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  1. #1

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    Hello everybody,

    Throughout the years I've been browsing this forum I've read several posts from people raving about the so called "Reg fingerings", a fingering system/protocol for the major, harmonic minor and melodic minor scales designed by forum member Reg.

    While I always tried my best to see its advantages over other popular "systems" like CAGED or the 7-position Berklee fingerings I never really got it, I never understood the way @Reg, and @matt.guitarteacher explained it and why it was so good for seeing the fretboard as one big shape. It was probably because I'm a non-native speaker so some info might got lost in translation, secondly some of the info goes over my head to be honest and finally because its pretty difficult to explain I guess. Playing the fingerings is one thing but what you thinking about when you do that i.e. the mental visualization process can be difficult to put into words as everybody's brain works differently.

    This thread is primarily to ask Reg and Matt whether I understand the system and its advantages correctly but also to hopefully provide some insights for other people (lol that sounds like I know what I'm talking about while I'm not. Not really at least...)

    So before this I used CAGED, so 5 shapes. I think everybody knows these shapes. The nice thing IMO is that they prevent stretching (by using shifts) and also provide a form of visualization around the CAGED chord forms. I always looked at notes in relation to the root of the chord of the moment.

    The problem with this approach is that:
    - You need to 'repaint' the intervals in relation to the root for each new chord or key (if we for example want to switch from G Aeolian to G Phrygian) in your minds eye. For me this takes quite a lot of mental bandwidth so to speak.
    - In addition we have the problem that these scales feel very different where they often only differ in just 1 or 2 notes. For example, when playing G Ionian we play the 5th, the note D with our middle finger on the B string, 3rd fret. When playing G Mixolydian, just one note difference as we lower the F# to an F, we play this note using our index finger. When it comes to minor scale the finger used to play the root note of the scale is different than when playing its major variant (the index finger versus the middle finger)

    The big difference between CAGEd and the Reg fingerings is that the CAGED fingerings use the root of the chord of the moment as a reference (as I think about them anyway) i.e they are "relative" based i.e. you take the root of the chord of the moment as a reference and then and then build your scale around that. The E shape with the root on the 6th string using the second finger. The A shape with the root on the 5th string using the second finger. The C shape with the root on the 5th string using the pinky finger etc. However the thing is that this reference changes once the chord changes. In jazz we often play a large number of chords in a relative chord period of time (in comparison to most blues and rock at least...) so this gets overwhelming pretty quickly. We have a constantly changing reference!

    Reg's fingerings on the other hand use an absolute reference i.e. a reference that stays the same regardless of what key you are in, what scale you are playing or what the chord of the moment is. It doesn't change the whole time. But then what exactly stays the same? The NOTES themselves! While the C on the fifth string 3rd fret is the 4th in G but the 1 in C and the 2 in Bb it is always the note C (duh!).

    Big deal you might say...

    However, when you use your middle finger as a reference on the 6 string you get the same effect as on the piano. For example lets say we are in second position (index finger at the second fret) so middle finger is on the note G at the 6th string, 3rd fret. Now play the note E using your index finger on the 4th string, second fret. Now, regardless of the key you are in, or the chord you are playing etc, the note E can be found in that position (so middle finger on the 3rd fret) using that fingering. Doesn't matter if you are playing G Ionian, G Dorian, G Lydian, G Mixolydian but also G Phrygian, G Aeolian etc i.e. scales that have a b6 instead of a 6.

    In the above example we still take G as a root reference. IMO in Regs system we should make a distinction between the physical reference (the note under your middle finger on the sixth string) and the "musical reference" (for lack of a better term). Lets take the key of Dmajor as a musical reference but still using the same physical reference (your middle finger on the G note at the 3rd fret on the 6th string). So D is the 1, E is the 2, F# is the 3 etc. We know that based on our physical reference the note E is always at the 4 string, second fret. Same applies to the note D, it can always be found with your pinky on the fifth string, fifth fret, regardless of what key we are in GIVEN (note the emphasis ;p) that we are with our middle finger at the third fret, sixth string.

    This is in essence the same as on the piano. When you are playing the note C with the thumb of your right hand, you just know that the note E can be found two white keys up with your middle finger. When your thumb is at the note B, you know you can find the note E three white keys up with your ring finger. Since we have 12 keys we can start with our thumb at 12 different positions and we just know based on our thumb reference where all other notes are. On the guitar we have the same but instead of using our thumb as a reference we use our middle finger on the sixth string. We know that if we are playing the note C with our middle finger 6th string 8th fret the note E is at the 5th string, 7 fret under our index finger as well as on the 3rd string, 9th fret under our ring finger. This is always the same if we put our middle finger at the 8th fret sixth string.

    The thing is that you really need to know your notes on the neck, instantly! When using the CAGED/relative approach you can just think intervals without actually being really aware of the actual note names. While this is nice in the beginning the constant repainting of the intervals in context in your minds eye can get pretty overwhelming quickly. In addition you need to really know your keys/intervals e.g. F# is the 3rd of D but the 7th of G, 2nd of E etc. While this can take some work I think it helps in really mastering your instrument and other instrumentalists (piano, saxophone etc) talk about note names anyway instead of pure intervals AFAIK.

    This kind of solves the two problems with CAGED which I mentioned above:
    1. Instead of using a relative reference for both physical awareness (again, for lack of a better term) and musical awareness start by using an absolute reference as a physical reference and overlay on top of that a relative reference when making music in context.
    2. As you can see the Reg fingerings always use the same finger for a note in relation to the 6th string middle finger reference. When playing the D on the second string 3rd fret we always use our middle finger if our physical reference is the note G on the 6th string, 3rd fret.



    Sorry if this post may come across as an incoherent ramble, this is probably because I'm still absorbing it and as I said I'm not a native speaker.


    ==Questions==
    1. Is my understanding of the advantages of Regs fingering system correct?
    2. Im still a little bit unsure whether my approach to seeing scales with another root note than thats under my middle finger is correct. Lets take G again as a physical reference and then E as a musical reference, E phrygian for example. What is your thinking process? Do you know that E phrygian consists of E F G A B C D and you know the location of these notes in relation to our physical reference (the middle finger on the sixth string, third fret) and you know that theorethically F is the b2, G is the b3 B is the 5 etc? Or do you approach it another way?
    3. There was a video of Kurt Rosenwinkel explaining his scale fingerings which were exactly the same as the ones from Reg. However it seems liket his video is deleted. Does someone have a mirror ?
    4. One great thing about the CAGED system is how it unifies the scale, arpeggios and chords. Im not yet sure how the arpeggios fit into the scale fingerings. Of course I can pick out the arpeggio notes but I mean how to think about them. Especially arpeggios of which the root note is not the physical reference. For example F major7 when using C 8th fret as a physical reference. Do you still visualize a chord shape or do you know that Fmaj7 contains FACE and since you know where these notes lie in relation to the note under your middle finger you can see the arpeggio? Similarily, how do you visualize chords?


    Thank you!

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    if we for example want to switch from G Aeolian to G Phrygian
    which tune?

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by djg View Post
    which tune?
    Hahahaha, I expected a reply like that assuming this is a rhetorical question . Well lets make it G Aeolian going to G Phrygian dominant. Not super weird I suppose? Secondary dominant to go to the iv chord in a minor key. Or just say we are changing keys from G minor to Ebmajor and playing a G minor chord but staying in the same position.
    Last edited by Lark; 01-06-2021 at 09:43 AM.

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Well lets make it G Aeolian going to G Phrygian dominant. Not super weird I suppose?
    so basically the first bars of a minor blues (edit: or not, i have no idea what G phryg dom actually means, lol).in that case i would advice you write down 10 convincing jazz lines in third position, going from Gm to Cm via G7alt in bar 4. if you cannot do that, do not worry about fingerings. find ten minor blues tunes and write down a few lines. do not study fantasy chord progressions. Gm7 to Ebmaj needs a tune associated with it otherwise why would you want tostudy that?

    study tunes. get martino's linear expressions to study how minor works, how positions work and how you connect positions.

    you need material to study fingerings not the other way around. fingerings do not create material. it's one of the biggest misconceptions in learning jazz.

  6. #5

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    Referring to those fingerings by mode names is a bit silly imo, and misleading - they're all major scale patterns, and all 7 modes are contained within each one. The advantage I see is that those patterns cover the whole fingerboard, where caged leaves gaps. I think there are advantages in terms of picking/speed on some material. I still prefer caged though because there are less patterns to learn, less stretches, and I find it easier to relate scales/arps/chords. But you can use any and all patterns you like, ypym.

  7. #6

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    Yea... the fingerings are just a way of having the fretboard become.... one 12 fret repeating pattern. Which is what the guitar is.

    Individual positions are just part of the 12 fret repeating pattern.

    The goal is to be able to play anything anywhere on the neck... that again will "Repeat". Eventually some musicians don't need to figure out how to play. They have a complete guitar technical fingering Reference. That Fingering Reference is just the starting point. You can make changes etc... but you don't need to create fingering organizations for everything you play.

    And sure, as Djg said..."you need material to study fingerings not the other way around. fingerings do not create material. it's one of the biggest misconceptions in learning jazz."

    But... eventually as most build Musical material to practice and perform, and you begin to be able to create Musical Relationships and develop them. When you don't have a technical performance system of organization on your instrument, (on the guitar a fingering system), it can becomes difficult to remember how to perform without constant practice etc...

    The other aspect is that when one begins to understand how music works, it's very helpful have a fingering system that naturally reflects those understandings.

    I personally see... practicing how to play and create musical relationships between Chords as extremely important part of Practice... which will help when performing or composing and arranging Tunes etc..

    As djg pointed out when suggesting playing Gmin to Cmin using G7 from G phrygian Dom. (the V7b9b13 chord from Harmonic Min.).... So practicing playing a I-7 to IV-7..... and using that G7alt to get to the IV- chord,(C-7). Expanding the basic G-7 to G7alt.

    The advantage of having a 12 fret repeating fingering system is that when I think or hear that G aeolian. I already hear, think and see on my fretboard.... All the Musically Diatonic Chords and Scales implied by G Aeo.

    That's just the basic Reference.... I also hear, think and see musical relationships that are possible with that G Aeo. and the rest of the Diatonic chords constructed on each scale degree.

    It's just like hearing, seeing and thinking about the Chord Tones. The Fingering system naturally expands.... those Chord Tones (and extensions) into possible chords and then Chord Patterns.... you can use standard vanilla note resolutions derived from functional guidelines, or expand those resolutions with other guidelines, Modal, Blues, etc...

    Anyway this is obviously the world beyond Fretboard Fingering Systems. But I did post most of this stuff 10+ years ago.

