What CAGED shapes for running licks?

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by slinger, Oct 27, 2014.

  1. jmclaren

    jmclaren Tele-Holic

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    I agree. Well said.
     
  2. P Thought

    P Thought Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I nominate this thread for 2014 Thread of the Year honors.

    6 (strings) x 17 (notes, open or readily reachable on my acoustic dread) = 102 reachable note positions on the fretboard, all this within a 3-octave range, at least for E-G#. Divide 102 by 12, and each note has 9 or 10 locations, with those in their 2 or 3 octaves.

    Why can't I memorize those? I don't know. Faulty memory, personality disorder, aversion to work. . .I'm working on it.

    Meanwhile my mediocre ability to use the nether regions of the neck has come from learning the five repeating, sequential patterns made by the notes of the major scale, and realizing that no matter where I locate them (according to the key I wish to use) the patterns and their sequence will remain constant. I further realized that the pentatonic scales were easily located within each of the five patterns, and that they "cross" in songs kind of like a harmonica does. . . .

    Funny, boneyguy, I learned these from a boy in my English class, who never uttered the C-word, and learning them was my first experience with playing single notes, after 30 years strumming chords down by the nut. So now I'm another blind man, and this is the way I have to see the elephant. I'm a curious blind man, though, and I am working to find other ways to see it. Octaves are big, I know. I still have to think to locate the tonic/octave notes in each pattern, even though I know they are there, and they don't change their locations. I am working to cement the "tonic" spots in my visual picture: I would like to see them all automatically as I view the fretboard, the way I know you do.

    The main cowboy chord shapes that give the "system" its easy-to-remember name are fairly clear to me now, in association with the several patterns in which they occur. What I'd like to do is locate two- or three-note patterns within each pattern that give me a range of usable I-vii chords: I know they're there, because intervals are intervals, are intervals. Why haven't I done that? I don't know. Faulty memory, personality disorder, aversion to work. . .I'm working on it.

    Anyway, I'm not a great guitarist, and might never be one, but I'm a durn sight better for having picked up the "CAGED system", and as a blind man, I really appreciate every opportunity to hear everyone else's perspective on the fretboard, which I consider a mystical totem. I want to express my sincere thanks to each and every one of you.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2014
  3. slinger

    slinger Friend of Leo's

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    P Thought } I nominate this thread for 2014 Thread of the Year honors.



    :oops:..I would like to thank the TDPRI for this award...I remember just starting on guitar and not knowing anything...now years later,many hours of hard work and determination..I know for sure,...I don't know anything!...thank you!..:lol:
     
  4. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    It is easy to memorize a small set of these. And it is just as easy to memorize another small set of these. Where this breaks down is in using these day after day after day. I could recommend something like work on these for 15 minutes a day for 6 months or a year, but for many people, that 15 minutes could represent half of one's practice time.
     
  5. larryk52

    larryk52 TDPRI Member

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    Long time lurker, first time poster here!

    This massive thread on the CAGED system caught my eye. I've been playing off and on for 50 years, but seriously for just the past five. I love to look for great deals on Craigslist as well as setting them up to play better, repairing the electronics and even strumming a few chords.

    But I come closer to quitting the darn things and burning my picks whenever I'm confronted with this CAGED system. I have tried via the internet (including Justin's excellent site) and the Fretboard Logic book (sent it back to Amazon) and while I know how to form the chords in the positions, I just can't see how that translates into a solo. It seems to me the best thing to do is learn every note on the fretboard; that way you know where the octaves are.

    I appreciate the hard work and ideas put forth in this thread, and I hope to contribute to the forum in the future (if I'm not run out of town on a guitar neck for doubting the CAGED system) but there's a huge barrier between me and this system that I just can't get past nor understand how knowing the way to make chords up and down the neck (some in very painful positions!) lends itself to playing a tasty solo.

    I think it's rhythm guitar for me and just forget about ever playing lead.

    Any help appreciated via the forum or IM. Thanx.
     
  6. slinger

    slinger Friend of Leo's

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    Welcome ..larryk52..I agree caged is not magic..you have to have the ideas of licks..but I find the Ideas flow better in certain chord positions (for me anyway) Im just an ear player...but..I have met some very good pickers over the years also with little theory and asked them ..how do you do it?..they all have said..I just work out of positions..which was no help to me at all..till years later I realized they are working out of chord positions (CAGED)...I have also found the chord is the map..anywhere you are trying to go is in the chord tones..also if you find some position is impossible...youre in the wrong shape..I don't know what Im doing ..but I hope this helps.:lol:
     
  7. midnight340

    midnight340 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I apologize up front if I've got some of this wrong…. but let me try a description of what this seems to be in my view, and i'm open to correction if need be.

    First of all, I'm fairly new to all this, ...a couple of years in (working through Justin's courses and such) but all the confusion here (for some) seems to stem from the whole Cxxxx "system" being used like a name of "something," or a "system" so it's either intimidating, or seems a mysterious esoteric knowledge.

    It ain't anything…it's just the fretboard designed so that in standard tuning there are interlocking patterns. Nothing more… and when you get how the fretboard design can be seen as one big interlocking pattern, you can move around better.

    Here's my take on what gets misunderstood: The guitar is laid out so that there's this big pattern…as was stated earlier, kinda "like a piano"… every so often there are three black keys, a little further down there are three more black keys, etc. You can play something, move it up and change the key, or far enough and it's the same key, but a different octave.

