Lesson #005, Octaves

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Lesson #005, Octaves

Hi Everybody and welcome back to the Moose,

I just wanted to touch on a little bit of music theory concerning the term octaves, since I mentioned it in the last lesson. For right now, I want to define an octave as being 12 half-steps away from any starting point or note. I'm going to be talking more about octaves in upcoming lessons but for right now I just want you to think of an octave as being 12 half-steps away from any starting note. I also want to call the distance between each fret a half-step including the distance from the nut to the first fret. An example of octaves is picking the fourth D string open and getting a D note then counting up 12 frets or 12 half-steps and fretting the fourth string at the 12th fret and getting another D note only sounding an octave higher in pitch. They are the same notes only the D string fretted at the 12th fret is higher in pitch than the D string played open. I'd also like to mention that there are only 12 notes in (western) music. You can see the importance of the first 12 frets and the only 12 notes that we have to work with in (western) music.

Thanks everybody and see you next time on the Moose


David Cavage

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In 2009, at the age of 60, I decided to learn to play the 5-string banjo. I searched the internet for lessons and struck gold when I found David Cavage's free banjo lessons at Musicmoose.org. His video hosting site revver.com was having some serious problems at the time so I downloaded as many of the lessons as I could whenever they became available. Revver.com stopped operating shortly afterwards and, sadly, Musicmoose.org is no more. I contacted David early 2020 and he told me he no longer had the original master videos and feared they may have been lost forever. This amazing course of free banjo lessons, from absolute beginner to advanced player, is too good to be forgotten, so this is my attempt to get David's work back out there again so that he can teach, inspire and spread the joy of banjo pickin' to more generations of budding musicians, just like he did with me. I've rounded up all the Moose stuff I could find and put it here, so start pickin' and enjoy!-------MooseHerder.