Welcome to another installment of “Intense Guitar!” I’m just getting back from Frankfurt, Germany for the MusikMesse. I’m writing this column while flying from Frankfurt to New York, NY. Laptops are a great thing! This month I’d like to continue looking at “intervallic designs.”
Before we do that, I’m sure you guys and gals are eager to know where March’s typo was for the Spectraflex Cable giveaway. First off, the winner (drum roll, please) is Raymond Hockenberry from Atlanta, Georgia. Raymond guessed the correct answer – the Hindustan scale does not have six notes to the octave, as stated, but seven. Ray is the winner of a 25’ Spectraflex braided cable – the best cables in the world - in his choice of color! Congrats Raymond.
Alrighty, this month we’re looking at intervals once more, in the same vein we looked at last month. We’re simply taking intervals within the seven diatonic modes and putting them in sequences. This month we’ll take the 1st, 2nd, 4th and 6th from each mode and play them successively in three octave patterns.
Now the cool thing about these patterns is that there are only two notes to a string. So, if you picked it out, it’d be like playing a pentatonic scale. The challenging part comes when you have to switch positions with the fretting hand. With that being said, the good news is the fretting hand maintains the same fingering per octave. This is a great way to cover a lot of territory across the fretboard and also puts some intervals within your solos. Playing in “box” patterns can get a little boring and redundant, so playing intervallically really makes things interesting and breaks up the monotony.
Last month I mentioned guys like Joe Diorio and Steve McNight of Cry Wolf using these patterns, but a few other players include George Lynch, Allan Holdsworth, Bill Conners, Al DiMeola, the late Django Reinhardt and the late great Shawn Lane.
As I said in the last issue, these patterns are all taken from the seven diatonic modes. Keeping in stride with last month’s column, I’ve written these in the key of Em/Gmaj. The fingerings are pretty selfexplanatory but you should pay particular attention to the fourth fingering – that’s the fingering people find to be the most challenging. Like most patterns, these fingerings are not “set in stone,” so feel free to experiment with other ideas. These are only fingerings that I personally suggest checking out.
That about wraps it up for this month. For those of you wanting to contact me with suggestions for future columns, contests or just wanting to say hello, you can email me at email@example.com, and check out my MySpace at myspace.com/toshiiseda. Thanks for tuning in and for all the great emails – they’re greatly appreciated! We’ll see you next month. As always, “who dares wins!”
Toshi Iseda is an Alumnus of the prestigeous Berklee College of Music and the American Conservatory of Music. He has been featured in Guitar Player, Guitar World and Guitar/Guitar One Magazines, and is a former instructor at the National Guitar Workshop and former instructor at the American Institute of Guitar.