Ok, So i’ve mentioned a few times that the nervous system drills
are only a small piece of the system… So, whats the “guitar scale
system” really all about? I know you can’t wait to see it, and
don’t worry – I should have some demo videos ready in a few days.
For now, let me give you the “lowdown” – what it is and how
I came up with it.
Probably you would agree that every serious guitarist needs to learn
and know their scales. But in reality, there’s a wide range of
how you well you actually “know” the scale. For example, take
the A minor pentatonic scale. Many of you probably know the
“root position” A pentatonic minor pattern that starts at the 5th fret.
A lot of you even probably know all 5 pentatonic patterns in A. But let ask
your a few questions:
– Do you know the entire A pentatonic scale across the entire fretboard
from top to bottom as well as you know the root position pattern ?
– Do you know all the 3-note-per-string patterns across the entire neck
as well as you know the root position pattern ?
– If you were to place your hand somewhere randomly on the fretboard,
would you instantly be able to fall into the scale with no thought?
– If you were playing in one area of the neck and suddenly slide your
whole hand to a new part of the fretboard, would you instantly be able to
keep playing in the same key?
– Do your fingers (and your mind) know all the interlocking “shapes” that the pattern forms on
2 strings and how they relate to the overall entire fretboard pattern?
– Do you have the scale memorized on just the A string? Could you play it on just the G string?
– What about playing on just the D and B strings together?
As you can see, its easy to “think we know” a scale, but theres a lot of levels in terms of
just how well we know it. Going one step further, we can ask
– Do we know this scale in all 12 keys?
– What about natural minor (and its modes)?
– What about harmonic minor and melodic minor in all the keys?
So almost EVERYONE can improve our mastery of the fretboard by knowing our scales much
better than we do now!
THE PROBLEM IS THAT ATTAINING SCALE MASTERY IS USUALLY A LONG AND BORING PROCESS.
I asked myself, “how can I make it easier and faster to really get these scales under my fingers?” Then I thought back to high school when I used to make flash cards to cram for a test.
Back when i was a student, i’d study by putting questions on a 3×5 notecard and
writing the answer on the back. Many people study this way, and it’s great because
you don’t have to THINK about which parts of the material you know and which parts
you don’t know. You simply put everything on flash cards, and cycle through them
until you have it memorized. When you know all the flash cards “COLD”, you know the material.
I used this concept in building the guitar scale system.
Essentially, the guitar scale system is a web-based tool that drills and grills you in
various “practice modes”.
First, you choose what scale you want to practice, and in what key. Then you can
choose what kind of jam track you want to play over. There’s 20 different backing
tracks, each in 12 keys, for a total of 240 possible jam tracks.
Then, you choose the practice mode.
PRACTICE MODE #1: Entire neck – this practice mode just has you playing all over
the neck as one big pattern.
PRACTICE MODE #2: Specific patterns – here’s where the flash card idea comes in –
every 30 seconds you’ll be playing in a different pattern, and you can choose
between traditional scale patterns and more advanced 3-note-per-string and
even 4-note-per-string patterns.
You wont have to think about what to practice next. Every 30 seconds, you’ll
be shown a different pattern, so you’ll be forced to play in tons of
different patterns in a very short period of time.
PRACTICE MODE #3: Specific areas of the neck – you’ll be challenged to have
your fingers “fall into” the scale anywhere on the neck. You’ll have
to switch areas every 15 seconds.
PRACTICE MODE #4: Switching direction – In this practice mode, you’ll
solo anywhere you want on the neck, and have to move either up
or down the neck, or to a higher or lower string, every 15 seconds.
PRACTICE MODE #5: Specific strings – You’ll have to solo just
on either 1 or 2 strings, switching every 30 seconds. This
will be challenging since the 2 strings might not be adjacent! (next
to each other)
PRACTICE MODE #6: Find the shape – This mode will further deepen
your mastery by having you play just certain scale shapes,
switching every 15 seconds.
By using these 6 practice modes, your guitar scale knowledge will dramatically improve. You will be hard-wired to the entire scale across the whole neck. Honestly, I’ve never seen anything like this system and I plan to use it personally to take my scale mystery to a new level.
And because there are cool jam tracks, you’ll be doing more than just memorizing scales… You’ll actually be using them in a musical context, while at the same time hitting them from every angle. Not only that, the jam tracks will make the entire process fun and enjoyable.
I’ll be sharing some samples of the jam tracks tomorrow and
I should have some demo videos for you in 2 days…
Please comment! Thanks, Claude