Scale Mastery by Karl Wolff
Scale Mastery by Karl Wolff

Scale Mastery by Karl Wolff

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A comprehensive guide to the fingerboard that entrains theory while building technique.


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Scale Mastery by Karl Wolff

Music expresses not only profound emotion, but also a broad range of more abstract concepts from the simple to the very complex. To be able to express all that music has to offer, you need to make the subtle concepts of its theory a part of your physical technique. I hope that this book will satisfy some of that need on several different levels. The material here should help students further develop their ability to read, play better technically and improvise in any and all keys. For teachers it is a reference book that will aid in answering questions regarding fundamental scale theory and reading in the higher positions. Professional players of all styles of music may find new resources here that will expand their technique and inventiveness.

This book is not intended to serve as a method book or to teach any particular style of playing, nor is it especially suitable for beginners. Rather it is a resource of fundamentals that are essential to all guitarists who have played long enough to know the basics and who are interested in expanding their abilities. Realizing how important fundamental scale theory is, I have made every effort to render as clear as possible the concepts this book encompasses. You can learn from this book on your own or as teachers and students, but I've also tried to create in it a resource that musicians can explore together, as ensemble or band members or as friends who wish to play and write together.

What is contained here are the scales that actual musical passages are based on. The scales you need to know to become knowledgeable enough of the fingerboard to read advanced music, arrange transcriptions, compose and improvise. Guitarists are somewhat at a disadvantage when exploring traditional reference books on harmony, counterpoint and orchestration. Nearly all the great books on harmony, counterpoint, orchestration and music history teach the theoretical structure of music and the fine points of interpretation by way of a piano keyboard. Books that explain the complex theories of music by demonstrating their examples on the fingerboard are rare and much needed.

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