    Lark... if you really want to get into the system... I obviously understand it, I'll be glad to answer questions. I can hand around.

  8. #7

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    I haven't worked on Reg's approach so I can't really comment about the details. He's a great player. He has lots of great videos in which you can see the fruits of his approach.

    Mine is a minority view. My approach is to learn the notes, by name, in all the chords and scales you use, in all 12 keys. And, know every note on the fingerboard instantly. This is a lot of work, but so is every other way of getting there.

    It has the advantage of not using geometric patterns, although you may want to add them to the approach -- that helps with fast tempos. Basically, you're playing a chord and/or scale and the fretboard lights up in your mind. Every note in the arp and every note in the scale light up in different colors all over the neck and your fingers find them.

    I don't see how this can hurt, even if you're using Reg's fingerings or some other system. In fact, I'd guess (and I'm confident Reg will be kind enough to tell us) that Reg also knows the fretboard in this way.
    Last edited by rpjazzguitar; 01-06-2021 at 09:36 PM.

  9. #8

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    Yea, hey Rick, hope your well.
    Yes I also think of the fretboard in the same way, the note names, when I choose to. That's part of the reason I have an organized fingering system.

    My approach to the fingering system I use is simple. I was taught starting with the Cage approach back in 50's and 60's... Once I became a better player, and maybe a little more aware of the world, I realized it didn't really work that well. And from watching different players and other instrument techniques, the transition to a different organizational reference of the Guitar fretboard... just seem obvious.

    I still use caged, can still just play changes, or use a key center approach, but I have a starting organizational reference of which all other fingerings are derives from. It's designed on very physical aspects of our hands and the Guitar. The biggest or most useful aspect of the system... is how naturally and easily musical aspects of playing function within the fretboard organization.

    Caged is just a expansion of the fingerings, the 7 positions etc... It's not like I'm the creator of the system. I think I was just one of the earlier players to use the fingering system to help unify Tonal and Modal musical concepts with a
    fingering system. It's very simple to relate and organize scales, chords, arpeggios from any tonal, modal and expansions of those approaches for understanding and performing music on the guitar.

    There are other approaches that also work... but that is still the point, Getting to a skill level of playing that works.
    (without constant practice and adjustments etc...)

    Obviously personally the fingering are designed on how my hands work, and my needs of performance. I needed to sight read at professional levels, need to be able to perform live, play 1st time.... no practice or staring at guitar etc. And have Chops, at least enough to perform without practicing how to play.

    Advantages of the system, as mentioned above, are how easily the system lets music expand and change tonal and modal references without any thought.

    Example could be... Lark's Gmin. Aeolian. I naturally think, hear and see G aeolian and all the other modal and tonal scales, arpeggios, and chords from that G aeo. I can also easily think, hear and see all the possible functional, harmonic and melodic relationships from that G aeo. Is that Gmin a Tonic, subdominant or dominant reference collection of notes.

    Different Functional relationships create different organizations of expansion, what other chords, scales, arpeggios, embellishments and chord patterns are available etc... Yea maybe too much info...

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    Mine is a minority view. My approach is to learn the notes, by name, in all the chords and scales you use, in all 12 keys. And, know every note on the fingerboard instantly. This is a lot of work, but so is every other way of getting there.
    I'm relatively new to guitar, but it seems odd to me that this would be the minority view. Where I come from in the electric bass world you either know where the notes are or you don't, and there aren't really any conventions like this since we don't normally play chords (not if we're actually working, at least lol).

    After about four years of studying guitar I only just figured out what the CAGED system was even trying to convey (it finally clicked when I saw all of the "campfire chord" voicings on C major across the board). I can see how it could be useful, but so far it's more distracting to me compared to simply knowing where the notes are and what the transposable chord shapes are.

    That said, from what I can glean of Reg's method from the OP's diagram, it seems to align with how I have approached the fretboard so far and seems like an extension of the kind of "modal" fingering system I've seen some guitarists use where the hand positions correspond to scale degrees: 7-1, 2, 3-4, 5, 6; or Locrian-Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian-Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian.

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by stringtapper View Post
    I'm relatively new to guitar, but it seems odd to me that this would be the minority view. Where I come from in the electric bass world you either know where the notes are or you don't, and there aren't really any conventions like this since we don't normally play chords (not if we're actually working, at least lol).

    After about four years of studying guitar I only just figured out what the CAGED system was even trying to convey (it finally clicked when I saw all of the "campfire chord" voicings on C major across the board). I can see how it could be useful, but so far it's more distracting to me compared to simply knowing where the notes are and what the transposable chord shapes are.

    That said, from what I can glean of Reg's method from the OP's diagram, it seems to align with how I have approached the fretboard so far and seems like an extension of the kind of "modal" fingering system I've seen some guitarists use where the hand positions correspond to scale degrees: 7-1, 2, 3-4, 5, 6; or Locrian-Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian-Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian.
    I guess I don't know for certain if it's a minority view.

    Suppose someone says G dorian, what's the first thing you think of to play?

    Perhaps some think of a geometric pattern for dorian around the 3rd fret. And, presumably, they have other patterns for other frets.

    I think, "that's one flat, Bb". At one time, it was like I knew where all the white keys are on the guitar and I'd change all the Bs to Bb's. I don't have any organized way of finding those notes other than I know where they are on the fingerboard.

    Actually, that's an exaggeration. I learned some patterns before I adopted this approach. And I do practice arps. That's for when the music is faster than my brain.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    Suppose someone says G dorian, what's the first thing you think of to play?
    Palestrina.*



    Oh, you're talking about what to play on the guitar! Right, sorry.

    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    Perhaps some think of a geometric pattern for dorian around the 3rd fret. And, presumably, they have other patterns for other frets.

    I think, "that's one flat, Bb".
    I think "Gm7" first, but if "Dorian" is to imply a linear construction, then yeah, I'm probably thinking of playing a minor scale starting with the first finger on the 3rd fret, 6th string, with a downward shift or stretch to grab the E-natural.

    But I don't really think in modes like this anymore. Maybe the first few years of studying jazz because of the pervasiveness of chord/scale theory, but I generally tend to think in terms of key areas and chord construction.



    * This joke is rooted in the view that what many modern jazz musicians call "modal music" isn't really modal, at least not in the sense that the term applies to pre-tonal works using the ecclesiastical modes.

  13. #12

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    But there’s a serious point here. With most modal musics; Middle Eastern, plainchant, Carnatic and Hindustani etc, the pitch set of the given mode is also accompanied with melodic norms, and the music is non harmonic.

    In 16th century polyphony the conception is intervallic counterpoint added to a modal cantus firmus, so the cadences etc slowly move towards the modal system turning into the tonal
    system by the 17th century or so.

    A lot of folk music preserves those earlier practices though, like the bVII-I cadence and so on, dorian melodies and so on.

    In jazz you can clearly hear Charlie Christian etc using the dorian as a melodic device. This isn’t surprising. We see the major 6th heavily featured as a colour tone on minor chords.



    But melodically jazz musicians move between melodic minor and dorian pretty freely. They all do this, Wes, Charlie, Django, you name it. Leading seventh ascending, flat seventh descending quite often.

    Miles does it on So What! Of course if you actually listen to that record they aren’t playing ‘modal’ in the modern conception.

    In contemporary jazz theory the mode is basically freely used; it’s a pitch set really, not a mode at all. And of course it’s used to generate harmony as well as melody. Prior to this melody and harmony had separate existences to some extent. It also sounds like jazz guitarists have become less chromatic over time and more likely to play permutations of these pitch sets.

    That’s a subtle shift and I don’t think
    a lot of people get it. I associate it with the integration of the two hands in piano playing (Bill Evans as year zero in jazz harmony) and the change in the sound of the minor I chord from minor sixth to minor seventh (and extensions.)

    This separation of the melodic minor and dorian is I think quite a modern thing. Before then it was all minor with that colourful major 6th sound added to minor chords (which may have originated with Eddie Durham expect for the fact that Django loved it too and was playing it by the mid 30s)

    One good example of a real Dorian minor melody is Mr PC - earlier melodies would have used a leading seventh here.

    I think there’s a lot of value in creating line on the first five notes of minor by the way 1 2 b3 4 5 - if you check out a lot of solos a surprising number of lines are based on just this half scale.

    Anyway none of this is to do with the OP lol

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Hello everybody,

    Throughout the years I've been browsing this forum I've read several posts from people raving about the so called "Reg fingerings", a fingering system/protocol for the major, harmonic minor and melodic minor scales designed by forum member Reg.

    While I always tried my best to see its advantages over other popular "systems" like CAGED or the 7-position Berklee fingerings I never really got it, I never understood the way @Reg, and @matt.guitarteacher explained it and why it was so good for seeing the fretboard as one big shape. It was probably because I'm a non-native speaker so some info might got lost in translation, secondly some of the info goes over my head to be honest and finally because its pretty difficult to explain I guess. Playing the fingerings is one thing but what you thinking about when you do that i.e. the mental visualization process can be difficult to put into words as everybody's brain works differently.

    This thread is primarily to ask Reg and Matt whether I understand the system and its advantages correctly but also to hopefully provide some insights for other people (lol that sounds like I know what I'm talking about while I'm not. Not really at least...)

    So before this I used CAGED, so 5 shapes. I think everybody knows these shapes. The nice thing IMO is that they prevent stretching (by using shifts) and also provide a form of visualization around the CAGED chord forms. I always looked at notes in relation to the root of the chord of the moment.

    The problem with this approach is that:
    - You need to 'repaint' the intervals in relation to the root for each new chord or key (if we for example want to switch from G Aeolian to G Phrygian) in your minds eye. For me this takes quite a lot of mental bandwidth so to speak.
    - In addition we have the problem that these scales feel very different where they often only differ in just 1 or 2 notes. For example, when playing G Ionian we play the 5th, the note D with our middle finger on the B string, 3rd fret. When playing G Mixolydian, just one note difference as we lower the F# to an F, we play this note using our index finger. When it comes to minor scale the finger used to play the root note of the scale is different than when playing its major variant (the index finger versus the middle finger)

    The big difference between CAGEd and the Reg fingerings is that the CAGED fingerings use the root of the chord of the moment as a reference (as I think about them anyway) i.e they are "relative" based i.e. you take the root of the chord of the moment as a reference and then and then build your scale around that. The E shape with the root on the 6th string using the second finger. The A shape with the root on the 5th string using the second finger. The C shape with the root on the 5th string using the pinky finger etc. However the thing is that this reference changes once the chord changes. In jazz we often play a large number of chords in a relative chord period of time (in comparison to most blues and rock at least...) so this gets overwhelming pretty quickly. We have a constantly changing reference!

