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Lyle Ronglien >> Fretboard Theory >>



Fretboard Theory

Lesson 1 - Intervals

Lyle: Let's see how well you know your intervals. Try this quiz: Starting on low F, 6th string 1st fret, go up a Minor 3rd (Ab), up a Flat 5th (D), down a Minor 6th, up a Major 3rd, up a Perfect 5th, down a Perfect 4th, down a Major 3rd, up an Octave, down a Flat 5th, up a Major 2nd. What note are you on now?

interval quiz answer 1


Lyle: How did you do? First you have to get to know your fretboard and the name of the notes. Then you need to be aware what intervals are. First….Let's assume you have a standard 22 fret electric guitar.

Lyle: How many A notes do you have on your fretboard?

Lyle: Here's the answer for those of you with 22 frets:

all the A notes




Lyle: Find and play all the A notes a quick as you can. Be accurate. Notice the pattern that lays out on the fretboard. Note: If you're using an acoustic guitar you may not be able to find and play all the notes shown here.

Lyle: Here's all the B notes:

all the B notes

pyite20v: Why did you pick that pattern of skipping the strings?

Lyle: Best pattern I could come up with. I can play all 12 - A notes real fast using this pattern.

Lyle: There are only 12 different tones in music. 7 are natural notes, 5 are accidentals also know as sharps and flats. On a piano, all the white keys are the natural notes, the black keys are the accidentals.

notes on the keyboard


Lyle: Notice there is no black key between the B & C, and the E & F notes.

Lyle: On the fretboard, all the natural notes are 2 frets apart except for the B & C, and E & F notes, which are 1 fret apart.

Lyle: View this TAB on the virtual neck to see all the natural notes on the fretboard:

All the Natural Notes

Lyle: Notice that the natural notes are all 2 frets apart except for B & C, and E & F.

Lyle: The term “Whole Step” means 2 frets.

Lyle: The term “Half Step” means 1 fret. The interval between E & F is a half step. The interval between A & B is a whole step.

Lyle: Now you should learn what intervals are because they are used when learning scales, chords, and arpeggios. You need to understand and memorize these intervals names and fretboard locations.

Lyle: An interval is the distance between any two notes.

Lyle: Minor 2nd = 1 half step / 1 fret

Minor 2nd

Joel: I studied this in piano... this almost makes sense. :) lol

Lyle: Good!

g: So B to C is a minor 2nd?

Lyle: Yes!



Lyle: Major 2nd =1 whole step / 2 frets

Major 2nd





Lyle: Minor 3rd =1 ½ steps / 3 frets

g: Whether the note you end up on is natural or not makes no difference when you refer to intervals?

Lyle: Correct!

Minor 3rd


Lyle: A to C is a Minor 3rd interval.

Lyle: F to G# is a Minor 3rd interval.

Lyle: G to Bb (flat) is a Minor 3rd.

Lyle: D to F is a Minor 3rd.



Lyle: Major 3rd = 2 whole steps / 4 frets

Major 3rd

pyite20v: Does the "sound" of say going up a major 3rd, feel the same going from any note to any note?

Lyle: Yes, it will.



Lyle: Perfect 4th = 2 ½ steps / 5 frets

Perfect 4th



Lyle: Flat 5th = 3 whole steps / 6 frets

Flat 5th




Lyle: Perfect 5th = 3 ½ steps / 7 frets

Perfect 5th



Lyle: Minor 6th = 4 whole steps / 8 frets

Minor 6th



Lyle: Major 6th = 4 ½ steps / 9 frets

Major 6th



Lyle: Minor 7th = 5 whole steps / 10 frets

Minor 7th



Lyle: Major 7th = 5 ½ steps / 11 frets

Major 7th



Lyle: Octave = 6 whole steps / 12 frets

Octaves

Minor 2nd = 1 half step / 1 fret

Major 2nd =1 whole step / 2 frets

Minor 3rd =1 ½ steps / 3 frets

Major 3rd = 2 whole steps / 4 frets

Perfect 4th = 2 ½ steps / 5 frets

Flat 5th = 3 whole steps / 6 frets

Perfect 5th = 3 ½ steps / 7 frets

Minor 6th = 4 whole steps / 8 frets

Major 6th = 4 ½ steps / 9 frets

Minor 7th = 5 whole steps / 10 frets

Major 7th = 5 ½ steps / 11 frets
Octave = 6 whole steps / 12 frets

Lyle: Playback this TAB notation of the G major scale:

G major scale

tiff: Why is there an exception on the B and E strings?

Lyle: Because of the way the guitar is tuned in 4ths, but the B string is a Major 3rd above the G string.

Lyle: Playback this tab notation. It's in the key of C major. You'll see the intervals laid out for the key of C:

Key of C

Lyle: If you go from 6th string 5th fret (A), go up a Major 7th (11 frets), you'll be on G#.

Lyle: If you start on 6th string 5th fret (A) and go over two string to the D string 6th fret, you'll be on G#, a Major 7th above where you started, 11 frets worth.

Lyle: Down the neck is by the tuners, the sound is lower and the fret number is lower, up the neck is towards the body, the higher fret numbers and the higher sound.

Joel: Do you have go down to go up an interval?

Lyle: Joel, you don't have to go UP the string to go up an interval. Example: a major 3rd:

G Major 3rd

Lyle: Here's another interval quiz. Starting on low G, 6th string 3rd fret, go up a Minor 6th, go down a Major 2nd, go up a Perfect 5th, go up an Octave, go up a Minor 3rd, go down a Perfect 4th, go up Minor 2nd, go down a Major 6th, go up a Minor 7th. What note are you on now?

interval quiz answer 2




Lyle: Starting on F#, 6th string 2nd fret, go up a Major 7th, go down a minor 3rd, go down a perfect 4th, go up a Flat 5th, go down a Minor 2nd, go up a Major 6th, go down a Major 3rd, go up a Major 2nd, go down an octave. What note are you on now?

interval quiz answer 3




Lyle: Starting on E, 9th fret 3rd string, go up a Major 3rd, go down an Octave, go up a Minor 7th, go down a Major 3rd, go up a Perfect 4th, go down a Major 7th, go up a Perfect 5th, go up a Minor 2nd, go down an octave, go up a Major 6th, go up a Minor 3rd. What note are you on now?

interval quiz answer 4


Lyle: Remember this chart:

Minor 2nd = 1 half step / 1 fret

Major 2nd =1 whole step / 2 frets

Minor 3rd =1 ½ steps / 3 frets

Major 3rd = 2 whole steps / 4 frets

Perfect 4th = 2 ½ steps / 5 frets

Flat 5th = 3 whole steps / 6 frets

Perfect 5th = 3 ½ steps / 7 frets

Minor 6th = 4 whole steps / 8 frets

Major 6th = 4 ½ steps / 9 frets

Minor 7th = 5 whole steps / 10 frets

Major 7th = 5 ½ steps / 11 frets
Octave = 6 whole steps / 12 frets

 

Lyle: So if I asked you to go down a Perfect 5th, how many frets would that be?

tiff: 7?

Lyle: Yes, good.

Lyle: Music theory can come quick and some of it takes longer to sink in. I plan on teaching you what I feel you should know, starting with these intervals.

Lyle: Let's take a break. Next lesson is on scales.



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