Other Octaves (misc. topics)


This lesson is on more octaves. More things they can be used for, etc. This lesson contains things not previously discussed in the fretboard lessons.

We'll start by re-examining the chromatic scale and how it is mapped on the fretboard due to the (intervallic) distances between strings.

Consider,
EADGBE

E to A, A to D, D to G, and B to E, are all perfect 4ths (p4).
G to B is a major 3rd (3, or M3).

If we look at 2 strings seperated by a perfect 4th, we find an octave 7 frets higher up on the higher string.

|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|

If we look at 2 strings seperated by a Major 3rd, we find an octave 8 frets higher up on the higher string.

|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|

What about the other distances not used in EADGBE ?

Consider,
DADGAD

A to D and D to G are p4.
D to A is a p5.
G to A is a M2.

If we look at 2 strings seperated by a p5, we find an octave 5 frets higher up on the higher string.

|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|
|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|

Several orchestra instruments use a tuning in 5ths: violin, viola, cello, bass, double bass, etc.

If we look at 2 strings seperated by a M2, we find an octave 10 frets higher up on the higher string.

|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|

Consider,
DADF#AD
D to F# is a M3
F# to A is a m3

If we look at 2 strings seperated by a m3, we find an octave 9 frets higher up on the higher string

|b3-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|

We can create similar patterns for 2 strings seperated by the remaining intervals.

But consider another direction.
Consider string distances between 3 strings.

Looking at EADGBE, the distances are
p4-p4-p4-M3-p4.

Taking 3 strings at a time we have 4-4, 4-M3, and M3-4 as possible combinations in this tuning.

4-4

|b7-|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|
|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|

4-M3

|-6-|b7-|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|
|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|

M3-4

|-6-|b7-|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|
|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|
 

Looking at DADGAD,
the distances are
p5-p4-p4-M2-p4

Taking 3 strings at a time we have
5-4, 4-4, 4-M2, M2-4

4-4 is shown above.

5-4

|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|
|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|
|-7-|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|

4-M2

|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|-2-|
|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|

M2-4

|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|
|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|

Looking at DADF#AD, we have
p5-p4-M3-m3-p4

we've already looked at 5-4, and 4-M3.

M3-m3

|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|-2-|b3-|
|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|

m3-4

|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|
|b3-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|

Etc. etc. More tunings yield other possibilities, but the advantage of learning smaller string combinations is the ability to transfer that knowledge to a new tuning (on the spot), or another instrument.

We'll not look at larger string combinations, but the electric bass has distances of p4-p4-p4, and the upright bass has distances of p5-p5-p5.

4-4-4

|b3-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|
|b7-|-7-|-8-|b2-|-2-|b3-|-3-|-4-|
|-4-|#4-|-5-|#5-|-6-|b7-|-7-|-8-|
|-1-|b2-|-2-|b2-|-3-|-4-|#4-|-5-|

5-5-5

|#5--6--b7--7---8--b2---2--b3-|
|b2--2--b2--3---4--#4---5--#5-|
|#4--5--#5--6--b7---7---8--b2-|
|-7--1--b2--2--b2---3---4--#4-|


And now for something different.

Recall, we had looked at positions of the fretboard based on open chords.

Open E major chord

R-I---|---|---|
O-I---|---|---|
--I-O-|---|---|
--I---|-R-|---|
--I---|-O-|---|
R-I---|---|---|

major chord (E-shape)

|-R-|---|---|
|-O-|---|---|
|---|-O-|---|
|---|---|-R-|
|---|---|-O-|
|-R-|---|---|

Open D major chord

--I---|-O-|---|
--I---|---|-R-|
--I---|-O-|---|
R-I---|---|---|
O-I---|---|---|
X-I---|---|---|

Major chord (D-shape)

|---|---|-O-|---|
|---|---|---|-R-|
|---|---|-O-|---|
|-R-|---|---|---|
|-O-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|

