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Two Scales To Learn To Love Playing Guitar

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What are two guitar scales to learn to love guitar playing?

In this blog post, we will discuss how to learn two guitar scales. One scale is major and one scale is major pentatonic. These scales help you increase your understanding of the fretboard as you apply what you learn. However, there are many guitar scales and intervals that you can use to create your own music.

The major scale consists of notes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7. The major pentatonic consists of notes 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6, omitting notes 4 and 7.

To create a major scale, we need to remember that notes 3 and 4 and notes 7 and 8 have no sharp or flat as the other notes in the scale do. Refer to the diagram below to see how that looks on a guitar fretboard. The characters “Rt” indicate the root or first note of the scale is.

G major scale
G major scale

To create a major pentatonic scale, just omit the 4th and the 7th notes in the major scale, leaving 5 notes. Notice the diagram below has omitted some of the major scale notes, leaving just 5 notes. The notes in this scale are all included in its relative minor scale of E minor. This is important because when you want to play a melody over a song in E minor, the diagram for G Major Pentatonic is very helpful.

G Major Pentatonic
G Major Pentatonic

What are the benefits of learning two scales to love guitar playing?

When you learn these two scales you will have a foundational pattern you can use as you learn to improvise. Using this knowledge you can play melodies to compliment the chords in the key being played.

Another benefit has to do with learning and recognizing shapes. When you play with other people, being able to “read” their hands is very useful for you to know what key, or chord they are playing.

How can you use guitar scales and intervals to improve your guitar playing?

One of the main ways scales and intervals improve your guitar playing is by training your ear. The intervals to start with are described below.

The major third interval is the relationship between the root note and the third note above it. Think of the song “Greensleeves” or “What Child Is This?” The first few notes form a major third interval.

The major fourth, usually referred to as the “perfect” fourth, is a very important interval to know as well. It’s critical for songwriting because most songs include the IV chord in the chord pattern. The song played at weddings known as “Here Comes The Bride” contains this interval.

Another important interval to know is the major fifth, referred to as the “perfect” fifth. You’ll see and hear this chord in almost any song you can think of. A good tune that helps you easily hear the interval is “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”.


Wrap Up

We have looked at 2 scales that contain patterns that help us create melodies as we move around the neck to match the key of the song we play.

We introduced intervals also. They make up important songwriting building blocks. The better we can recognize them, both visually on the guitar neck and aurally by listening, the more we will love playing guitar.

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