    Reg's fingerings on the other hand use an absolute reference i.e. a reference that stays the same regardless of what key you are in, what scale you are playing or what the chord of the moment is. It doesn't change the whole time. But then what exactly stays the same? The NOTES themselves! While the C on the fifth string 3rd fret is the 4th in G but the 1 in C and the 2 in Bb it is always the note C (duh!).

    Big deal you might say...

    However, when you use your middle finger as a reference on the 6 string you get the same effect as on the piano. For example lets say we are in second position (index finger at the second fret) so middle finger is on the note G at the 6th string, 3rd fret. Now play the note E using your index finger on the 4th string, second fret. Now, regardless of the key you are in, or the chord you are playing etc, the note E can be found in that position (so middle finger on the 3rd fret) using that fingering. Doesn't matter if you are playing G Ionian, G Dorian, G Lydian, G Mixolydian but also G Phrygian, G Aeolian etc i.e. scales that have a b6 instead of a 6.

    In the above example we still take G as a root reference. IMO in Regs system we should make a distinction between the physical reference (the note under your middle finger on the sixth string) and the "musical reference" (for lack of a better term). Lets take the key of Dmajor as a musical reference but still using the same physical reference (your middle finger on the G note at the 3rd fret on the 6th string). So D is the 1, E is the 2, F# is the 3 etc. We know that based on our physical reference the note E is always at the 4 string, second fret. Same applies to the note D, it can always be found with your pinky on the fifth string, fifth fret, regardless of what key we are in GIVEN (note the emphasis ;p) that we are with our middle finger at the third fret, sixth string.

    This is in essence the same as on the piano. When you are playing the note C with the thumb of your right hand, you just know that the note E can be found two white keys up with your middle finger. When your thumb is at the note B, you know you can find the note E three white keys up with your ring finger. Since we have 12 keys we can start with our thumb at 12 different positions and we just know based on our thumb reference where all other notes are. On the guitar we have the same but instead of using our thumb as a reference we use our middle finger on the sixth string. We know that if we are playing the note C with our middle finger 6th string 8th fret the note E is at the 5th string, 7 fret under our index finger as well as on the 3rd string, 9th fret under our ring finger. This is always the same if we put our middle finger at the 8th fret sixth string.

    The thing is that you really need to know your notes on the neck, instantly! When using the CAGED/relative approach you can just think intervals without actually being really aware of the actual note names. While this is nice in the beginning the constant repainting of the intervals in context in your minds eye can get pretty overwhelming quickly. In addition you need to really know your keys/intervals e.g. F# is the 3rd of D but the 7th of G, 2nd of E etc. While this can take some work I think it helps in really mastering your instrument and other instrumentalists (piano, saxophone etc) talk about note names anyway instead of pure intervals AFAIK.

    This kind of solves the two problems with CAGED which I mentioned above:
    1. Instead of using a relative reference for both physical awareness (again, for lack of a better term) and musical awareness start by using an absolute reference as a physical reference and overlay on top of that a relative reference when making music in context.
    2. As you can see the Reg fingerings always use the same finger for a note in relation to the 6th string middle finger reference. When playing the D on the second string 3rd fret we always use our middle finger if our physical reference is the note G on the 6th string, 3rd fret.



    Sorry if this post may come across as an incoherent ramble, this is probably because I'm still absorbing it and as I said I'm not a native speaker.


    ==Questions==
    1. Is my understanding of the advantages of Regs fingering system correct?
    2. Im still a little bit unsure whether my approach to seeing scales with another root note than thats under my middle finger is correct. Lets take G again as a physical reference and then E as a musical reference, E phrygian for example. What is your thinking process? Do you know that E phrygian consists of E F G A B C D and you know the location of these notes in relation to our physical reference (the middle finger on the sixth string, third fret) and you know that theorethically F is the b2, G is the b3 B is the 5 etc? Or do you approach it another way?
    3. There was a video of Kurt Rosenwinkel explaining his scale fingerings which were exactly the same as the ones from Reg. However it seems liket his video is deleted. Does someone have a mirror ?
    4. One great thing about the CAGED system is how it unifies the scale, arpeggios and chords. Im not yet sure how the arpeggios fit into the scale fingerings. Of course I can pick out the arpeggio notes but I mean how to think about them. Especially arpeggios of which the root note is not the physical reference. For example F major7 when using C 8th fret as a physical reference. Do you still visualize a chord shape or do you know that Fmaj7 contains FACE and since you know where these notes lie in relation to the note under your middle finger you can see the arpeggio? Similarily, how do you visualize chords?


    Thank you!
    I look at that chart and see standard fingering for arpeggios with scale tones added in. This seems basically the way I learned to map the fretboard. These shapes are all very familiar and dare I say it, bog standard.

    What I find a bit suspect about the whole operation and can’t get my head around is naming the positions after modes. I can’t see how this can be helpful. They are two separate things, any there are also two distinct ways we can conceptualise modes both of which have their uses.

    I just look at that sort of thing and get a headache trying to work out how people can play music that way. But if you find it helpful, sure.

    but then to be honest I’ve never understood what Reg was saying, and to be frank given there are plenty of clearly laid out routes toward learning this stuff, not something I was keen to sink time into decoding. Matt might be able to explain it...

    Anyway I would actually suggest getting into one octave scale shapes and linking them together into longer combinations; this is a road less travelled and extremely useful for jazz. Great for mapping fast changes.

    From my own development as a player, I think there’s a tendency on guitar to use too much of the instrument, and playing lots of notes and big up/down arpeggios all the time that’s a more a habit rather than a conscious decision and encouraged by learning these big shapes across the strings; focussing on one register and making melodies within that can be very effective too. See Charlie Christian, Jim Hall etc.
    Last edited by christianm77; 01-18-2021 at 06:11 AM.

  15. #14

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    Oh another point; so I teach a fair number of beginning / intermediate jazz guitarists.

    one thing that seems a surprisingly hard thing for more or less all of them to do is the following.

    Take a common or garden chord grip - say a G bar chord or something.

    Play each note of the chord with the first fretting hand finger. Now play portions of the chord with different fingerings.

    Almost everyone finds this hard at first. What this has taught me is you need to teach players to make a conceptual leap from grips to seeing notes on the fretboard even before you start giving them names or interval numbers.

    The same for scales. I would say that once the basic shapes are mastered it’s good to get used to playing them in all sorts of different ways. The ‘one fingered’ anti-technique thing seems a good way of getting away from the fingering/note connection a lot of guitar players have.

    I think this is essential work; being able to see where chord and scales tones etc are on the neck beyond being locked into fingerings. If you can do this over the whole neck, fingerings are very much a matter of convenience.
    Last edited by christianm77; 01-18-2021 at 07:11 AM.

  16. #15

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    Phrygian dominant sounds funny to me. Phrygian already tells a beginner like me that you have a flat 2,3,6 and 7, informing your extensions. By calling it dominant are you saying you’re moving to a C Locrian or planning a key change playing e.g. Cmaj (nice we moved half a note down removing 5 sharps) . If one says to me Dorian I just think flat 3 and 7, or the notes of the major scale that starts one note lower are all valid.
    The shapes inform which notes to play both in lines and on extensions.
    Once you can do all that without thinking you can add your own notes: you will hear exactly how they will sound as you know exactly how the notes next to them sound without needing to play them.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    Oh another point; so I teach a fair number of beginning / intermediate jazz guitarists.

    one thing that seems a surprisingly hard thing for more or less all of them to do is the following.

    Take a common or garden chord grip - say a G bar chord or something.

    Play each note of the chord with the first fretting hand finger. Now play portions of the chord with different fingerings.

    Almost everyone finds this hard at first. What this has taught me is you need to teach players to make a conceptual leap from grips to seeing notes on the fretboard even before you start giving them names or interval numbers.

    The same for scales. I would say that once the basic shapes are mastered it’s good to get used to playing them in all sorts of different ways. The ‘one fingered’ anti-technique thing seems a good way of getting away from the fingering/note connection a lot of guitar players have.

    I think this is essential work; being able to see where chord and scales tones etc are on the neck beyond being locked into fingerings. If you can do this over the whole neck, fingerings are very much a matter of convenience.
    This is where I feel fortunate not to have grown up in "guitar culture."

    In my experience, the study and internalization of the core music fundamentals (what most people mean when they say "music theory"), as painful and boring as it seems to be to so many people, simply makes instrumental study easier because it frees you from being overly dependent upon instrument-specific conventions. Then it becomes about the raw mechanics of it; the "how" rather than the "what" or "why." If you've already got a thorough understanding of harmony and voice leading, then it's a matter of making your hands do the things to make the sounds you want to hear.

  18. #17

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    Yea... it is simple. A 12 fret six string fingering pattern that repeats. The names, terms etc... don't really matter. Like I've said a million times... label it whatever works for you....just finish whatever approach you use so you don't need to think about it. I don't unless I want to.

    It's really difficult to play Jazz without a developed level of technique on your instrument.

    When I see or hear G or G-7.... The entire fretboard reflects what I see, hear (or think). It's just plug and play.

    The other thing, we are talking on a Jazz forum, I would thing it would be OK to use Jazz Terms with their Jazz concepts.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by stringtapper View Post
    This is where I feel fortunate not to have grown up in "guitar culture."

    In my experience, the study and internalization of the core music fundamentals (what most people mean when they say "music theory"), as painful and boring as it seems to be to so many people, simply makes instrumental study easier because it frees you from being overly dependent upon instrument-specific conventions. Then it becomes about the raw mechanics of it; the "how" rather than the "what" or "why." If you've already got a thorough understanding of harmony and voice leading, then it's a matter of making your hands do the things to make the sounds you want to hear.
    Thank you so much for making a distinction between fundamentals and theory; the lack of specific terminology for the two drives me potty.

    Of course the basic fundamental, the one thing you can't do without is the inner ear - the ability to hear what you are trying to play, be it a major scale or a bop line.

    But *most* guitarists are inveterate noodlers who never focus enough on what they are trying to play to actually execute it correctly, so we all end up bluffing our way through things. (I say we because that was true of me when I was younger.) I think the kinaesthetic approach to playing 'here's a position' is to blame here. You don't have to know what a time signature or a mode is to do this, but you have to be a musician, how have to hear music in detail...

    You can 'get away with it' in rock and pop (although not to play it well), but jazz kind of throws these things into sharp focus.