Open C major chord

O-I---|---|---|
--I-R-|---|---|
O-I---|---|---|
--I---|-O-|---|
--I---|---|-R-|
X-I---|---|---|

Major chord (C-shape)

|-O-|---|---|---|
|---|-R-|---|---|
|-O-|---|---|---|
|---|---|-O-|---|
|---|---|---|-R-|
|---|---|---|---|

Open A major chord

O-I---|---|---|
--I---|-O-|---|
--I---|-R-|---|
--I---|-O-|---|
R-I---|---|---|
X-I---|---|---|

Major chord (A-shape)

|-O-|---|---|
|---|---|-O-|
|---|---|-R-|
|---|---|-O-|
|-R-|---|---|
|---|---|---|

Open G major chord

--I---|---|-R-|
O-I---|---|---|
R-I---|---|---|
O-I---|---|---|
--I---|-O-|---|
--I---|---|-R-|

Major chord (G-shape)

|---|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|---|
|-R-|---|---|---|
|-O-|---|---|---|
|---|---|-O-|---|
|---|---|---|-R-|

And we had considered octaves from these positions (named after the root notes of the open chords)

Octaves (E-shape)

|-1-|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|

Octave (D-shape)

|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|

Octave (C-shape)

|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|

Octave (A-shape)

|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|
|---|---|---|

Octaves (G-shape)

|---|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|-1-|

Octaves (13 frets of fretboard)

|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|1|
|-|-|-|-|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|1|-|-|-|
|-|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|
|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|1|

Now, what we would like to do is to consider them 2 at a time. Doing this will help to connect the fretboard, and offer more possibilities. We can look at arpeggios over a larger section of the fretboard, and "lead" patterns.

Starting with e and D shapes

(E-shape)

|-1-|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|
|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|

+
(D-shape)

|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|


=

|-1-|---|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|-1-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|---|---|---|

Consider the major chord :

|---|-1-|---|---|---|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-5-|---|---|---|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|---|-3-|---|---|-5-|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|-1-|---|---|---|---|---|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|---|---|---|---|---|
|---|-1-|---|---|---|-3-|---|---|---|

1.) One could create arpeggios that span both octaves. (ex. in A)

|--------------5--|
|------------9----|
|----------6------|
|--------7--------|
|------7----------|
|--5-9------------|

2.) one could create a 3-octave arpeggio using the same fingering pattern and shifting the hand down the neck.

|----------------7-10--|
|--------------8-------|
|----------4-7---------|
|--------5-------------|
|----2-5---------------|
|--3-------------------|

Some people find "lead patterns" useful, especially when moving fom one section of the fretboard to another (like in a run).

Here is a lead pattern for G Maj pent over the above combined octave patterns.

|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|
|---|---|---|---|---|-1-|---|
|---|---|---|---|-5-|---|-6-|
|---|---|-1-|---|-2-|---|-3-|
|---|---|-5-|---|-6-|---|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|---|
  3


|-------------------------|
|----------------------8--|
|------------------7-9----|
|------------5-7-9--------|
|--------5-7--------------|
|--3-5-7------------------|

as a scale

as a possible run

|---------|---------|---------|
|---------|---------|---------|
|---------|---------|---------|
|---------|---------|---------|
|---------|---5---5-|---7-5-7-|
|-3-7-5-7-|-5---7---|-7-------|

|---------|---------|---------|etc.
|---------|---------|---------|
|---------|---------|---9-7-9-|
|---5---5-|---7-5-7-|-5-------|
|-5---7---|-7-------|---------|
|---------|---------|---------|

I've seen several examples of blues licks that slid between boxes (but that's more an example of using the boxes and switching between them , than combining them).

Other Possibilities include other 2 shapes combined:
e.g.

D + C

|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|1|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|1|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|1|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|

C + A

|-|-|-|-|-|
|1|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|1|
|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|1|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|

A + G

|-|-|-|-|-|1|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|1|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|1|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|1|

G + E

|-|-|-|1|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|1|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|1|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|1|-|-|

I've personally found E+D and A+G to be the most useful to me.

