Caged help.

mark64

TDPRI Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2017
Posts
72
Age
69
Location
bronx new york
I asked my teacher how to go about learning the neck. He introduced me to the caged system. He showed me each shape and related it to the major scale. My question is what is a good book to start learning caged. I would prefer something thats easy to understand and put to use.
 

ghostchord

Tele-Holic
Joined
Aug 5, 2020
Posts
940
Location
Vancouver, BC, Canada
My 2 cents are that there's the understanding of how chords work, then there's understanding how they work with the guitar in general, then there's these "systems" like CAGED, then there's the actual internalizing of all that knowledge, relating it to scales etc. The best explanation of how chords work and how they work on the guitar that I've seen is this:


I highly recommend going through this series.

Once you got all that (and it might take some time) you should have no problem understanding that the open position C (the C in the CAGED) is the same chord as the A shape barre chord, as the G shape chord with its root on the C note (on the low E string) as the E shape barre chord with the root on C and finally as the D shape barre chord with the C on the 13th fret of the B string and then cycling back... phew. Now there's actually a lot more ways to play various C chords so it doesn't end there.

Then you want to figure out the relationship between these chords and the different scale positions.

Drilling all that into your fingers to the point you don't have to think about any of this is really the hard part IMO. At least for myself after many years of working on this I'm still part way there. Learning the neck is also about being able to tell what note every string on every position is, not just chords, that's something you can just practice once you have a basic understanding of how the guitar is organized.

Really the question is what's your objective in terms of your guitar playing? I.e. what are you trying to do. Learning theory in a vacuum doesn't necessarily further your objectives. If your goal is lead playing/improvising there's various paths and if your goal is rhythm there are again various paths.

EDIT: I realize I didn't answer your question about books. I think this is going to be very hard to learn from a book. I'm sure there must be some books...
 

G Stone496

Tele-Meister
Joined
Aug 2, 2022
Posts
191
Location
NYC
I asked my teacher how to go about learning the neck. He introduced me to the caged system. He showed me each shape and related it to the major scale. My question is what is a good book to start learning caged. I would prefer something thats easy to understand and put to use.

Fret Board Logic if it’s still around is how I learned CAGED.
Yeah, I used Fretboard Logic too. It’s a pretty good system. The first two books cover the Caged system pretty thoroughly. They’re pretty thin books with 34 and 58 pages each, so not as daunting as it seems. It took me a couple hours a day for about 3 months to get through both books and learn and really memorize the chords scales and arpeggios in all 5 positions.

AB802167-2661-45F4-8074-34F31070E86C.jpeg
43C7AD03-4B9B-456E-BC57-C6FA9B4AA131.jpeg
 

Texicaster

Friend of Leo's
Ad Free Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Posts
3,741
Location
It Varies.....
Careful!

CAGED can lock YOU you in a cage playing wise!

I wasted years playing out of those patterns as with TAB in emphasis' patterns instead of tones. It's cool as it gets you up and running quick but I think it can be a blind alley.

Better approach is just learned the danged fretboard and music theory!

Learn the major scale over 3 strings; NOT 6 strings!. It's a simple pattern. Now learn how the modes work. You don't have to learn a new pattern to play the Mixolydian; you just flatten the 7th degree! To learn most modes you're simply flattening/sharpening a note or two from the major scale.

I still recall my disappointment when visiting a friend who was a great guitar player. I thought I had advanced a great deal since I last saw him as I had "mastered" the CAGED pentatonics. He looked at me saying "you're just playing pentatonics".....

Remember practice doesn't make perfect it makes permanent....
 

Peegoo

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Oct 11, 2019
Posts
14,714
Location
Beast of Bourbon
The other thing is to learn all the notes on the fretboard.

On a 22-fret neck, there 132 note positions between the nut and the last fret (not counting the nut). If memorizing all those notes seems insurmountable to you, here’s a dead-easy way to learn them in less than a week, I guarantee. The very cool thing about this method is you have to memorize only 20 notes.

You already know the notes of the open strings at the nut (low to high: E, A, D, G, B, E). That also applies to the 12th fret, where everything starts over again as if from the nut.

Memorize the notes where the position markers are on the fretboard, between the nut and the 12th fret.

3rd fret: G, C, F, A#/Bb, D, G

5th fret: A, D, G, C, E, A

7th fret: B, E, A, D, F#/Gb, B

9th fret: C#/Db, F#, B, E, G#/Ab, C#

Yes, that's 24 notes, but one E string cancels out the other E string since they're the same, so the total number of memorized notes is 20.

At the 12th fret it starts all over (like from the nut) again from E, A, D, G, B, E.

Here's where things get really easy. Any note on a string that falls on an un-dotted fret position will be only one or two notes up or down from a note you already know, so after playing around with this for a week, all those notes you didn’t originally memorize will automatically fill themselves in. It’s pretty cool how easy it is when you approach it this way.

This takes an apparent mountain of information and distills it down to small bite-sized chunks you can totally master inside of a week.

Another really great side effect of learning the notes this way--across the strings--is it gets you away from linear thinking, e.g., every note on just one string, in order. This really helps unlock stuff like harmony and chord theory.
 

ASATKat

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Nov 16, 2018
Posts
6,188
Age
68
Location
next to the burn zone
I asked my teacher how to go about learning the neck. He introduced me to the caged system. He showed me each shape and related it to the major scale. My question is what is a good book to start learning caged. I would prefer something thats easy to understand and put to use.
The CAGED imo, doesn't really need a book. The CAGED simply shows how five chords connect as they go up the neck. C major, A major, G major, E major, and D Major. These are often called the cowboy chords or campfire chords because they are played in the open position, the beginner chords used in so many folk songs. Knowing these open position chords is an essential prerequisite to the CAGED.

