Friday, December 25, 2009

2009 Year in Review

I knew 2009 was going to be a good year when my beloved Pittsburgh Steelers won the Super Bowl. I've been a fan since I was child. My earliest memories are of watching them win in the 70's. I suffered through many bad seasons in the 80's and many disappointments in the 90's. It makes the championships now all the more sweet.



I turned 35 in March which also marked my 21st year of guitar playing. I never wanted to be a rock star. I just wanted to make a living playing guitar. Thousands of gigs, lessons, books and videos later I'd say I made it!

I find it humbling to realize that my music career is dependent upon all the people who work real jobs. In a sense I'm a kind of freeloader. We need farmers, construction workers, doctors and nurses before we need artists and musicians. We need clean water and electricity before we need guitar lessons. Entertainment is a luxury that is made possible only after the necessities of life are taken care of. And the whole industry relies upon ordinary workers who have the discretionary income to support it. Musicians, artists and entertainers ought not let their talents go to their heads. We're not as important as we think.

One of the freedoms of my job is that I can fill orders from anywhere. My wife, daughter and I always take trips during the summer with boxes of books and DVDs in tow. This past summer we visited Niagara Falls. Although I have always lived within 5 hours of one of the great wonders of the world I had never seen it. It was spectacular.



I don't gig anymore and have no desire to get back into it. The thought of going back to the bars, clubs and parties makes me want to vomit (which I saw plenty of back in the day. Even hurled at the gig a few times myself.) But I can understand why many people enjoy it. I guess I just had too much of a good thing. These days my only live playing is at church. It's a privilege to serve in a music ministry that honors God (especially considering all of the dis-honoring I participated in before).



Consider this: Music is not something we create ourselves, but rather it's something that has already been made for us and we simply discover it (if we've been given the gift). Think about it.

I recently finished reading the Old Testament beginning to end. It was a project that I started earlier this year. It required a lot of discipline and was tedious at times. I can't believe how fickle and foolish the Israelites were despite being privy to God's miracles, revelations and blessings. And the story is left incomplete because sin was not eliminated as God had promised. He says he's sending someone. Perhaps setting things up for a sequel?

I really enjoy getting outside and easing my mind with recreational activity. This past fall I finally felt comfortable enough on my quad to loft myself into the air on it. Fun!



What will 2010 bring? Hopefully a new book or DVD. I just need to figure out how to create more time to complete the projects I'm working on. Unfortunately, filling orders, answering emails, and blogging take up most of my work day. I still do most work myself. It may be time to hand some things over to others.

Oh, and I hope to start practicing my guitar on a regular basis again. Use it or lose it!

Merry Axe-Mas and Happy New Gear!


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Brown Eyed Girl Intro Tab

The guitar introduction to "Brown Eyed Girl" by Van Morrison features major scale patterns played in thirds. The first phrase is played over a G major chord and uses the G major scale starting with G at the 12th fret of string 3. The second phrase is played over a C major chord and uses the C major scale starting with C at the 13th fret of string 2. The very last phrase is part of a D major barre chord and requires a bit of finger or hybrid (pick and finger) picking.

Brown Eyed Girl Intro Tab

E--------------------------12--13--15--13--12---------|
B----12--13--15--13--12----13--15--17--15--13---------|
G----12--14--16--14--12-------------------------------|
D-----------------------------------------------------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

E-----------------------------------------------------|
B----12--13--15--13--12----10----------10-------------|
G----12--14--16--14--12--------11--12-----------------|
D--------------------------12-------------------------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|


Playing major scale patterns in thirds is covered in Fretboard Theory Chapter 9: Intervals.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Confused About Guitar Modes

Why am I having a hard time understanding modes and modal guitar scales?


Guitar modes is a very misunderstood topic. The reason is because it's a music concept that stems from others. If you don't know the others, then you're not going to get it.

If you truly want to understand music modes and how they relate to popular music and guitar playing, then I suggest you first study chord progressions and playing by numbers. I cover this in Fretboard Theory Chapter 6. I also have a DVD entitled Guitar Chord Progressions and Playing by Numbers.

Also, modes are based on major scale patterns for guitar (which are taught in Fretboard Theory Chapter 5). Make sure you understand how to cover the whole guitar fretboard with major scale patterns and can play major scale songs.

After you have developed a good working knowledge of chord progressions and major scale patterns you'll be ready to explore the modal scale concept (which I have covered in the book and on DVD). I actually get you started on it in chapter 7 which is about roots, keys and applying scales (the heart of guitar modes). But I don't put it into modal terms until chapter 8.

With learning music theory for guitar, it's critical to completely master the fundamentals before venturing into more complicated and advanced subjects. Be sure to take things one step at a time as each concept prepares you for the next. Walk before you run!


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Roxanne CAGED Chords and Guitar Tabs

"Roxanne" by The Police is a great example of using partial major and minor shapes based on the CAGED guitar chord system. This song also includes suspended 4 chords. See the Roxanne chords and guitar tabs below.

Opening Verse Chord Progression
Gm ("Em form")
Dm ("Dm form")
Gm ("Dm form")
F ("C form")
Eb ("C form")
Fsus ("E form")
Gsus ("E form")

E----3----1----6----5----3----1----3------------------|
B----3----3----8----6----4----1----3------------------|
G----3----2----7----5----3----3----5------------------|
D-------------------7----5----3----5------------------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

To learn more about the guitar CAGED system see Fretboard Theory Chapter 3 or the CAGED Template Chord System DVD. Chord extensions such as sus4, maj7, and add9 are covered in Fretboard Theory Chapter 10.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Guitar 7sus4 Chords

"Hard Day's Night" by The Beatles and "Is She Really Going Out with Him?" by Joe Jackson are currently the only songs I know of where the guitar uses this fingering to play a 7sus4 chord. In "Hard Day's Night" it's a G7sus4 and the very first chord you hear before the verse begins. "Is She Really Going Out with Him?" uses the same chord along with an F7sus4 two frets lower during the bridge.

