Segovia believed that practicing scales formed the most important aspect of learning the guitar and developing strength and fluidity.
This page provides
music theory related to the development of major and minor scales which will empower you to construct, by yourself, any scale required in the future.
It also provides the provides the
music scales, minor scales and other scales required by the Trinity College London music school and the ABRSM guitar examination.
Scales are practiced for a number of different reasons
Students generally focus on playing the speed at breakneck speed. While developing a good speed is definitely an important reason for practicing scales, it is by no means the only reason. In fact, there is little worse sounding than scales played badly, with poor articulation and control, at breakneck speed.
The surest, easiest and quickest way to practice the scale is to start slowly – very slowly! Push the metronome up by slowly as competence is reached at each tempo.
Scales, well practiced, provide the opportunity to develop the players musical control . Scales should be practiced legato and staccato and should have minimum string squeak, particularly when shifting positions. The player should practice playing the scale along the dynamic range from pp to ff, the dynamic range. Scales can be practiced with different dynamic range starting the scale with pp and gradually working up to ff and then back again.
Another reason for practicing scales is to develop finger strength . Here the strategy is to play the scales i-m-i-m-i-m-i-m, then m-i-m-i-m-i.
Scales should be played tirando and apoyando.
Scales are one of the quickest ways to become familiar with the fingerboard . Guitarists are notoriously slow at getting a grasp of the full guitar fingerboard.
A last and very important reason for practicing scales is to develop your ear . Various patterns of scales can be played to develop aural familiarity with intervals. For example, scales can be practiced 1-2-3-2-3-4-3-4-5-4-5-6-5-6-7-6-7-8 or 1-2-3-4-3-4-5-6-5-6-7-8.