Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Classical Guitar technique: studies, scales, arpeggios, theory
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Fretful
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:12 pm

THE CONVENTIONAL STANDARD TUNING OF THE GUITAR:

The guitar is (usually) tuned in FOURTHS, except for the Ⓖand Ⓑ strings.

The G and B strings are tuned so as to form a MAJOR THIRD;

A PERFECT FOURTH - the interval between strings Ⓔ and Ⓐ, Ⓐ and Ⓓ, Ⓓ and Ⓖ, and Ⓑ and Ⓔ - contains FIVE SEMITONES; but the interval between Ⓖand Ⓑ, a MAJOR THIRD, contains only FOUR SEMITONES:
INTERVALS - Between Strings.jpg
therefore, to produce a PERFECT FOURTH when combining the Ⓖ and Ⓑ strings (as compared to other string couplings) requires that the Ⓑ string should be raised by ONE semitone, this being done either with any combination of two fingers or adding finger 2 to a ½ barré;

Play the following PERFECT FOURTHS using Ⓖ and Ⓑ and speaking/singing the names of the notes (do not try to MEMORIZE anything, but allow the mind and the fingers to make connections as it starts to cross-reference different aspects and perspectives of the fingerboard; it is more important at this stage to UNDERSTAND what you are doing, to KNOW where you are in relation to the open strings, as well as the relationship between the G and B strings which produces a Perfect Fourth, as opposed to the combinations of other strings where a barré will suffice):

THE PERFECT FOURTH USING THE G and B strings:
PERFECT FOURTHS - Using G and B Strings.jpg
Play the following BEFORE looking at the subsequent fingered version, devising your own fingerings but always using the combination of the Ⓖ and Ⓑ strings for the Perfect Fourths:
PERFECT FOURTHS - The Steps... (Unfingered).jpg
Below, for reference, the same piece with suggested fingerings and positions (You will notice in this version a couple of "courtesy" accidentals which are there to remind the player that, despite the previous change of key making the ear "wish" for a B flat, the B in the new bar should be (!) a B natural; in theory, a new bar requires no accidental instruction but in cases such as these, composers will often add them to avoid any ambiguity):
PERFECT FOURTHS - The Steps ... (Fingered).jpg
Next: The Fifth Fret and the Perfect Fourth
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Fretful
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Feb 09, 2019 11:29 am

THE FIFTH FRET AND THE PERFECT FOURTH:

As there are FIVE semitones in a Perfect Fourth, it follows that the FIFTH fret will offer a Perfect Fourth from each of the open strings (of course, in this way, a Perfect Fourth can only be produced as a “melodic” one, not as a chord):
The Fifth Fret and the Perfect Fourth.jpg
Compare:
Compare Perfect Fourths with Open Strings Versus Using Fret V.jpg
Learn the sound of the Perfect Fourth as you play this segment of the Aranjuez, using Open Strings and Fret V, on all six strings, respectively:
PERFECT FOURTH - on 1 - Open & V.jpg
PERFECT FOURTH - on 2 - Open & V.jpg
PERFECT FOURTH - on 6 - Open & V.jpg
PERFECT FOURTH - on 5 - Open & V.jpg
PERFECT FOURTH - on 4 - Open & V.jpg
PERFECT FOURTH - on 3 - Open & V.jpg
Next: The Perfect Fifth
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Fretful
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Feb 16, 2019 11:47 am

The PERFECT FIFTH

Familiarise and memorise the Perfect Fifth (P5) pattern on the stave:
PERFECT FIFTH - on the stave.jpg
Perhaps the most familiar interval, aurally, is the PERFECT FIFTH, as in:
PERFECT FIFTH - Baa Baa Blacj Sheep.jpg
PERFECT FIFTHS and the Seventh Fret:
(*) Just before playing each Perfect Fifth, try and “pre-think” and “pre-hear” the interval and allow the playing of it (hopefully) to confirm the anticipated sound until your “prediction” always proves right.
When playing a full scale from I to XII on a single string, always restrict your LH movement to TWO shifts only, as indicated:
PERFECT FIFTH and the Seventh Fret.jpg
“FIFTH ELEMENT”:
(*) Apply the same approach as above, when playing the following, and finger most of the intervals of the P5 on the same string:
PERFECT FIFTH - Fifth Element.jpg
Next: Patterns for PERFECT FIFTHS
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Fretful
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Feb 23, 2019 11:48 am

Perfect Fifths can be played with different patterns; first, using (some) open strings:

1. PERFECT FIFTHS on ADJACENT STRINGS – PATTERN 1:
PERFECT FIFTHS - (open strings).jpg
It is worth being reminded of the logistics involved in creating intervals when moving from string to string, first using some open strings, and then no open strings (in this instance, to achieve the Perfect Fifth):
[*Observe the discrepancy between the number of semitones raised during string crossovers, depending on whether the mode is Major or minor, or depending on what position you are at]:
PERFECT FIFTH - from String to String.jpg
There are two main finger patterns, one being on non-adjacent strings, and the other on adjacent strings (both eventually to be memorised):

2. PERFECT FIFTHS on ADJACENT STRINGS – PATTERN 2:
Study this new fingering patterns, bearing in mind that if some of the notes are the same as in the previous exercise, the tone is quite different:
PERFECT FIFTHS - adjacent strings - fingerings.jpg
Now, without referring to the above fingerings, play the exercise below and see if you can remember Pattern 2 (also, sing the interval at all possible opportunities):
PERFECT FIFTHS - adjacent strings - no fingerings.jpg
The gradual memorisation of intervals (i.e. knowing instinctively what a minor third above, say, a C, a G, or a D, or any other note, would be - or a Major Sixth above a D, a B, or a G, or any other note, will prove increasingly useful as you develop your knowledge of music and sight-reading, so take this opportunity, as we are working on only one interval at a time, to absorb as much as possible since, at the moment, the going is easy.