E----3------------------------------------------------|
B----3------------------------------------------------|
G----5------------------------------------------------|
D----3------------------------------------------------|
A----5------------------------------------------------|
E----3------------------------------------------------|

The most common type of 7sus4 chord is A7sus4 played in the open position. You can hear this exact fingering used in "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd, "Tom Sawyer" by Rush, and "Closer I Am to Fine" by the Indigo Girls (capo 2).

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

To learn more about chord construction, intervals, and chord extensions see Fretboard Theory chapters 6 and 9.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
YouTube: http://youtube.com/GuitarMusicTheoryTab
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Monday, November 30, 2009

The Difference Between Guitar Thirds and Sixths

Playing a major scale in thirds is often confused with sixths on guitar. This is because thirds are often inverted on the fretboard with the third in the lower, or bass, position and the root on top. When this occurs the interval appears to be a sixth because you're looking at it backward.

The guitar tab below illustrates a G major scale played along the string 2 (B) with third intervals following over on string 1 (E). Shapes like this are used in songs such as "Heaven" (intro) by Los Lonely Boys, "Wanted Dead or Alive" (intro) by Bon Jovi, and "Tequila Sunrise" (solo) by The Eagles.

E----7---8-----10-----12-----14-----15-----17-----19--|
B----8---10----12-----13-----15-----17-----19-----20--|
G-----------------------------------------------------|
D-----------------------------------------------------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

In the tabs below, the thirds from string 1 (E) have been transposed down an octave and placed on string 3 (G). But if you mistakenly view the notes along string 3 as the roots, then the notes along string 2 appear to be a sixth away. In actuality, these notes are still thirds. The shapes have just been inverted. Shapes like these are used in songs such as "Your Body is a Wonderland" (solo) by John Mayer, "Peace Train" (intro) by Cat Stevens and "Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?" (verse) by Bryan Adams.

E-----------------------------------------------------|
B----8---10----12-----13-----15-----17-----19-----20--|
G-----------------------------------------------------|
D----9---10----12-----14-----16-----17-----19-----21--|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

In this final guitar tab example you can see the same notes with the roots on string 1 (E) and the thirds on string 3 (G). Shapes like this are used in songs such as "Brown Eyed Girl" (verse) by Van Morrison, "Patience" (intro) by Guns and Roses and "Finish What You Started" (solo) by Van Halen.

E----3----5-----7-----8-----10-----12-----14-----15---|
B-----------------------------------------------------|
G----4----5-----7-----9-----11-----12-----14-----16---|
D-----------------------------------------------------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

So you can see that 3rds on the guitar can take on many different forms. Some of the inverted shapes above are mistakenly referred to as 6ths because guitar players are looking at the wrong note and calling it the root. Using interval shapes for guitar is covered in Fretboard Theory Chapter 9: Intervals.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
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Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Choicest Bounties of Heaven




"We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!" -ABRAHAM LINCOLN


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Serenade Steve Miller Guitar Tabs G Major 7 Chord

The song "Serenade" by Steve Miller Band is a great example of using a major 7 guitar chord. You can hear a G major seven played in the open position at 0:53 in the video below.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vPsdlso6-X8


The chords to this section, which begins at 0:51 are G, Gmaj7 and Am. These chords are notated for guitar in the tab below.

E----3----2----0--------------------------------------|
B----0----0----1--------------------------------------|
G----0----0----2--------------------------------------|
D----0----0----2--------------------------------------|
A----2----x----0--------------------------------------|
E----3----3-------------------------------------------|


The verses to this song use the chords Am, F and G as notated in the tabs below.

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

To learn more about major seven chords for guitar, including which popular songs use them, see Fretboard Theory Chapter 10: Chord Extensions.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Diminished Chord Songs and Guitar Theory

A full diminished guitar chord is based on all minor third intervals. It consists of a root, minor third (b3), flat fifth (b5th) and double flat 7 (bb7th). For example, a Bdim chord includes the notes B D F and Ab. Each note is a minor third, or three frets, above the note before it. And B is a minor third above Ab to complete and repeat the formula. The notes of a Bdim guitar chord can be seen in the tabs below.

E-----------------------------------------------------|
B-----------------------------------------------------|
G-----------------------1---------1----------1--------|
D---------------------3-------0-3----------3----------|
A--2-5-8-11-14----2-5-------2------------5------------|
E--------------------------------------7--------------|

Diminished Chord Fingerings
In order to combine these notes and make a chord shape you have to transpose some intervals up an octave. Three of the most common diminished chord fingerings can be seen in the guitar tab below.

E------------10---------------------------------------|
B--3----6----9----------------------------------------|
G--1----7----10---------------------------------------|
D--3----6----9----------------------------------------|
A--2----x---------------------------------------------|
E-------7---------------------------------------------|

Diminished Chord Inversions
The neat thing about guitar diminished chords is how their inversions are formed on the fretboard. Since diminished chords are built on fixed minor third steps, you can simply slide any diminished chord fingering up 3 frets for an inversion. Move the same chord fingering up 3 frets again and you have the next inversion, and so on until you match the first position exactly one octave higher.

Diminished Chord Guitar Theory
If you know anything about guitar music theory, then you know that true diminished chords do not fully occur in the major scale. The closest you come is the seventh chord (see Fretboard Theory Chapter 6 Guitar Chord Progressions and Playing By Numbers). This scale degree has three of the four notes needed to build a full diminished chord. It has the root, minor third (b3), flat fifth (b5th), but no double flat 7 (bb7th). But many musicians refer to this as a diminished chord anyway. Other names include diminished triad and half-diminished.

Diminished chords also have many abbreviations. For example, 0, 07, dim, dim7, o, º, º(7), o7, º7. Unfortunately, some things are arbitrary. It can really get confusing to keep track of whether or not diminished means the four-note/all-minor-thirds form or the seventh degree of the major scale with its b7.