    This is quite separate from technique, practice positions etc, sure. But technique is fairly easy to teach anyway and there's a lot of info on it now.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eck View Post
    Phrygian dominant sounds funny to me. Phrygian already tells a beginner like me that you have a flat 2,3,6 and 7, informing your extensions. By calling it dominant are you saying you’re moving to a C Locrian or planning a key change playing e.g. Cmaj (nice we moved half a note down removing 5 sharps) . If one says to me Dorian I just think flat 3 and 7, or the notes of the major scale that starts one note lower are all valid.
    The shapes inform which notes to play both in lines and on extensions.
    Once you can do all that without thinking you can add your own notes: you will hear exactly how they will sound as you know exactly how the notes next to them sound without needing to play them.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    The terms for scales are a train wreck.

    I've always had disrespect for jargon and terminology. As a result, it just bothers me on a fundamental level that the names of the scales aren't synonymous with the names of the chords they represent the most obvious choice for. We should simply refer to G mixolydian as the G7 scale, G lydian dominant as the G7#11 scale, G7b9b13 for Phrygian Dominant, and so on.

    That way instead of talking about using the lydian dominant on G7, you say instead you are playing G7#11 (the 9th and 13th are assumed to be natural in this convention); which makes absolute sense. I honestly don’t think if we did this tomorrow anyone would be confused by it.

    (For non seven note scales, you say, pentatonic, half-whole and whole tone etc as we do now.)

    Then all the seven note scales in common use can be defined by their variations from the diatonic norm via the chord symbol. Altered is a shorthand for that particular chord symbol (7b5b9#9b13 or whatever.)

    actually we sort of do already, just in a really wordy way.

    There's not even an established convention on what to call the ‘Phrygian Dominant scale’ - some people call it 'mixolydian b9 b13' which I think is the Berklee approved term now. It's so long winded, but I do prefer it to Phrygian Dominant because at least it prioritises application 'mixolydian goes on dominant' and follows my convention. I’d actually prefer to call it minor key dominant.

    Altered is a decent name - does what it says on the tin, and tells you what you need to know as a player (perhaps '7alt' would be better, but anyway.)

    There are (as Mark Levine points out, of all people) only a small number of scales we actually use. The modal names are about how we use them, and I can't see why we simply wouldn't use the names of the chord as the label for the scale. I mean that's the basic idea of chord scales, right?

    Unless they put the names in to make music sound more complicated than it actually is of course lol.

    In practice most who have been through the jazz schools just know these names very well now, so it's not really fixing any sort of problem that exists, and doesn't even relate to the way I teach or think about applying scales (I use the parent scales and teach rules of application) it just sort of bugs me on an OCD level lol. And I think it's a bit intimidating for beginners of course.
    Last edited by christianm77; 01-20-2021 at 10:24 AM.

  21. #20
    Lark, sorry I missed this previously. Thanks for the message.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Hello everybody,
    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Sorry if this post may come across as an incoherent ramble, this is probably because I'm still absorbing it and as I said I'm not a native speaker.
    ==Questions==
    1. Is my understanding of the advantages of Regs fingering system correct?
    2. Im still a little bit unsure whether my approach to seeing scales with another root note than thats under my middle finger is correct. Lets take G again as a physical reference and then E as a musical reference, E phrygian for example. What is your thinking process? Do you know that E phrygian consists of E F G A B C D and you know the location of these notes in relation to our physical reference (the middle finger on the sixth string, third fret) and you know that theorethically F is the b2, G is the b3 B is the 5 etc? Or do you approach it another way?
    3. There was a video of Kurt Rosenwinkel explaining his scale fingerings which were exactly the same as the ones from Reg. However it seems liket his video is deleted. Does someone have a mirror ?
    4. One great thing about the CAGED system is how it unifies the scale, arpeggios and chords. Im not yet sure how the arpeggios fit into the scale fingerings. Of course I can pick out the arpeggio notes but I mean how to think about them. Especially arpeggios of which the root note is not the physical reference. For example F major7 when using C 8th fret as a physical reference. Do you still visualize a chord shape or do you know that Fmaj7 contains FACE and since you know where these notes lie in relation to the note under your middle finger you can see the arpeggio? Similarily, how do you visualize chords?
    First, far from being incoherent, I think you communicate excellently with English, not just grammatically, but in deeply exploring and abstracting complex ideas and concepts.

    To question #1, absolutely, yes. There's more, to be sure, but it's complicated, because the attempt to abstract a deeply subjective, and profoundly kinesthetic and visual "understanding" of something of this complexity is no simple task. Words don't do it justice, and many are apt to dismiss it on the face of its surface-level verbal/symbolic representation.

    To question #2: I think you're on the right track. It's somewhat personal - and more related to actual practice (in both senses of the word) than to simple verbal thought. So, I'll just speak from personal experience/understanding re the Second Finger Reference (SFR). I'm going to use a different example, for simplicity's sake, and just talk about G major for a moment. I'll use Reg's B-Phyrgian position, for a few differnt reasons: 1) Because it's the least familiar, 2) because it's the most removed (cyclically) from traditional maj/min scale fingerings and 3) because it illustrates something important about mapping the fretboard chromatically.

    First of all, if you approach learning fingerings this way, these fingerings become the "bottom level" of analysis, not in terms of tonal music theory, but in terms of fretboard layout. So, in that position especially, I go to thinking in terms of B rather than "G from a 1st-finger-stretch root". Gmaj7 in this position is somewhat of a Bm7 chord, both theoretically and visually/kinesthetically. B-D-F# are all chord tones from B, and only the G (b13 of B) is somewhat foreign to a newcomer. I would argue, at the very least, that most experienced players "think" Bm faster from this position than Gmajor, regardless of time put in. I would speculate that this only "clicks" at a very high level of experience and understanding, at which point you are subconsciously viewing things in the same "SFR manner" anyway. From what I can understand, Reg's purpose with the SFR is to promote this manner of seeing/hearing/thinking from the beginning, rather than as a random artifact of 1000's of hours on the instrument.

    So, when I woodshed Gmaj and Gmaj7 melodic patterns for our Patterns for Jazz group, thinking of that position in (physical) terms of a Bm chord (with added b13). When there were technical breakdowns with more difficult (chromatic etc) patterns in that position, I defaulted to thinking more in terms of Bm (again physically/not necessarily "modally"). Honestly, this B Phrygian fingering is a good gateway for the curious, again because it is "foreign enough" to disrupt automatic pattern/position thought processes associated with more familiar fingerings. After discovering some of this, I started doing more work on trying to clean up my capacity to see/think from the SFR perspective in other positions.

    I find this perspective to be particularly helpful in "viewing" would-be 4th finger arpeggios in all positions and all chord types. So, you practice learning to think of D7 for example, beginning on C (2nd finger; "Lydian position") as if it's a type of "C" chord. The benefits are multi-level honestly. It certainly doesn't "replace" prior knowledge. It simply adds a layer of understanding, theoretically sure, but more importantly a different "kinesthetic understanding". My hands respond differently when thinking from C versus thinking D7 from the 4th finger. Anyway, that's a lot of words to describe something that is 99.9999% non-verbal, but honestly, there's nothing to be done about that other than to actually explore the playing/visualizing aspects of this concept.

    So, if I'm working on something in that position which is more difficult, I am able to go back to that bottom level of viewing notes/intervals from the context of B, rather than a G "root note" from a 1st-finger-stretch. Thinking of this position is helpful for the aspect that it is probably the most alien to those of us who have played for a while. This position has given me more insight into the positive benefits of the second finger reference (2FR), because I didn't previously "think" in this position from years of prior practice.

    I feel that it also needs to be expressed that, with completion of the Phrygian fingering, you have a physical reference for all 12 tones chromatically, from any given position on the fretboard, and each one of those is a concrete diatonic reference from one of the fingerings. 5 fingerings don't cover these in-position, and a purely chromatic viewpoint of potential stretches from fingers 1 or 4 produce numerous unisons and "choices to be made" about where chromatic notes should be played. Reg's fingerings reduce the choices to 1, eliminating unisons and other "choice issues", at least it pertains to "defaults". You can, of course, finger things other ways as well. But that mental clarity and simplification is no small thing. Its benefits related to sightreading alone make it well worth considering.

    To question #3. Yes, but they’re going to keep chasing it. It’s current versions don’t have the original title keywords. Download it (and its siblings), and for the good of all mankind, upload it to Odysee/ Lbry.tv or somesuch. Youtube search on terms “Rosenwinkel workshop” and similar to find all. I think “R0senwinke1 w0rk5h@p” now yields nothing. (These videos have turned me into an insurrectionist I guess. I think they should be out there and available.)


    To “Reg approach” naysayers, I’d suggest that you watch the Kurt video and honestly ask whether you believe that he (or reg) are primarily referring to modal understanding (or modal playing), or are they mostly describing a more basic physical understanding. Modal understanding and hearing is only one level of analysis and not unimportant. It may arguably not be the most important initially, but that doesn’t change the fact that you’d have to somewhat work modal approaches separately later, if not integrated as “arbitrary fingering labels” in the beginning.

    Stretch fingerings in and of themselves are somewhat of a separate issue to the thought process, but to be fair, there is a direct correlation to the ideas validity and the use of shifts (resulting in fewer constants). Again, please listen to Kurt’s actual words on thought process regarding position etc.

    To question #4, I mostly answered with a lot of my thought process on this in #2. Simply understand that you still have to woodshed things somewhat separately, but it’s different when you view arpeggios as variations of a "parent" position-arpeggio.


  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    Mine is a minority view. My approach is to learn the notes, by name, in all the chords and scales you use, in all 12 keys. And, know every note on the fingerboard instantly. This is a lot of work, but so is every other way of getting there.

    It has the advantage of not using geometric patterns, although you may want to add them to the approach -- that helps with fast tempos. Basically, you're playing a chord and/or scale and the fretboard lights up in your mind. Every note in the arp and every note in the scale light up in different colors all over the neck and your fingers find them.
    I'm doing the exact same thing like you. But you're the first ever person I encounter that uses this approach too. So, yeah, really minority report.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by DonEsteban View Post
    I'm doing the exact same thing like you. But you're the first ever person I encounter that uses this approach too. So, yeah, really minority report.
    Thanks. To be honest, I don't understand the finger-position approaches, if I may call them that. I've read posts and looked at diagrams and I still don't understand it.

    Nobody here owes me a lesson, but if someone would simply answer the following question, I'd appreciate it.

    I already know all the notes on the fretboard, instantly, without thought.

    I know the names of the notes in the chords and scales I use (this does require some maintenance via drilling).

    I know enough about harmony to be aware of things like what the tonal center is at any given moment in a Tin Pan Alley type of tune. Similarly, for the mode of the moment in a more modal tune.

    So, for example, if I'm in the key of G and the chord is an Am7, I instantly know where all the chord tones are and also where all the tonal center (G major scale) notes are. Since I'm trying to play the melodic lines in my head, I really don't need any of that awareness, anyway, but in a more complicated chord/tune/situation it could be helpful to avoid clams.

