> HEY MAN, I really need your help...

...the thing is, I need you to start progressing faster then ever, but to achieve that I need your help:

* Don't know where to start? Just pm me and we will sort it out directly, I am online every day.

* Join My Army. Sounds aggressive? It is! We can study anything from the most fearsome picking techniques to bombastic songwriting. A medal of honor awaits the brave. Seriously, this is an opportunity for you to get a personalised learning experience...what are you waiting for?!

* Join my next video chat! GMC startpage holds a video chat schedule. We always cover a lot of ground and have fun. Remember that you don't need any previous knowledge, and you can be passive in the chat.

* Jam with me - you will find active collabs here.

* Post a topic on this board, guitar related or not - doesn't matter! You will find that chatting with instructors boosts your motivation to practice.

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* Finally I want to tell you a secret. Nah I changed my mind - pm me instead ;)

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> Midwestmetalhead's Thread, for Gab's Army
Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 6 2017, 03:16 PM
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Hi mate! Welcome to Gab's Army, before we start, I need some more info about you:


- How many time have you been playing guitar?
- Favorite guitarists, bands and musicians.
- What are your guitar goals?
- How would you like to you see yourself in 5 years (related to music and guitar)?
- How many time can you play guitar each day?
- Do you have playing live experience?
- Which are your strong and weak points with guitar?
- What do you know about music theory?
- Can you record videos of you playing?
- Share here audios and videos that reflect your current playing.


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 6 2017, 07:54 PM
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Hi Gab!

Thanks for the reply.

Here are your questions followed by my answers.


- How many time have you been playing guitar?

I have been playing on and off for 29 years.



- Favorite guitarists, bands and musicians.

Iron Maiden. Adrian Smith
Opeth. Mikael Akerfeldt
Judas Priest. Glenn Tipton
Iced Earth. Troy Seele (ex-Iced Earth now)
Gary Moore.
Lots of blues players. I don’t know the names. Its just music I like.



- What are your guitar goals? 


To be a better writer. Or a writer at all really.
To have confidence to play lead guitar.
To be able to take what is in my head and play it.



- How would you like to you see yourself in 5 years (related to music and guitar)?


I would like to have an album of original material.
I would like to be a bigger asset to my bandmates.
I would like to be in love with the guitar and music.



- How many time can you play guitar each day?


I can get a couple of 30 minute sessions in each day if I commit to it.
Maybe 8 of these 30 min sessions a week. That’s 4 hours a week total. If I apply myself.
Now I only practice existing material from my band so I am ready live. I didn’t write this material. Or record it. I joined after
this album was done. We are working on our 2nd now.



- Do you have playing live experience?


Yes. With a handful of different bands. I was always the 2nd guitarist.



- Which are your strong and weak points with guitar?


Strong – rhythm. Taking tabs and learning them. As long as they are in my ability. Not having an ego. Working well with
other musicians. I’m not an asshole. People like me in their bands. I’m not super competitive. I enjoy the fun and social
aspects of playing with others. I take critique well and am not afraid to learn.

Weak – Lead. I hate “jamming”. I struggle to come up with anything spontaneously. I struggle going out of my comfort zone.
I am still playing the same stuff I learned years ago. When it gets hard I go do something else.

***Recently I was talking to a friend and I said that “I feel like a guitar player. Not a musician.” To me, its muscle memory
and something I do “visually”. I don’t hear the music as much as I remember where to put my hands. I want to approach
music with my ears. Not just remembering which frets to go to and in which order. Yes I started this in 9th grade. (1988) I
should be waaaaaay further along now in 2017. But I’m not. I’m still the best at basic power chords and simple riffs. Sure
some might be fast, but none of it is very technical. One reason is I tend to not be moved by technical music. The players I
listed are not shred monsters. And I don’t long to become one of those. I could listen to Michael Schenker all day. And be
happy. But after 29 years I’m still nowhere even close. I have taken very little in lessons. I mainly play to be in bands with
friends. For the social element. I think I would have more fun if I were a better player.



- What do you know about music theory?


The basics. The notes. How to apply a scale formula to get the notes of a scale. How chords are constructed. I don’t put
much of it into practice. But the bare bones stuff is there from previous learning experiences.



