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Becoming a Guitar Hero One Pentatonic Scale at a Time

You've searched high and low for a way to learn to play the guitar, in a manner that suits your lifestyle, gives you flexibility yet provides you with a similar experience that a live, professional guitar teacher would.

You found Guitarwaze and are intrigued. Motion technology capturing a live teacher? Voice control for you to instruct the program with your speech alone? Structured lessons, curated by a professional classical guitarist, with over 40 years experience? Sounds amazing, but what is it you will learn exactly?

We have a course curriculum which details exactly what will be covered in each level.

You'll read and hear about scales, arpeggios, etudes and dominant seventh chords.

You may not have thought that learning to play an instrument involves learning a foreign language, but music is a language of its own, both emotionally and mentally. But fear not, it's still music and therefore an absolute delight.

To begin with you'll probably find it interesting what certain words or phrases mean and what sort of benefit learning them on your instrument will have. We have chosen 3 technical terms that will be of interest and use to you.

1. Pentatonic Scale

The Pentatonic Scale is a sequence of 5 tones per Octave, as opposed to 7 tones per Octave, for example, (Remember the Sound of Music's "Do, re, mi..."? That's a 7 tone Octave). Many civilisations have independently developed such scales over millenia. They are said to be a natural sequence that our brains hear and consider harmonious. "Our brain is inherently wired to know the pentatonic scale", said Bobby McFerrin.

There are several shapes of pentatonic scales, or 5 tone sequences, to learn, starting in different positions. They are an amazing exercise for your fingers and are used in almost every song. Knowing them, will give you a good foundation for improvisation and a basis for expanding beyond the 5 notes, to 6 and 7 notes scales and more.

When you know what scales are used in a song, you can go up and down the scales as you please and make the tune sound amazing, letting your creativity flow up and down the fingerboard.

2. Arpeggio

The term Arpeggio, means playing a chord one note at a time as single notes. An Arpeggio is placed in note order and played as a unique shape. They are used to play melodies and solos among other things and learning these will again, give you a range of melodic options and skill to improvise at your own leisure.

3. Dominant Seventh Chords

The Dominant Seventh Chords are chords that begin on the 5th tone of a scale and are built in steps of 3, and made up of 4 tones. If you use the C scale, you would start at G (the 5th tone of the C scale), add B, D and end with F. When you play these 4 notes you will find that you'll expect some sort of "release" at the end. It's a tension builder and studying these chords allows you to provide a pleasing end to a musical phrase, or to introduce a new key.

Practicing, and ultimately mastering those techniques will simply give you the skill to play your instrument more freely. It will help you understand how music is structured on the guitar, and allow you to experiment and truly PLAY. You will no longer be confined to a sheet that lists chords that you follow, but will have the skill to create, to improvise and do as you please, through a deeper insight into music and your guitar.

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