Modes are something that are magical in music. They convey moods in a given context. However, they are often glossed over briefly in graded theory books without much detail. Back when I took my RCM theory, the book “Total Theory” by James Lawless, a fine theory resource that got me through my exam quite well, but sorely lacked content for modes, maybe half a page, and mostly it was a chart listing the modes. What I found also, was that the RCM theory exam didn’t really cover modes at all. In reviewing and brushing up my theory I have found that the “Elementary Rudiments” by mark Sarnecki is also a fine series of theory books. There are a few things that are expanded on or touch in with more details in this series of books. The biggest thing I’ve found so far is their coverage of modes. Instead of just half a page with a bit of descriptive text, we have 5 pages dedicated to the modes, with exercises following, with tips for analysis.

Now most guitarists from an electrical background will be familiar with modes from moveable scale patterns, they know the G Dorian mode, because they use the Dorian scale pattern, starting on G. Some guitarists will also develop a passion for a specific mode pattern and will use it to define their style. So for further understanding of modes for those that may be interested, I found the following web page. 

Now to just sit down, work thorugh it and some exercises to put it all together!


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