Diminished Chord Songs
The diminished chord gives us an unstable and restless chord that wants to lead to or resolve on something else. For this reason it's often thought of as a "leading chord". It acts like a stepping stone between chords. You can hear diminished chords used in popular songs like "Michelle" and "Glass Onion" by The Beatles, "Man In The Mirror" by Michael Jackson, "Crazy" by Willie Nelson/Patsy Cline, and "Don't Look Back In Anger" by Oasis.

For more diminished chord songs visit: http://chordmine.com

Jazz Guitar Chord Progression
Diminished chords are more common in jazz. Try this jazz chord progression: Bb Bdim Cm7 F7

E------------3----1-----------------------------------|
B--3----3----4----1-----------------------------------|
G--3----1----3----2-----------------------------------|
D--3----3----5----1-----------------------------------|
A--1----2----3----3-----------------------------------|
E-----------------1-----------------------------------|

Learn more about music theory for guitar including scales, chords, progressions, modes and more.


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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Monday, November 9, 2009

Holy Holy Holy Guitar Tabs

http://blip.tv/file/2826572


"Holy Holy Holy" is a traditional Christian hymn and praise and worship song. This is a fingerstyle chord melody version for intermediate and advanced guitar players with finger picking experience. It's a great lesson on how to use shapes and inversions based on the CAGED Guitar Chord system.



D Bm A A7 D G Em7 D/F#
E--------2--2--5-----2-----7---7---7---7--------------|
B--3--3--3--3--5--8--3-----8---8---8---8--10--7-------|
G--2--2--4--4--6--6--2-----7---7---7---7--7---7-------|
D--0--0-----------7--0--------------------7---7-------|
A--------2--2--0--0--------10--10--10--7--9---9-------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

A D A/C# Bm E7 A D A E7 A A7
E--------------10--10--9----------5--7----------------|
B--5--5--7-----7---9---10--10--5-----9--10--10--5-----|
G--6--6--7--9--7---9---9---11--6-----7------9---6-----|
D--7--7--7--7------------------7------------11--5-----|
A--0--0--5-------------0-------0------------0---0-----|
E-----------9--7---0-----------------0----------------|


D Bm A A7 D G Em7 D/F#
E--------2--2--5-----2-----7---7---7---7--------------|
B--3--3--3--3--5--8--3-----8---8---8---8--10--7-------|
G--2--2--4--4--6--6--2-----7---7---7---7--7---7-------|
D--0--0-----------7--0--------------------7---7-------|
A--------2--2--0--0--------10--10--10--7--9---9-------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|


Bm D/F# G D G/B A D
E--10----------7--------------------------------------|
B--7---10--10--8---7-----8--5--5--3--3----------------|
G--7---7---7---7---7-----7-----6-----2----------------|
D------7---7-------7-----5-----7-----0----------------|
A------9---9---10--5-----------0----------------------|
E--7------------------8--7----------------------------|



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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
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Thursday, November 5, 2009

In Christ Alone Christian Guitar Tab Lessons Pentatonic Songs

"In Christ Alone" was written by Stuart Townsend and made famous by Travis Cottrell and many other Christian praise and worship music performers. This song features an opening guitar riff played in the E major pentatonic scale pattern 1. It's suitable for beginner and intermediate level players who are learning how to use guitar scales and play pentatonic songs.


E-----------------------------------------------------|
B---------------------9-------------------------------|
G---------9--11----------11---9-----------------9-9---|
D--9--11------------------------11------9--11---------|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|

E-----------------------------------------------------|
B-----------------------------------------------------|
G---------9h11---11/13\11--p9-------------------------|
D--9h11-----------------------11------9p11/14--14-----|
A-----------------------------------------------------|
E-----------------------------------------------------|



This version is played and tabbed in the key of E major, but the pentatonic riff can be shifted to other keys. Although not included in the guitar tab, the vocal melody is mostly based on the same E major pentatonic scale and even starts on the same few notes as the riff. Try it!

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
YouTube: http://youtube.com/GuitarMusicTheoryTab
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MrGuitarTheory
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Podcast: Search Desi Serna at iTunes

Monday, November 2, 2009

Guitar Bar Chords and Sore Hand Muscles

My books and DVDs focus on music theory for guitar but I frequently get emails from guitar players complaining about sore hands, especially when fretting barre chords. If you're experiencing muscle or joint pain while playing guitar, then I suggest that you find other ways to fret and play things so that your muscles are not being stressed the same way all the time.

For example, I sometimes play barre chords by wrapping my thumb around the neck (Jimi Hendrix style).


This puts my wrist and hand in a totally different position. I find it a relief especially after playing barre chords in the traditional manner for several minutes. When my hand tires I switch back. I couldn't make it through some songs without doing this.



Little tricks like this can help give some parts of your hand a break while you use other parts. Learning how to avoid situations where your hand endures pressure for too long in one place is critical to building your endurance and playing pain free.

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
YouTube: http://youtube.com/GuitarMusicTheoryTab
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MrGuitarTheory
Facebook: http://facebook.com/desi.serna
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/guitarmusictheory
Podcast: Search Desi Serna at iTunes

Friday, October 30, 2009

Learn How to Improvise, Play Guitar Solos & Create Your Own Style

One of the most common questions guitar players ask is, "How do you learn how to improvise, pick your own licks and phrases?" The answer is to learn songs. That's why I include so many song references in my guitar theory book and videos. Each guitar riff, solo and bass line you learn will teach you something new about picking and phrasing. After you develop some common guitar technique, and a good repertoire of licks, you can begin to rearrange phrases in your own order.

Is Copying Cheating?
Some guitarists feel that this approach is simply copying and not a legitimate way to create an original style. Nothing could be further from the truth. You'll never develop lead guitar technique or understand how to use and apply scales correctly without first learning some examples by other players.

Stevie Ray Vaughan & Albert King
Why do people say you can hear Albert King in Stevie Ray Vaughan's playing? Because SRV learned how to phrase by first copying what he heard on King's records. That's how all great guitar players got started and developed their style.

