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Discussion Starter #1
It took me a long time to memorize the names of the notes on the fretboard...a really long time. Probably because it is boring and I lack discipline.

I found this tool that might make the task easier for someone like myself who hates drudgery but likes a challenge. I wish I had something like this back in the day:

Fretboard Trainer | Free Online Learning Software
 

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I’ve got an app called Fretronome. There was a nice app that didn’t make it to iOS 10 called Fret Surfer, the main advantage being in that app you could limit the number of frets it questioned you on.

On another forum there is a thread where I posted about the three or more months I did this exercise, it was very effective:

My teacher told me about this exercise many times. Once a day, every day do this: Play every note up the board on every string. Hit the note and then say the note out loud, look at it. Don't cheat, say it out loud. If you do this every day [I can't remember what duration he would say, I think for one month], you will know the board and never forget it. And then he would add that he had told every student he'd ever had to do this and none had ever accomplished it.

It's surprisingly similar to the way I was taught the first five frets by my first guitar teacher in school, and I know those. It's so much easier to be forced to do it in a class. I remember we were learning from the Mel Bay book, a string each week, and by the sixth week we were dreading the start of class. He would take the whole class through the exercise, first string, open --- e, first fret --- f, third fret --- g, OK now the second string...torture!
One month was not enough, I’m sure now my teacher had said 90 days, and no one had done more than a month.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I can find them on that app but it doesn’t translate into memorizing them on a real fretboard.
I used a different method personally, so I can't really comment on that. But I am curious why you feel that way? Do you have problems relating other scale or chord diagrams to the fb as well, or just this diagram? Doesn't seem any different to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)

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. Do you have problems relating other scale or chord diagrams to the fb as well, or just this diagram? Doesn't seem any different to me.
I think it’s bcs I have to interact with the app as opposed just look at a diagram and connect that mentally to the fb.

Kinda like how a keyboard gets in the way of flowing ideas onto paper whereas a pencil doesn’t.
 

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I think it’s bcs I have to interact with the app as opposed just look at a diagram and connect that mentally to the fb.

Kinda like how a keyboard gets in the way of flowing ideas onto paper whereas a pencil doesn’t.
So the interaction is basically a distraction or even a learning impediment for you. Interesting take. I thought it looked like a great idea, but I guess not for everyone. And if there is one person who feels the way you do, there are probably a lot more.

Maybe for guys like you it would be more useful if you could communicate the note through the guitar on demand. eg play E on the G string.
 

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Yeah there’s a lot of people I know that are 20 years younger than me who still use a pen and paper to brain storm ideas as they come rather than use a keyboard even though they can touch type a lot of words per minute. The pen is like part of your hand where as the keyboard you have to think about.

And yeah I can find notes on the neck easy enough but usually I’m playing in the various boxes and go be ear.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
And yeah I can find notes on the neck easy enough but usually I’m playing in the various boxes and go be ear.
If you can identify the names of the notes by ear, learning them by position would be redundant anyway. :)
 

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If you can identify the names of the notes by ear, learning them by position would be redundant anyway. :)
I don’t always know what the name of the notes are by ear I just know what key I’m in and play what sounds right or mess around until I find something that fits. I figure most of us can probably do that and same with chords you can hear if it’s a minor chord or a 7th whatever.

Used to jam with a mandolin player who had trained as a piano tuner he had perfect pitch and could name the notes by ear.
 

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I don’t always know what the name of the notes are by ear I just know what key I’m in and play what sounds right or mess around until I find something that fits. I figure most of us can probably do that and same with chords you can hear if it’s a minor chord or a 7th whatever.
Ahhh I see.

Used to jam with a mandolin player who had trained as a piano tuner he had perfect pitch and could name the notes by ear.
That would be sweet.
 

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I’ve heard that having perfect pitch can be a pain in the ass and you end up being pissed off all the time because all the mere mortals that you jam with are out just a little bit out and it drives you nuts.
 

