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Question About Scale Fingerings

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Defualt User ImageChiledog
12:18 pm Saturday
March 4, 2006
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I have been wanting to ask this question for a long time. First let me say I don't have and neck diagrams to help with the visual aid on this, so you are going to have to bear with me.

First let me get you to envision a G Maj. scale in the "box form" starting at the root on the 6th string 3rd fret. In your mind play two octaves, staying in the box form. We all know that you end up on the first string 3rd fret to complete the second octave.

Ok, now that I have you thinking in that general direction...

Lets say you want to play a 2 octave Major scale in C. And we are starting with the root at the 3rd fret on the A or 5th string starting the sequence with the middle finger. the 2nd note D is played with the pinky finger on the A string at the 5th fret. The third note E is played on the D string with the index finger at the 2nd fret. The 4th note F is played on the D string 3rd fret with the middle finger. The 5th note G is played with the pinky 5th fret D string.

**now at this point you could go a head and complete the single octave in the "box" form, but here is what I am doing...**

At this point, still on the D string, I slide the my pinky up to the 7th fret to hit the sixth note of the scale the A. Then play the seventh note of the scale B on the G string at the 4th fret with my index finger. The octave of course is C and is played on the G string 5th fret with my middle finger.

The first note of the second octave D is played with my pinky on the G string at the 7th fret. The 3rd note E is played with my index finger on the B string at the 5th fret. The fourth note F is played on the B string by my middle finger at the 6th fret. The 5th note G, is played on the B string by my pinky finger at the 9th fret. The 6th note A, is played by by index finger on the E string (first string) at the 5th fret, the 7th note B is played on the E string by my ring finger at the 7th fret, and finally the octave is played on the E string at the 9th fret by my pinky finger.

Whew...I never thought I would get that out! Shocked

I know this is not anything new, as I am sure there are scale wizards out there that play this variation as well.

I tought myself this pattern as I was looking for a way to take the 2 octave scale up the neck. My question is, is this the wrong way to go about playing this? If it is, just how would you play a 2 octave scale starting at the same place.

This is what is so scary to me, when I come up with stuff like this by myself. I cant afford and instructor, much less the gas to get to one, I live 100 miles round trip to the nearest city (Corpus Christi Texas) and drive a 3/4 ton pick up no less! Shocked
So I have to teach myself new techniques. I have seen the 3 note per string pattern and just cannot manage the stretch comfortably or maybe I am doing something wrong.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your time.

Blessing Always,
Todd
User ImageNate
6:04 pm Saturday
March 4, 2006
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Hey, as far as I'm concerned, there's absolutely no problem with the way you're doing it. You've accomodated the scale so that you are comfortable playing it, and they are the same notes as if you played it with any other pattern right? Wink For that reason there is no reason that anyone can say you're doing it wrong.

As far as the three notes per string way, I'm assuming it's the two first sets of three notes that are uncomfortable for you (five fret stretches)? Even though these patterns are uncomfortable for you, I'd still suggest approaching them because conquering uncomfortable positions is a great way to advance in your playing. I'm sure that with a little practice and persistance you'll be able to whip through that pattern without any thought in no time. There's no reason that you have to play this scale, or any scale for that matter, in positions that you arn't comfortable with if you have found a way to do it in a more convenient way, but tackling "tricky" stuff is a great way to advance your fretboard ability.

As for as other patterns, I'd check out the Full Fretboard Finder on Mike's main page or any other guitar codex such as the following..... http://www.broadwater.surrey.sch.uk/games/codex/ and just seek out any patterns that you don't know or havn't discovered before and just fiddle around with them. Smile

Hope I could help atleast a little bit. I'm sure someone else will have to more to say as well. Smile

Also, if you're looking for any more finger dexterity or stretching excercises, I'd suggest you try to hunt down a copy of John Petrucci's Rock Discipline instructional video, it covers many aspects of guitar playing and is a really great learning tool that I would suggest to anyone.
User ImageMike Lindyn
1:36 am Sunday
March 5, 2006
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Nothing wrong with what you are doing at all but there are things you could do instead as well.

The pinky slide to the seventh fret that you mentioned could be replaced by using your index finger on the A, then moving to the B using your ring finger , then shift your hand position slightly higher and use your middle finger to fret the C and then your 4th finger to fret the D. Finish the run the way you stated in your post.

The fingering above is a classical run technique that is used with notes separeated in the manor that A,B,C, & D are. This technique will seem strange when you first start but does offer an alternetive to the common picky slide.

I my self would use the pinky slide for this about 60% of the time. I have to think about the technique about to use it but I can also do some phrasing things better useing this technique.
Defualt User ImageChiledog
8:55 am Sunday
March 5, 2006
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Thanks guys! Like I said when I "make things up" I just want to be sure I am not hindering my future advancement by picking up bad habits...lol, no pun intended!

Nate,
Yes, I am going to get to the 3 notes per string pattern, like you said it's the first 6 note stretch that is killing me. Speaking of that, and maybe I missed it somewhere along the way, just how do you guys finger the first 6 notes in that pattern. I have tried to different approaches to it, and neither really feels right. Ofcourse, it's not going to feel "right" as it is new to me.

hmm, ya know I just thought of something, I picked up a finger stretching exercise in Guitar Player magazine a month or so ago, where you stretch your pinky by itself away from the ring finger, it looks like the old Vulcan greeting "live long and prosper". Anytime I am on the road I am doing that exercise and have been at it now about a month....maybe it's time to go back to the 3 note per string pattern after all...hmmm could be interesting!

Thanks again for your time guys, I appreciate it.

Blessings,
Todd
User ImageNate
9:47 am Sunday
March 5, 2006
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For the first two sets of three notes I can use either pattern (index to ring to pinky or index to middle to pinky) because I have these gross long fingers Laughing but if I were to just "go to it" I would use the index to ring to pinky as the stretch seems slightly easier that way. That's just me though, we'll see what anyone else has to say..
Defualt User ImageChiledog
10:03 am Monday
March 6, 2006
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Nate,
I started messing around with the 3 note per string pattern yesterday afternoon. I can see the pattern shifting up from G through D starting on the 6 string ofcourse. I really can't take it any further than that as I am just now getting comfortable with playing above the 12 fret (too much time on my acoustic). Does a pattern exist for starting on the 5 string? I know I saw the patteren for the 6th string here at GKN somewhere but can't seem to find it now.

Thanks,
Todd

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