Eric Clapton "Hideaway"
To help further demonstrate my point, listen to this very early recording of Eric Clapton playing the song "Hideaway" with John Mayall's Blues Breakers.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25ICK4Uqv7o


Freddie King "Hideaway"
Now listen to the original version of "Hideaway" played by Freddie King.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjPLDxe6sZQ


Note-For-Note
Did you notice that Eric Clapton copies many of Freddie King's phrases note-for-note? And Freddie King is just one of Clapton's many influences. Eric Clapton spent his early years listening to, learning and practicing licks and phrases by other guitar players. Is it any wonder that he has become so proficient? Do you honestly think that you can skip this step and progress to the same level? Think again!

Why Reinvent the Wheel?
If you want to develop good technique, draw from a good arsenal of licks and phrases, and become a good improvisor then you absolutely must learn songs and copy other players. There's no short cut to getting good. This process requires patience, hard work, dedication, and lots of practice. In time you'll start to rely less on copying and more on your own creativity. This will ultimately lead to you composing and improvising in your own unique style.

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Facebook: http://facebook.com/guitarmusictheory
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MrGuitarTheory
YouTube: http://youtube.com/GuitarMusicTheoryTab
Podcast: http://bit.ly/ac4cDk

Monday, October 19, 2009

Play guitar and sing at the same time

How can I learn to play guitar and sing at the same time?



Singing and playing guitar can be tricky for a beginner but it's not impossible. A sense of good timing, rhythm and ability to combine two actions at once will come with practice and dedication. My website, books and DVDs focus on music theory for guitar with very few references to technique. But there is a great article posted on WikiHow that outlines a good method for developing the ability to strum guitar and sing at the same time. I suggest you try working through their steps.

http://www.wikihow.com/Play-the-Guitar-and-Sing-at-the-Same-Time

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna (Google me!)
http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Pentatonic/CAGED/Progressions/Modes

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Guitar Chord Progressions and Secondary Dominant Major 2 Chord

"Why do some guitar chord progressions have a major second chord when it should be minor? What is a secondary dominant?"



If you know anything about guitar music theory you know that building chords from the major scale produces the following chord sequence:

1. I major
2. ii minor
3. iii minor
4. IV major
5. V major
6. vi minor
7. vii minor (flat five)


But songs with major two chords are fairly common on guitar. The songs listed below are just a few examples:

"That'll Be The Day"
Buddy Holly - Key of A but includes a B major 2 chord.
"Hey Good Looking" Hank Williams - Key of C but includes a D major 2 chord.
"Patience" Guns and Roses - Key of G (gtr. tuned down 1/2 step to Eb) but includes an A major 2 chord.
"Out of My Head" Fastball - Key of E but includes an F# major 2 chord.

A major 2 chord is actually a key change and stems from the music theory behind a functioning dominant seven chord. A dominant seven chord (which can be referred to as simply 7) is a major chord with a flat seven interval. This occurs naturally on the fifth scale degree in a major scale. The dominant seven 5 chord has a bit of tension that leads to and resolves on 1 (the 'tonic' in a major scale). For example, in the key of G a D7 chord leads to and resolves on G. D is said to be the 'dominant' of G major. In fact, D can lead to G whether or not the guitar chord actually has the seventh interval in it.

"Hey Good Looking" by Hank Williams is in the key of C and normally has a D minor chord, but the song uses a D major instead which creates a strong pull to G. When playing this song on guitar you're in the key of C but you're borrowing the dominant from the key of G in order to produce the dominant pull to and resolution on G. Get it? This is said to be a 'secondary dominant' chord and is a composition technique that can be used in any key. So the song examples I used can be explained like this:

"That'll Be The Day"
B major is the dominant of and leads to E.
"Hey Good Looking" D major is the dominant of and leads to G.
"Patience" A major is the dominant of and leads to D.
"Out of My Head" F# major is the dominant of and leads to B.

You can create secondary dominant movement for any chord in a key. Just remember that it's a type of key change so the scale you play over it with should follow. This is important when learning music theory for guitar.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Blues Chord Progression

"Is an E, A and B blues chord progression 1 4 5 in the key of E?"


These three chords are indeed 1 4 and 5 in the key of E, but when used in blues there is more guitar theory to understand.

The blues concept is based on dominant seven chords (which unlike major seven chords can simply be called "seven" or "7"). This means that blues vocal melodies, bass lines and guitar solos use intervals and scales that correspond to dominant 7th chords whether or not one of the instruments is physically playing them. So a progression with the chords E, A and B is treated as if the chords were E7, A7 and B7.

If you know anything about music theory, then you know that only the fifth major scale degree has a major third and flat seventh interval necessary to build a dominant seven chord. So 7th chords only occur once per key. A progression with three different dominant 7th chords is actually three different keys. E7 stems from the key of A (or A major scale). A7 stems from the key of D (or D major scale). B7 stems from the of E (or E major scale). E7, A7 and B7 is actually a 5 5 5 chord progression with each chord produce a key change. But musicians and guitar players refer to this type of blues chord progression as 1 4 5 anyway. 

There are a few different ways guitar players can play over this type of blues chord progression.

The first is to ignore the whole progression and simply follow the root chord (where everything begins and resolves). In this case it's E. Since the E chord is base on an E major triad you can play the E major pentatonic scale over it. But blues players also break the rules a bit and play the E minor pentatonic instead. The tension and dissonance that results contributes to the much loved and edgy blues sound. In fact, this minor-over-major approach has become the standard in this style of music and many blues players rely on it alone. But most blues music incorporates the major pentatonic too usually by mixing it together with minor pentatonic patterns.

Another option is to use full major scale patterns. Since the E chord is treated as if it were an E7, and since E7 stems from the A major scale, then A major scales patterns are the correct ones to play. Since the fifth note E is functioning as the root this produces the fifth mode, Mixolydian (a.k.a. "Dominant scale" because it goes together with dominant chords). Full major scale patterns can also be mixed with both major and minor pentatonic patterns. Throw in some chromatic passing tones and you have quite a palette of notes to choose from!