- Can you record videos of you playing?


Yes.



- Share here audios and videos that reflect your current playing.


Attached is a video of me playing along to a recording of my band. With my track removed.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhL5-Zvdmx8...eature=youtu.be








QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 6 2017, 09:16 AM) *
Hi mate! Welcome to Gab's Army, before we start, I need some more info about you:


- How many time have you been playing guitar?
- Favorite guitarists, bands and musicians.
- What are your guitar goals?
- How would you like to you see yourself in 5 years (related to music and guitar)?
- How many time can you play guitar each day?
- Do you have playing live experience?
- Which are your strong and weak points with guitar?
- What do you know about music theory?
- Can you record videos of you playing?
- Share here audios and videos that reflect your current playing.



--------------------
\m/ \m/



"There's many who tried, to prove that they're faster. But they didn't last and they died as they tried." - Judas Priest "Hellbent For Leather"
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 7 2017, 09:54 PM
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Hi mate! From what I can hear and see in that video, your rhythm skills are very consistent. The fact that you are playing in bands is not a small thing. I can see you playing all those riffs smoothly. Well done!

So the two goals are lead technique and music theory applied + ear training.

Let's start! This is my suggestion for the first week:


Technique training: 10 minutes

Alternate Picking: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/solo-guit...upstroke-focus/

Work on that lesson at a comfortable tempo. Practice it in blocks (each part as a different exercise) over metronome.

Scale Practice + Improvisation: 20 minutes

1. Work on this lesson: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/ls/Simple-Aminor-Soloing/

2. Practice A minor scale all along the fret-board (based on the caged system). When playing the scale up and down, sing along the notes. Try to be sure that you are singing the right pitch. Record yourself and send me an audio if it's necessary.

3. Improvise over the backing track using the scale and creating variations of the licks learnt from the lesson.




Any question?





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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 8 2017, 07:33 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 7 2017, 03:54 PM) *
Hi mate! From what I can hear and see in that video, your rhythm skills are very consistent. The fact that you are playing in bands is not a small thing. I can see you playing all those riffs smoothly. Well done!


Thank you!

QUOTE
So the two goals are lead technique and music theory applied + ear training.


Sounds good.

QUOTE
Let's start! This is my suggestion for the first week:


Technique training: 10 minutes

Alternate Picking: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/solo-guit...upstroke-focus/

Work on that lesson at a comfortable tempo. Practice it in blocks (each part as a different exercise) over metronome.


For the first session I worked on the first pattern. I can do this up to 140 bpm just fine. How do you recommend I approach this? 1 shape per practice session. Until I have practiced all of them up to 140 bpm? Then start working on assembling them and going from one to another at tempo?

QUOTE
Scale Practice + Improvisation: 20 minutes

1. Work on this lesson: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/ls/Simple-Aminor-Soloing/


I really like this solo. This is the stuff I really like when it comes to lead guitar. Tasty! I printed this out and noted the picking direction of each note. Is it super important that I am 100% what he is doing? Or is it more as long as I am using alternate picking its ok? I use alternate picking regularly, but it may not be 100% the same as he does. I'm just talking about the right hand. I have the first 8 bars learned.

QUOTE
2. Practice A minor scale all along the fret-board (based on the caged system). When playing the scale up and down, sing along the notes. Try to be sure that you are singing the right pitch. Record yourself and send me an audio if it's necessary.


I've heard of CAGED but I have not looked into it. Is there a diagram of this that you can send or point me to on the web somewhere? What exactly i should be using for patterns.

QUOTE
3. Improvise over the backing track using the scale and creating variations of the licks learnt from the lesson.

I'll get to this once I have Darius' solo learned. Is that ok?

Thanks again for taking me as a student. One 30 min sessions down. I'll get another one in today still.


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 9 2017, 11:37 PM
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QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 8 2017, 03:33 PM) *
For the first session I worked on the first pattern. I can do this up to 140 bpm just fine. How do you recommend I approach this? 1 shape per practice session. Until I have practiced all of them up to 140 bpm? Then start working on assembling them and going from one to another at tempo?