Here's an example (in Am) of A-harmonic minor over C+A+G

|-|-|-|O|O|-|-|O|1|
|O|1|-|O|O|-|O|-|-|
|O|O|-|-|-|1|-|-|-|
|O|O|-|O|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|
|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|1|

|--------------------------------12-13-16-17--|
|------------------9-10-12-13-15--------------|
|-------------9-10----------------------------|
|-----9-10-12---------------------------------|
|--12-----------------------------------------|
|---------------------------------------------|


OVERLAPPING OCTAVES - Scales over Chords

(I'm assuming here that you know where all the root notes are in the chords and scales you want to use, as well as how the chromatic scale maps out on the fretboard. to learn those things, go to http://simianmoon.com/snglstringtheory/chords/index.html and scales look at the lesson http://simianmoon.com/snglstringtheory/scales/chromatic.html)

We'll also need to understand keys ( see http://simianmoon.com/snglstringtheory/archive/july12.html), and chord construction in a key context ( http://simianmoon.com/snglstringtheory/archive/aug9.html) to understand some of the ideas on inside and outside playing.

Consider a major chord (here A-shape barre chord)
major chord = 1,3,5
example C major ; C major = C,E,G

C

|-O-|---|---|
|---|---|-O-|
|---|---|-R-|
|---|---|-O-|
|-R-|---|---|
|-O-|---|---|
  3

|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|-1-|
|---|---|-5-|
|-1-|---|---|
|-5-|---|---|
  3

And consider the major pentatonic scale
major pentatonic scale = 1,2,3,5,6

major pentatonic scale (E-shape)

|---|-R-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-O-|
|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|-O-|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|


|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|
|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|

major pentatonic scale (D-shape)

|---|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|-O-|---|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-O-|---|-O-|---|


|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|---|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|

major pentatonic scale (C-shape)


|-O-|---|---|-O-|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|
|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|-O-|


|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|

major pentatonic scale (A-shape)


|---|-O-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-O-|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|-O-|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-O-|

|---|-5-|---|-6-|
|---|-2-|---|-3-|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|

major pentatonic scale (G-shape)


|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-O-|---|---|-O-|
|-R-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|-O-|---|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|

|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|

**ASSUMING that the C is the I chord

We could play C maj.pent.(I-maj.pent.), F maj.pent.(IV-maj.pent.), or G maj.pent.(V-maj.pent.), and still have the notes inside the key of C
C major (key of C) = C,D,E,F,G,A,B
C maj.pent. = C,D,E,G,A
F maj.pent. = F,G,A,C,D
G maj.pent. = G,A,B,D,E

So these 3 choices are inside choices to play over the I chord.

Now in this lesson, we want to look at overlapping/combinig the chord and scale maps to solo with.

1.)
Starting with I-maj.pent. over I (both root notes are on same location).
* B stands for note in both chord and scale.
* R stands for root note of the chord.
* numbers on combination map are intervals in chord not found in scale.
* O stands for note in scale not found in chord.

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
C maj.pent.

|---|-5-|---|-6-|
|---|-2-|---|-3-|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|
  2 

=

|---|-B-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-B-|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|
|-B-|---|---|-B-|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|
|---|-B-|---|-O-|

C major chord + Cmaj.pent. scale = C,D,E,G,A = 1,2,3,5,6

2.)
Playing the IV-maj.pent. over I

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
F maj.pent.

|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|---|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|
  2

=

|---|-B-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-O-|---|-3-|-O-|
|-O-|---|---|-R-|---|
|-3-|-O-|---|-B-|---|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-B-|---|-O-|---|
  2

C major chord + F maj.pent. scale = C,D,E,F,G,A = 1,2,3,4,5,6

Playing the V-maj.pent. over the I

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
G maj.pent.

|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|
|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|
  2

