at the C shape, the first shape in the CAGED series. We saw that the C shape gives us a major scale, and a selection of chords that can be played in the same position as the scale. Next, we are moving on to the A shape, the second CAGED shape - the A in CAGED in fact. What will we see?

Well, now we are basing our scales and chords around the open chord of A. To get the scale and chords that we desire, we need to move the A shape up 5 frets, to look like this:

Attached Image

Now, when we fill in the scale notes around the A shape, we find that we now have the option of playing our D major scale in a different position on the neck, like this:

Attached Image

This is exactly the same scale as we played before, except that since we have moved up the neck slightly, some of the lower notes are inaccessible, and we have a few higher notes. However, musically it is an identical scale of D major. So now, we know 2 places on the neck we can play this same scale.

Now, remember from the previous lesson, we are looking at how to play 3 chords in each of our scale positions: the D chord which is the root, and the associated G and A chords. Since we are working with the A shape, when we are playing an open chord of A, the chords we would use to make up our 3 chord example set are D and E, and as you might expect, we can make use of these chords in our D scale, using the CAGED A position to get those same G and A chords. We need to move those open chords up 5 frets to make up our set, like this:

Attached Image

Attached Image

The hard part is over now. Hopefully by now you can see that we are systematically working our way up the neck, and for each position we have a scale, and a set of chords that we can use in that position. The next 3 shapes are just more of the same!

The G Shape

Since we're getting so good at this now, I can introduce the scale straight away:

Attached Image

As you can see, it's a little further up the neck, but still musically the same scale. Our 3 example chords are based on the G shape, and are G, C and D, played up 7 frets, to look like this:

Attached Image

Attached Image

Attached Image

Once again, you can see that all of the chord shapes are made up of notes from our scale.

The E Shape

Moving right along, we hit the E shape next. The scale looks like this:

Attached Image

And our 3 example chords will be based on the E, A and B shapes, moved up 10 frets:

Attached Image

Attached Image

The A major chord is a little tricky since there is no natural open chord of B to use, so we will re-use the A shape and move it up 2 frets like this:

Attached Image

The observant amongst you will notice that we are playing an A shape 1 octave up here, to get an A.

The D Shape

And finally we arrive at the last shape - the D shape. The scale looks like this:

Attached Image

And the chords are based on D,G and A, but an octave up.

Attached Image

Attached Image

Attached Image

Now this seems a little strange - we are playing open chords an octave up - isn't that a little weird? Well not really. It is just a coincidence because we picked the scale of D which matches one of the CAGED shapes. This could happen with any of the shapes depending on the scale we are playing, or none of them if we pick a scale that isn't C,A,G,E or D - for instance a scale of C flat, so don't read anything significant into this.

Next Steps

Now we have had a tour of the CAGED system, what should you do with it? Well obviously, practice, practice, practice - but what should you actually practice? Here are a couple of ideas:

Firstly, as with any scale system you should practice all of the boxes until you are comfortable. The next step is moving between boxes. The way you do this is explained very well in Kris' pentatonic series - the same principles apply about moving horizontally, vertically and diagonally. The ultimate aim is that you move beyond the boxes and become comfortable playing runs of notes anywhere on the fretboard - this comes through a lot of practice, and initially knowing the boxes.

Another point to look into is use of chords. I gave 3 example chords for each position, but there is nothing magic about those chords, they were just examples. I hope you understood the principles well enough to apply them to any chord you are interested in. For instance, the chord of E minor can be played in any of the CAGED positions, can you use the principles we have discussed to find all 5 of them? If you practice this enough with many different chords, you will open up the fretboard to many different chord voicings and enrich your rhythm playing. Also, bear in mind that although I showed a lot of these chords with bars, you are free to play them in any way you please - maybe using just a few notes of the chord here and there as passing adornments to a lead line - the important thing is that you know where to find the notes and the chords.

Conclusion

That's it for now - enjoy learning the CAGED system and opening up that fretboard - if you have any questions or feedback, I'll see you on the forum!

This post has been edited by Andrew Cockburn: Mar 14 2007, 03:01 PM


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radarlove1984
post Feb 25 2007, 09:51 PM
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Once again, great lesson. Thanks so much for clearing all this up. I've never even heard of the CAGED system until you brought it up a few weeks ago.

Thanks dude cool.gif
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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 26 2007, 05:40 PM
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QUOTE (radarlove1984 @ Feb 25 2007, 03:51 PM) *
Once again, great lesson. Thanks so much for clearing all this up. I've never even heard of the CAGED system until you brought it up a few weeks ago.