That sounds good. Just play for 2 or 3 minutes the patterns previously worked at the beginning of each session to maintain it.


QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 8 2017, 03:33 PM) *
I really like this solo. This is the stuff I really like when it comes to lead guitar. Tasty! I printed this out and noted the picking direction of each note. Is it super important that I am 100% what he is doing? Or is it more as long as I am using alternate picking its ok? I use alternate picking regularly, but it may not be 100% the same as he does. I'm just talking about the right hand. I have the first 8 bars learned.


It's ok for this mentoring program if the variations allows you to play the licks well. If you are planning to share takes at REC program, this can be commented by any instructor but it's not a big issue. Let's see how it sounds in your own way.


QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 8 2017, 03:33 PM) *
I've heard of CAGED but I have not looked into it. Is there a diagram of this that you can send or point me to on the web somewhere? What exactly i should be using for patterns.


HERE: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...?showtopic=2944


QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 8 2017, 03:33 PM) *
I'll get to this once I have Darius' solo learned. Is that ok?


Sounds good!


--------------------
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Join Gab's Army

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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 10 2017, 11:05 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 9 2017, 05:37 PM) *
That sounds good. Just play for 2 or 3 minutes the patterns previously worked at the beginning of each session to maintain it.


QUOTE
Technique training: 10 minutes

Alternate Picking: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/solo-guit...upstroke-focus/

Work on that lesson at a comfortable tempo. Practice it in blocks (each part as a different exercise) over metronome.


I'm doing 10 min on this each time. As your original instructions said. Otherwise I'll never get through it.

After my 3rd session (30 min on this part total) I have 2 of the patterns down. I am using the gp5 speed trainer loop and going from 55 to 65% with the tempo going up by 1% each time. Any faster than this and its sloppy. Next time I'll try to add the 3rd pattern on. Again, 2-3 min of this isn't going to get my anywhere.

QUOTE
Scale Practice + Improvisation: 20 minutes

1. Work on this lesson: https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/ls/Simple-Aminor-Soloing/


For the Am simple solo I am up to bar 22 and have it down pretty well. I'm struggling with the vibrato on the bends but it'll come with time.

QUOTE
2. Practice A minor scale all along the fret-board (based on the caged system).


Sorry, I'm not following what I should be doing here. Am I to play the A minor scale in the C shape, then the A shape, then the G shape, then the E shape then the D shape? I think I need more specific instructions.

Thanks Gabriel.

This post has been edited by MidwestMetalhead: Mar 10 2017, 11:13 PM


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"There's many who tried, to prove that they're faster. But they didn't last and they died as they tried." - Judas Priest "Hellbent For Leather"
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 11 2017, 03:18 PM
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QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 10 2017, 07:05 PM) *
I'm doing 10 min on this each time. As your original instructions said. Otherwise I'll never get through it.

After my 3rd session (30 min on this part total) I have 2 of the patterns down. I am using the gp5 speed trainer loop and going from 55 to 65% with the tempo going up by 1% each time. Any faster than this and its sloppy. Next time I'll try to add the 3rd pattern on. Again, 2-3 min of this isn't going to get my anywhere. .



Hi mate! I meant to play a few minutes the exercises previously worked once you start with the new ones. For example, after your 3rd session you have 2 patterns down at 65%. One the following session, you could start working on a new one (maybe not on the following, you could do it on session 6/7) but the idea is that before you start working on the new one, you dedicate some minutes to play the 2 patterns that you've worked before... I hope that it makes sense.


QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 10 2017, 07:05 PM) *
Sorry, I'm not following what I should be doing here. Am I to play the A minor scale in the C shape, then the A shape, then the G shape, then the E shape then the D shape? I think I need more specific instructions.

Thanks Gabriel.



The idea is that you learn A minor scale all along the fretboard and connect the different shapes. This means that you'll play A minor in G shape, then A minor in E shape, then A minor in D shape, A minor in C shape and finally A minor in A shape.

Once you connect everything, you should get this:




Let me know if it's clear.



