Not only are they cool to play, octave patterns allow you to find the same note at different points of the fretboard.
What is an octave?
Technically an octave is the distance of 12 semitones between 2 notes. That’s why the double dot at the 12th fret is the name of the open string again (every fret is 1 semitone). The musical alphabet is: ABCDEFG at which point A starts again. ‘Oct’ means 8 so if you take any note and go up 8 notes in a major scale you will get to the next highest instance of that note. That is an octave:
4 Very Useful Octave Patterns
All 4 patterns come from the diagram below. We will use ‘A’ as an example. There are only 5 ‘A’ notes up to the 12th fret.
1. 2 frets to the right, 2 strings towards the floor
2. 3 frets to the left, 3 strings towards the floor
3. 12 frets to the right on the same string
4. 7 frets to the right, 1 string towards the floor
All patterns together
Learn each octave pattern one by one and you will instantly have 2 notes for the price of 1! Once you know a few notes you will be able to locate others more easily.