Before tackling this course, you should be comfortable with all the material from Episode 17 - Q&A Special 1

Summary: Theory Fun!

In this episode we discuss theory in a bit more detail, including information on diatonic chords, cadences and soloing within a key. Don't worry, there is nothing scary here!

    Opening Jam: John Mayer Style

    If you loved that jam track that we opened up the lesson with, you can find it as part of our full John Mayer player study, which is available here tottaly free: John Mayer Player Study.

Diatonic Chords: The building blocks

The boys kick off with some basics, leading up to building a diatonic key. The first thing we need is to take our major scale. When you construct a key, you take the scale (in our case we'll be using the major scale) and build a chord from each of the 7 notes of that scale. The chord that you build can only use notes that are on that scale. For example, if you are using the key of C major, all of the chords must be built from the notes within the scale of C major. This is why the chords within the key of C major all work together and can be classed as being in the same key. Here is the formula you can apply to any major scale:

major, minor, minor, major, major, minor, diminished

So here is an example of that in practice using the D major scale and that formula to create the key of D major. Try playing through all of these chords on the guitar and you will hear how they all 'work' together!

    More detail: Go A Little deeper

    If you want to really get to grips with this theory stuff, and specifically creating a key, this is definately the course you need: Theory Course, and then move onto this: Scale harmonisation.

Lead: Using Scale Theory

When we see guitar players jamming, there is an understanding of theory taking place. The person playing the chords understands the theory above. The lead player knows that, because the chords are all diatonic, and built from the scale, they can simply use those scale notes to solo with. In the example Thomas and Andy use, they are playing a C major to F major and using the C major scale over the top (shown below).

Ready to move on? Remember to check out every lesson in this unit first – then try the next unit...

Episode 19 - How to Play Funk Guitar

In this episode we'll be taking a look at funk guitar and the techniques you need to learn the style. We'll take a look at a Jackson 5, Chic and Daft Punk track to get you in the funky mood!