how to play guitar scales

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Hello there future guitar god, Darrin Goodman here from with another little guitar lesson for you to help you on your quest. So you want to know how to play guitar scales, well that is a question with many answers. Let me show you a couple of things to get you started.


The first scale we will look at is the major scale, why you ask. Well, the major scale is a musical scale that consists of the seven notes that are in a given key. So lets say that you in the key of, A Major, the seven notes are; A, B, C#, D, E, F#, and G#. Although there are only seven notes in the scale, the pattern I will give you actually has 18 notes in it because after you reach the last note, G, you simply start over again.


Now notice that there are three notes per string in this pattern. This lends itself well for using the technique of alternate picking which is where you pick up and down and do not do two down strokes or upstrokes in a row. So if you start with a down stroke on the first note, the second will be an up and the third will be a down again and then when you move to the next string it will be an up. This is an area where a lot of beginners mess up. They think that since the third note was a down stroke and since they are now moving down to the next string they should do another down stroke, but that is incorrect. Since you are alternate picking it would be an upstroke. Alternate picking is tricky at first, but once you get the hang of it you will find it easy and effective.

Now let’s look at the major scales cousin, the natural minor scale. It consists of basically lowering the third, sixth and seventh notes of the major scale by one half step. If we stay in the key of A major we would play the natural minor scale starting on F#, which is the relative minor key of A Major.


Just like the major scale you will want to work on your alternate picking for this one too. For some killer instruction on scales check the course “Virtuoso Guitar Secrets”.


Well I’m off to practice some scales,