Learn Guitar Scales

Learn Guitar Scales

To be able to learn and play guitar scales the right way, it is important that you first understand the different scale sounds and the fret positions on the fretboard. This article gives you some sound knowledge about the same and helps you get started.
The first guitar lesson taught to a beginner is how to play chords on it. It is the most basic thing to learn, and every aspiring guitarist should be well-versed with all the major and minor chords before moving on to the next step, i.e., learning how to play scales on the guitar. Scales are mostly used to play 'lead' on the guitar, but can also be effectively used to play the bass guitar. Once you find you can effectively play the chords and scales on your guitar, you can move on to trying their different combinations and keep on evolving as a guitarist.

A guitar scale is a set of notes that are played individually, out of which some notes form a complete chord when played together. There are many types of scales, and some of them include major, minor, pentatonic, chromatic, etc. Out of these, the 'major' and 'minor' scales are most commonly used. Understanding the difference between guitar scales is very crucial in finding out the chords for an unknown song. One good thing is that once you come to know their basic format on the fingerboard, you can play all scales with ease. A combination of a few notes from a particular scale makes a chord. With the help of a guitar scale, the individual tones of any song can be played. Listed below are illustrations of a few basic scales that will help get the beginners and novices started.

C Scale

Major

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G----------2-----4--5-------------------------
D----------2--3-----5-------------------------
A----------3---------5-------------------------
E-----------------------------------------------

Minor

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G---------3---------5-------------------------
D---------3---------5---6---------------------
A---------3---------5---6---------------------
E-----------------------------------------------

D Scale

Major

e-----------------------------------------------
B----------------------------------------------
G----------4------6---7----------------------
D----------4--5-------7----------------------
A--------------5-------7----------------------
E----------------------------------------------

Minor

e----------------------------------------------
B----------------------------------------------
G-------------5----7-------------------------
D-------------5----7---8---------------------
A-------------5----7----8--------------------
E----------------------------------------------

E Scale

Major

e------0----------------------------------------
B---------------2----4-------------------------
G---------1----2----4-------------------------
D---------------2----4-------------------------
A------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------

Minor

e------------------------------------------------
B------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------
D-----------0-----2----------------------------
A-----------0-----2----3-----------------------
E-----------0-----2----3-----------------------

F Scale

Major

e------------------------------------------------
B------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------
D----------0--------2----3---------------------
A----------0----1--------3---------------------
E---------------1--------3---------------------

Minor
e------------------------------------------------
B------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------
D----------------1----3------------------------
A----------------1----3--4---------------------
E----------------1----3--4---------------------

G Scale

Major

e------------------------------------------------
B------------------------------------------------
G-----------0-----------------------------------
D-----------0---2-------4---------------------
A-----------0---2---3-------------------------
E--------------------3-------------------------

Minor

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G-----------0----------------------------------
D-----------0---1-------3--------------------
A-----------0----1-------3-------------------
E-------------------------3-------------------

A Scale

Major

e---------------2-------4---5-----------------
B---------------2---3-------5-----------------
G---------------2-------4---------------------
D-----------------------------------------------
A-----------------------------------------------
E-----------------------------------------------

Minor

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G-------------0-----2-------------------------
D-------------0-----2---3--------------------
A-------------0-----2----3-------------------
E----------------------------------------------

B Scale

Major

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G---------------1--------3--4----------------
D---------------1---2-------4----------------
A--------------------2-------4----------------
E----------------------------------------------

Minor

e-----------------------------------------------
B-----------------------------------------------
G--------------2----4-------------------------
D--------------2----4----5-------------------
A--------------2----4----5-------------------
E----------------------------------------------

These were some basic and extremely simple fret notations of major and minor scales. Remember that you can play any scale on any string, just by changing the position of your fingers on the fretboard appropriately. You will find that with regular practice, you will become more efficient at this. You will start developing your own style and set of skills and along the way, you will also discover new chords, scales, and notes. A visual demonstration will give you a better idea so you can observe guitarists playing lead on the fingerboard. The one thing that remains and will always be, is that to be good at playing guitar scales, regular practice is absolutely necessary.
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