Also it is called CAGED with all capital letters.

Lastly, CAGED chords is not really a method, it is by pure chance that these five chords spell CAGED as it ascends the neck up 12 frets, then it repeats starting at the 12th fret.
 

soundchaser59

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Posts
2,189
Location
Up The Creek
Careful!

CAGED can lock YOU you in a cage playing wise!

I wasted years playing out of those patterns as with TAB in emphasis' patterns instead of tones. It's cool as it gets you up and running quick but I think it can be a blind alley.

Better approach is just learned the danged fretboard and music theory!

Learn the major scale over 3 strings; NOT 6 strings!. It's a simple pattern. Now learn how the modes work. You don't have to learn a new pattern to play the Mixolydian; you just flatten the 7th degree! To learn most modes you're simply flattening/sharpening a note or two from the major scale.

I still recall my disappointment when visiting a friend who was a great guitar player. I thought I had advanced a great deal since I last saw him as I had "mastered" the CAGED pentatonics. He looked at me saying "you're just playing pentatonics".....

Remember practice doesn't make perfect it makes permanent....
It's not wrong to learn CAGED, just wrong to think of it as the final destination. It's a great start but one must expand on it from there.

Another thing that was a profound realization for me is the modes can also be played by starting the major scale on a different note. For example, the Db Major scale is also the same notes as the C Locrian scale. The next chord is C alt? Use a Db scale but start the fingering on C.

If I am recalling correctly.....
C Ionian is C Major.
C Locrian is the same as Db Major.
C Aeolian is the same as Eb Major.
C Mixolydian is the same as F Major.
C Lydian is the same as G Major.
C Phrygian is the same as Ab Major.
C Dorian is the same as Bb Major.
 

mark64

TDPRI Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2017
Posts
72
Age
69
Location
bronx new york
The other thing is to learn all the notes on the fretboard.

On a 22-fret neck, there 132 note positions between the nut and the last fret (not counting the nut). If memorizing all those notes seems insurmountable to you, here’s a dead-easy way to learn them in less than a week, I guarantee. The very cool thing about this method is you have to memorize only 20 notes.

You already know the notes of the open strings at the nut (low to high: E, A, D, G, B, E). That also applies to the 12th fret, where everything starts over again as if from the nut.

Memorize the notes where the position markers are on the fretboard, between the nut and the 12th fret.

3rd fret: G, C, F, A#/Bb, D, G

5th fret: A, D, G, C, E, A

7th fret: B, E, A, D, F#/Gb, B

9th fret: C#/Db, F#, B, E, G#/Ab, C#

Yes, that's 24 notes, but one E string cancels out the other E string since they're the same, so the total number of memorized notes is 20.

At the 12th fret it starts all over (like from the nut) again from E, A, D, G, B, E.

Here's where things get really easy. Any note on a string that falls on an un-dotted fret position will be only one or two notes up or down from a note you already know, so after playing around with this for a week, all those notes you didn’t originally memorize will automatically fill themselves in. It’s pretty cool how easy it is when you approach it this way.

This takes an apparent mountain of information and distills it down to small bite-sized chunks you can totally master inside of a week.

Another really great side effect of learning the notes this way--across the strings--is it gets you away from linear thinking, e.g., every note on just one string, in order. This really helps unlock stuff like harmony and chord theory.
Thanks. I am going to do this.
 

JDB2

Tele-Afflicted
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Posts
1,211
Location
Arizona
Check out Guitar Theory for Dummies. I bought a copy a couple weeks ago. It’s actually a really great book and it has a chapter on CAGED. Not a lot of exercises, just helpful explanations you can understand and then run with.
 

ghostchord

Tele-Holic
Joined
Aug 5, 2020
Posts
940
Location
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Yes, that's 24 notes, but one E string cancels out the other E string since they're the same, so the total number of memorized notes is 20.

Also use the octave patterns, then there's even less to memorize.

There's still a bit of a gap between being able to find a given note reasonably quickly and being able to internalize that with your playing. Like "know" what notes are part of any given chord including extensions/colours. knowing how they relate to the scale (where the 3rd and 5th and 7th are for any given scale) ... and being able to use that when improvising without thinking. That you can't do in a week (or if there's a way nobody told me yet).
 

hnryclay

Tele-Holic
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Posts
780
Age
42
Location
Virginia
Yeah, CAGED is a fine way to help remember patterns. I would recomend instead you learn what makes the major scale, and how to play it in every key all over the neck. Then play it in 3rds, which would allow you to play arpeggios all over the neck. It really doesent matter how you learn the fretboard, but if you want to play it is a necessity. It will hit you like a bilt of lightning one day when you are riding down the road listening to a song and you hear the chords, and are playing the song in your head. It juat takes time and practice.
 

kbold

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Jul 21, 2015
Posts
3,174
Location
Australia
CAGED is a representation of a single triad chord that can be played in different positions on the fretboard.
For example C triad = C-E-G
C open chord = C (the rest are barred chords)
A shape at the 3rd fret = C
G shape at the 5th fret = C
E shape at the 8th fret = C
D shape at the 10th fret = C

For reasons mentioned above, I prefer not to think of it in scale form.
For scales, better to learn the diatonic scales.
 

Keithr41

TDPRI Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Posts
45
Location
Oregon
I learned the CAGED system years ago and never really got it until I started studying Triads. That’s where the fret board really opened up for me and the CAGED system makes perfect sense now. If I were you I’d forgo the book and learn your major and minor triads in all inversions. Once I figured it out the fret board was WAAAAAY less confusing.
 




Top