Connecting Scales

Welcome back! With this lesson I will be showing you some ways you can move around the neck and to connect your scales more fluently. If you know all of your scale patterns individually and are not sure how to connect them, this lesson will help you. Also, If you don’t know your scales that well, like the basic pentatonic and the major scales etc, it would be a good idea to learn them beforehand in order to fully understand this concept.

If you know the theory, like the notes and intervals of the scales that would be very helpful as well. The guitar is a very pattern based instrument, and it is typically taught that way, so most of you should understand this concept.

For this lesson, each example will be based in the same key, and hopefully these example will inspire you to create your own.

Example 1 is based in the E blues scale (E, G, A, Bb, B, D) and we are adding just a couple of notes from the E Dorian mode, (E, F#, G, A, B, C#, D), such as the 2nd F# and the 6th, C#, for a little bit of color. Notice the use of open strings to smoothly get us into other positions, and for a more unique sound. This is just one way to move around the neck; the possibilities are endless.

MP3 - Connecting Scales - Example 1

Example 2 introduces a great way to move around the neck, with this 16th note triplet, shred type example in the E minor scale (E, F#, G, A, B, C, D). If you know your scales or shapes etc, you will notice the connection. This pattern is built with 9 notes, moving throughout the key and the neck. Be sure to alternate pick all of this example. Also, this type of pattern is great for your picking, because after each set of 9 notes the picking alternates from a downstroke to an upstroke when changing to a new string after each 9 note pattern. This odd grouped notes will make the upstroke fall on a downbeat - I have covered this in an inside/outside picking lesson.

MP3 - Connecting Scales - Example 2


That is it for now! Be sure to make up your own examples and visit for more info and all merchandise.

Mike Campese is an all-around music performer, session artist and teacher competent in many musical styles, electric and acoustic. He has studied at G.I.T. (Honors Graduate), and with Paul Gilbert, Norman Brown, Stanley Jordan, Scott Henderson and Keith Wyatt.

Mike Campese: The Fire Within