Practical Intervals in Guitar Improvisation  


Human Encounter





2011 Single


165 fingering positions you should know for guitar improvisation
by Salim Ghazi Saeedi, Feb 2011

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5 semitones - Perfect 4th

Starting finger

non B-G strings

B-G string

var #1

var #2

var #3

var #1

var #2

index (*) NA (**)
middle (***) (***)
ring (*) NA NA
pinky (****) (***) (*) NA




It should be played with rolling technique. Always avoid jumping across strings with one finger. It is highly unstable.        
** This position is more prevalent than one may expect at first sight. Actually it lets hand's position more relaxed in semi-45 degree "electric guitar left hand position"; as opposed to semi-90 degrees angle left hand position that is more prevalent in classical guitar. These fingerings could also be seen as parts of chord fingerings.        

I classify this type of fingering as "crossing fingering". It is useful for harnessing wild changes in left-hand's position.

Suppose that you want to repeat the bar provided in the tablature for unlimited times. Also suppose that you have started on B-string, fret 3. As you see in the tablature and video, if you avoid using "cross fingerings", the pattern will crawl the fretboard until it finds a suitable fingering somewhere between 12th and 17th frets. But if you adopt "crossing fingerings", the position change will immediately stop between 5th and 8th frets.

The video includes both ascending and descending examples for "crossing fingerings".

**** I've deliberately put this fingering on var #1... However that it seems a difficult fingering at first, but to my experience it is usually preferable in course of improvisation; since it changes fretboard position immediately and let you adapt your improvisation to a new position - if it is preferable.


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