SMG Guitar Lesson #2: The Five Octave Positions

Most beginner guitar instruction will teach scales and barred chords in position one, where the root note is the lowest note found on the sixth string. The root note two octaves above, is found upon the same fret on the 1st string. This relationship provides an excellent foundation and frame of reference.

Listen: 2 – P1 Octaves Exercises

Position 2 occurs when the root note is located on the fourth and second strings.

Octave Position 2 for Guitar

Listen: 3 – P2 Octaves Exercise

Helpful Tips for position 2:

  • There are two frets and one string in between the root note on the fourth string and the root note on the second string.
  • In the open position, the notes D and Eb occur in position 2

Position 3 occurs when the root note is located on the second and fifth strings.

Listen: 4 – P3 Octaves Exercise

Helpful Tips for position 3:

  • Notice how this position seems to fall upon a reverse diagonal
  • The two notes are two strings apart with one fret in between
  • In the open position, the notes B, C, and C# occur in position 3

Position 4 occurs when the root note is located on the fifth and third strings.

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