Another option when playing over dominant seventh blues chord progressions is to follow the key changes with the scales you play. So when the progression goes to A, play A major and minor pentatonic and A mixolydian mode (D major scale patterns). When the progression is on B7 play B major and minor pentatonic and B mixolydian mode (E major scale patterns). Switching scales like this can be tricky and many blues players prefer a simpler approach. But country and jazz players, who are usually more trained in music theory for guitar, love this challenging method of playing.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Circle of Fifths Guitar Theory Lesson

The circle of fifths is a geometrical representation of key signatures used in writing traditional musical notation. For modern guitar players interested in developing a working knowledge of music theory that can be applied specifically to the fretboard the circle of fifths is less useful. But if you insist on exploring the idea you can easily map out the fifth cycle on the guitar neck with patterns.

Guitar players can play the circle of fifths by using the patterns taught in Fretboard Theory Chapter 6 Chord Progressions and Playing By Numbers (and also in the DVD program entitled Chord Progressions and Playing By Numbers). You can start in any key but I'll begin with the key of F using chord pattern 1 beginning at the 1st fret of string 6.

The 5 chord in the key of F is C.
Now switch keys to C and use chord pattern 2 beginning with C at the 3rd fret of string 5.
The 5 chord in the key of C is G.
Now switch to the key of G.

The 5 chord in the key of G is D. Switch to D.

The 5 chord in the key of D is A. Switch to A.

The 5 chord in the key of A is E. Switch to E.


Continue this process until you've cycled through all keys. Reverse it to produce the circle of fourths.

You can hear a chord progression based on this type of movement in the song "Hey Joe" by Jimi Hendrix. The verse progression is all fifths starting on C.

C G D A E


I should point out here that rather than try to follow each key change with a new parent major scale, Hendrix simply played the E minor pentatonic scale over the whole progression for the lead guitar solo. This works because the E minor pentatonic notes are all found in the same keys that also have the chords. The exception is the E major chord. In its case the minor pentatonic gives the major chord a blues flavor.

So the circle of 5ths and the circle of 4ths have limited use in music theory for guitar which is why I left them out of my guitar theory book and DVDs. And if you map out scale patterns and chord progressions properly on the fret board then you already have the concept down.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Natural Talent and Guitar Playing

Many people who are learning to play guitar are intimidated by the learning process, frustrated with their progress and believe that they lack the natural talent necessary to make music. Is it possible that some people just can't learn how to play guitar? Or do some aspiring players set unrealistic expectations? How can a person know if they're wasting their time or not?

How to Learn Guitar
Getting good at playing guitar requires study, practice and a little creativity. You have to know how something is properly done so that you don't waste your time doing things incorrectly or developing bad habits. You must spend a lot of time with your guitar in hand practicing and playing. You need to find what it is that you can do well and learn how to compensate for your weaknesses. Finally, you need to accept your limitations and embrace what abilities you have been given.

Natural Talent
If you're unable to make progress with certain guitar styles or techniques, then move onto something else that comes more naturally to you. Take advantage of your strengths and accept your limitations. Have you ever seen B.B. King play chords? Not one of his strengths! And Dave Matthews couldn't take a lead guitar solo if his life depended on it. Yet they are both accomplished guitar players in their own right because they have something they can do uniquely well. Don't expect to be able to play everything you want to play. And don't get hung up on things that seem impossible. Instead, make the process a journey to discover what you CAN play.

Armless Guitar Player
There is perhaps no better example of how to succeed at making music when faced with limitations than armless guitarists Tony Melendez. Born without arms, Tony never let his handicap get in his way. Instead he developed proficiency in using his feet. "I was pretty secure in what I could do," he says. What a great attitude. The video below shows just what he can do.



You Can Do It
When there's a will there's a way. Maybe you won't be able to copy licks and phrases by famous guitar players like some other guys can, but that's no reason to give up on the special ability you may have. If you're struggling, perhaps you need to reconsider your expectations and change your approach. A good guitar instructor can make a big difference. And there are plenty of books, DVDs and online guitar lessons that can help too.

Music Theory for Guitar

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

How to Transcribe Songs

"Will your Fretboard Theory book help me transcribe songs?"


My guitar theory book and DVDs may not focus on the skill of transcribing specifically, but do teach guitar players how to understand keys, scales, chord progressions and other important musical elements that transcribers use to figure out songs by ear. So if your goal is to better understand the music you play and better anticipate what's happening in the songs you're listening to, then yes Fretboard Theory will help.

Friday, September 4, 2009

How Guitar Players Can Develop Rhythm and Timing

Guitar players who jump right into reading tab and playing songs often struggle with rhythm and timing. Learning how to read music is great for improving your rhythm and timing skills. This is because you must assign a value (or length) to the notes you play, count everything out and tap your foot. Consider getting a Mel Bay or Hal Leonard beginner series and working your way up to and through whole notes, quarter notes, eighth notes and syncopation (which is about book 2 or 3 in the Mel Bay series). Just learning the beginning levels of standard music notation will often times help guitarists develop enough skill to feel their way through more complicated rhythms. Try it!

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna (Google me!)
http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Pentatonic/CAGED/Progressions/Modes

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Devil Went Down to Georgia Tab Pentatonic Patterns Blues Scale Songs



“The Devil Went Down to Georgia” by Charlie Daniels Band has a great minor pentatonic blues scale riff at 1:34. It has been adapted for guitar in three different pentatonic positions in the tabs below. Suitable for beginner to intermediate level guitar players who want to use the scale patterns taught in Fretboard Theory and Getting Started with the Pentatonic Scale DVD.