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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 11 2017, 06:54 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 11 2017, 09:18 AM) *
Hi mate! I meant to play a few minutes the exercises previously worked once you start with the new ones. For example, after your 3rd session you have 2 patterns down at 65%. One the following session, you could start working on a new one (maybe not on the following, you could do it on session 6/7) but the idea is that before you start working on the new one, you dedicate some minutes to play the 2 patterns that you've worked before... I hope that it makes sense.


Yep. Thats pretty much what I'm doing. Today I worked on the first 3. The other 2 from before and then added the third. I had to slow it down since I added a new one, but I think I'll have it back to 55-65% with the first 3 patterns after next time. Then the time after that I'll add the fourth. So it went like this:

10 min pattern 1
10 min pattern 1 and 2
10 min pattern 1 and 2
10 min pattern 1, 2, 3
10 min pattern 1, 2, 3 (this will be my next session)


QUOTE
The idea is that you learn A minor scale all along the fretboard and connect the different shapes. This means that you'll play A minor in G shape, then A minor in E shape, then A minor in D shape, A minor in C shape and finally A minor in A shape.


I'll add these to my next session.

I made it a bit farther into Darius' solo. Bar 24. Today wasn't very good. But thats how you know you're learning. It may be 2 steps forward one day, a step back the next, but the next time you gain more ground and what was hard the day before is easier. Its a marathon not a sprint!

Thanks again!


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"There's many who tried, to prove that they're faster. But they didn't last and they died as they tried." - Judas Priest "Hellbent For Leather"
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 12 2017, 10:42 PM
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Hi mate, everything sounds great. It's really promising to see how you are very focused and organised. I can expect great things happening on this thread.

Keep on the hard work! smile.gif


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 13 2017, 02:56 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 12 2017, 04:42 PM) *
Hi mate, everything sounds great. It's really promising to see how you are very focused and organised. I can expect great things happening on this thread.

Keep on the hard work! smile.gif


Got another bit of Darius' solo this morning. I'm up to bar 29 out of 33 and I have now switched over to playing it to the backing and not along with Darius in the video. Its coming along. My plan is to send a video after tomorrows sessions. That will finish off our 1st week.

The Muris' alternate picking lesson is going slowly. But I see its value. I'm still on the first three patterns. And I'm still in the 55-65% range on the speed trainer. Its a bit shaky at the 63-65% speeds. I'm adding another pattern on tomorrow. I'll send a video of where I end up there too.

More tomorrow.





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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 14 2017, 02:27 PM
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Great! Thanks for the update! I'll wait for today's video. wink.gif


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 14 2017, 06:08 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 14 2017, 08:27 AM) *
Great! Thanks for the update! I'll wait for today's video. wink.gif


Well I ended the week here:

4 of the Muris patterns learned. These are at 70 bpm. 50% of the video speed. I'm just not used to playing stuff that is fast. The fourth pattern I just learned today. I'm having more trouble getting that one down.

https://youtu.be/PfZxav6ItXQ

The Darius solo I am doing alright it. The vibrato is tough. The bends could be better but they aren't bad I don't think. I don't have the ending down yet. But its close.

https://youtu.be/dxb5dIou7I8





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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 14 2017, 09:38 PM
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Hi! Thanks for the vids!

I think that this is going well. When playing the alternate picking exercises, please try to be sure that you are not doing right hand fingers movement. The movement should start from your wrist to be effective. Take care of this, and compare your movement with the instructor to be sure that you are doing it right.

Regarding the other lesson, you're right, it sounds good but it has some more room to improve those bends and vibrato. It's not bad, but some bends, mostly in the last section are not precise, and your vibrato tend to be a bit quick making your phrasing nervous. Work on it.



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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 14 2017, 09:41 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 14 2017, 03:38 PM) *
Hi! Thanks for the vids!

I think that this is going well. When playing the alternate picking exercises, please try to be sure that you are not doing right hand fingers movement. The movement should start from your wrist to be effective. Take care of this, and compare your movement with the instructor to be sure that you are doing it right.

Regarding the other lesson, you're right, it sounds good but it has some more room to improve those bends and vibrato. It's not bad, but some bends, mostly in the last section are not precise, and your vibrato tend to be a bit quick making your phrasing nervous. Work on it.


I'm with ya!

