JRS Survival Guitar Lesson 10: Ionian Mode

The first Mode to learn is the Ionian Mode.

Click on Ionian Mode to hear a midi file example. Note that this C Ionian Mode is played with a over a sustained C note in the background. Listen how the Mode sounds over this sustained note. This becomes important later, as I teach you to play modally. Hang in there!

The Ionian Mode is shown here, arranged to cover two octaves on the guitar. To play this mode in the key of C (like the midi file example), start the first note of the mode on the 8th fret.

If you’ve been going through the other lessons, you’ll recognize that what your looking at is also known as our old friend, the Major Scale. Yes, The Ionian Mode, and the Major Scale are identical. This makes sense, because we know that the Modes are built from the Major Scale. We also know (from lesson 9) that the Ionian Mode is created by taking notes from the Major Scale, starting on the first note of the Major Scale.

I hope you don’t feel deceived, thinking the Ionian Mode was going to be some fabulous new thing. The fabulous sounds don’t start happening until the next Mode, which starts on the second note in the Major scale. So, look this one over, commit it to memory and we’ll move on the next Mode.








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