One of the most efficient ways to memorize scales and play them on the guitar is using box patterns. These are ways of 'mapping' the scale across the guitar fretboard, creating fixed shapes that can be transposed to play the scale in a different key. They are particularly helpful for improvisation, and once they are memorized, they serve as an excellent aid to understand the visual and auditory relationships between intervals. Select a root note to see a list of box patterns for the major scale:


C 

C#/Db
D 

D#/Eb

E 

F 
F#/Gb 
 G 
G#/Ab 
A
A#/Bb 
B


The major scale is one of the most used musical scales, being of central importance in the development of European music. It is made up of seven notes, with the eight duplicating the first at the double of frequency. The intervallic structure of the major scale is given as w, w, h, w, w, w, h, (h meaning half a tone and w meaning a whole tone). Thus, it follows that the major scale of C is made up of all natural notes, making it the easiest scale to write.

The relative minor of a major scale starts down a minor third, and uses the same key signature. For example, G major and E minor use the same key signature. The major scale corresponds to the Ionan mode (as originally classified by Heinrich Glarean in the sixteenth century). In musical languages that make use of an extensive number of scales, the term 'major scale' is used broadly when referring to any scale whose first, third, and fifth degree form a major triad.