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Old 05-09-2021, 08:49 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default do you need to learn scales to make "good" music?

im a guitarist who has been learning by myself. i feel like i have to learn scales to be good. is that true?
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Old 05-09-2021, 10:46 AM   #2 (permalink)
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No
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Old 05-09-2021, 12:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Not really, you can go by feel and experience


But scales, keys, modes, etc actually do help a lot, no matter whether you're a beginner or a pro

Many people like to say that learning music theory makes people lose their creativity, but it's the opposite really. Music theory makes you see more possibilities on the neck, keyboard, etc


It's like learning a language really. You might learn it gradually over time while living in a foreign country (but then your communication skills will be at least unsatisfying for a long period of time at the beginning), or you can first learn the basics of talking, writing, etc of that language and then emigrate.


Then again, if you focus to much on these theoretical stuff, then you might feel like it is holding you back (just like if you were talking in a foreign language and instead of having a conversation you would constantly worry whether your syntax or conjugation is right)
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Old 05-09-2021, 02:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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There is nothing wrong with learning fundamentals. They are a practice run for soloing cause it helps build up left/right hand coordination. With scales you can understand harmony and chord progressions a little better. If you learn them it's win/win.
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Old 05-12-2021, 02:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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There are no absolutes, but 9 times out of 10 I'd rather play with someone who knows a scale or two. If nothing else it tends to be a good measurement of someones dedication to making music.

That said, what I think is more important is learning how to hear scales. Develop your ear, and internal ear, so that you can really truly hear a scale/distance between notes- this will surely help you more as a musician than memorizing dots/hand movements on the fretboard (what most people think of when they talk about "learning" scales).
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