Thanks dude cool.gif


Cool, glad it helped you - let us know what you want to learn next smile.gif


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fretdancer
post Feb 26 2007, 08:24 PM
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Andrew,
Big round of applause for making it all so simple.

I have read a lot about the CAGED theory previously and only understood bit of it, its always been a bit complicated and not easy for me to understand.

Now that I have read both your lessons, its become much much clearer. You have managed to flick on the switch of understanding in my head where others have failed.

I have read that CAGED is actually a very simple and easily understood lesson, but other peoples explanations have always left me scratching my head in confusion where as this was easily understood and simply yet comprehensively explained.

I now have a great grounding and reference for when I have time to explore it more fully.

Thanks again for explaining it in a way that *I* understood.

This post has been edited by fretdancer: Feb 28 2007, 10:00 AM


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Kristofer Dahl
post Feb 28 2007, 08:55 AM
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WOW!! Thanks do some research done by Andrew we can now see the scale diagrams in full size, looks great! biggrin.gif


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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 28 2007, 02:22 PM
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QUOTE (fretdancer @ Feb 26 2007, 02:24 PM) *
Andrew,
Big round of applause for making it all so simple.

I have read a lot about the CAGED theory previously and only understood bit of it, its always been a bit complicated and not easy for me to understand.

Now that I have read both your lessons, its become much much clearer. You have managed to flick on the switch of understanding in my head where others have failed.

I have read that CAGED is actually a very simple and easily understood lesson, but other peoples explanations have always left me scratching my head in confusion where as this was easily understood and simply yet comprehensively explained.

I now have a great grounding and reference for when I have time to explore it more fully.

Thanks again for explaining it in a way that *I* understood.


You're welcome Fretdancer !

QUOTE (Kristofer Dahl @ Feb 28 2007, 02:55 AM) *
WOW!! Thanks do some research done by Andrew we can now see the scale diagrams in full size, looks great! biggrin.gif


Excellent, I think it makes the lessons flow a lot better!


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Layzer
post May 30 2007, 01:21 AM
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Andrew i spent 30minutes seriously diving into this and realized i can already do all this stuff making theory much easier to learn!!!!! Since i have joined GMC i have been at it for at least 3-4 hrs a day if not more and i JUST now decided theory lessons were worth looking at and i have to say....the amount of puzzle peices i put together simply reading the CAGED 1 and 2 lessons has given me just as much motivation as perfecting Gabriel's Blues Saraceno lessons (love them). I will be spending the next few hours taking a look at more of your theory lessons to see where im at because i have been able to make the "G" shape all along the neck for a while but i didnt ever use it in my own music simply because i didnt know how it applied. GREAT JOB!


p.s. one mistake i saw about a 3rd of the way down....it says..."g" in a "g" shape.....i think you meant G in a C shape.....

EDIT: wait.... is that a mistake or am i missing something!

This post has been edited by Layzer: May 30 2007, 01:24 AM


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Andrew Cockburn
post May 30 2007, 03:23 AM
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QUOTE (Layzer @ May 29 2007, 08:21 PM) *
Andrew i spent 30minutes seriously diving into this and realized i can already do all this stuff making theory much easier to learn!!!!! Since i have joined GMC i have been at it for at least 3-4 hrs a day if not more and i JUST now decided theory lessons were worth looking at and i have to say....the amount of puzzle peices i put together simply reading the CAGED 1 and 2 lessons has given me just as much motivation as perfecting Gabriel's Blues Saraceno lessons (love them). I will be spending the next few hours taking a look at more of your theory lessons to see where im at because i have been able to make the "G" shape all along the neck for a while but i didnt ever use it in my own music simply because i didnt know how it applied. GREAT JOB!
p.s. one mistake i saw about a 3rd of the way down....it says..."g" in a "g" shape.....i think you meant G in a C shape.....

EDIT: wait.... is that a mistake or am i missing something!


Its probably my terminology - when I say G shape I am referring to the CAGED position, not the shape of the actual chord. Maybe I should have said "G chord in caged G position(C shape)" ?

Anyway, glad to see you have found out the secret fact that theory is just a way of describing what we already know (and taking it an extra step or two) smile.gif


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Layzer
post May 30 2007, 03:41 AM
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QUOTE (Andrew Cockburn @ May 29 2007, 09:23 PM) *
Its probably my terminology - when I say G shape I am referring to the CAGED position, not the shape of the actual chord. Maybe I should have said "G chord in caged G position(C shape)" ?

