FRET BOXES: chords, scales and capo no­ta­tion


Hand la­belling

Here are the abbreviations used for each fin­ger. Fret­ting hand: 1, 2, 3, 4, (T) Pick­ing hand: p (thumb), i (in­dex), m (mid­dle), a (an­nu­lar), c (lit­tle fin­ger)

Nut and Fret­board

This fret­box di­a­gram rep­re­sents the gui­tar’s fret­board ex­actly, as seen in the photo. This de­sign is used for ease of visu­al­is­ing a fret­board scale or chord quickly.

Ch ord ex­am­ple

This di­a­gram rep­re­sents a G chord. The ‘o’s are open strings, and a cir­cled number is a fret­ting hand fin­ger. A black ‘o’ or cir­cled number is the root note (here, G).

capo ex­am­ple

The blue line in the di­a­gram rep­re­sents a capo – for this A chord, place it at the 2nd fret. Ca­pos change the fret number or­der­ing. Here, the orig­i­nal 5th fret now be­comes the 3rd fret, 7th fret now 5th fret, etc.

capo no­ta­tion

Here the chord looks like a C in the tab, but the capo on the 2nd fret raises the pitch to make it a D. The 2nd fret capo’d notes are shown with a ‘0’ in the tab as if they were open strings.

scale ex­am­ple

The fret box di­a­gram il­lus­trates the fret hand fin­ger­ing for the A ma­jor scale us­ing black dots for root notes and red dots for other scale tones. The photo shows part of the scale be­ing played on the fourth string with the first, third and fourth fin­gers.

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