Understanding Key Signatures (Guitar Lesson)


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Chris Liepe

Understanding Key Signatures

Key Signatures! How do they relate to one another? Chris Liepe explains them in lesson 16 of his beginner series. Getting familiar with your key signatures will help pull everything together that has been covered so far in the series.

Taught by Chris Liepe in Basic Electric Guitar with Chris seriesLength: 15:21Difficulty: 2.0 of 5


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teggenbergerteggenberger replied on February 14th, 2015

Hi Chris, i've so 'Key Signatures' are only relevant when it comes to using Sheet Music to determine the key - is that correct?

BradleyABradleyA replied on February 7th, 2017

Key signatures also tell us how to harmonize chords.

teggenbergerteggenberger replied on February 14th, 2015

oops, typo. disregard the "I've'

nstechnstech replied on April 26th, 2014

Hi Chris, I jumped in at lesson 16 and am trying to understand the circle of 5ths. You are on "C" on the 6th fret about 6:07 in the video. Could you explain what tuning you are using? I am at C on the 8th fret. Thanks!

the_ANTIDRUGthe_ANTIDRUG replied on January 31st, 2014

Nice, been watching several of the instructors in the beginners series and finally someone is playing a real guitar (sorry DMac) Fender Telecaster Delux- Nice

the_ANTIDRUGthe_ANTIDRUG replied on January 31st, 2014

I mean why is Brennan, who supposed to be into Roger Waters, playing a Tom Anderson guitar. Use the Strat, it's good enough for Pink Floyd.

kingsrkingsr replied on November 14th, 2013

Great lesson Chris.

petar2013petar2013 replied on October 12th, 2013

hello chris, i am confused about the notes at 4:52. If i see that correctly and you start on the 5th fret of the D string, that note is a G. But you are saying D? How is that a D? Sorry if i am wrong.

addreaddre replied on September 1st, 2013

Hello, I look at the circle and it looks to be missing the key of C# and when going to view the video it says video not found

donnydarkodonnydarko replied on July 11th, 2013

the guitar grimoire scale book was an excellent reference for this lesson. this is some heavy knowledge! Thanks Chris.

mistasnowmanmistasnowman replied on May 20th, 2013

Hi Chris, Regarding the 'circle of fifths,' I understand the order/number of sharps in a given key. However, I do not understand fully of the order of flats in a given key. If you can shine some light on this, I'd appreciate it. Thanks and I'm enjoying the lesson series!!!

viehwoiderviehwoider replied on December 25th, 2012

thanks for explaining chris. this was hard to explain but easy enough to understand. i think i understood most of it straigtaway. there`s just a thing or two that confuse me. in the order of sharps you explained that f major has 6 sharps. but in your diagramm (and the order of flats) f has one flat!? i don`t get the point. perhaps my english is not good enough :)

haqzafhaqzaf replied on December 15th, 2012

Hi,Chris Regarding circle of fifth diagram geometrical angle,"C" should point 12,O,Clock or 000 position."G" to be at 1.00 O,clock, "D" to be 2,O,Clock and so on untill "F" to be 11,O,clock position.Your diagram already rotated clockwise placing "C" at wrong position and so all the other notes.Please correct this diagram.

festergutsfesterguts replied on October 4th, 2012

I don't understand how everyone is getting this, I am so lost. So much usage of the words flat and sharp.

molbromolbro replied on July 7th, 2013

Enter your comment here.

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on October 5th, 2012

a sharp is a note raised a half step. C# is C up one fret. A flat is a note lowered a half step. B down one fret is Bb

predbrookpredbrook replied on June 13th, 2012

Thank you so much, Chris. After many years of struggling with key signatures, you made this so easy! Had my music theory teacher in college explained it this way, it would've saved me much grief. Truly an Aha! moment :)

dave simsdave sims replied on May 10th, 2012

Thanks for explaining this chris, i purchased a guitar wheel about a year ago not knowing how to use it, but after watching this lesson i understand it much clearer now, its a great reference tool.

BradleyABradleyA replied on February 7th, 2017

I just received my Guitar Wheel yesterday. It is an amazing tool that works well well for this and the related theory lessons. If you don't have one, search for it on Amazon. You'll see lots of new chords and triads just glancing at it.

samputrahsamputrah replied on May 8th, 2012

I would recommend more supplemental content for this exercise. This is very important and better visuals and tabs would go a very long way

lexvlexv replied on May 4th, 2012

Wow thank you, i didn't understand the circle of 5ths for along time... now I do!

sillygummersillygummer replied on April 1st, 2012

what is a fith or a fouth on the guitar neck?

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on April 2nd, 2012

check out lesson 8 in this series. I explain all the intervals there. If you've already looked at that, let me know!

jimmy109jimmy109 replied on November 4th, 2011

#

ratfaceratface replied on September 15th, 2011

which is sharp, # or b?

BradleyABradleyA replied on February 7th, 2017

# is sharp

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on January 13th, 2011

oops! good catch!

aussie twangaussie twang replied on January 10th, 2011

at about 6 minutes in, the c is actually on the 8th fret, E string, 6th fret would be a Bb

rangorango replied on April 5th, 2012

I had to stop and check if I heard him right... Chris was just testing us! ;-)

Basic Electric Guitar with Chris

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Chris will guide you through the world of electric guitar in this series.



Lesson 1

Introduction to Your Electric Guitar

Chris Liepe talks about the absolute basics of the guitar, including tuning, the guitar parts, and proper technique.

Length: 23:21 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 2

Playing Your First Chords

Chris Liepe introduces you to your very first 2 chords, E and A. Since this is your first chord lesson, Chris also introduces a backing track for you to slowly play along with. Practicing in this manner...