    If you play a snippet of melody, I can imitate it, even though I have no idea what the notes are. That is, it goes from ears to fingers with no intervening language.

    So, my question is, what advantage of the finger-position type of system have I missed? Maybe I took the long way around, but since I'm here, is there any reason to start studying a different approach? I know, that was two questions, but it's really the same question.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post

    So, my question is, what advantage of the finger-position type of system have I missed? Maybe I took the long way around, but since I'm here, is there any reason to start studying a different approach? I know, that was two questions, but it's really the same question.

    You haven't missed anything. Finger patterns are just a visual and physical memory aid. They also help in developing right and left hand technique. If you've already got the scale notes down and the technique to play what you want without fumbling around on the fretboard, finger patterns have nothing else to offer other than a host of potential traps and pitfalls.

    Most players learn the finger patterns so they don't have to learn or think about which notes are involved or how those notes relate to the key or chord of the moment. They just learn to locate the appropriate finger pattern relative to the tonal center. then let their fingers do the walking. This approach starts to break down when the player wants to play in an environment that requires more thought and intention than just figuring out the scale for the key and noodling around in that scale.

    .

    .

  25. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    Thanks. To be honest, I don't understand the finger-position approaches, if I may call them that. I've read posts and looked at diagrams and I still don't understand it.

    Nobody here owes me a lesson, but if someone would simply answer the following question, I'd appreciate it.

    I already know all the notes on the fretboard, instantly, without thought.

    I know the names of the notes in the chords and scales I use (this does require some maintenance via drilling).

    I know enough about harmony to be aware of things like what the tonal center is at any given moment in a Tin Pan Alley type of tune. Similarly, for the mode of the moment in a more modal tune.

    So, for example, if I'm in the key of G and the chord is an Am7, I instantly know where all the chord tones are and also where all the tonal center (G major scale) notes are. Since I'm trying to play the melodic lines in my head, I really don't need any of that awareness, anyway, but in a more complicated chord/tune/situation it could be helpful to avoid clams.

    If you play a snippet of melody, I can imitate it, even though I have no idea what the notes are. That is, it goes from ears to fingers with no intervening language.

    So, my question is, what advantage of the finger-position type of system have I missed? Maybe I took the long way around, but since I'm here, is there any reason to start studying a different approach? I know, that was two questions, but it's really the same question.
    The idea is to have a method for beginners to use in arriving at the kind understanding that YOU already have ...but much earlier than that they would by simply "playing a lot".

    I don't see that it has a distinct purpose for YOU, as you have already achieved that level of understanding. My inclination is that you and he have pretty much the same concept of fretboard, in terms of letter names/intervals. He has one additional layer of understanding regarding mode names and their associated chord types perhaps, but I think it's important to point out that he most likely learned these FROM the fretboard understanding that you already use, moreso then using the mode names to learn where the letter names are. I think you're somewhat viewing that the wrong way around.

    More likely though, in the beginning, each informs the other to some degree , but I would assume that it's mostly note names informing knowledge of what the modes are. Anyway, there's really no way for you to appreciate the value of this approach as a BEGINNING point , because you simply can't un-know what you already know. Sorry, it's not FOR you guys who already have it down, it's for folks like me. :-)

  26. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    I haven't worked on Reg's approach so I can't really comment about the details. He's a great player. He has lots of great videos in which you can see the fruits of his approach.

    Mine is a minority view. My approach is to learn the notes, by name, in all the chords and scales you use, in all 12 keys. And, know every note on the fingerboard instantly. This is a lot of work, but so is every other way of getting there.

    It has the advantage of not using geometric patterns, although you may want to add them to the approach -- that helps with fast tempos. Basically, you're playing a chord and/or scale and the fretboard lights up in your mind. Every note in the arp and every note in the scale light up in different colors all over the neck and your fingers find them.

    I don't see how this can hurt, even if you're using Reg's fingerings or some other system. In fact, I'd guess (and I'm confident Reg will be kind enough to tell us) that Reg also knows the fretboard in this way.
    I'd be curious as to how you arrived at this or whether you remember .

    Did you learn major scales in five positions up-and-down the fretboard?

    In mapping out non-scale tones, Did you view them chromatically BETWEEN scale tones in the beginning or did you visualize them more as would-be scale tones from DIFFERENT scales?

    I or as pure chromatic conceptualization for a given position, from the very beginning.

    Thanks.

  27. #26

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    I'm sorry but I have to be honest. Parts of the last few posts are absurd, no offense to anyone.

    Rather, it seems to me that the truth is:

    1. Whether a musician is playing a rapid glissando passage on a keyboard or guitar (which for the guitar is next to impossible to do like a pianist), they do NOT have time to think "oh, this is an F#, this is a G, this is an A, now a Bb", for a 20-note stretch at a rapid clip etc. Same goes for an elaborate Parker or Trane type line.

    2. Fingerings? Fingerings enable one to play whatever it is they want to play, and to play it rapidly and cleanly. If one wants to play or improvise scales, arepeggios, intervals, permutations of arpeggios/broken chord, licks, chromatics, chord outlines that mix all of the above - then they had best practice those very things. Chances are that one will NOT effectively improvise something dense and fast that does not have its antecedents in practice.

    If one wants to play slow and introspectively all night long that's one thing, but they shouldn't be surprised that whatever teensy audience they have hits the exits early. That's true for any style of music by the way, and especially true for jazz.

    As is the case with anything physical, if one masters technique they can probably survive those occasions when they get out of position, and still pull off some nice moves. But if they're out of position all the time, or don't even know what being in position is...
    Last edited by Donplaysguitar; 03-03-2021 at 05:21 PM.

  28. #27

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    Just an FYI -

    "Reg's" fingerings are a subset of the 12 Leavitt fingerings. 6-7 of them, as I recall. They involve stretches, and to cover 12 frets they also require shifts. Even playing all 12 Leavitt fingerings requires a 1-fret shift between adjacent fingerings, much less a fingering that is not adjacent.

    What's the point? That shifts are unavoidable even if one utilizes 12 fingerings to cover 12 frets.

    Further, Leavitt himself pointed out that 3 of the 12 fingerings - when applied to Melodic and Harmonic Minor - were impractical. So that's 9 fingerings for those 2 scales, which means more shifting than a Leavitt devotee would be required to use for Major fingerings. (never mind the symmetric scales)

    So, like Leavitt, and like Aaron Shearer, you need fingerings and you need nifty shifts. Both of those distinguished guitarists/educators described a set of fingerings and a variety of shifting strategies/techniques as well.

    So, pick your favorite fingerings AND your favorite shifts, and get on with playing music.
    Last edited by Donplaysguitar; 03-03-2021 at 05:23 PM.

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    I think you're somewhat viewing that the wrong way around.
    :-)
    Ah, so you're agreeing with my wife.

  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    I'd be curious as to how you arrived at this or whether you remember .

    Did you learn major scales in five positions up-and-down the fretboard?

    In mapping out non-scale tones, Did you view them chromatically BETWEEN scale tones in the beginning or did you visualize them more as would-be scale tones from DIFFERENT scales?

    I or as pure chromatic conceptualization for a given position, from the very beginning.

    Thanks.
    I did not take a linear path. Instead, I studied with different teachers, years apart, and, even later, figured some stuff out on my own.

    1. I studied Chuck Wayne's system with Carl Barry, a great NYC player. So, I learned major scales and arps, Chuck's way.

    2. I studied with Warren Nunes, who had 7 major scale patterns (equivalent to modes, although he rejected that term). I also learned what a tonal center is from him.

    3. I learned how to read from the very beginning, so I knew the fingerboard.

    4. I could never memorize patterns very easily. For example, I couldn't keep Warren's 7 patterns straight. Arne Berle's GP articles with dots on grids were useless to me. I know and use a handful, but if I had to assimilate a complete system, I'd switch to kazoo.

    5. At some point, I realized that I could solo without difficulty on a Cmaj7 tonic chord. I knew instantly which notes were in the chord and in the tonal center and I knew, instantly, where they are on the fingerboard. My approach is to always try to make melody and this told me which notes to use for the basics and I could embellish by ear.

    I also realized that I couldn't do it as well in some other keys. I'd have to think in Db Gb F# and B. So I started drilling them. Scales and arps. IRealPro helped. I'd pick a tune, set it to change key by a 4th every chorus and play in different positions in every key. If I couldn't do one, I'd slow it down and drill it. And, that's pretty much where I am now.

    I agree with the criticism that my approach isn't so great for really fast playing. I have mixed feelings about that. I like it when I hear it. OTOH, I like to try to make every note melodic and intentional and I can't even scat sing good lines at high tempo. So, when I have to play fast, I end up relying on a too-limited vocabulary -- did I mention that I also have trouble hearing a good lick and ever getting it into my playing?

    Last point -- I'm what some might think of as "old". I don't have a great many years left to play -- so I'm trying to consolidate things into a style rather than explore brand new vistas. The idea is to make the stuff I can hear and execute sound better and not to be distracted from that goal.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    I did not take a linear path. Instead, I studied with different teachers, years apart, and, even later, figured some stuff out on my own.

    1. I studied Chuck Wayne's system with Carl Barry, a great NYC player. So, I learned major scales and arps, Chuck's way.

    2. I studied with Warren Nunes, who had 7 major scale patterns (equivalent to modes, although he rejected that term). I also learned what a tonal center is from him.

    3. I learned how to read from the very beginning, so I knew the fingerboard.

    4. I could never memorize patterns very easily. For example, I couldn't keep Warren's 7 patterns straight. Arne Berle's GP articles with dots on grids were useless to me. I know and use a handful, but if I had to assimilate a complete system, I'd switch to kazoo.

    5. At some point, I realized that I could solo without difficulty on a Cmaj7 tonic chord. I knew instantly which notes were in the chord and in the tonal center and I knew, instantly, where they are on the fingerboard. My approach is to always try to make melody and this told me which notes to use for the basics and I could embellish by ear.

    I also realized that I couldn't do it as well in some other keys. I'd have to think in Db Gb F# and B. So I started drilling them. Scales and arps. IRealPro helped. I'd pick a tune, set it to change key by a 4th every chorus and play in different positions in every key. If I couldn't do one, I'd slow it down and drill it. And, that's pretty much where I am now.

    I agree with the criticism that my approach isn't so great for really fast playing. I have mixed feelings about that. I like it when I hear it. OTOH, I like to try to make every note melodic and intentional and I can't even scat sing good lines at high tempo. So, when I have to play fast, I end up relying on a too-limited vocabulary -- did I mention that I also have trouble hearing a good lick and ever getting it into my playing?

