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Thread: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

  1. #1
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    Default Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    I apologize of this is an obvious "known" to the experienced guys any gals here, but in studying the fretboard to try to get familiar with notes and such I just noticed a pattern I don't remember seeing before.

    Looking at the open E string (nut)...going down 2 frets and over 2 (D string)...I get the E again. Every note follows this pattern. I realize this may be a "duh" observation...but for some reason it just made the fretboard kinda open up for me.


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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    This is the epiphany of the mandolin. Welcome brother, we've been expecting you.
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    George Wilson GRW3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    Nothing beats personal discovery in music theory. This relationship is the fundamental building block to 5 chords everywhere on the neck.

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    Unfamous String Buster Beanzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    Look on the G string at any note then do 4 higher and 4 across and you've the same note.
    Or any of the G/D/A strings and you have 6 higher and 2 across (D/A/E) and you've the same note.
    'tis a wonderful beastie the thingy tuned in 5ths.

    Then look next string higher to the note you're on and you've the 5th. one fret lower and one string lower and you've the third. So whatever note you're on you have a chord with the same fret/string higher and a fret lower/ string lower.
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    Alan....That is how most of us pickers play "By ear" when it is really just a knowledge of the neck and how to get to the right notes that we desire....Playing by ear is really knowing a good bit of music theroy and understanding the different ways to make the same chord or note up and down the neck is the secret ...at least it is for me....

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    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    As has been pointed out above,the mandolin is such a logical instrument with regard to it's tuning,that if you watch (& hear) where the 'sounds' you need are available,you'll get to know the fingerboard in no time. I use the term 'sounds' as that's basically what we're hearing. When you find the 'sound' the fret will name it for you.The other thing that i really love about the mandolin,is thatwith such a short scale length,the notes are almost under your fingers all the time.A lot different than a guitar or banjo,where there's a mile between the top & bottom of the fingerboard !,
    Ivan
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  11. #7

    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    The same relationship with all fretted notes on any two strings next to each other is the "split octave";
    A string second fret (B note) E string seventh fret (B note) This also repeats everywhere.
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    When I remember my first six months of serious mandolin playing, it is these wonderful moments when the fretboard and instrument 'clicked' that still make me smile.

    The mandolin (5ths) fretboard has a couple great discoveries like this. I love hearing the happy people who just figured them out, it will never get old for me.
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    Still a mandolin fighter Mandophyte's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    Alan,
    For the most basic of relationships, see my avatar (left).
    R is the root (key) note and the numbers are the number of the note in the scale.
    Good luck on your mandolin journey, I'm sure that you'll find even more things and if you discover them for yourself they'll stick in your brain more.
    Enjoy
    Last edited by Mandophyte; Jan-14-2013 at 9:03am. Reason: Another minor edit
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    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    The more you become familiar with the fretboard the more of these and other relationships you will see, learn, and memorize. It's part of learning the instrument. Sometime soon someone will ppost a diagram of the fretboard with all the notes named, and you can just stare at that until you see patterns emerge. The most useful ones are scales, of course, and the pentatonic scale, which you will use again and again, looks like

    5-X-6-X-X-8
    1-X-2-X-3-X

    Fretbear alluded to that (where 1 and 8 are the same note, an octave apart). Occasionally I use a double octave effect for G and D notes, playing the open string plus an octave above and an octave above that - one string up, five frets up, then again. If done emphatically it's pretty ear-catching; if done subtly it can be a drone. And a darned good intonation check.
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  16. #11
    Mandolin Pickin Fool dawgmike94's Avatar
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    Default Re: Something I just noticed on studying the freboard.

    Willie, that could possibly be the best, concisest, and most truthful statement that i have heard about playing "by ear." Playing by ear is often glorified, belittled, and misunderstood. Its just a practical application of music theory. If you can play by ear, you know music theory.
    Trying to get my hands to do what I hear in my head...
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