D minor pentatonic pattern 2
E----------------------------------|
B------------3---------------------|
G------0-1-2---2-1-0---0-1-2---0---|
D--0-3---------------3-------3---3-|
A----------------------------------|
E----------------------------------|

D minor pentatonic pattern 4
E----------------------------------|
B----------------------------------|
G------------7---------------------|
D------5-6-7---7-6-5---5-6-7---5---|
A--5-8---------------8-------8---8-|
E----------------------------------|


D minor pentatonic pattern 1
E--------------------------------------------------|
B--------------------------------------------------|
G--------------------------------------------------|
D-----------------12-------------------------------|
A--------10-11-12----12-11-10----10-11-12----10----|
E--10-13----------------------13----------13----13-|



CAN'T READ THIS TAB? You can also view it here: http://guitar-music-theory.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=439

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Dueling Pianos International (2008 Short Demo)



For those of you who are gigging, remember that all the knowledge in the world about Guitar Theory can not necessarily compensate for being a great entertainer! I'd recommend going to a Dueling Piano show to steal some tricks of the trade to incorporate into your own show.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

When to Use Pentatonic Verse Major Scale Patterns

"When guitar soloing, how do I know when to use a pentatonic scale or major scale?"


As taught in Fretboard Theory, each chord, progression or song has a corresponding pentatonic and major scale that can be played over it. It's your choice whether you use one over the other or combine them. If you're trying to copy a song, then follow what the song does. Minor scales use the same patterns as major scales.

Friday, July 31, 2009

I Will Possess Your Heart D Minor Pentatonic Bass Tab

"I Will Possess Your Heart" by Death Cab For Cutie is a good example of an easy pentatonic scale song for guitar. The bass line is based on the D minor pentatonic scale patterns 3 and 4.

G|-------------------------------------------------|
D|-----------------------3------3---3-5-7--------------|
A|-3/5-5-5-3-3-5-5-3--5-5-5---5--------------------|
E|-------------------------------------------------|

To learn more about pentatonic scale patterns and guitar theory visit: http:Guitar-Music-Theory.com

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Pentatonic Guitar Picking Techniques



This guitar lesson demonstrates right hand alternate picking technique consisting of sequences of four notes. These four note groups are more difficult that the three note groups taught in the DVD Getting Started with the Pentatonic Scale.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Heavy Metal Guitar Tab Bang Your Head Verse Chord Inversions

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "Bang Your Head (Metal Health)" by Quiot Riot. This is the verse chord progression which uses partial "A form" barre chords and a pedal tone. Suitable for beginner level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Friday, June 5, 2009

Cult of Personality Tab C Major Scale Guitar



"Cult of Personality" by Living Colour is a great example of using C major scale patterns for guitar. The main riff uses G Mixolydian mode (a.k.a. the "Dominant scale"). Additionally this example demonstrates how to develop alternate picking (or cross picking) technique, accuracy, fluidity and speed. Get free guitar tab when you sign up for a free preview of Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Phish Tabs Tweezer Minor Pentatonic Scale Guitar Pull Off



This free guitar lesson is a great example of using A minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Tweezer" by Phish. This is the opening guitar riff which utilizes a lot of pull-off technique. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Major Soloing Scales and Pentatonic Lead Patterns

"I have learned the pentatonic scales up and down and connect them well but always revert to patterns 1 and a bit of 2 and 5 when guitar soloing. Any tips to ensure I don’t always fall into this trap?"


There is nothing wrong with favoring certain patterns. In fact, you really need to simplify things and get good at phrasing in one position at a time before you try to fly all over the whole fretboard. So it sounds like you're on the right track. And many accomplished players favor the same lead pattern you have put together.

"How essential is the major scale? Could I not get by soloing with just the pentatonic scale?"


About half of popular guitar melodies, riffs, lead solos and bass lines are played in major scale patterns. Just take a look at all the major scale song references in my guitar theory book. And music theory in general stems from the major scale and its structure. So you definitely want to know and play it well. But don't get ahead of yourself. I recommend focusing on the easier pentatonic scale patterns first. Be sure to learn lots of pentatonic scale songs while you're at it. Give yourself plenty of time to get comfortable with using the patterns and develop good technique. Then move onto the major scale patterns and repeat the whole process.

Playing Major Scale Patterns Over Minor Keys

So to confirm what you said when playing over a minor key, I can still use the major scale without flatting any note or without raising any note.  The same applies with other modes.  Is that correct?


Yes. Minor keys use the same scale patterns and chords as major keys, you just phrase everything around a different scale degree like vi. Em is simply G major scale patterns. Am is C major patterns, etc. This is covered in Fretboard Theory Chapter 7: Roots, Keys and Applying Scales.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Rush Tab The Spirit of Radio Guitar Chord Inversion Lesson

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "The Spirit of Radio" by Rush. This is the chord progression that begins at 0:27 and is based on a partial "D form" barre chord. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Friday, May 29, 2009

Third Stone From the Sun Tab A Major Scale Guitar

This guitar lesson is a great example of using A major scale patterns played in the style of "Third Stone From the Sun" by Jimi Hendrix. This is the octave guitar riff at 0:42 which is based in E mixolydian mode. You'll also learn about guitar modes and creating modal scale sounds. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Acoustic Guitar Solo Pentatonic Scale How to Tab Lesson

This free guitar lesson is a great example of using E minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Turn Off the Light" by Nelly Furtado. This is the lead guitar solo that starts at 2:53. It's suitable for beginner/intermediate level players who are getting started with lead guitar technique. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Blink 182 Guitar Tabs Chorus Chord Inversion CAGED Lesson

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "Stay Together For the Kids" by Blink 182. This is the chorus at 0:39 and is based on a partial "C form" arpeggio pattern. Suitable for beginner level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com



Accurate & Complete Guitar Tab
To get the complete, accurate, fully licensed and legal guitar TAB for this song go to: http://www.unitedwetab.com/Guitar-Tab/Blink-182/Stay-Together-For-The-Kids/588?_dcs=DS20

This blog has moved to: http://www.guitar-music-theory.com/blog/

Friday, May 22, 2009

Stay Together For the Kids Tab D Major Scale Guitar

This guitar lesson is a great example of using D major scale patterns played in the style of "Stay Together For the Kids" by Blink 182. This is the opening guitar riff which also makes for a great alternate picking exercise. You can also use this song as a play along jam track to practice connecting major scale patterns for guitar. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

No Woman No Cry Guitar Play Along Jam Track

Use this jam track to practice playing the lead guitar solo licks and phrases taught in the "No Woman No Cry" video lesson.