    Last point -- I'm what some might think of as "old". I don't have a great many years left to play -- so I'm trying to consolidate things into a style rather than explore brand new vistas. The idea is to make the stuff I can hear and execute sound better and not to be distracted from that goal.

    The Warren Nunes and Chuck Wayne/ Carl Barry ways of picking were as different as night and day. I just dig the Nunes sound more than the Wayne/Barry sound, because of the strong articulation differences he could get with his picking technique.

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Lark, sorry I missed this previously. Thanks for the message.
    First, far from being incoherent, I think you communicate excellently with English, not just grammatically, but in deeply exploring and abstracting complex ideas and concepts.

    To question #1, absolutely, yes. There's more, to be sure, but it's complicated, because the attempt to abstract a deeply subjective, and profoundly kinesthetic and visual "understanding" of something of this complexity is no simple task. Words don't do it justice, and many are apt to dismiss it on the face of its surface-level verbal/symbolic representation.

    To question #2: I think you're on the right track. It's somewhat personal - and more related to actual practice (in both senses of the word) than to simple verbal thought. So, I'll just speak from personal experience/understanding re the Second Finger Reference (SFR). I'm going to use a different example, for simplicity's sake, and just talk about G major for a moment. I'll use Reg's B-Phyrgian position, for a few differnt reasons: 1) Because it's the least familiar, 2) because it's the most removed (cyclically) from traditional maj/min scale fingerings and 3) because it illustrates something important about mapping the fretboard chromatically.

    First of all, if you approach learning fingerings this way, these fingerings become the "bottom level" of analysis, not in terms of tonal music theory, but in terms of fretboard layout. So, in that position especially, I go to thinking in terms of B rather than "G from a 1st-finger-stretch root". Gmaj7 in this position is somewhat of a Bm7 chord, both theoretically and visually/kinesthetically. B-D-F# are all chord tones from B, and only the G (b13 of B) is somewhat foreign to a newcomer. I would argue, at the very least, that most experienced players "think" Bm faster from this position than Gmajor, regardless of time put in. I would speculate that this only "clicks" at a very high level of experience and understanding, at which point you are subconsciously viewing things in the same "SFR manner" anyway. From what I can understand, Reg's purpose with the SFR is to promote this manner of seeing/hearing/thinking from the beginning, rather than as a random artifact of 1000's of hours on the instrument.

    So, when I woodshed Gmaj and Gmaj7 melodic patterns for our Patterns for Jazz group, thinking of that position in (physical) terms of a Bm chord (with added b13). When there were technical breakdowns with more difficult (chromatic etc) patterns in that position, I defaulted to thinking more in terms of Bm (again physically/not necessarily "modally"). Honestly, this B Phrygian fingering is a good gateway for the curious, again because it is "foreign enough" to disrupt automatic pattern/position thought processes associated with more familiar fingerings. After discovering some of this, I started doing more work on trying to clean up my capacity to see/think from the SFR perspective in other positions.

    I find this perspective to be particularly helpful in "viewing" would-be 4th finger arpeggios in all positions and all chord types. So, you practice learning to think of D7 for example, beginning on C (2nd finger; "Lydian position") as if it's a type of "C" chord. The benefits are multi-level honestly. It certainly doesn't "replace" prior knowledge. It simply adds a layer of understanding, theoretically sure, but more importantly a different "kinesthetic understanding". My hands respond differently when thinking from C versus thinking D7 from the 4th finger. Anyway, that's a lot of words to describe something that is 99.9999% non-verbal, but honestly, there's nothing to be done about that other than to actually explore the playing/visualizing aspects of this concept.

    So, if I'm working on something in that position which is more difficult, I am able to go back to that bottom level of viewing notes/intervals from the context of B, rather than a G "root note" from a 1st-finger-stretch. Thinking of this position is helpful for the aspect that it is probably the most alien to those of us who have played for a while. This position has given me more insight into the positive benefits of the second finger reference (2FR), because I didn't previously "think" in this position from years of prior practice.

    I feel that it also needs to be expressed that, with completion of the Phrygian fingering, you have a physical reference for all 12 tones chromatically, from any given position on the fretboard, and each one of those is a concrete diatonic reference from one of the fingerings. 5 fingerings don't cover these in-position, and a purely chromatic viewpoint of potential stretches from fingers 1 or 4 produce numerous unisons and "choices to be made" about where chromatic notes should be played. Reg's fingerings reduce the choices to 1, eliminating unisons and other "choice issues", at least it pertains to "defaults". You can, of course, finger things other ways as well. But that mental clarity and simplification is no small thing. Its benefits related to sightreading alone make it well worth considering.

    To question #3. Yes, but they’re going to keep chasing it. It’s current versions don’t have the original title keywords. Download it (and its siblings), and for the good of all mankind, upload it to Odysee/ Lbry.tv or somesuch. Youtube search on terms “Rosenwinkel workshop” and similar to find all. I think “R0senwinke1 w0rk5h@p” now yields nothing. (These videos have turned me into an insurrectionist I guess. I think they should be out there and available.)


    To “Reg approach” naysayers, I’d suggest that you watch the Kurt video and honestly ask whether you believe that he (or reg) are primarily referring to modal understanding (or modal playing), or are they mostly describing a more basic physical understanding. Modal understanding and hearing is only one level of analysis and not unimportant. It may arguably not be the most important initially, but that doesn’t change the fact that you’d have to somewhat work modal approaches separately later, if not integrated as “arbitrary fingering labels” in the beginning.

    Stretch fingerings in and of themselves are somewhat of a separate issue to the thought process, but to be fair, there is a direct correlation to the ideas validity and the use of shifts (resulting in fewer constants). Again, please listen to Kurt’s actual words on thought process regarding position etc.

    To question #4, I mostly answered with a lot of my thought process on this in #2. Simply understand that you still have to woodshed things somewhat separately, but it’s different when you view arpeggios as variations of a "parent" position-arpeggio.

    Thanks for that Matt. I didn’t really get it before but I’m kind of getting some sort of idea from this.

    So for me it’s quite fun to muck around with different ways of visualising the fretboard. There seems to be no end of them.

    Anyway, for those piecing it together at a base level, my beat and most honest advice is to choose one thing and plug away at it.

    Later on, flexibility becomes more important. But you have to start with muscle memory and visualisation, and I realise while what you say here is to me sort of .... how can I say this? .... a bit disreputable and unmusicianly. But that’s the guitar for you.

    A version of this is indeed how I put my understanding of the major scale on the fretboard about 25 years ago.

    The second shock was realising this knowledge did not in any way prepare me to play Barry’s scale outlines. The piano and saxophone are octave invariant. The guitar; not so much. So I embraced a cellular octave approach and practiced that for about a year, and then I could deal with Barry.

  33. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    The second shock was realising this knowledge did not in any way prepare me to play Barry’s scale outlines. The piano and saxophone are octave invariant. The guitar; not so much. So I embraced a cellular octave approach and practiced that for about a year, and then I could deal with Barry.
    I personally found the Barry Harris material to be SUPER difficult on a technical level for guitar. Started once and quit.

    Then, a year and a half or so later while doing the patterns for jazz material with a group (accountability), really got my head around an approach which at least makes it technically viable for me and understandable.

    There's a real low ceiling for getting enough reps on those patterns to be technically viable without wearing out your hands pretty fast. Anyway, my eventual approach ended up being something I could do and is sustainable physiologically. Kind of quit with all of it several months ago , but had worked through a lot of the material from the DVD booklet.

    I think some of us probably need to lay out actual fingerings for this stuff which work, in case we get hit by a comet or something. Personally think guitarists areweirdly superstitious about fingerings and then being personal or something. Other instruments lay out fingerings in great detail, especially to aid in getting started, and have done so for several hundred years now I think.

    Everybody's different. I never could do the Ronnie Ben Hur fingerings. The bottleneck for those with me was mental/ Attention span etc. They were just too disconnected from what I was used to in viewing the fretboard. I eventually came up with some starting guidelines for myself regarding active displacement etc. for the arpeggio based material. I'll definitely be back to that stuff before too long .

    I would be interested to see the CMiller versions for sure.

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    I personally found the Barry Harris material to be SUPER difficult on a technical level for guitar. Started once and quit.
    It’s not that hard (at least the improvisation stuff) but the way the guitar is conventionally mapped is not helpful. I don’t think Reg’s positions would be helpful. They are too big.

    I figured if I couldn’t simply play scales of a seventh up and down through a blues at tempo that was the fault of my learning of the instrument, not Barry’s teaching. It seemed like a thing I should be able to do. I fixed it and it didn’t take that long.

    It’s a bit like the opposite, practicing scales from low E to the highest fret on the top string, (and then doing through a tune.) It seems to me I should be able to do that .

    There's a real low ceiling for getting enough reps on those patterns to be technically viable without wearing out your hands pretty fast.
    I’m not sure what you are doing with your hands, but have you considered interleaved practice? You go for 3 minutes and keep coming back to it. Gives you a break but I find this stuff is great for learning this kind of material. Going at it for an hour straight is actually less effective apparently.

    I would be interested to see the CMiller versions for sure.
    I never thought about writing down my fingerings. In general I use a variation of CAGED atm I guess? But I build scales in one octave cells and this relates well to chord shapes. Generally I use 2nd or 4th finger reference.

    But the fingers I use I try to mix up. I’m currently trying to eliminate barring from my playing for instance.

    I always think I sound better when I use three fingers though. So fingerings are malleable. Positions are too. I don’t like getting stuck. Joining up small cells can help you get around better.

    I encourage student to play everything with the first finger as an exercise so they learn to see the notes on the neck rather than get locked into muscle memory. Most of them can already play all the modes etc in position, though.

    So my more advanced students can adopt whatever fingering suits them best bearing in mind their technique etc. I’m not interested in being a teacher who demands the student start at square one and learn my way. I’d rather help them make the most of what they already know .
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-04-2021 at 05:38 AM.

  35. #34

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    Another advantage of one octave scale mapping is that if you want to change for instance a major scale into a melodic minor, all you need to do is count up three and lower that note by a half step - there’s no doubling of pitches. You can also integrate functional ear training into this as well.

    Sp one related advantage is seamless changes playing. If I’m in C and I see an Fm6 chord for example I can simply lower the 6th in whatever cell I am using in C and seamlessly express the chord. I don’t have to think ‘Harmonic Major’ or something and reach for another fingering. I think it makes for efficient learning. It makes the guitar more like a piano... eventually. It also makes me more sensitive to the importance of each note and less cluttered in my improvising.

