Saturday, November 2, 2013

Numbering Fretboard Patterns

 Hi Brett,

I have been working through your "Guitar Fretboard Workbook" for almost a year now.  I really enjoy your method and have learned so much.  I have seen other books where the authors use 5 patterns or root shapes to map out the fretboard as you do in this book.  For example, "(title)" from (author), has this on page 4 of his book.  However, when I saw this I became confused because his "pattern 3" is your "pattern 1" and his pattern 5 is your pattern 2, etc.  He states that he defines his patterns based on the Key of C (6th string root note of C).  I would be happy to email you a copy of this page if you would like to comment.  I simply want to learn the correct way, if there is only one correct way that is.

Thank you,

Hi Keith,

Thanks for getting this book and working with it. I'm glad it's helping you.

The numbering system it uses can in some ways be considered arbitrary, as you correctly imply. However the system as it is in GFW is more common and increasing in popularity with most teachers over time.

The numbers correlate to CAGED, the open position chords that each successive shape resembles as you move C roots up the neck starting from open position.

C = 1
A = 2

If you play a pattern 2 C chord (barre chord at the 3rd fret, root on string 5) you will see it corresponds to an open-position A chord.

I'm sure you understand this and just want to make sure that this method of numbering is more useful. In fact either way could conceivably work just as well in the abstract. But if you consider that more guitars players you converse with in the future will use this method than most others, it's the way to go.

Just as if 100,000 years ago we all had started using the word "blue" to refer to what we know now as "red," we'd all be in agreement and the result would be the same: clear thought and communication.

For guitar players, that historical neanderthal moment is now!

Thanks again,

Barrett Tagliarino

Barrett Tagliarino