=

|---|-B-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-B-|
|-O-|---|-O-|-R-|
|-B-|---|---|-B-|
|-O-|-R-|---|-O-|
|---|-B-|---|-O-|

C major chord + G maj.pent. = C,D,E,G,A,B = 1,2,3,5,6,7

Looking at some slightly outside choices over the I.

i-min.pent. (= bIIImaj.pent.) is a common choice in blues and rock.
i-min.pent. = 1,b3,4,5,b7 , C-min.pent. = C,Eb,F,G,Bb
bIII-maj.pent. = b3,4,5,b7,8 , Eb-maj.pent. = Eb,F,G,Bb,C

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
C min.pent.

|-5-|---|---|b7-|
|---|b3-|---|-4-|
|b7-|---|-R-|---|
|-4-|---|-5-|---|
|-1-|---|---|b3-|
|-5-|---|---|b7-|
  3

=

|---|-B-|---|---|-O-|
|---|---|-O-|-3-|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-R-|---|
|-3-|-O-|---|-B-|---|
|---|-R-|---|---|-O-|
|---|-B-|---|---|-O-|

C major+ C-min.pent. = C,Eb,E,F,G,Bb = 1,b3(#2),3,4,5,b7
* here #2 and b7 are outside notes over the I (only the #2/b3 would be outside if this was over the V).

Over the IV, the choices earlier become V-maj.pent., I-maj.pent., and II-maj.pent.

Over the V the earlier choices become IV-maj.pent., bVII-maj.pent., and I-maj.pent.

If we take these possibilities (II-maj.pent, and bVII-maj.pent.) and apply them over the I, we get:

Playing II-maj.pent. over the I

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
D maj.pent.

|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|
|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
  2 

=

|-O-|-5-|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-B-|
|-O-|---|-O-|-R-|
|-B-|---|-O-|-5-|
|-O-|-R-|---|-O-|
|-O-|-5-|---|-O-|
  2 

C major + Dmaj.pent. = C,D,E,F#,G,A,B,C = 1,2,3,#4,5,6,7

* here the #4 is an outside note over the I (and probably the most common outside note used).

Playing the bVII over the I.

C major chord

|---|-5-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|
|---|---|---|-1-|
|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|---|
|---|-5-|---|---|
  2

+
Bb maj.pent.

|---|-6-|---|---|-1-|
|---|-3-|---|---|-5-|
|---|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|---|-5-|---|-6-|---|
|---|-2-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-6-|---|---|-1-|
  2

=

|---|-B-|---|---|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-3-|-O-|
|---|-O-|---|-R-|---|
|-3-|-O-|---|-B-|---|
|---|-R-|---|-O-|---|
|---|-B-|---|---|-O-|

C major + Bb maj.pent. = C,D,E,F,G,Bb = 1,2,3,4,5,b7
* here the b7 is an outside note over the I.


OPEN STRING AND CAPOED NOTES (OCATVES)

1.) open strings can form octaves with fretted notes.
ex. Bs

|-----|
|--0--|
|-----|
|-----|
|-----|
|--7--|

2.) capoes can be placed on the guitar changing where open/ringing notes occur changing which notes can openly ring as an octave of some other note.

capo 3rd fret

|-----|
|--3--| <-- This note is capoed and ringing freely (not fretted)
|-----|
|-----|
|--5--|
|-----|

3.) Capos can be partially covering the neck (you can use a shubb or keyser capo to do this) Capos can be cut to allow some strings to ring rfeely , and some specialty capos allow selective capoing (third finger comes to mind).

example:
using a dropped-d capo (keyser) that has been cut to exclude the 1st and 2nd strings , placed at the 2nd fret.

|-----|
|--0--|
|-----| both notes are not fretted, openly ringing
|-----|
|--2--|
|-----|

Next lesson is on harmonics.

Peace,
Christopher Roberts
snglstringtheory@aol.com



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Last updated November 14, 2002
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