    But then the modes are an open book as well. In combination with Jordan’s melodic triad approach this method can get very powerful. You have complete flexibility in how you construct modes and scale too; whether you use derivative or parallel thinking (to use Goodrick’s terms) or both.

    there are teachers who taught this approach, but I can’t remember who they are and I evolved this approach independently in response to specific musical and teaching demands.

    anyway since you asked here’s a vid


    In practice you wouldn’t want to derive every scale from the major like I’ve shown. That helps you understand the neck, and where the intervals are, but practicing the various cells for major, minor, dominant, altered etc still needs to be done. But there’s smaller bits of information to learn.

    Anyway I think it works well, but there’s quite a few ways up this particular mountain, and it’s interesting to see what routes people have used.
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-04-2021 at 05:49 AM.

  36. #35

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    Just to offer an alternative for discussion.

    To go from a Cmaj to Cmelmin, I know that it's the same scale except for E > Eb. I know where every one of the 7 notes in C or Cmelmin is on the fretboard. Pretty easy in C, but you have to know all 12 keys and a few enharmonic equivalents, all instantly. It's a lot of work, but so is trying to memorize patterns.

    So, if I see Fm6, as a tonic, I used to think "white keys except Bb and Ab". Now, it's pretty automatic. I also know I can use any chord generated by the Fmelmin scale. And, if I was short of ideas, I know the same notes spell Dm7b5 and rootless Bb9. If the Fm6 is not a tonic I don't know the theory so well, so I'd probably adjust by ear, if necessary.

    It wouldn't occur to me to need a finger reference. Unless I'm missing something, once you know where the notes you want are on the fretboard, you just grab them at will. Any finger that facilitates the line you're trying to play.

    I'm wondering if this approach works for me because I learned to read, all over the neck, when I was in my mid-teens. People who don't read might prefer a pattern based approach.

    As the risk of belaboring the point, I agree with the criticism that this may not be a good method for high speed. And, it sure isn't a substitute for talent.

  37. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    It’s not that hard (at least the improvisation stuff) but the way the guitar is conventionally mapped is not helpful. I don’t think Reg’s positions would be helpful. They are too big.

    I figured if I couldn’t simply play scales of a seventh up and down through a blues at tempo that was the fault of my learning of the instrument, not Barry’s teaching. It seemed like a thing I should be able to do. I fixed it and it didn’t take that long.

    It’s a bit like the opposite, practicing scales from low E to the highest fret on the top string, (and then doing through a tune.) It seems to me I should be able to do that .



    I’m not sure what you are doing with your hands, but have you considered interleaved practice? You go for 3 minutes and keep coming back to it. Gives you a break but I find this stuff is great for learning this kind of material. Going at it for an hour straight is actually less effective apparently.



    I never thought about writing down my fingerings. In general I use a variation of CAGED atm I guess? But I build scales in one octave cells and this relates well to chord shapes. Generally I use 2nd or 4th finger reference.

    But the fingers I use I try to mix up. I’m currently trying to eliminate barring from my playing for instance.

    I always think I sound better when I use three fingers though. So fingerings are malleable. Positions are too. I don’t like getting stuck. Joining up small cells can help you get around better.

    I encourage student to play everything with the first finger as an exercise so they learn to see the notes on the neck rather than get locked into muscle memory. Most of them can already play all the modes etc in position, though.

    So my more advanced students can adopt whatever fingering suits them best bearing in mind their technique etc. I’m not interested in being a teacher who demands the student start at square one and learn my way. I’d rather help them make the most of what they already know .
    Yeah. I guess the part I found difficult mostly was the halfstep rules, especially the sequence presented: single key, adding a scale degree at a time. I initially wanted to woodshed those in single positions etc., but my hands really didn't like it, even easier positions. I eventually arrived at just working a single scale degree at a time in all positions simultaneously.

    That mix was just easier physiologically, and definitely more engaging cognitively. Basically camped out on each one for about a week, (in seven positions), but I could manage that while watching TV etc. found them to be , like most things, mostly your training. Just took me a while to hear something pretty different from what I was used to at those tempos.

    Once I knew all of them , I could pretty easily do the workshop sequence for those in all positions. I don't know that I ever would've gotten there the other way though. I was pretty quickly hitting the walls , with attention span and just physiology , but I don't see how you can get away from the number of reps needed to learn something like that. I haven't tried the interleaved practice thing yet. I'm not a good student. Ha. :-)

    Probably the most important of that material for me is making it compelling with the right hand technique as well. Really think slurring into the beat, helps hear better phrasing with this, and there's. adds complexity and interest to something which has to be sorted by pure reps anyway. Kind of a "while you're there anyway" kind of thing. Anyway, I actually ended up enjoying the process.

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Yeah. I guess the part I found difficult mostly was the halfstep rules, especially the sequence presented: single key, adding a scale degree at a time. I initially wanted to woodshed those in single positions etc., but my hands really didn't like it, even easier positions. I eventually arrived at just working a single scale degree at a time in all positions simultaneously.

    That mix was just easier physiologically, and definitely more engaging cognitively. Basically camped out on each one for about a week, (in seven positions), but I could manage that while watching TV etc. found them to be , like most things, mostly your training. Just took me a while to hear something pretty different from what I was used to at those tempos.

    Once I knew all of them , I could pretty easily do the workshop sequence for those in all positions. I don't know that I ever would've gotten there the other way though. I was pretty quickly hitting the walls , with attention span and just physiology , but I don't see how you can get away from the number of reps needed to learn something like that. I haven't tried the interleaved practice thing yet. I'm not a good student. Ha. :-)

    Probably the most important of that material for me is making it compelling with the right hand technique as well. Really think slurring into the beat, helps hear better phrasing with this, and there's. adds complexity and interest to something which has to be sorted by pure reps anyway. Kind of a "while you're there anyway" kind of thing. Anyway, I actually ended up enjoying the process.
    Yeah, I think no that’s right. so there’s a fair amount to talk about here, but the important thing is that the fingering must reflect the phrasing.

    So an added note scale is a musical phrase. It doesn’t make any sense to put the B on a different string to the Bb when descending, or break up neighbour tone/chord tone groups onto different strings (unless they make sense with the phrasing.)

    I think trying to practice added note scales in traditional positions might not be the most useful thing to do.

    so you reference slurring into the beat which is connected to that.

    Again one octave cells help a lot.

    I really think conventional positions get abandoned pretty quickly when I have to play actual jazz phrases.

    in terms of reps for learning, there’s a lot to unpack there. I’ll leave a link for you to find out more about interleaved practice (assuming you haven’t already looked into it).
    The application of spacing and interleaving approaches in the classroom | impact.chartered.college
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-04-2021 at 08:48 AM.

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Once I knew all of them , I could pretty easily do the workshop sequence for those in all positions. I don't know that I ever would've gotten there the other way though. I was pretty quickly hitting the walls , with attention span and just physiology , but I don't see how you can get away from the number of reps needed to learn something like that. I haven't tried the interleaved practice thing yet. I'm not a good student. Ha. :-)
    Ive been working a lot on classical guitar lately and the process of achieving the baseline - being able to play a piece effortlessly at tempo - does require a lot of specific mechanical practice with unfamiliar fingerings and movements.

    Ive found that I can normally focus in on three or four notes that are actually the thing that needs to practiced. This makes repeating these movements much less arduous and I can pick up a guitar and do a few useful seconds practice in between fetching my daughter drinks which is my main occupation at this time.

  40. #39

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    Starting out I learned scale fingerings out of the Leavitt #1 and Sal Salvador Single String books. There was lots of overlap and if I remember correctly
    some small differential as well.

    I spent a few years in Jazzmobile workshops with Ted Dunbar.
    He put much emphasis on knowing the fingerboard inside out.
    This entailed being able to play fluently in all keys, full range within any 5
    fret position. This yielded many of the commonly used fingerings and a few
    that were less user friendly but still playable. He also would demonstrate connecting octaves using multiple pathways and the idea that whatever degree or finger you were on, to be able to continue in any direction.

    From a few lessons with Pat Martino, I learned the idea of string groups as an organizing principal for generating fingerings. Around that time, I also read an interesting Downbeat magazine article by Dr. William Fowler on tetrachords as the organizing principal to generate scale fingerings. This period solidified the 3 note per string thing and also yielded fingerings organized to help support various combinations of slurs. Then there was Mick Goodrick's "Advancing Guitarist" which helped solidify the importance of integrating horizontal and vertical movements or in Mick's playful esoterica "the realm of the electric ice skating rink".

    Later I got into an interval perspective as the fundamental building
    block of all note combinations.This added yet another lens with which
    to view a given fingering.

    Lastly although I am out of practice with this, is a cool legato approach,
    playing scales where every note (as much as possible) is on a different string. This works best with keys that have at least some open strings. I would be surprised if this isn't something that Bill Frisell is conversant in.

    In short, I know perhaps too many fingerings. Reg posited the idea of
    having a default fingering system (a starting reference) and I had to pause
    for a moment to consider what of all this mess was mine.
    Best answer was the 5 fret thing which is my sight reading go to as well as for playing over unfamiliar tunes that move through keys in rapid succession.

    There is also this artistic classical music perspective, something like this: crafting fingerings that best support the tonal color and phrasing of each note and passage as it functions in the evolving form of the composition.
    It is an approach more easily adapted to well practiced, through composed
    content and quite a bit harder to instigate on the fly.

    Lastly, one thing I like about Reg's 2nd finger orientation is having the 7th degree available to the 1st finger below the modal root.

    So how many fingerings does one need to know and where is best place to start? For myself, I am happy with what I have learned about where to find
    and how to finger various note collections or problem solve anything unfamiliar. So, congratulations to me.

    Now back to that other small task of cultivating the skill to spontaneously create and execute high level musical content on a consistent basis and
    how to function as a better communal citizen in a musical collective,
    onstage and in rehearsal.

  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by bako View Post
    Lastly although I am out of practice with this, is a cool legato approach,
    playing scales where every note (as much as possible) is on a different string. This works best with keys that have at least some open strings. I would be surprised if this isn't something that Bill Frisell is conversant in.
    Oh yeah that’s lovely. Campanelas. Plenty of that in the classical pieces I’m learning interestingly. IIRC Jimmy Wyble (and Sid Jacobs) was an enthusiast of this kind of thing, and I can certainly hear it in Bill.

    Anyway, using open strings both for scales and also for chord voicings adds a level of complexity to it, because to do it you really need to map the guitar in terms of absolute pitch, not simply intervals by which I mean ears and/or note knowledge...

