Extended Scales

Happy Holidays! In this lesson I will be showing you a great way to practice scales to help move up the neck very quickly, as well as a great way to master the fretboard. It is important to be able to play in every key all over the neck and to be able to shift smoothly into different positions.

In the beginning, when you first learn scale patterns, they are usually played up and down the neck, instead of across. You can take any scale and play it anywhere on the neck; it is just the same notes repeated in different octaves.

In this lesson I will be playing four notes on each string, shifting with the pinky when ascending and shifting with the index finger when descending. You can experiment with different fingers; this is just how I like to do it. Notice that the shift happens after the third tone on each string. I charted the scales descending, so you could see how I do it, but make sure you try other ways. Also, when you descend, play the same notes in reverse, shifting with your index finger. You can really fly up the neck if you practice this way a lot.

Looking at Example 1, we'll be taking a G major scale (G, A, B, C , D , E, F#) across the neck in three octaves. Follow the fingerings listed so you can play this smoothly, shifting with your pinky. There are many ways you can play this scale across the neck, this is just one way I chose.

MP3 - Example 1

Now, for Example 2, let's take a G minor scale (G, A, Bb, C, D, Eb, F) and play it the same way we did with the G major. There is no one way to do this, as long as you are playing the right notes then you are doing it right.

MP3 - Example 2

Example 3 features an extended G Phrygian scale (G, Ab, Bb, C, D, Eb, F). This one is the same as the G minor scale, but with a flatted 2nd. Try this with other modes; you can really develop your ear if you play scales across the neck, and if you try to find many different ways to move up and down the neck.

MP3 - Example 3

Example 4, our final scale, is a G minor pentatonic (G, Bb, C, D, F). A lot of people tend to play the pentatonic scale straight up and down. This is a great way to add a unique sound to your playing. Again, be sure to follow the fingerings supplied.

MP3 - Example 4


OK, I just gave you a few good examples for now, take any scale you are learning and apply this concept to it. Also, experiment using hammer-ons and pull-offs, I used alternate picking for all the examples. Be sure to check out my CDs on this amazing site and check out my new CD release, "The Meaning Of Christmas". Also visit mikecampese.com for more information.

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.

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