PDA

View Full Version : Trouble Understanding Scales



rasputinsghost
07-02-2010, 08:05 AM
Hey guys,

I'm working on learning scales to develop my improvising. I have the first two parts of the cmaj scale down as indicated in this tab. (http://liveukulele.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/11/Major-Scales.pdf)

However, in this tab after the first two parts the tablature shifts to the A string (3-5-7 etc). How do I keep playing in Cmaj up the neck? Is it just isolated to the A string after those two parts? I've always had a problem with this, and but am only now asking. Forgive my inability to understand music/notation. Thanks very much.

mailman
07-02-2010, 09:01 AM
I'm certainly no expert on music theory (far from it), but I suspect you've answered your owm question. I think that once your scale has moved onto the A string you are limited to moving up the neck on the A....

AzMichael
07-02-2010, 09:11 AM
You can map out the scale on each string using intervals.


A string 0 2 3 5 7 8 10 12 14 15
E string 0 1 3 5 7 8 10 12 13 15
C string 0 2 4 5 7 9 11 12 14 16
G string 0 2 4 5 7 9 10 12 14 16

Improvise away!

~Michael

Ukulele JJ
07-02-2010, 09:12 AM
That's the weird thing about stringed instruments. There are often several places to play the same note.

This is unlike a piano, where there's one key per note, one note per key, and everything makes sense. :-) (Yeah, I started on piano. Does my bias show?)

Anyway, the tab you have is showing only one way to play the second octave of the C major scale. Nothing wrong with that approach. But you could also play it like this:


A----------8-10-12-- etc...
E--8-10-12----------
C-------------------
G-------------------

Or even like this, if you happen to be a glutton for punishment:


A---------------12-14-15--
E-----10------------------
C--12---------------------
G--------9-10-12----------

Or any of many, many other possible ways. You get the picture. Notice that all those versions sound the same.

What makes it a C major scale isn't so much the position of your fingers on the frets, but rather the notes (pitches) that you make. You can make the same note in different spots, therefore there are several options for scales.

Case in point: You could do that first octave of the C major scale all on one string too, if you wanted to:


A---------------------
E---------------------
C--0-2-4-5-7-9-11-12--
G---------------------

JJ

pulelehua
07-02-2010, 09:43 AM
The basic logic is that you you play in a particular spot because either:

You want your hand to be in that position on the neck (makes doing something else you need to do easier)

or

You like the sound of the notes on that string

As JJ has said, there are almost always several places to play notes on the ukulele. But that doesn't mean they sound the same. If you play your A-string, then play your C-string on the 9th fret, those are the same notes, but one will tend to sound warmer, the other more cutting.

The best method, as always in music, is to play around. See what you like. You might use one scale pattern in one song, and a different one in another. There are a handful of truths, but very few rights and wrongs.

Brad Bordessa
07-02-2010, 11:56 AM
Or even like this, if you happen to be a glutton for punishment:


A---------------12-14-15--
E-----10------------------
C--12---------------------
G--------9-10-12----------

That's just wrong. Talk about making life hard on yourself.

I just did the tab because it was easier than the full fretboard dots. I don't know of a good program to simplify the task. Paint can do a lot, but it sucks at the same time.

Grumpy Coyote is less lazy than me and took the time to make some full-fretboard charts that should complete the picture for you. http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?22071-Uke-Scales-Diagrams

Brido
07-02-2010, 04:17 PM
Has anyone developed a set of scales for Low G tuning please? As I am trying to learn my scales this seems to change things quite a bit.

Thanks

Brad Bordessa
07-02-2010, 05:54 PM
Has anyone developed a set of scales for Low G tuning please? As I am trying to learn my scales this seems to change things quite a bit.

Thanks

The tab linked in the first post has low G scales. Note charts like Grumpy Coyote did work for either high or low G. I'm working on doing a series of video lessons on all the scales (low G included). I've got four done so far with more in the works. Check out my YT channel if you're interested (link in sig).

clayton56
07-02-2010, 08:45 PM
what you should do is find a "point of departure" where you play an open string, and while that's being played you move your hand up the neck to continue the scale.

Alternating string style is fascinating if you want to take it further.

dans003
08-01-2010, 09:55 PM
Has anyone developed a set of scales for Low G tuning please?
to my knowledge the tabs on rasputinsghost's pdf are for low g tuning
notice the g scale - starts at the g below middle c, (whereas on high g it would be above)
hope this helps

Dans