    On the guitar, up by the nut there are those basic chords we all learn on. They can be laid out in a string in a big pattern, one next to another. C then A then G then E then D. This whole pattern can be moved, changing the key, and the original chord shapes can make different chords (depending on where the pattern is shifted.)

    Everything happens on this pattern. Whether playing chords, or playing scales, or improvising solos, or whatever, . The Cxxxx (CAGED) map just tells you where the chord patterns are, how they interlock, and where the whole things starts to repeat. It's one big pattern that you can move up and down… and moving it changes the key. And whether you play chords on this map (fretboard design pattern), or play scales on this map, or break all the rules on this map, it's still an accurate map to travel by.

    It's just kinda handy to have this map in your head…. whatever you're up to!!

    Did I get this right? More or less?
     
  8. boneyguy

    boneyguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    Yup, I'd say you understand exactly what it (the thing that shall not be named) is.
     
  9. larryk52

    larryk52 TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Unfortunately, I still don't understand how to use the system in trying to play a solo. Seem like I would have to go, okay, I'm in C-Major. I can play around at this position down here, or go up there, but first I have to figure out if the part of the neck I"m playing in requires an E shape or a D shape or whatever, and then remember where the chord tones are. Meanwhile, whatever lousy band would have me is waiting for me to figure out the first notes of a solo.

    If this system works for you, that's terrific, but even though I know the chord shapes up and down the fretboard, I have no idea how to put it to use. I think I'll forget about C-you-know-what and concentrate on knowing the notes on the fretboard and the notes in the chords.

    All the best.
     
  10. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    When you internalize something, you no longer think about it, you just *do*.
     
  11. Newbie Brad

    Newbie Brad Tele-Meister

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    For each of those basic open chords which are the shapes, what finger is root, what finger is the third, what finger is the fifth, any other fingered or open notes? What are they within the chord. Then when you make the CAGED pattern with all the chord inversions laid out end to end it won't seem trouble at all, you will see the repetitions of notes easily. It's nothing but information, you can interpret and communicate information many different ways and still get a great result. Best wishes to you and respects Larryk52.
     
  12. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    This is what I do.
     
  13. bloomz

    bloomz Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    Dang I wish I could get to that point.


    I heard someone call it "the freedom point".
     
  14. Ian T

    Ian T Tele-Afflicted

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    I find the aversion to seeing the CAGED layout to be puzzling.

    It is so simple. After all, we all know the "cowboy chords" already. That's all it is.

    Well, there are the pentatonics that correspond. We all know "the box". I really can't think of a good argument why anyone shouldn't be able to play the same sound from any of the other 4 positions.

    So that's all it is. 4 pentatonic forms, plus the "box". And 5 cowboy chords. That each correspond to each other.

    Either you see it or you don't.

    Ignorance is bliss, I suppose, for those that feel their approach will be hampered somehow buy having awareness of the forms.

    I'm guessing that all but the most beginner of guitarists know their 5 cowboy chords already. So for those that have never studied the pentatonic forms, there are 4 more you have to learn, because you all know "the box" already. It's not a big deal - at all.

    Then, just start looking at all the chords you know, and all the little 3 note chord fragments you know, and then figure out which of the forms it relates to. They all relate to the forms. It ties it all together.

    The CAGED system is just the layout of the guitar. Simply. Either you see it or you don't. I think it's good to be aware of these things, but not the end all either. You still have connect your soul to the sounds you make.
     
  15. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    It's a *system*. A system! Yes, a SYSTEM! Wake up! There are nefarious organizations out there trying to control our minds!
     
  16. slinger

    slinger Friend of Leo's

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    this might be of some help with the caged soloing
     
  17. Space Pickle

    Space Pickle Tele-Meister

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    I haven't read the entire thread.

    With that out of the way, CAGED is a good way to remember scale finger patterns. My "aversion" to CAGED and other so-called systems is the trap it presents for beginner players.

    Look at some of the posts on this page. There is a guy asking how to use CAGED to improvise guitar solos. This question like this is so completely off the mark it isn't funny. I don't blame the student for asking it, but it is the result of the wrong information presented in the wrong way. It's also more than a little bit due to professional musicians who like to pretend they don't know anything.

    There is another poster on this page who is bemaoning the amount of notes on the fretboard, as though it would be some impossible task to memorize them all. This makes no sense, can you imagine a piano player complaining about having to memorize all 88 keys? Of course not. A trumpet player asking how he will remember all the valve combinations? Ridiculous.

    CAGED can be a useful tool to help remember some fingering patterns. It is not the magical key to improvising guitar solos.
     
  18. rogb

    rogb Tele-Afflicted

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    Now that is really useful, thanks! It's starting to make sense.
     
  19. Leon Grizzard

    Leon Grizzard Friend of Leo's

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    I differ on this. Some positions are more useful than others, depending on what style you are playing or what you want to play. I think that's what the OP was asking.
     
  20. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    To be fair I don't think anybody's saying that. And even though I don't and never did use or even think about CAGED, I don't think it's a 'trap' for beginners. Especially if it's pop, rock, blues or country that you're into.

    I sort of came to most of it (the CAE parts anyway) myself in the late 70s. I would wager that most guitar players do.

    *If you want to move beyond basic soloing and, god forbid, you maybe want to play some jazz then you will naturally, due almost totally to your desire, delve into scales, chord/scale relationships, the entire fingerboard, getting your ear better, working on your meter, etc., et al.

    But in the beginning there's always a 'system'. Some type of system.
     
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