Anyway, glad to see you have found out the secret fact that theory is just a way of describing what we already know (and taking it an extra step or two) smile.gif



great...thanks srry i figured i was justmissing something.....2 hours later im still going at these theory lessons..

QUOTE (Layzer @ May 29 2007, 09:36 PM) *
great...thanks srry i figured i was justmissing something.....2 hours later im still going at these theory lessons..


also....can we get some more jazzy santana like recordings??? i like the line6 sounds

This post has been edited by Layzer: May 30 2007, 03:38 AM


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Andrew Cockburn
post May 30 2007, 03:58 AM
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QUOTE (Layzer @ May 29 2007, 10:41 PM) *
great...thanks srry i figured i was justmissing something.....2 hours later im still going at these theory lessons..


Wow, careful you don;t OD smile.gif

QUOTE (Layzer @ May 29 2007, 10:41 PM) *
also....can we get some more jazzy santana like recordings??? i like the line6 sounds


Cool - I'm working on a cover to Manhattan by Eric Johnson at the moment - will be a while before I can play it well though, and I also have one of my own on the way called "Child of the Light" - needs more work but I'll post it when I am done !


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coxy81
post Sep 8 2007, 12:36 PM
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Wow! awsome stuff Andrew. Really simple to understand the way you've explained it. up to this point i've known my pentatonics really well, but hadn't had my eyes opened to the full major scale patterns. With the CAGED scale shapes I see how what i already know fits in, and how the modes i've been learning start to fit.......COOL!!!!

Thanks Again
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Andrew Cockburn
post Sep 8 2007, 09:20 PM
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Great - glad it was helpful smile.gif


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shellshock1911
post Dec 31 2007, 06:52 PM
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What is the relationship between this system and modes? I your example key of D has the notes
D-E-F#-G-A-B-C#-D. And I notice that when you should the A shape, it was the same thing as A Mixolydian, and A mixo is the 5th mode in the key of D, so is that how they are related? So if I were to play the D major box, E Dorian box, F# Phyrgian box, G Lydian box, A Mixolydian box, B Aeolian, and C# Locrian, starting on each root of the 6th string, I would have the D major scale on the whole fretboard?


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Andrew Cockburn
post Jan 1 2008, 04:48 AM
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Modes and boxes are related, although not the same thing - you are spotting the underlying way that modes are generated here - move up a note, call it the root and then play the original scale and you get the next mode up, and of course this also means you are playing the next box in the series, so they are kind of inter related. But, please read my introduction to modes lesson to really understand what modes are (altered scales), as opposed to how they are generated (as I mentioned above).


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post May 26 2008, 02:31 PM
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Hi Andrew.

It's a good lesson, but im not sure what i get out of it.

Is this an "easy" way to determine which scale pattern to apply when playing a certain chord?

Meaning, if i know where to play a barré E major chord (which is an A moved up 7 frets), i should apply this scale pattern (of course moved up two frets).. however if i'd rather locate the E major on the 12th fret i should use this scale pattern only moved up two frets?

i am having a bit difficulty applying the correct scale pattern to specific chords.

Thanx in advance,
-Zion-

edit: dont mean scale, but scale pattern

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Andrew Cockburn
post May 26 2008, 06:23 PM
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I think I'd more call it a way of relating bar chords to patterns - what you said in your post was right, and this is about choosing a good pattern to use for what you are trying to do, b ut of course you don't have to be a slave to it.

So yes, if you want to play a chord of E using the A shape as you said, you also know, using the CAGED A shape that you can play a scale of E in that exact same position without for instance moving up to the 12th fret as you would have to if you oly knew one pattern.


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-Zion-
post May 26 2008, 09:19 PM
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thanx andrew..

i think i have to read this lesson through a couple of times over, but hopefully i'll get it completely some day.. wink.gif
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Andrew Cockburn
post May 26 2008, 09:34 PM
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Don't be a slave to it though - this is one possible way of opening up the fretboard, there are others. Its far more important that you understand the basics of scale construction in the first place, this is how you might apply it that's all.


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post Oct 13 2008, 08:12 PM
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Is it only me or below the ''G shapes'', the G major chord has actually a C shape instead of a G shape ???


QUOTE (Andrew Cockburn @ Feb 25 2007, 01:17 PM) *
CAGED Lesson Part 2


Introduction

This lesson is part 2 of the CAGED series. If you haven't already, I suggest you check here for part 1.

