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Guitar Fretboard Memorization – A Different Approach

Most guitarists spend a good deal of time learning the notes on the fretboard, parrot fashion.

While this is useful to a degree, it’s far more beneficial to spend your fretboard memorization time on what I call “spatial co-ordination” – the visualization of how one note relates to another in several positions on the guitar neck.

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By using the exercises presented in this lesson, you’ll tap into and drastically improve the part of your mind responsible for these fretboard co-ordination skills, in turn improving your ability to move smoothly between notes/positions across the neck… without getting lost in the process!

You’ll find that these co-ordination skills carry over into learning scales, arpeggios and chords, as you’ll be more “pattern focused” and spatially aware, meaning you’ll be able to think beyond your current position and play more confidently and intuitively as a result.

In short, this lesson, while it may not teach you any pretty licks, will set the groundwork for knowing the fretboard like the back of your hand so you can truly be your creative self.

More help here: http://www.fretjam.com/fretboard-memorization-exercises.html

About Eric D.

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49 comments

  1. Watching this video is like the best "11 min investment" beginner guitar player can do. Thanks a lot.

  2. Seriously… words can't express how thankful I am for this. I figured this out in 10 min or so. I obviously don't have everything memorized yet but I can find any note I want. This is a game changer and I'm instantly better because of this. Thank you!!

  3. best lesson i haver received i can see more clear now.. thank you so much

  4. am i the only one who thinks he sounds like KSI?

  5. damn this lesson hurt my head and still don't fully understand it yet, but I'm going to approach it slowly until I get it!

    Nice video man it really is a different approach!

  6. this is amazing!!! thanks so much!

  7. This is amazing, there is no video lesson on YouTube better and clear than this, can you please make lessons on different scales and soloing when you get time, thankyou

  8. one of the best lessons I ever went through.i thank you from my core of heart to make it so easy and simple

  9. good lesson Ukulele Atlanta Holly

  10. wonderful lesson! thank you so much for putting this together!

  11. It's these priceless Gems of knowledge that included with purchase of new Guitar. "Instead of coupon for bottle Aspirin"
    It Sure would have save time and money.would speed things up. without less headaches.

  12. Could someone point me in the right direction on learning what to 6ths and 3rds and so on mean?

  13. You've discovered something very valuable , I really appreciate the work. The piano keyboard makes sense and is easy to learn on, now I've discovered a way to apply that visual to the fret-board. Thank you for posting !

  14. Thank you very, very much for this, I've been playing since 1969 and have never come across this very useful approach: a small correction…..at 8:19 there's a mistake; it's played on the D, G and B strings, not A, D and G as shown….sorry for the quibble…now back to make up for lost years…

  15. Thanks… And I appreciate your speech is not very hasty as it is so expanded now – bad habit… I am not native speaker, but unfortunately it is similarly in this way also in my native language…

  16. perfect your work. tks

  17. Check out my new iPhone game for a fun way to practise your notes!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxpEM6FKtws

  18. Hey!! This is an amazing lesson!!! Thank you so much!! You have helped me enormously!

  19. Sir, I just want to say a huge thank-you for the way you completely changed my view of the fretboard. The idea given in one of your very first uploaded is just crucial for understanding how do all these scales correlate with each other. I should consider myself so lucky to run into it on early stages! THANK YOU!

  20. I don't think you can get better lessons than this channel, really awesome !

  21. Excellent tutorial/method. Great work & thanks for publishing for FREE! 10/10.

  22. Well done. Easily the best guide to finding frets and notes on youtube.

  23. This has made so much more sense to me than other methods of fretboard memorisation techniques. Many thanks for taking the time to make, edit, and upload this lesson; it has helped myself, and no doubt many others, so much. 🙂 x

  24. Im a lefty too my low string is at the top
    High string at the bottom
    Seems right when l see other players
    But the left and right hand may make a
    Difference. Should l change the
    Order of the strings to accomodate
    A left handed player Thanks?

  25. I'm a big fan of fretjam, and this is a series I come to again and again when I want to learn more knowledge on guitar. This is the BEST video in the entire collection. If one can spend time studying their fretboard in the way this man describes, you'll be further on your way to being a guitar GOD!

  26. This is GREAT!!!!!!! Thanks A LOT I LOVE THIS LESSON very Helpfull!

  27. Where can I find lefty stuff?

  28. This is a really cool exercise! you've got a subscriber

  29. Great video!

    Btw what personally frustrates me is my inability to sort of "meld" different approaches together. So for example let's say I'm arpeggiating D7 with the root on the 5th fret, 5th string and I want to move up the neck. For that to happen my brain needs to "switch off" the arpeggiated pattern I was playing over and "switch on" the "root triangles" patterns so I can move my root up (either that, or I simply look up the neck and hecticly try to find the nearest D while still keeping up with the melody). Only after landing to another D (most likely in a haphazard fashion) can I go back to chord tone soloing in D7, but then my brain again completely switches off the information about where the other roots on the neck are. Now add to that a fact that I'm probably not playing to an eternally sounding D7 but rather a progression of some kind and my brain is ready to explode.

    I guess this is all a matter of practice, practice, practice but I must say it doesn't seem to get any easier.. :)

  30. This is my new, go to information channel. Great stuff here, thanks a million. 

  31. this is a fantastic video, loved it!

  32. Hey is important to know where a 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 chord is im a minor key I know where it is in a major key also is important to know where It is for mode like should I know where a 1 2 3 chord or what ever is for a Dorian mode or any mode. Also I know that a one chord in the Ionian chord progression is c major or major 7 but, could the one chord also be c major 9 or c major 11 etc. thank you please get back soon

  33. 4 chord can I play a c major 11th if a wanted to or 13 and can I play a 13 dominant for the 5 chord or maybe a minor 9 for the 6 chord if I want too while using the normal c major scale over the whole thing like would these chords alter the key? Also can you explain what 9th interval is in the least confusing way possible. And would the 3 chord in the key of c minor be Eb major? And when people say minor chord progression they mean like aeolian chord progression right

  34. Is it correct if im playing in b aeolian to call the 1 chord b and call the 3 chord d major and 4 e minor or should I just refer to it by using its relative major B major so it would be 6 1 2 instead of 1 3 4 same for modes like should I refer to it from the major scale or comes from or do a whole new one based on the mode

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