Play along lesson – Step 2 – The magic pattern

The ‘magic’ pattern

Once you have found the pattern of notes described earlier, now you can lock in the ‘magic’ pattern. As I said in the introduction,  I call it magic because this exact shape of notes will fit in to most songs you will want to play along to and sound ‘right’. The pattern is always the same, no matter what key or mode your play-along song is in. All you need to find out is where it goes.

Once you have found the home fret (in yellow), the ‘magic’ pattern fits on top of it as below. You are now locked in to the place where all the right notes are all there for you to play.

Take a short while to inspect the pattern. Although at first glance it may look a little daunting, it will become second nature in no time.

This patterns is an amalgamation of the most useable notes I have found through many hours of playing along to music. For Mode Decoder users, it is derived as from the notes of locations 2 and 3). It is your key sequence of notes which will sound great work with most tracks. Look at the pattern and play some notes shown along to your track, picking out the melody and complimenting the track with other notes shown. Give it a try now!

Notice the location of the home fret and that there are 3 kinds of notes shown .

  • red – most useable
  • purple – also good depending on the song / mode
  • gray – generally don’t tend to use (though not ‘wrong’ notes)

You can also see the flow of notes indicated by the green arrows ending in a bend on the 5th string. concentrate mainly on this flow, bending and adding in purple notes wherever you think. By getting to know this pattern and playing it repeatedly over different tracks, you will build powerfull muscle memory which will soon even allow you to play without even looking at the fretboard!