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> Scale Degrees, What is the Easiest way to remember scale degrees?
post Dec 15 2009, 10:33 AM
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Hi everybody,

This is the first time for me writing in the forums, I want to say that this is a great site with great instructors and lessons. Very beneficial.

I am playing guitar for 4-5 years and the biggest problem for me is finding my way on the fretboard. My problem mostly begins when it comes to using modes. I want to use appropriate modes according to chords and emphasize chord tones, so i think I must know the scale degrees of each mode on the fretboard. Also if I want to emphasize a mode, for example dorian mode in blues playing , it is better to emphasize 2th and 6th degrees of the mode, the different notes from minor pentatonic scale. Therefore in my opinion, every scale degree has different effects and could be visualized on the fretboard.

I can visualize the shapes of the modes according to the main mode( for example when I play E mixolydian, I know that the notes are the same with A major). However, scale degrees change and notes to be emphasized change. Considering 7 modes of major scale, harmonic minor modes etc it makes too many notes to remember and visualize on the fretboard to use every mode appropriately and also to create something htat sounds good.

My question is, Is there an easy way to visualising scales and their degrees on the fretboard? Also I am wondering How do you see the fretboard when you look at it?I mean How do you find your way? Sometimes when i push myself to remember and visualize, i feel lost:)

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Ivan Milenkovic
post Dec 16 2009, 02:21 AM
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Don't worry it will come in time. The things that you should learn can be separated into 3 main categories:

- scales
- arpeggios
- chords

each of these categories is equally important to you as a musician and a guitar player. Learn them all simultaneously. For example, learn the complete C major diatonic pattern on the neck. In the same time, rehearse the chords and arpeggios within that pattern, position by position. This will give you a good insight to the notes and their relations. The goal is not to look the fretboard and see the pattern, the goal is to memorize it so well that you hear the notes in your head while you play the imagined pattern in your head. Don't be bothered with modes and the way you can accent them, learn the chords, and the way you can accent them with notes from modes, this is what music is mainly about.

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