The Use Of Scales
Using scales, a lot of students ask me why they should learn scales, what use will it have to their playing and perhaps even, shall I practice scales more than songs and just focus on them? Scales are a very useful way to get all of your fingers active in a fixed position, very practical to build an organised, incremented demonstration of abilities - meaning you can evidently see your progress and demonstrate your knowledge to someone else by playing through a series of scales moving along the fretboard. Furthermore, watch any one of your heroes, Slash, Steve Vai, Ritchie Kotzen, Kirk Hammett, Al Di Meola, they have their improvised and structured solos in boxes around the neck, or their solos flow and move around seemingly effortless or well thought out. Scales do that, scale practice helps you to play all over the fretboard, they give you notes to hit, map out what is going to work over a certain key, you will find notes that sound good together and you will find your own licks (as well as your heroes licks) all over the fretboard, you will gain speed, accuracy, know what you are doing and impress your friends, great! I am going to emphasise one thing here though, this will all happen if you practice your scales, but practice your scales correctly, the benefits are vast. It's good to go up and down scales to a metronome, but you need to practice far more than just going up and down to a metronome. Read my detailed approach to practising scales effectively here. Note: If you have a guitar teacher and they teach scales a different way, follow what they say, there are many different ways to develop your abilities using scales.