I'll keep at it.



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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 15 2017, 06:06 PM
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Did my first run at the alternate picking lesson with a new right hand technique that is different from what I've been doing for almost 30 years.

WOW!!!!

Instant difference.

I curled my fingers under to force myself to move my wrist. It took a few minutes to get used to and i have to think about it a bit to keep them there but that will work itself out over time.

I was immediately able to do the 4 patterns I've learned at 50-60% with the speed trainer. I bumped it to 55-63% and I was able to do that too.

I am very excited. I feel I have always been held back speed-wise. I think this is why.

THANK YOU!!!!!

This week I'll keep moving forward on the Muris' lesson and finish the Darius solo. I'll also dig into the Am CAGED thing as well.



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"There's many who tried, to prove that they're faster. But they didn't last and they died as they tried." - Judas Priest "Hellbent For Leather"
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 16 2017, 11:19 PM
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It's awesome to see how some technique adjustment can affect our playing! I so happy of reading this man!

Keep going!! smile.gif


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 17 2017, 03:25 PM
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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 16 2017, 05:19 PM) *
It's awesome to see how some technique adjustment can affect our playing! I so happy of reading this man!

Keep going!! smile.gif


Will do.

I'm swamped at the moment but I'm fitting in time each day for something.


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 17 2017, 04:39 PM
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Still very confused on the caged thing.

you said:

QUOTE
The idea is that you learn A minor scale all along the fretboard and connect the different shapes. This means that you'll play A minor in G shape, then A minor in E shape, then A minor in D shape, A minor in C shape and finally A minor in A shape.


But when I look at the diagram you sent, isn't the first shape the C shape? The one that start on the open low E string?

I'm just not following what to do here. so I'm not doing anything with it as I don't want to learn it wrong.

Where am I supposed to start? At the 5th fret E string? Play the amin scale using the G shape there? If I do that aren't I ignoring everything below that?

EDIT: I decided to start at the low E 5th fret A note and I am learning the G and E shapes. Alternating between them to get them committed to memory.


This post has been edited by MidwestMetalhead: Mar 17 2017, 04:57 PM


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Mar 19 2017, 01:31 PM
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QUOTE (MidwestMetalhead @ Mar 17 2017, 12:39 PM) *
Still very confused on the caged thing.

you said:



But when I look at the diagram you sent, isn't the first shape the C shape? The one that start on the open low E string?

I'm just not following what to do here. so I'm not doing anything with it as I don't want to learn it wrong.

Where am I supposed to start? At the 5th fret E string? Play the amin scale using the G shape there? If I do that aren't I ignoring everything below that?

EDIT: I decided to start at the low E 5th fret A note and I am learning the G and E shapes. Alternating between them to get them committed to memory.



Yes, G shape is the first comfortable A pentatonic scale to start learning, then E shape (also starting from 5th fret 6th string), then D shape (7 fret, 4th string), C shape (12th fret 5th string, and finally A shape (12th fret 5th string).

Let me know if it's clear and record a video of shape a tab if you want to check with me.


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MidwestMetalhead
post Mar 19 2017, 06:43 PM
Post #20


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QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Mar 19 2017, 07:31 AM) *
Yes, G shape is the first comfortable A pentatonic scale to start learning, then E shape (also starting from 5th fret 6th string), then D shape (7 fret, 4th string), C shape (12th fret 5th string, and finally A shape (12th fret 5th string).

Let me know if it's clear and record a video of shape a tab if you want to check with me.


The G shape, at the 5th fret, starts on A. And includes all of the notes in A minor.

The E shape, if I start it at the 5th fret of the 6th string as you mention above, would be A, Bb, C, D, Eb, F, G, A, Bb, C, D, Eb, F, G, A, Bb, C. Which isn't A minor.

How can we use 2 different shapes in the same position? I thought these all linked together. Meaning the E shape comes after the G shape. (caGEd) We can't play different shapes at the same frets and be in key can we?

You also lost me with starting these on other string besides the 6th. How does that work? Maybe we should come back to this...

Not at all clear. I thought I had it when I was learning G shape at 5th fret and E shape at 7th fret. (to be in A min)


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