Next: Perfect Fifths - continued (Patterns 3)
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Fretful
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Mar 02, 2019 10:56 pm

PERFECT FIFTH – continued:
PERFECT FIFTHS - on non-adjacent strings.jpg
PERFECT FIFTHS on non-adjacent strings – “PATTERNS 1 & 3 – Exercise":
(As from “etc.” (bar eight), Positions are no longer given and must be inferred, being guided by the occasional fingerings):
PERFECT FIFTH - non-adjacent strings - Ex.pat. 1&3.jpg
PERFECT FIFTHS – in seven keys” (do no more than one key per session):
PERFECT FIFTHS - in seven keys - page 1.jpg
PERFECT FIFTHS - in seven keys - page 2.jpg
Next: The Major Third
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Gordon
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Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Gordon » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:00 am

I looked in my extensive pdf collection and found a pdf called, "Segovia Scales _Diatonic Major and Minor Scales" (9 pages; copyright 1953). Would that be the scale book you are referring to when you say Segovia Scales??

ronjazz
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by ronjazz » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:34 am

Gordon wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:00 am
I looked in my extensive pdf collection and found a pdf called, "Segovia Scales _Diatonic Major and Minor Scales" (9 pages; copyright 1953). Would that be the scale book you are referring to when you say Segovia Scales??
Definitely
Lester Devoe Flamenco Negra
Lester Devoe Flamenco Blanca
Aparicio Flamenco Blanca with RMC pickup
Bartolex 7-string with RMC pickup
Giannini 7-string with Shadow pickup
Sal Pace 7-string archtop

Fretful
Posts: 254
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:00 pm

Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Mar 09, 2019 12:02 pm

THE MAJOR THIRD:

As in:
MAJOR THIRD (O When The Saints).jpg
One of the most common and important intervals, the Major Third features in all Triads, Major or minor; in a Major Triad, the two lower notes form a Major Third:
The Major Third in Major Triads.jpg
The Major Third contains FOUR semitones; it is easy to finger and play, usually on adjacent strings : although they can be variously fingered, there is one pattern for strings ⑥ and ⑤, ⑤ and ④, ④ and ③, ②and ①, and another pattern for strings ③ and ② where, of course, string ② must be raised by one semitone.

MAJOR THIRDS - PATTERNS 1 & 2:
Regardless of which fingerings you choose, the patterns for the Major Third chord will always be the same, i.e. on adjacent strings ONE fret apart for ⑥ and ⑤, ⑤ and ④, ④ and ③, ②and ①; but for strings ③ and ② they will be on the same fret;
Familiarize with these patterns (as well as with the sound of the M3) by playing the following identical chords with different fingerings, as indicated:
Major Thirds - Patterns 1 & 2.jpg
The M3 famously features in the opening phrase of the “Mozart Variations” by Sor:
MAJOR THIRDS - Sor-Mozart - Var.jpg
Practice for Sor's Mozart Var.:
The Major Third in Sor, Opus 9.jpg
Next: Further fingerings and Patterns for the Major Third
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RubenR
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Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by RubenR » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:50 pm

I am slowly working through this methodology and I just wanted to say thanks so much for putting this up for us.

Fretful
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Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:00 pm

Re: Improve your Fingerboard Knowledge and Sight-Reading Technique

Post by Fretful » Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:53 am

The Major Third in a Major Scale:

In any given Major scale, there are FOUR Major Thirds (the fourth one, on the 8th degree, being a repetition of the Major Third (M3) on the 1st degree but one octave higher) (the Thirds on degrees 2,3,6, and 7, are minor and will be studied later):
MAJOR THIRDS - in a Major Scale.jpg
(Regarding the above scale: see “Preface to Major Thirds in a Major Scale” on Public Space)

Further fingerings and Patterns for the Major Third:
Fingerings for the Major Third.jpg
With the following exercises, familiarize with Major Thirds in different keys, first with accidentals shown individually, then with the accidentals as key signatures which will require more concentration (at first, they are easily forgotten – however, you will notice that in the chords containing accidentals, only one of the notes is affected, so, if it helps, use the unaffected note to get your bearings)

Use the suggested positions as a starting point, they are given for reference:
MAJOR THIRD IN SEVEN KEYS - with individual accidentals.jpg
Work out (very slowly, and more for practice than for knowledge) at which positions the following Major Thirds can be found, applying the above fingering principles (for each chord, with one exception [in bar 11], there will be at least two positions; quite a few of them can be found in FOUR different positions):
The Major Third.jpg
Next: different ways of locating and fingering Major Thirds in Seven Keys
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