The major scale is the foundation of a learning the neck of the
guitar. There are a few different ways of organizing the major
scale on the neck, but by far the most common and easiest to visualize
is the CAGED Scale System. These scale forms are based around
the basic open position major chords C, A, G, E and D. By using
these chords shapes, you will be able to keep track of the different
Make sure that you learn how major
scales are constructed. Understanding the theory, as well
as learning the physical shapes will help you put these into use
For the purposes of demonstration, the examples will be for a
G major scale. All of the notes that are circled in red are the
root of the scale/chord (G)
G major scale, based around the E chord form
This is the most common fingering
for a major scale. It is usually the first one that is learned
by most guitar players. In order to train your ear to hear
the notes in relationship to the root, it is a good idea as
part of your practice routine to hold the root note a little
longer that the other notes.
This is a movable major chord shape,
based on an open E. Played at the 3rd fret this is a G chord.
Keep in mind that there is a difference between being based
on a particular chord shape, and the actual chord sound.
This scale form is built around this movable
major chord shape, and is sometimes referred to as the E form
(CAG E D)of the
major scale. It is not an E major scale, It is a G major scale
based around the basic E major chord shape.