Chord Progression: C G/B Am F, C F Em Dm C

Guitar Scales: C major scale, C major pentatonic scale

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna (Google me!)
http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Pentatonic/CAGED/Progressions/Modes

No Woman No Cry Chords Scales For Guitar How to Solo



An instrumental guitar jam played in the style of "No Woman No Cry" by Bob Marley. Learn about the chords and progression used in this song, plus how to apply pentatonic and major scale patterns over it. This guitar theory lesson is suitable for intermediate and advanced players who want to learn more about the inter-workings of music. No tab is available for this song, but you can play along with the jam track at: http://guitar-music-theory.com/music-theory-songs/NoWomanNoCry-JamTrack.mp3

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sublime Tabs Pawn Shop How to Guitar Solo Minor Pentatonic Scale

This free guitar lesson is a great example of using E minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Pawn Shop" by Sublime. This is the opening lead guitar solo that starts at 0:28. It's suitable for beginner/intermediate level players who are getting started with lead guitar technique. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Monday, May 18, 2009

Dave Matthews Guitar Tabs Video Tripping Billies Chord Inversions

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "Tripping Billies" by Dave Matthews Band. This is the opening chord riff and includes partial major and minor "E form" barre chords. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Man Who Sold the World Tab F Major Scale Guitar

This guitar lesson is a great example of using F major scale patterns played in the style of "The Man Who Sold the World" by Nirvana. This is the chorus bass line which begins at 0:45. Guitars tuned down 1/2 step to Eb. Suitable for beginner level plays who are getting started with playing scales. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Monday, May 11, 2009

Third Eye Blind Tabs Never Let You Go Bridge Chord Inversions

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "Never Let You Go" by Third Eye Blind. This is the chord riff that occurs in the bridge at 1:50 and includes part of an "E form" arpeggio pattern. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Modes to Harmonic and Melodic Minor Scales

Apart from learning the minor modes in the major scale like Dorian, Phrygian, and Aeolian should guitar players learn modes built from the harmonic and melodic minor scales?


I don't teach the modes of the harmonic and melodic minor scales because they're used so infrequently. Instead I like to focus on more fundamental music theory like the modes of the major scale (which includes minor modes). I will say this, be sure to master the lessons I teach in my guitar theory book and DVDs before you venture into more complicated topics. And also keep in mind that exotic scales are used primarily in obscure music like bebop jazz and very advanced instrumental music (like some Joe Satriani songs). The exception would be the harmonic minor scale. It comes up in pieces every now and then but not in any unusual modal form. Check out the opening lead guitar solo to "Smooth" by Carlos Santana.

When you're ready I recommend checking out the following books from Dock Mock on harmonic and melodic minor scales for guitar.






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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Friday, May 8, 2009

Sir Duke Bass & Guitar Tab Sheet Music Major Pentatonic Blues Scale



This free guitar lesson is a great example of using B major pentatonic blues scale patterns played in the style of "Sir Duke" by Stevie Wonder. This is the band riff that occurs at 1:04. For intermediate and advanced level players only. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Blues Guitar Scale Iron Man Example Minor Pentatonic Passing Tone

This free guitar lesson is a great example of using B minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath. This is the guitar riff that occurs at 2:04. It uses pentatonic pattern one together with chromatic passing tones creating what is commonly referred to as the "blues scale". Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Breakdown Tab Easy Guitar Solo Pentatonic Scale Lesson How to

This free guitar lesson is a great example of using A minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Breakdown" by Tom Petty. This is the opening lead guitar riff based in patterns two and one. Techniques such as slides, hammer-ons and pull-offs make this a great song for intermediate level players who are learning how to guitar solo. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com



Accurate & Complete Guitar Tab
To get the complete, accurate, fully licensed and legal guitar TAB for this song go to: http://www.unitedwetab.com/Guitar-Tab/Tom-Petty/Breakdown/11197?_dcs=DS20

This blog has moved to: http://www.guitar-music-theory.com/blog/

What Key Are the Guitar Chords to Get Back by the Beatles in?

"Get Back" by The Beatles is based in A Mixolydian mode (a.k.a. the dominant scale). Mixolydian is the fifth mode so the parent major scale is D. The open chord riff is A for three and a half measures followed by G and D. By number this would be 5 4 1, with the 5 chord A functioning as the root (or tonic). Some musicians like to always call the root chord 1 and then renumber everything from there, but I like to keep it simple and just leave the numbers as they occur in the parent major scale.

This song also includes some blues elements. You can here a minor third of A, C, thrown in for a little off key blues flavor. The guitar solo starts out in A major pentatonic, switches to D major pentatonic over the D chord briefly, but finishes with A minor pentatonic.

Music Theory for Guitar
"Get Back" by The Beatles may be an easy song to play, but it requires some music theory knowledge to understand. It's important to remember that concepts like modes and blues stem from more fundamental ideas like major scale patterns and chord progressions. Guitar theory is a process. Take it one step at a time.

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna (Google me!)
http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Scales, Chords, Progressions, and More

Harmonic Minor Scale Guitar

What key is the song "Malaguena" (Spanish dance) in that it uses the following chord progression; Am, G, F and E? It appears to be in the key of C except the E major chord. Shouldn't it be E minor? And what scale can I play over it?


You're right, the E chord should be minor. Then everything fits into the C major scale. In this example, the Am chord is functioning as the root (tonic). "A" is the relative minor (sixth degree) to "C". So this would be called A Aeolian mode or A natural minor.

But the E major chord has a raised third, G#. Often times a progression like this includes an E7 which has a V7 pull and resolution to the tonic Am. And when the E major, or E7, chord comes up, the lead/melody usually raises the G to G# too. Then back to G natural when the progression returns to Am. This is called the harmonic minor scale. Specifically, this application would be called the "A harmonic minor scale" because the Am is functioning as the root (tonic). Anytime you raise the seventh scale degree of a natural minor scale you create a V7 chord and harmonic minor scale.