    In short, I know perhaps too many fingerings. Reg posited the idea of
    having a default fingering system (a starting reference) and I had to pause
    for a moment to consider what of all this mess was mine.
    Best answer was the 5 fret thing which is my sight reading go to as well as for playing over unfamiliar tunes that move through keys in rapid succession.
    I think default fingerings is something that is pretty necessary if you are sight reading. But they will most often not be the most musical solution. I would not base my choice of fingerings on; so...

    There is also this artistic classical music perspective, something like this: crafting fingerings that best support the tonal color and phrasing of each note and passage as it functions in the evolving form of the composition.
    Yeah. But good jazzers do this too.

    It is an approach more easily adapted to well practiced, through composed
    content and quite a bit harder to instigate on the fly.

    Lastly, one thing I like about Reg's 2nd finger orientation is having the 7th degree available to the 1st finger below the modal root.

    So how many fingerings does one need to know and where is best place to start? For myself, I am happy with what I have learned about where to find
    and how to finger various note collections or problem solve anything unfamiliar. So, congratulations to me.
    I do think the main problem a student has now is too much choice: the internet. Why choose this or that system?

  42. #41
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    Ive been working a lot on classical guitar lately and the process of achieving the baseline - being able to play a piece effortlessly at tempo - does require a lot of specific mechanical practice with unfamiliar fingerings and movements.

    Ive found that I can normally focus in on three or four notes that are actually the thing that needs to practiced. This makes repeating these movements much less arduous and I can pick up a guitar and do a few useful seconds practice in between fetching my daughter drinks which is my main occupation at this time.
    Ha ha. Yes. Lack of time is greatly clarifying. I have basically boiled down to anything I can't do while watching TV quietly isn't Paired down enough. It's interesting....most problems are "technical". And by that, I have come tothink of that is here as well. Always think of Galper and "hearing louder" . I kind of view that technical work as the thing that gets me to the point where I can actually hear it enough to play it. I think you can basically play anything you hear well, using "hear" to describe something kinesthetic as well. I think a lot of the fretboard understanding /mapping process is a scaffold which maybe get you there a little quicker when woodshedding.

  43. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    Yeah, I think no that’s right. so there’s a fair amount to talk about here, but the important thing is that the fingering must reflect the phrasing.

    So an added note scale is a musical phrase. It doesn’t make any sense to put the B on a different string to the Bb when descending, or break up neighbour tone/chord tone groups onto different strings (unless they make sense with the phrasing.)

    I think trying to practice added note scales in traditional positions might not be the most useful thing to do.

    so you reference slurring into the beat which is connected to that.

    Again one octave cells help a lot.

    I really think conventional positions get abandoned pretty quickly when I have to play actual jazz phrases.

    in terms of reps for learning, there’s a lot to unpack there. I’ll leave a link for you to find out more about interleaved practice (assuming you haven’t already looked into it).
    The application of spacing and interleaving approaches in the classroom | impact.chartered.college
    I don't necessarily disagree, but I use a slightly different filter. I develop all the variations to certain degree , trusting that personal preference will do the self editing in the end. Knowing a few more, when you already have basic together isn't that much more effort and to a certain degree helps map where you would "shift from" to avoid certain things.

    Things that are more viable understandably get a little more attention and use, especially with things like triplets. They're simply impossible as a slur without some "headroom", but I give cursory attention to the ugly "picked" ones as well in the beginning , Just as a form of filling out the map, maybe mostly to satisfy a little OCD.

    Also, at a certain level, I think you have come to terms with what DOESN'T work as much as what does. I somewhat see both of these approaches as the same kind of editing, just on a different end of things?

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    But the fingers I use I try to mix up. I’m currently trying to eliminate barring from my playing for instance.
    It is maybe 3rd time you mention this. I wonder why trying to eliminate anything which actually can be useful/ Let us say you thoroughly untrain yourself doing rolls and do only DPWS and then you have to play something like Chameleon (2nd repeats, 2nd bar, descending fourths).

    Reg's Fingerings-screenshot-2021-03-04-19-46-21-png

  45. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danil View Post
    It is maybe 3rd time you mention this. I wonder why trying to eliminate anything which actually can be useful/ Let us say you thoroughly untrain yourself doing rolls and do only DPWS and then you have to play something like Chameleon (2nd repeats, 2nd bar, descending fourths).

    Reg's Fingerings-screenshot-2021-03-04-19-46-21-png
    Yeah that’s absolutely fine with separate fingers. I use 3 2 1 / 1 instinctively but I might practice 3231 to eliminate the slide

    But it’s not very fast. You should have posted Inner Urge haha. Or maybe Freedom Jazz dance. (EDIT: Actually FJD is fine, more reliable for me without barring in my opinion.)

    Re right hand I haven’t been a straight gypsy style picker for years for this very reason. My natural tendency with that figure is to alternate pick it which feels reasonable with my natural DWPS stance. Possibly I might practice UUDU. I can actually do it at the tempo with downstrokes only, again Chameleon is not very fast (I’ve practiced Charlie Christian solos at around 200 with all downstrokes.) downstrokes can be pretty nippy if you do them right. Descending arpeggios are easier than you might think.

    DWPS has advantages and disadvantages. That’s the way I pick and a solid approach with distinct advantages and drawbacks but not a panacea (no technique is). But that can be discussed elsewhere.

    For ‘shred’ rolled barring is pretty necessary; but I prefer the control separate fingers give in most cases.
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-04-2021 at 01:59 PM.

  46. #45

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    Oh I stupidly practiced that without the Eb in the pickup so I would actually in context instinctively use 3 1 2 1 / 1 for Eb Db Ab Eb Db, (but that might not be the best fingering) alternate picking starting on a downstroke

    it might seem weird at first but it gets more natural the more you do it. I practice pentatonics in fourths a lot, as well as triad arpeggios to get used to this.

    I might add that I teach classical guitar a lot atm and the suggested fingerings for arpeggios etc are often very interesting and unfamiliar in how they aim to get separation between notes. Finger crossing and stuff like that can be for me quite odd as well.
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-04-2021 at 02:10 PM.

  47. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danil View Post
    It is maybe 3rd time you mention this. I wonder why trying to eliminate anything which actually can be useful/ Let us say you thoroughly untrain yourself doing rolls and do only DPWS and then you have to play something like Chameleon (2nd repeats, 2nd bar, descending fourths).

    Reg's Fingerings-screenshot-2021-03-04-19-46-21-png
    This is a good example. I look at the notes and pick an area where they're playable. It wouldn't occur to me to think about a fingering pattern.

    When you get to the second line, bar 2, there are some choices.

    For the sake of discussion, I'm going to assume that the tempo is brisk enough for the bar to be challenging.

    If you're able, which I'm not, you can sweep it. Great solution, if you can do it.

    Warren Nunes style, might be to play the first note of the bar as a pull-off. He might then try to get the Ab and Eb on the same string.
    Or maybe pick the first note, pull off to the second note (same string even though it's stretchy), and then play the Eb and Db on the same string. Or, maybe he couldn't play that line. He didn't read.

    My solution would probably be to palm the pick and play the line fingerstyle, which makes it easy and avoids risking flubbing it.

    I confess that I don't understand how fingering patterns can make it easier to read single note lines. It seems to me that, if you can read the notes and you know where they are, you construct a fingering on the fly - one that makes the line sound best. You pick octave, string, and coordinate left hand and picking to get the sound you want -- if there's time to think of all of that. In a pressure situation, you size up where the high and low notes are to pick a position, and then scan for problem areas. If you're the only melody instrument you can always "interpret". If you're voiced as an extra horn in a horn band, then you have to get precise and try to get the guitar to melt into the horn sound. It's usually not that hard -- arrangers know that guitarists tend to be poor readers. There are exceptions.

  48. #47

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    Just to be clear I had to play it to work out what fingers I would use. It’s not something I think about before when reading or playing phrases by ear. I just see the music and play.

    i see the notes light up on the fretboard and use whatever fingers seem natural (based of course on hours of scale and arpeggio practice over the years.)

    But otoh the intuitive first go is not always the best way of fingering something... I mean that’s one reason to practice music right?

  49. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by bako View Post
    Lastly although I am out of practice with this, is a cool legato approach,
    playing scales where every note (as much as possible) is on a different string. This works best with keys that have at least some open strings. I would be surprised if this isn't something that Bill Frisell is conversant in.
    Indeed, Bill Frisell wrote a short essay, "An Approach to Guitar Fingering" about this very topic. It appears in a collection edited by John Zorn (Arcana: Musicians on Music).

  50. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    Oh I stupidly practiced that without the Eb in the pickup so I would actually in context instinctively use 3 1 2 1 / 1 for Eb Db Ab Eb Db, (but that might not be the best fingering) alternate picking starting on a downstroke

    it might seem weird at first but it gets more natural the more you do it. I practice pentatonics in fourths a lot, as well as triad arpeggios to get used to this.

    I might add that I teach classical guitar a lot atm and the suggested fingerings for arpeggios etc are often very interesting and unfamiliar in how they aim to get separation between notes. Finger crossing and stuff like that can be for me quite odd as well.
    Sure you can play it like this, but does it feel and sound to you - smooth, articulated and funky? It is not kind of a line which is ok to be played sloppy (and live tempo usually is faster).
    Here is another one, our keyboard player wants us to end Tenor Madness like this (I don't know where did he get it from, not from a guitar I bet):

    Reg's Fingerings-screenshot-2021-03-04-23-30-01-png


    This one arguably tolerates some sloppiness, but still with rolling and economy picking/sweeping it is much more playable and natural (and thus sounds better).

    Of all Troy's interviews the most valuable to me is the one with a mandolin/guitar player (Andy Wood?) where he says that he hears a piece of music and then looks for a way to execute so it would sound right - making adjustments to technique, etc. The music drives the technique, not the other way around.

    I would say, actually this holds true to a certain extent for each of those accomplished players -- they were after a certain style/sound which defined their technique.

    The classical guitar is a very different instrument -- much higher action and effort/precision to get tone, very different sound and kind of music, naturally they have different approaches to the same sequences of notes.

    In a summary I would vote for keeping every bit of various techniques, also need to mention that they seem to help each other even when unrelated (sort of elasticity of brain/hands or something like that)

  51. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    This is a good example. I look at the notes and pick an area where they're playable. It wouldn't occur to me to think about a fingering pattern.
    I use this line as a theme for a reflection on guitarist's reality -- playing it in different positions, with various picking patterns and fingerings, feeling dissatisfied to certain extent everywhere Mostly I would sweep it and roll, but it depends on my mood (and I'm not anywhere close to sight read parts like this).

    I've once got an assignment from a teacher - to play a solo of Charlie Christian in Shivers. I liked horn parts even more than the CC's playing. So I've transcribed and - ouch how unnatural are those heavenly sounds for a guitar.