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I’ve heard that having perfect pitch can be a pain in the ass and you end up being pissed off all the time because all the mere mortals that you jam with are out just a little bit and it drives you nuts.
I'd deal with it ;-)
 
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I'll try the game out.. this is sadly something that I still haven't taught myself in 20 years.. I've never gone far beyond easy power chord songs I can just find tab for on the internet or are easy enough for me to figure out myself.
I can determine the notes on the fretboard when I have to, just not quickly. There's "anchor notes" that I do know, and I just find the closest one and count from there.
For the last little while I've been trying to learn modes.. but without the ability to quickly determine which note I'm on or need to get to.. It is nothing more than learning shapes that I can't actually work with.
 

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For the last little while I've been trying to learn modes.. but without the ability to quickly determine which note I'm on or need to get to.. It is nothing more than learning shapes that I can't actually work with.
It took me forever to understand what was actually going on with modes. I will pass on my experience to try to help you. If someone had told me this it would have saved me a lot of time. Take it for what t is worth...you can decide that part. ;-)

I was given a VHS by my brother called 'Modes: No More Mysteries' by Frank Gambale. I was super stoked to get into it when I first fired it up. About 1/2 an hour into it I realized I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. It was depressing and I almost didn't bother because I realized how little I knew and how much hard work I needed to do if I wanted to learn this stuff. Not only about modes but music theory in general. I hate hard work and I am lazy...but I love guitar and I am stubborn.

One thing that I actually understood from the video was when FG said the reason most people don't understand modes is because they aren't taught modal chord progressions. So that was a clue. If I wasn't jamming to modal chord progressions I wasn't going to learn to play modal lead lines. I also realized It was going to be a fool's errand to try to learn 'the modes of the major scale' without complete knowledge of the major scale, which I did not have. I was mostly a Pentatonic guy who combined the Maj/Min Pentatonic scales/boxes and added in 'colour notes' I picked up from learning solos off of records.

So my first task was to learn the major scale inside out. I began to memorize the C Maj scale. A,B,C,D,E.F and G. This is also a great way to memorize the names of the notes. Kind of a two birds with one stone thing. I was comfortable playing in certain A minor pentatonic boxes, so I learned the C maj scale notes in those positions first. Those notes are also all the notes in A minor, so that was helpful in itself. Doing it in smaller chunks that way still gave me lots of time to have fun noodling or whatever and wasn't as daunting. I needed that because I lack discipline too lol.

I was fortunate to have a programmable sequencer at that time so I could program rhythms to jam to. FG was teaching parallel modes(modes from different keys with the same root), but that was way more than I could get my head around so I took the method he offered and programmed rhythms to accommodate just the modes of the C Major scale. To do that I had to learn the intervals. That isn't too hard.

His method was to use the IV and V chord from the 'parent key' of the mode you wanted to play, and use a chord from the same key as a root chord to give it its 'modal' tonality. I was looking at C so I was using F Maj and G Maj as the IV/V. I started with a D Dorian progression so I used with D minor as the root chord and use the F and G chords to make he rest of the rhythm. Next I wanted an A Aeolean progression I used A Minor as the root with the same V and IV. Then I used E minor for an E Phrygian progression.

This worked great to get the modal tonality in the background. To solo over it I just used the notes of C Maj. I had to 'feel my way around at first, but my ear guided me.

I did the same thing for the major modes and the method works well for the Ionian mode. But for the Lydian and Mixolydian modes I had to use either the IV or V chord twice. Not ideal because FG's method was for parallel modes, not modes in the same key but it still worked. If I wanted to use the parallel mode method I would have had to know the notes in six more keys and I was nowhere near that.

If it worked for me, it will work for anyone, trust me. ;-)
 

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I've never been a 'student of the guitar' - I've just played them forever. Haven't had a guitar lesson since I was 12. When I was a teenager I was a serious student of the bass. I learned the fretboard by drawing lines on paper. 4 strings, 12 frets. Then I'd write in the notes, including the open strings. No sharps or flats because if you write down A & G it's pretty obvious where A# is. Also pretty obvious what goes on after the 12th fret.

I think it helped and I learned the board pretty quickly. Can't remember how many pieces of paper I went through but I remember doing it many times for a few months. I didn't look at the apps mentioned above but I think the act of putting pencil to paper while you think about it is a pretty good way to learn things. Worked for me anyway.

Choosing a note and then trying to find that note all over the neck is also good for you.
 
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