You can hear this done in songs like "Smooth" by Santana, "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor, and "Nothing Else Matters" by Metallica (E harmonic minor) just to name a few.

Music Theory for Guitar
Notice how more complex concepts like the harmonic minor scale stem from more fundamental concepts like major scale patterns and chord progressions. Guitar theory is a process. Don't get ahead of yourself!

Harmonic Minor Scale Guitar
When you're ready I recommend checking out the following books from Dock Mock on harmonic and melodic minor scales for guitar.






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Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna
Website: http://Guitar-Music-Theory.com
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Twitter: http://twitter.com/MrGuitarTheory
Facebook: http://facebook.com/desi.serna
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/guitarmusictheory
Podcast: Search Desi Serna at iTunes

Friday, May 1, 2009

The difference between diatonic and pentatonic scales.

1. What is the difference between the diatonic and pentatonic scales?


This is a great guitar theory question. The term diatonic basically means two tones. This refers to the two different kinds of steps that occur in major scales, whole-step and half-step. The word is also used to indicate when something stems from one key. For example, "this riff is all diatonic" means that all of its notes are straight out of the parent major scale. Or, "this guitar solo is not diatonic" means that it features notes that are not part of the parent major scale (like chromatic passing tones).

Pentatonic scale patterns are not considered diatonic because they are not based on a two step formula. And they don't have seven notes like major scales do.


2. How can I play a major pentatonic scale over a song that uses chords from the major scale?


The pentatonic scale follows the root chord in a progression. The root is the tonal center of a song and usually where everything starts and ends. If the root chord is major, then you can play the same major pentatonic scale over the whole progression. If the root chord is minor, then you can play the same minor pentatonic scale over the whole progression.

For example, the song "Wonderful Tonight" by Eric Clapton is based on a 1 5 4 5 (G D C D) chord progression in the key of G. The G chord is the root since everything pulls to and resolves on it. So you can play G major pentatonic scale patterns over the whole song. Just position pentatonic pattern one so that the second note is G (the relative minor is E).

The guitar solo to "Stairway to Heaven" by Led Zeppelin is based on a 6 5 4 chord progression in C, with the 6 chord Am functioning as the root. So you can play Am pentatonic patterns over the whole progression. Just position pentatonic pattern one so that the first note is A.

In order to use the correct major scale, you must take the whole progression into account, not just the root. So in the first example play G major scale patterns. In the second play C major scale patterns (Am is the relative minor).

Pentatonic and major scales are taught in Fretboard Theory Chapters 2 and 5. Roots, keys and applying scales is taught in Chapter 7.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Extreme Tab Hole Hearted Intro Chord Inversion CAGED Lesson

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "Hole Hearted" by Extreme. This is the opening chord riff and includes a triangular shape that stems from both the "C form" and "D form" barre chords. These types of chord fragments are common in all styles of music and the roots can be traced back to string 5. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Monday, April 27, 2009

Rhiannon Tab A Minor Scale Guitar

This guitar lesson is a great example of using A minor scale patterns played in the style of "Rhiannon" by Fleetwood Mac. This is the opening guitar riff which includes double-stops, major thirds, minor thirds, and fifths. You can also use this song as a play along jam track to practice connecting major scale patterns for guitar. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com



Accurate & Complete Guitar Tab
To get the complete, accurate, fully licensed and legal guitar TAB for this song go to: http://www.unitedwetab.com/Guitar-Tab/Fleetwood-Mac/Rhiannon/11067?_dcs=DS20

This blog has moved to: http://www.guitar-music-theory.com/blog/

Friday, April 24, 2009

Easy Guitar Riffs Tabs Pentatonic Scale Lessons How to Play

This free guitar lesson is a great example of using G minor pentatonic scale patterns played in the style of "Lady Marmalade" by Gloria Gaynor. This is the opening guitar and bass riff that continues throughout the verses and choruses. It's suitable for beginner level players who are just getting started with scales and riffs. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Thursday, April 23, 2009

All Star Guitar Tab Chord Inversions CAGED

This guitar lesson is a great example of using chord inversions and shapes derived from the CAGED guitar system and played in the style of "All Star" by Smash Mouth. This is the opening chord riff and includes chord shapes based on the "E form" and "A form" major and minor barre chords. These types of chord fragments are common in all styles of music. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I Want Candy Tab D Major Scale Patterns Guitar Picking Exercise

This guitar lesson is a great example of using D major scale patterns played in the style of "I Want Candy" by Bow Wow Wow. This is the opening riff which makes for a great guitar picking exercise. This song also includes a key change and Mixolydian mode. Suitable for intermediate level players and up. Get free tab for this song excerpt when you sign up for a preview of the book Fretboard Theory at: http://guitar-music-theory.com

Friday, April 17, 2009

How to Guitar Solo and Play Lead Guitar

To learn the fine art of lead guitar soloing follow these steps.

1. Learn the scale patterns taught in my guitar theory course.
http://guitar-music-theory.com

2. Build your arsenal of licks and phrases by learning songs.
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=FD1758248F2C7509
http://www.youtube.com/user/GuitarScalesMajor

3. Learn how to rework parts from one song and play them over another.
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=947010768346257548
http://guitar-music-theory.com/jam-tracks.html

That should do it. Take your time.

Play Until Yer Fingers Bleed!
Mr. Desi Serna (Google me!)
http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com
Pentatonic/CAGED/Progressions/Modes

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Blessed Be Your Name Christian Guitar Lesson

Guitar tab, chords, lyrics, vocal melody, and jam track can all be found at: http://guitar-music-theory.com/tabs/BlessedBeYourName.html

"Blessed Be Your Name" by Matt Redman guitar theory lesson. Learn what chords and scales this popular Christian praise and worship guitar song uses including pentatonic and major scale patterns, CAGED chord inversions and arpeggio patterns. Also, learn about how to use effects such as distortion, delay, and volume pedal. PART 1 OF 3. Taught by Desi Serna author of Fretboard Theory. http://www.Guitar-Music-Theory.com