Using 3rds In The G Major Scale

Here’s a more advanced guitar lessons for those of you who are ready for it!

In this lesson Colin will give you some ideas on using 3rds from the G major scale. You’ll have to know your scales pretty well to follow this, as Colin moves around using the whole fretboard, though he’s also using the E pentatonic minor scale (open position) quite a bit as well.

That E pentatonic minor scale is relative to G major, so it works perfectly here.

Most of the examples in the video are coming off the 1st and 3rd strings, though you’ll see towards the end he also dives into the inverted thirds on the 2nd and 4th strings as well, just to change things up a bit.

You can find more lessons by Colin Daniel at – I highly recommend checking out his site as he’s got tons of top notch guitar lessons there.

If after watching this you realize that you need a brush up on your guitar scales, I recommend checking out my course on Guitar Scale Patterns!

3rds In The G Major Scale

Watch 3rds In The G Major Scale on Youtube

Leave a Reply 23 comments

Rob - June 4, 2011 Reply

Thanks Colin.

bishop - June 4, 2011 Reply

hi there thanks that was really nice thanks again i like that

Bob - June 4, 2011 Reply

Aren’t those 6ths in the G major scale and not thirds? Confused.

    Jonathan Boettcher - June 6, 2011 Reply

    They’re inverted thirds… meaning the root note is the one with the higher pitch. Looked at the other way around, they would indeed be a 6th, but you always have to figure out where the root is, and work from there.

Dennis R - June 4, 2011 Reply

nice, but why didn’t you explain
the finger positions on those 3rds?
or did i miss the explanation in a previous
Dennis R

eddie - June 4, 2011 Reply

Thanks for the great riff Colin.I like the way you play the 3rds in \D in reverse.Definately gets me pickin’

Al McCausland - June 4, 2011 Reply

This was great and it looks really easy unless you’re like me that doesn’t know jack about music theory. Thanks!

    mark - June 4, 2011 Reply

    simple theory G major is G A B C D E F# G ( any major scale is figured W W H W W W H) W- whole step, G to A or E to F#… H- half step F# to G for example) so knowing the G major scale is G A B C D E F# G . Give each letter a number G is 1 A is 2 B is 3….. a major chord is the 1,3,and 5 note for G major GBD makes the chord tones 1st and 3rd would be G and B what he is playing on the 1 and 2,3 strings. In a major scale the first note The I is always major ( G Major) the ii(2) chord is Am(inor)ACE. III B minor (BD F#). IV is always major in this case C major(CEG). V chord is D7(D F# A C). vi 6 chord E minor( EGB). The vii is rarely played. I IV V of a scale are the most used chords. On guitar a chord should have the 1,3,5 of the chord tones they can be repeated C major open x32010= 6 string muted or if open E, 5 str.C, 4 str E, 3 str open G, 2 str 1 fret is C, 1 str open is E (ECEGE) I hope that helps the theory it is really not that hard. If you have any questions Email me I’ve been playing for almost a year. I know my theory well, but my strumming needs work. Have fun Mark (smurfinmaui at

      Jonathan Boettcher - June 6, 2011 Reply

      Hey Mark – you covered a lot of ground in there, but you’re bang on 🙂

marian - June 4, 2011 Reply

I foud it difficult to follow.

kenner - June 4, 2011 Reply

nice stuff but poor too much and goes too fast .tells more what to do than show how to do it

Richard - June 5, 2011 Reply

Love the sound of this progression but will have to watch it many times to get the chords and rythym.

Mike - June 5, 2011 Reply

Hi There Colin
Some Tabs would certianly help see what your fingers are doing.

jeff - June 6, 2011 Reply

Speedy. That was “E minor pentatonic” for the related scale?

Dave - June 7, 2011 Reply

Tab please!

Frank - June 7, 2011 Reply

Check out “Clock Diatonic Harmony” on YOUTUBE. It explains the theory via a clock face.

Robert Manuel - June 27, 2011 Reply

Thank for this Colin. It may sound a little advance guitar lessons for some of those I am currently teaching but it feels nice to have another approach of teaching it from another mentor. Thanks again! 🙂

Dominic - July 2, 2011 Reply

You my friend are a good taecher!
You do make it FUN and simple.
Thank you,

bruce - July 5, 2011 Reply

Good , but to fast , n not accurate description of what your doing . lt just looks like show off noodling.

Justin - July 28, 2011 Reply

Yeah, that’s the thing with Colin. He goes way too fast and doesn’t show you exactly what he’s doing. There were several licks I would have loved to learn from some of Colin’s previous lessons…

Denis McCourt - October 14, 2011 Reply


I have been struggling with 3rds, but your video here(Jonathan kindly directed me to) has opened the door for me.

I was able to go to my major and Minor scales and work things out. Now I understand .

I should be able to transpose into other keys

Thanks again

Denis McCourt

Blsankey - June 28, 2012 Reply

Ninja , you are going way to fast with no explanation of which hand , or fingers are where , or why. As a teacher slow down , n explain better rather than just razzle dazzling us with  an entertaining  performance, where we have no idea what you just did or how you did it.

    Jonathan Boettcher - June 28, 2012 Reply

    This lesson is a bit more advanced; if you don’t know the scale patterns Colin is working with in here, then you need to start by learning those first. This lesson is not intended to teach these intervals from the ground up…  you can start here:

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