Today we’re continuing and expanding our series on the C Major Scale and the modes that can accompany it! For this lesson we’re going to take a look back at the third Major pattern, which recently we were using for Phrygian mode.

By adjusting the tonic notes of this scale and removing the first note, what we end up with is the fourth of seven “diatonic scales”, and in this case it is a “mode” called Lydian. Each mode is a based around its tonic (root) note and the seven intervals leading to its next tonic note, and each mode has a signature sound. In the case of Lydian, its sound is often described as otherworldly, dreamy, haunting, or arresting. Some examples include the theme songs to The Simpsons and Six Feet Under.

Lydian mode can be transposed to any key – and guitarists have a huge advantage in that by using patterns like the one posted here.

For example, if you take this exact pattern and move it on the fretboard so your tonic/root notes are on the fifth fret, which starts on an A, you would then be playing in A Lydian! Take a look at the tab and compare it to the pattern, and then play from tonic note to tonic note (marked with V’s overtop), paying careful attention to the 4th note in the scale. That is the “character note”, and help represents the sound of Lydian ! You can also check below for a backing track to try this out on!

You can also take a look at the last several Monday and Tuesday posts lesson for examples on Ionian, Dorian, and Phrygian mode!

Was this helpful to you? For those familiar with modes, what helps you keep them simple? If you’re looking for more help on this, we are currently offering online lessons!

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