In part 1 we learnt what CAGED stood for, and a little about what it can do for us. In this lesson we will complete the CAGED system with a tour through the remainder of the scales and chords.

The A Shape

In part one, we were looking at the C shape, the first shape in the CAGED series. We saw that the C shape gives us a major scale, and a selection of chords that can be played in the same position as the scale. Next, we are moving on to the A shape, the second CAGED shape - the A in CAGED in fact. What will we see?

Well, now we are basing our scales and chords around the open chord of A. To get the scale and chords that we desire, we need to move the A shape up 5 frets, to look like this:

Attached Image

Now, when we fill in the scale notes around the A shape, we find that we now have the option of playing our D major scale in a different position on the neck, like this:

Attached Image

This is exactly the same scale as we played before, except that since we have moved up the neck slightly, some of the lower notes are inaccessible, and we have a few higher notes. However, musically it is an identical scale of D major. So now, we know 2 places on the neck we can play this same scale.

Now, remember from the previous lesson, we are looking at how to play 3 chords in each of our scale positions: the D chord which is the root, and the associated G and A chords. Since we are working with the A shape, when we are playing an open chord of A, the chords we would use to make up our 3 chord example set are D and E, and as you might expect, we can make use of these chords in our D scale, using the CAGED A position to get those same G and A chords. We need to move those open chords up 5 frets to make up our set, like this:

Attached Image

Attached Image

The hard part is over now. Hopefully by now you can see that we are systematically working our way up the neck, and for each position we have a scale, and a set of chords that we can use in that position. The next 3 shapes are just more of the same!

The G Shape

Since we're getting so good at this now, I can introduce the scale straight away:

Attached Image

As you can see, it's a little further up the neck, but still musically the same scale. Our 3 example chords are based on the G shape, and are G, C and D, played up 7 frets, to look like this:

Attached Image

Attached Image

Attached Image

Once again, you can see that all of the chord shapes are made up of notes from our scale.

The E Shape

Moving right along, we hit the E shape next. The scale looks like this:

Attached Image

And our 3 example chords will be based on the E, A and B shapes, moved up 10 frets:

Attached Image

Attached Image

The A major chord is a little tricky since there is no natural open chord of B to use, so we will re-use the A shape and move it up 2 frets like this:

Attached Image

The observant amongst you will notice that we are playing an A shape 1 octave up here, to get an A.

The D Shape

And finally we arrive at the last shape - the D shape. The scale looks like this:

Attached Image

And the chords are based on D,G and A, but an octave up.

Attached Image

Attached Image

Attached Image

Now this seems a little strange - we are playing open chords an octave up - isn't that a little weird? Well not really. It is just a coincidence because we picked the scale of D which matches one of the CAGED shapes. This could happen with any of the shapes depending on the scale we are playing, or none of them if we pick a scale that isn't C,A,G,E or D - for instance a scale of C flat, so don't read anything significant into this.

Next Steps

Now we have had a tour of the CAGED system, what should you do with it? Well obviously, practice, practice, practice - but what should you actually practice? Here are a couple of ideas:

Firstly, as with any scale system you should practice all of the boxes until you are comfortable. The next step is moving between boxes. The way you do this is explained very well in Kris' pentatonic series - the same principles apply about moving horizontally, vertically and diagonally. The ultimate aim is that you move beyond the boxes and become comfortable playing runs of notes anywhere on the fretboard - this comes through a lot of practice, and initially knowing the boxes.

Another point to look into is use of chords. I gave 3 example chords for each position, but there is nothing magic about those chords, they were just examples. I hope you understood the principles well enough to apply them to any chord you are interested in. For instance, the chord of E minor can be played in any of the CAGED positions, can you use the principles we have discussed to find all 5 of them? If you practice this enough with many different chords, you will open up the fretboard to many different chord voicings and enrich your rhythm playing. Also, bear in mind that although I showed a lot of these chords with bars, you are free to play them in any way you please - maybe using just a few notes of the chord here and there as passing adornments to a lead line - the important thing is that you know where to find the notes and the chords.

Conclusion

That's it for now - enjoy learning the CAGED system and opening up that fretboard - if you have any questions or feedback, I'll see you on the forum!

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Andrew Cockburn
post Oct 14 2008, 01:06 PM
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Its a little confusing but "G Shape" refers to the CAGED position, not the shape of the actual chord we are playing. Think of it like this:

We are using the CAGED "G" position
We are playing a Chord of "G" Major
We are using a chord shape of "C"

Three different things, and not necessarily related!


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