Profile PictureMaster Guitar School

Going Modal

0 ratings

An Alternative Approach to Modes for the Guitar:

I see a lot of confusion on the subject of modes. It's constantly brought up in various guitar groups on the many social media platforms on which Master Guitar School has a presence. This lesson series is my attempt to address this issue and to give you my approach which I hardly ever see in the many answers and responses to the questions that people pose.

It appears that my methodology, though not exclusive to myself, is somewhat rare.

​One of the most common questions I see is,

​“What is the difference between scales and modes?”

​If you google this question you will typically find,

  • A scale is an ordered sequence of notes with a start and end. A mode is a permutation upon a scale that is repeatable at the octave, such that the start and end points are shifted.

​As far as I'm concerned, the distinction between scales and modes is a finely-split hair, if even that.

​That's because I think of a mode as its own key, or its own tonality, regardless of the “parent” scale from which it's derived, or as put above, the scale from which it is a “permutation.” Therefore, “scale” and “mode” are functionally synonymous. For instance, if we're dealing with the Dorian Mode, you need to be able to "think" in Dorian, "hear" in Dorian and visualize your Dorian patterns on the fretboard, independently of the “scale” from which they're derived.

​Having said all that, it is important to understand the scale/mode derivations, but I teach that last instead of first. But before we get to that, you will know various modes in-and-of themselves, as their own key or tonality. If you can do that, understanding those modes relative to a “parent” scale is a very easy concept.

​Furthermore, the fingerings for various modes can be derived from only two archetypal patterns or templates.


Add to cart

The Going Modal lesson series is a PDF download that has: *18 lessons *47 pages *71 Fretboard diagrams *14 Notation examples *18 video links

4.73 MB
47 pages
Copy product URL

Going Modal

0 ratings
Add to cart