3 Notes Per String Major Scales

This lesson is a complete breakdown of the 7 scale forms created when you arrange a major scale for 3 notes per string. This lesson combined with the "Understanding Keys" lesson can be used to learn the complete guitar neck in all keys.

This is the first lesson dealing with major scales arranged for the 3-notes per string. I believe this method is the best to completely visualize scales in all keys across the neck.

Memorizing these shapes and combining them with the knowledge of Major Keys will provide an incredible resource to open up the guitar neck in ways that you can hardly imagine.

The next couple of lessons in the Advanced Guitar Series will be technical exercises using these 3-notes per string scales shapes, then after we get a good handle of them we will begin to start our visualization lessons.

So be patient and start memorizing these forms. And don't forget to get the PDF of the lesson.

3-Notes Per String Major Scales PDF

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3 Notes Per String Major Scales


  1. larrywjr says:

    Hey Carl, great stuff but I am confusing myself. I’m probably over thinking or being plain dense but …
    Using the pdf as a reference we are starting at 7th fret – Root is B, Shape built from the root makes sense to me but when we do the shape from 2nd tone (C#) the third note is a D and not in the B-Major scale. I know you said not to focus on a particular key but seeing this creates a doubt in me as to my basic understanding.

    • Carl Brown says:

      Hey Larry, this particular lesson doesn’t deal with visualization of keys or anything like that. It is simply trying to keep you in just one area of the fretboard and memorizing how to physically play all seven forms before you start throwing them into keys.

      You will see the major scale visualization exercises which will take care of that.

      Every scale form on this PDF is in fact in a completely different key. Since the scale forms all start on B the keys would be:

      Root Form: B major
      2nd Degree Form: A major
      3rd Degree Form: G major
      4th Degree Form: F# major
      5th Degree Form: E major
      6th Degree Form: D major
      7th Degree Form: C major

      Does this make more sense now?

      • larrywjr says:

        Hi Carl, Thanks for the quick response. It now makes sense. I hadn’t realized that the exercise intentionally switched keys so I got confused.

        Thanks again.

        P.S. The understanding keys – which I studied a while back was probably the clearest and most informative I’ve ever run across. I refer to it often.

  2. Andrew Walker says:

    this is great stuff, i havent seen a lesson on modes so simplified and compartmentalized. ive always understood the concept but havent found a good practice routine until now. thanks again man, keep em comin.

  3. Andrew Walker says:

    petrucci has a good 3 notes per string lesson but i dont remember him making the modes so easy to visualize.

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