Modal chord substitution for a Spanish Guitar is not a substitute for other techniques, and takes quite a bit of motivation and application to realize it's potential and use it well. It also affords great insight into the musical math of the guitar. And it will certainly allow you to go straight to a harmonic substitution for the vast majority of scales or chords desired. For Lap Steel Guitar, modal chord substitution is imperative if you want to be able to establish the entire foundation of every other scale and chord on the Lap Steel Guitar. In either instrument's case, when you learn the modal system you will wonder why it ever seemed difficult.
Spanish Guitar open E6 chord finger position will produce a 6th chord finger position to move up and down the neck with the same results as the Steel Guitar sections herein; Although as you move up the neck you will have to barre the 1st and 2nd string together to provide a 5th note not present until the 4th finger is removed from the 6th note to expose the 5th note under the first finger barre. Actually, even a plain triad chord will work also, but be lacking the 6th note and all it's additional and cool inversions we will see later on and you can simply use the 6th chord without the 5th note, although you will probably want to use the 5th note when you discover what this course teaches. It doesn't take much woodshedding to digest when and how choosing the 5th or 6th note works for voicing. We will also use F6 on the charts to show the barre notes. The easier E13 / F13 will not work because the dominant 7 doesn't fit into the template, as you will see later. The easy F6 chord is played only on the first 4 strings; A bit harder version with the third finger holding down both the 5th and 1st notes on the 5th and 4th strings; And yet a bit more difficult, adding the thumb in to hold down the bottom 1 note on the 6th string. For the purposes of this course, the easy first 4 strings F6 will work just fine.
ATTITUDE / MOTIVATION BREAK: Now is a good time to get a friend to strum some chords to compare with that F6 chord position MOVED UP TO C6 POSITION AT THE 8TH FRET; So you can see for yourself that the C6 is indeed also a form of Dmin7, Emin7b9, FMaj9, G7, Amin7(b6) and Bdim. Also notice that by lowering the C6 2 frets to Bb6 you will get all the other extensions of C6 to compare with your strumming partner. In other words Bb6 is all the other extension notes of C6: 1 note goes down to b7, 6 note goes down to 5, 5 goes down to 4, 6 goes down to 5. So Bb6 is also C11/13 with the 4 note played and C13 omitting the 4. Alternating between C6 and Bb6 while your strumming partner strums one the comparative relative chords above, you will hear the C6 relationship to all the other Major and minor chords you compare in turn. If you or your strumming partner is good with scales, try playing all those relative Major and minor scales over C6 ..BUT ALWAYS PLAY SOME / ANY OTHER UNRELATED CHORD IN BETWEEN EACH OF THE COMPARISONS YOU TRY .TO ERASE YOUR BRAIN'S ROOT NOTE FROM THE PREVIOUS COMPARISON AND PREPARE IT FOR THE NEXT COMPARISON. In other words, when you finish playing around with comparing C6 to Dmin7 .play a few bars of some unrelated chord before you start comparing one of the other relative chords with your strumming friend. If you really want to learn, you can sit down and draw this paragraph's theory out on paper charts in the ways that make best graphic sense to you.
FOR ALL PURPSOSES OF THIS COURSE, ALL REFERENCES TO A 6TH CHORD MEANS THAT IT'S 7 EXTENSION IS A DOMINANT 7 (b7) (the Mixolydian mode,). The necessity for this will become apparent in the modes, scales, chords and chord extensions learned later herein.
Steel Guitar players are rather restricted play the scales co-located with the chords, in other words in the same position as the chords; But Spanish Guitarists can use either the Major scale substitution technique taught in this course which are not in the same position of the chords, or they can also use the Steel Guitar methods herein as well.
The Lap Steel Guitar tuning we will use in this course for Lap Steel readers is C6 TUNING; Low to high the open notes are C E G A C E (1, 3, 5, 6, 1, 3). A Spanish Guitarist can use any full voicing of a 6th chord and get similar results of this course, but I suggest the previously said F6 fingering for many reasons.
C6 chord and it's extension notes which are found 2 frets down from C6 (at Bb6)together provide all the notes of the Dominant 7 scale and therefore the C6 and C11/13 chord, which is called the MIXOLYIDIAN mode (dominant 7 mode). For the purposes of this course and for playing Lap Steel Guitar, I call 6th chords the HOMEBASES from which all the other chord forms are navigated.
The Mixolydian mode (dom7 scale) is commonly used in Euro-American music melody evidenced by the common occurrences of dom7 tonic chords or dom7 passing chords in the tonic that announces a pending chord change. The notes of a dominant 7 scale (Mixolydian) are 1 2 3 4 5 6 b7 1, so a full dom7 chord would contain notes 1 3 5 b7. Now is a good time to mention the importance that any 2 or more notes of a chord or it's scale will be harmonious to the named chord and/or scale.
All chord forms, their extensions and their scales can be derived away from their 6th chord HOMEBASE position, somewhere else on the neck. In other words, to navigate any kind of chord Emin7 for example we navigate it from it's 6th chord position (E6 in the example). In this example, Emin7 chord is the same thing as G6 chord, so we move E6 up 3 frets and play G6 chord as a substitution for Emin7 (and all the remaining extensions will be located up 2 more frets). We will learn the navigation techniques later.
Remember the 5 Times Technique?