Mark John Sternal
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Mark John Sternal

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The best kept secret in music


GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques and Applications from MJS Music is a new take on guitar lesson books. For beginner to expert, this book teaches every major or minor scale in every position on the guitar and all the ways to use them to create music. A tall goal to be sure prompting the author, Mark Sternal, to make the guarantee that you'll learn more than $5,000 worth or over five years of tutored guitar lessons.

The book starts at a level anybody without any experience can begin and then progresses at a pace controlled by the student. Sternal claims it is the first study course of its kind that can take a player from a beginner to a professional level in one volume. After you're playing well, chapters 13 through 58 present, in tablature and staff notation, every major and minor scale in all keys and modes with each scale shown in every position on the guitar neck. These chapters also work as a quick reference for the season pro player who wants to expand the 'voice' of his/her instrument.

You'll learn what Neapolitan Minor Scale or a Hungarian Gypsy Scales are all about and throughout this book there are loads of tips and techniques explained. Learn how to do ghost bends, hammer ons and pull off techniques all as you go--like receiving small rewards for all the hard work mastering a musical instrument is.

GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques and Applications sells for $24.95 and for more information, MJS Music Publications, Inc. at 352-563-1779 or go to
- Barry Rudolph

At the June Ohio Guitar Show, sponsored by Guitar Digest, I met the folks at MJS publication who were offering their new scale book, “Total Scales Technique and Applications” for sale. Like many guitarists, I’ve got dozens of “Improve your playing” and “Play like Hendrix” books lying about, most not getting a lot of use because they were either too basic, too advanced or simply not user friendly. “Total Scales Technique and Applications” or TSTA, solves all of those previously listed deficiencies because it’s a book that can grow with you as you improve. It starts out easily and the layout and configuration is wonderful for a beginner just trying to discover the mysteries of the guitar. The book gives every guitarist the opportunity to learn every note, in every position, in every key all over the fret board. The author, John Sternal, did a very good job in mixing it up and each page becomes more interesting and intense. The first chapter is essentially a comprehensive look at the fundamentals of guitar…again, I stress that in my opinion it’s the application of fundamentals that will really pay off over time. I know my guitar instructor beats me up about fundamentals all the time and for good reason! Clearly author John Sternal agrees because he starts at first base and continues from there. The following chapters are pure playing with basic scales and also tons of cool exotic scales that intermediate and advance players will really enjoy. Knowledge of scales and the ability to use them as you play is really an integral part of making quality music with a guitar. Rock, blues, jazz, metal, you name it, every guitarist uses scales at some point to make their music. This book is a real winner and a rare resource that you’ll use far more than you might anticipate. I loaned this book to a very advanced player and he was very impressed with it. The book’s real strength is its “exercise approach” which encourages doing the scale drills with various combinations of notes and partial scales. There are also tons of cool guitar techniques like pick squeals, artificial harmonics and even tapping. This book will challenge you and make you a better guitarist and that’s exactly what a “learning resource” should do. Visit MJS Publications at for more information. The book is often available on ebay as well. -CWA
- Chris Armold

Mark's “GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques And Applications” book has opened up things for me and given me options that I didn't know I had available... Those notes were not on my guitars before I opened this book? As a lifetime "know-it-all" can imagine how surprised I was when I found out there were scales and techniques in this book that I wasn't aware of! It's been a humbling and profoundly beneficial experience working through it, (GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques and Applications), and teaching my seven and nine year old (children), from it has been the perfect way to follow up...after all, the best way to learn is to teach!
Memorize every page of this will make you a better musician and guitarist!!! - Shawn Eiferman

"Mr. Sternal expertly untangles the mess of theory behind chord/key relationships, and in
the process gives you a glut of useful shapes and songwriting tips. Whereas some chord
books offer 34,276 diagrams and not a hint of direction, Probable Chords presents a
clear-cut method for learning the most essential fingerings and then putting them to work in
a musical context."

- Chris O'Byrne

“...Mark John Sternal has already authored seven best-selling instructional books on guitar.
He's often referred to as "the world's greatest guitar teacher. ...Successfully putting into
words how to play guitar and how to make it a fun passion and pastime, what Mark
Sternal's life mission is all about.


“In his book GUITAR: Probable Chords, Mark J. Sternal thoroughly and efficiently lists all
basic chords, and even their mutants. Not only does he list them, but unlike other guitar
books, he explains them in the context of all 12 keys. As a teacher I believe that this book
has the best explanation of extended chords on the market. I would recommend this book to
all of my colleagues and students.

Andres Delikat
Music Instructor at the Academy of Music and Art, and Gainesville Guitar Academy - Andres Delikat

“Mark John Sternal has done it again. This guy has a wonderful ability to take what is truly
complex and through words and diagrams, convince the reader it's not as tough as it really
is. "Guitar: Probable Chords" is a superior guitar chord book, or rather as the author puts it,
"a chord, key encyclopedia" in which Sternal applies his own practical rules to explain chord
structure and how it relates to each key. The book offers basics for new-bees,
intermediate, advanced chords/keys and a section called "all" which includes neutral chords
such as suspended 4th and so on. The book is easy to follow and Mark's instructions for
maximizing learning are clear and again, make sense. Making sense of often fuzzy theory
and demystifying the complex is one of the true attributes of "Guitar: Probable Chords." If
you own Guitar: Total Scales Techniques and Applications" you'll most certainly want to add
this wonderful reference to your learning arsenal.”

Review by Chris Armold, Guitar Digest Magazine - Chris Armold


7 music instruction books and CDs.
"GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques and Applications"
"BASS GUITAR: Total Scales Techniques and Applications"
"GUITAR: Probable Chords"
"The Twelve Notes Of Music"
"Complete Guitar By Ear - 2 CD Audiobook"
"Complete Bass Guitar By Ear - 2 CD Audiobook"
"GUITARRA: Escalas, Técnicas y Aplicaciones Totales"


Feeling a bit camera shy


Mark John Sternal, a Chicago native, began playing guitar at a very young age and has performed live since the age of 15. After relocating to Florida, Mark began to teach music. As a passionate player and teacher, He developed his own style of teaching. It wasn't long before Mark saw a demand for his teaching styles in the form of educational books and CD's.