So you are no longer a newbie. Congratulations on not sucking anymore!
Anyway, now that you are at the intermediate level, you are probably better then me. If my girlfriend ever heard you play the Eruption solo, she would probably leave me for you. Fortunately, I don’t have a girlfriend.
Despite you putting my Eruption solo to shame, I do happen to know a thing or two about music theory.
Note: As I said in the newbie section, make sure to read the written content of each lesson in addition to watching the video. The written portion of each lesson often contains links to other pertinent lessons that will help you to fully understand the concept at hand.
As an intermediate player, maybe you want to refine your lesson search a bit more…Most of the lessons on this site are grouped in 4 primary categories:
- Chords and Chord Progressions – Exploring all the Different Types of Chords and What to do With Them
- Soloing with Scales – Lessons Regarding “Applying Scales” as Your Soloing Framework
- Soloing with Chords – Lessons Regarding “Targeting Chord Tones Within the Scales” as Your Soloing Framework
- Modes – What Modes Really are, and How to Incorporate Them into your Playing
…Or you can simply follow through the intermediate lessons below
So you know the basic pentatonic scale…right?
Of course you do, you are an intermediate player.
Before we move on…Do you have a way of practicing your leads over some sort of backing track or rhythm section?
- Here’s How I do it, and I Consider this to be one of the Most Important Tools for any Aspiring Lead Guitar Player
Make Sure that you Know How to Determine the Key You Should be Playing in…
Now maybe you want to have a few more notes to play around with for your leads/solos/improvisations/jams…You want your playing to start sounding much more “melodic”. Here’s how to do that…
Now you want to start sounding more “blusey”…
Or maybe you want to start being able to sound exotic so Spanish chicks will dig you…
- Introduction to the Harmonic Minor Scale
- Where the Harmonic Minor Scale is Derived From and How to Use it
- Combining the Harmonic Minor Scale with the Major Scale
Okay, enough of these scales…There’s a whole fretboard to be used, but all of these “intro” lessons have you confined to just one position. What gives?
Before moving on, do you understand the relationship between major and minor keys? Do you understand how major differs from minor? Do you understand why the major scale and the minor scale contain the exact same notes as one another? If not, you need to take a look at this lesson first:
Once you fully grasp the relative major/minor Concept, then and ONLY THEN are you allowed to move on to bigger and better things such as….
- The 5 Pentatonic Positions
- The 5 Pentatonic Positions (Part 2) – Applications
- Adding the “Blue Note” to the 5 Pentatonic Positions
- The 7 Positions of the “Diatonic Scale” (aka. The Major Scale or the Minor Scale…They are the Same Thing…You do Understand the Relative Major/Minor Concept Don’t You?)
- The Diatonic Scale Simplified to Just 5 Positions
Up until now, you have only been shown how to “solo/play leads/improvise/jam over a chord progression/etc.” by using scales. Some guitarists that don’t have a very good understanding of theory think that it is necessary to learn a bunch of different scales. However, that is not the case.
In reality, there are only:
Learning those 4 scales FULLY, up and down the neck will take you a very very long time, but then again so will a lot of things on the guitar. That’s all part of the process. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Once you work through the above material, and you begin to get really good with your scales, you will understand:
1.) How all of these scales fit together
2.) You will understand that the “pentatonic scale” contains 5 of the 7 total notes of the “diatonic scale”, and that the two can be used interchangeably
3.) You will understand the relationship between major and minor
4.) You will “see” the connection within each pattern/position on the fretboard
5.) You will see exactly where the “blue note” and the “harmonic minor note” fit into these patterns/positions
6.) You will be able to “solo in key” over rhythms and chord progressions
- Here is a Musical Demonstration of How the Concept of “Scale Combining” Across the Entire Fretboard Looks and Sounds
All of these things will become clear to you, but….
Eventually, you will realize that although choosing the correct scale(s), within the right key, will always “work”… There are hidden gems (perfect notes) located within these scales known as “chord tones”. Although it may seem intimidating, ultimately it is what will take your playing to the next level…
Here are some introductory lessons to help get you started on this concept:
- Introduction to the “CAGED” System For Chord Tone Targeting
- Targeting Specific Intervals Within the “CAGED” Shapes (roots, 3rds, and 5ths)
- Introduction to Arpeggios (Note: The CAGED Shapes are Also Arpeggios)
If you find the concept of chord tone soloing intriguing (which you will one day, even if not today…I guarantee it), and you want to learn how to apply it to the entire fretboard. Here is a 10-part series explaining exactly how to do that…
- Part 1 – Chord Tone Soloing Within the “Home Box”
- Part 2 – Chord Tone Soloing Within the “A-String Home Box”
- Part 3 – Chord Tone Soloing Within the “E-Shape Position”
- Part 4 – Connecting the Shapes Together and Recognizing Recurring Patterns
- Part 5 – Minor Chords Within the CAGED System
- Part 6 – All 5 CAGED Shapes and Their Respective Pentatonic Positions
- Part 7 – 20 Exercises, With Musical Demonstrations, to Help Solidify Your Understanding of the Chord-Scale Relationship
- Part 8 – Non-Triad Tones
- Part 9 – Non-Diatonic Chords
- Part 10 – The Pros and Cons of the CAGED System
Here are 2 lessons which go over the VERY important concept of making the connection between chords and scales…
- Understanding the Chord-Scale Relationship to Create Lead Lines and Melody Lines (Major Key)
- Understanding the Chord-Scale Relationship to Create Lead Lines and Melody Lines (Minor Key)
Do you want to have the ability to quickly “call out” any note on the fretboard, without a second of hesitation?
- Here is a 10-minute practice daily practice routine designed to get you to instantly recognize every major and minor chord all up and down the neck AND every single note on the fretboard
And lastly, here are some additional theory lessons to help you fill in some of the holes in your knowledge…
- Introduction to Modes
- How Chords and Scales are Created Using “Formulas”
- Understanding Rhythm Dynamics (quarter notes, 1/8 notes, triplets, etc.) For “Clean” Leads
- Basics of the Roman Numeral Numbering System for Chord Progressions
Please contact me if you don’t understand anything, or if there is anything that you would like me to add to the site…
Weekly Lesson Updates
I let everyone know once per week (usually on Mondays) about any new free lessons that I add to the site!