Before tackling this course, you should be comfortable with all the material from The G CAGED Shape

It is now time to tackle all the shapes at the same time! This simply means that we will be choosing one part of the fretboard and working in that same position to bring in all the minor CAGED shapes. This is where we really start to dive into the GOLD of using the CAGED chord systemand we’ll start to see the massive benefits of doing so. Let’s get started!

Lesson 21: The Chords

The first part of our mission is to lay out the chords in one part of the neck. You can, in theory, choose absolutely anywhere for this, and eventually you’ll be able to do it all over the neck, but for now we will choose one position. That position will be based around the 5th fret. We are using the same chord progression, as shown here:

Am, Em, Bm, F#m, C#m, G#m.

Therefore, our positions, all in this part of the neck, will be as follows. Our first task is simply to get these positions learnt and in our head.

A Minor [E Shape]

E Minor [C Shape]

B Minor [G Shape]

F# Minor [D Shape]

C# Minor [A Shape]

G# Minor [E Shape]

Lesson 22: Layering!

Let’s now take it one stage further and layer all of those chords and scales together! We’ll do the same as we have done so far, which is to take the chords and now add the layers on top of them. We’ve written out all of the diagrams for you here, and your only task is to play them, nothing fancier than that! Just find them and get through them, the creativity comes next!

A Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [E Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 1]

Minor Scale [Box 1]

E Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [C Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 3]

Minor Scale [Box 53]

B Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [G Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 5]

Minor Scale [Box 5]

F# Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [D Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 2]

Minor Scale [Box 2]

C# Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [A Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 4]

Minor Scale [Box 4]

G# Minor (click to expand)

Minor Arpeggio [E Shape]

Minor Pentatonic [Box 1]

Minor Scale [Box 1]

Lesson 23: Playing Melodically

Now we’ll really take this up a notch and see how melodically you can play over this progression. The key things to note are once again pointed out below. The more subtle you can make those transitions the better! Good luck, and enjoy the process!

    Top Tips

  • 1. Use the arpeggios to target the key tones of the chord as you change to a new key.
  • 2. Visualise the chord box to find the key, but don’t necessarily play it!
  • 3. Play simple melodies using the scales provided. No need to overcomplicate this!
  • 4. Take your time, and accept that there will be many mistakes! This is a creative process, and therefore you will have good days and bad days with it. Keep working at it and you’ll gradually reduce those bad days!

Lesson 24: Test!!

Let’s have a bit of fun in this lesson, and test me! Dan's on camera with Ollie throwing chords at him left right and centre. This is full blown on camera testing, mistakes and all. This is a real fun challenge for you to try with random backing tracks or a friend if you have a guitar buddy. Enjoy!

Materials: Backing Track

Here's the track Dan plays along with in the videos. Once you're comfortable with the concept try it yourself!

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

Major & Minor

Now we will get to the ultimate application of everything we have learnt in this course and our previous major chord course.