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Watch the The Vertical C Major Scale online guitar lesson by Frank Vignola from Modern Method for Guitar

We start with a 1-octave C major scale and work up to a 3-octave scale. After we cover some basic scales, I will show you how to make up your own fingerings. Since it is important to be able to play both vertically and horizontally, we will cover both, beginning with the vertical approach, and then horizontal method.

1. Build the major scale by starting on a key note and applying the following formula: whole step, whole step, half step, whole step, whole step, whole step, half step.

2. Start with the basic vertical major scale beginning on the C at the 3rd fret of the 5th string as demonstrated in the video and written in the notation that follows.

Next we learn how to find other fingerings.

3. Place your first finger on the same C.

4. Play a one octave C scale beginning with your 1st finger, hunting down the notes that make up the C scale.

5. Next, fret the same C with your 2nd finger and repeat the exercise. Using a different digit to start the scale forces you to come up with an alternative fingering.

6. Next, start with your 3rd finger and play a C scale.

7. Finally, start with your 4th finger and play a C scale.

8. Use this same approach with every C note on the guitar.

9. After you do the 1-octave scales, connect them to build 2-octave scales.

10. Then, do 3-octave scales.

11. Use this approach to find several ways to play scales, arpeggios and chords in upcoming studies.

12. After playing in the key of C, take the major scale around the cycle of fourths with the goal of playing in all 12 keys.