Length: 28:54 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 3

3 New Chords: Complete the CAGED Method

Here in lesson 3, Chris teaches the C, G, and D chords. Once you have mastered the chords taught in this lesson and the previous lesson, you will have learned the CAGED method of remembering open chord...

Length: 12:22 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 4

The Basics to Tablature, Chord Charts, and Musical Notation

Chris is back with his most information packed lesson to date. In this lesson, you will learn how to read tablature, chord charts and musical notation. All of these tools will drastically help you in your...

Length: 25:38 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Introduction to the Concept of Scales

Chris Liepe is back in lesson 5 with an introduction to scales. In this lesson, you will learn how to play up and down simple scale patterns.

Length: 13:55 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 6

Barre and Minor Chords

In this lesson, Chris introduces minor chords and barre chords.

Length: 25:23 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Strum Patterns and Time Signatures

Chris Liepe lays down some grooves in this lesson! He provides instruction on rhythmic strumming patterns and time signatures such as 4/4, 3/4, and 6/8.

Length: 21:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 8

All About Intervals

Intervals, Intervals, Intervals! Chris Liepe explains what they are, where they are found, and how to play them in this lesson.

Length: 14:07 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 9

Intervals Pop Quiz

Sharpen your pencils and grab your guitar. It's pop quiz time. Chris Liepe adds to his beginner lesson series with a quiz on intervals. This is a hands-on lesson that will undoubtedly improve your ears....

Length: 15:39 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 10

Triads: Everything You Need to Know

Chris Liepe breaks through his 10th lesson with a detailed discussion of triads. Dig in and take these triads for a ride!

Length: 24:14 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 11

Effect Pedal Mini Series

This lesson begins a mini-series on effects pedals. Chris breaks down routing and how effects work with each other.

Length: 8:20 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 12

Effect Pedal: Compression

The compression effect pedal is one of the most misunderstood pedals around. Chris Liepe finally sheds some light on the subject. By explaining all the different options and sounds this pedal can create,...

Length: 14:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 13

Gain Stacking with Overdrive and Distortion

Chris Liepe is back with the 3rd installment in his Effects Pedal mini-series. He explains the concept of "gain stacking" by combining an Ibanez Tube Screamer and a Boss DS-1 Distortion pedal.

Length: 7:54 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 14

Effect Pedal: Delay

Chris Liepe adds yet another lesson to his effect pedal-mini series. Here he covers the delay pedal. This effect that operates on the principles of time and rhythm. Use this pedal to add depth to your...

Length: 19:52 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 15

Effect Pedal: Chorus

Chris Liepe quickly demonstrates the chorus pedal with some 80's style licks. This pedal can create a deep and rich addition to solos or add the illusion of multiple guitars.

Length: 3:28 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 16

Understanding Key Signatures

Key Signatures! How do they relate to one another? Chris Liepe explains them in lesson 16 of his beginner series. Getting familiar with your key signatures will help pull everything together that has been...

Length: 15:21 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 17

Chord Harmony Basics

Chris Liepe demonstrates how to take a key signature (the set notes within a key) and stack 3rds on top of a root note to form chords. With the help of a modulating backing track, this should be a fun...

Length: 30:02 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 18

Technique Basics: Alternate Picking

Chris explains and demonstrates the very basics of alternate picking. He also provides simple exercises to develop the technique in your own playing.

Length: 16:03 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 19

Technique Basics: Legato Playing

Chris details and demonstrates the fundamental movements and suggested left hand position for legato playing -- specifically hammer-ons and pull-offs. He also provides exercises for developing the technique.

Length: 16:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 20

Technique Basics: Palm Muting

Chris talks about proper palm muting and discusses potential snags when first attempting the technique. He offers a number of exercises and patterns to help palm muting become a part of your rhythm playing.

Length: 9:22 Difficulty: 1.0 FREE
Lesson 21

Technique Basics: Hybrid Picking

Hybrid picking can add a fresh dimension to your chord and rhythm playing. In this lesson, Chris briefly covers how to get started with hybrid picking and offers two exercises that you can use to apply...

Length: 6:27 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 22

Major Scale Positions in G (Part 1)

Chris talks about what it means to play in position and teaches three of the five "CAGED" major scale positions in the key of G.

Length: 12:44 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 23

Major Scale Positions in G (Part 2)

Chris continues in his teaching of the five basic "CAGED" major scale positions in the key of G.

Length: 11:39 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only

About Chris Liepe View Full Biography Chris Liepe was born on September 17th, 1981 in Portland OR. His first instrument was piano which he pursued until discovering his love for the electric guitar in high school. He became fans of such groups as Soundgarden, Collective Soul and U2 inspiring him to start singing, songwriting and helping others in their musical endeavors with teaching, co-writing and album production.

Having moved to Colorado with his family, he began gigging, recording and teaching in a number of music stores as well as out of his apartment until deciding to pursue music full time. He moved to Denver, CO to complete a Bachelors in Music Technology and was then hired on by Sweetwater Productions, a division of Sweetwater Sound and one of the largest, most successful recording studios in the Midwest.

Chris spent nearly 4 years at Sweetwater as a producer, recording engineer, studio musician and writer. During this time he had the privilege of working with many artists including Augustana, Landon Pigg, Jars of Clay, and Mercy Me. He also wrote for and played on numerous independent albums and hundreds of radio/TV commercials.

Wanting to get back to his favorite State in the world (Colorado) and feeling the urge to 'go freelance', Chris moved to Greeley, CO and opened his own recording and teaching studio. He continues to write and produce music for artists and agencies and is happy to be among the proud JamPlay.com instructors.

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