# C Major Scale, One Octave

Most people recognize the sound of do-re-mi-fa-so-la-te-do, and that's exactly what I'm teach to you to play in this lesson.

We'll start with our index finger in the 5th fret of the G-string. Next up we'll play the 7th fret with our 3rd finger. Take your time with that!

Now we'll move up to the B-string and start with our index finger in the 5th fret. Next up we'll add the 6th fret of the B-string, played with our middle finger. Next up we'll grab the 8th fret of the same string with our pinkie.

As much as possible, try to avoid your fingers flailing all over the place. Try to keep them steady and ready to go. Now we'll switch to the high E-string and start with our index finger in the 5th fret. Next up we'll add the 7th fret. Now we'll finish our pattern with our pinkie in the 8th fret.

Take your time with that, and once you're ready you can try playing it backwards like this.

If you're up for an extra challenge, you can try alternating between upstrokes and downstrokes in your right hand. Play the scale very slowly so you can focus on your picking hand without messing up the fretting hand. If you want to play the scale backwards, make sure you play the highest note one more time.

Now let's count the notes. There are only 7 notes in the major scale, so once we reach our 8th step in the scale it's just the first note repeating, only a higher version of the same note! This relationship is called an octave. Because it's the 8th step in the scale and the prefix 'oct-' means 8.

If this concept is confusing you, try to imagine a grown man and a child singing a song together beautifully. They're singing the same melody but one voice is low and the other is high. That's because they're singing the same melody in different octaves.

If you think of your do-re-mi-fa-so-la-te-do. It ends on 'do' again but up in the higher octave. We'll talk much more about the octaves as we go through the course, and I'm very confident it'll all make sense to you soon.

Now let's practice this scale together really slowly. First we'll go up the scale. And then without pausing we'll pick the top note again and go back down. I'm going to do all downstrokes, but you're welcome to try the alternating up and downstrokes if you have the extra capacity for it.

I'll do a one-bar count-in and then we'll play a note for every quarter note, meaning every number I count. Feel free to just watch and listen a couple of times before you start playing along.

Instructor Anders Mouridsen
Tutorial:
One Scale, Thousands of Melodies
Styles:
Any Style
Difficulty:

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6 months ago
How can you tell which finger to use when looking at the TAB? The info seems to only show which fret# and which string to play but not which finger to use..
Mike Olekshy 6 months ago

Hello - thanks for the question! Unfortunately the TAB will not usually tell you which finger to use. A good rule of thumb is to look for the lowest fret (in this case, the fifth fret), and assign your index finger to that one. Then assign, the middle to the next fret up, etc. So in this case, the ring finger would fret the 7th fret, and the pinky would fret the 8th fret. This won't always be the case, as sometimes you might have to stretch your fingers across the frets, or even change position. But overall, this is a good general approach. Hope this helps!

9 months ago
The G string on my guitar is in tune (according to my Korg) but when I play it on 5th & 7th frets it sounds out of tune for this scale. Yet if I drop down and use 4th & 6th it is perfectly in tune. I have checked on-line and there is loads about the G string being an issue but I can't work out what the best course of action is. I have a Yamaha c40 classical (if that helps at all)
Josh Workman 9 months ago

Yes, this is quite common with classical guitars and often has to do with the distance between the nut and saddle, sting tension, and a few other things. Are your strings kind of old? Have you noticed the problem after a while or has it always been like that. I suggest bringing it to a repair person and having them assess what can be done. Sometimes the saddle can be reshaped to compensate for intonation issues.

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