by Jesse Engel
o you can manage with using the root note but what if you want something more to do?
Let's play the same note an octave higher!
Western music uses a 12 tone system of music: C-Db-D-EB-E-F-Gb-G-Ab-A-Bb-B-C... See how the C (or any note for that matter...) comes back around on the 12th note up? It is the same note, just an octave
This is why you can find that if you play an open string and then it's 12th fret, that they sound the same, only the 12th fret one is an octave higher. So if you want to spice up your music, but want the simplicity of using the root notes, you can simply use octaves.
Obviously it is very incovienient to try to play the 12 fret gap, but you can play the same note if go down two strings and just two frets foward! seq|4_5|2_7|A (octave shape)|seq |cr| This 'octave shape' is very important since you can use it instead of just playing the root note. Here is the first example using octave shapes.