Author Topic: Five Minor Pentatonic Scale Patterns (Fixed an error in Major pentatonics)  (Read 1141 times)

Offline SadisticKeith

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Was gonna wait until Monday to set this ball rolling but what the hell?

 Here are the five minor pentatonic scale patterns/positions for the key of A minor. The pentatonic scale is named so because it only uses five ("Penta meaning five and "tonic" meaning tones) degrees of a diatonic scale. Diatonic meaning all notes are related to the same key. For example the A Minor diatonic scale would be spelled out like this: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, A. If you are somewhat familiar with scales and basic music theory you will notice the diatonic scale is just the seven scale degrees of your typical major or minor scale. If not don't worry it will make sense later. Now to make that an A minor pentatonic scale we would remove the 2nd scale degree as well as the sixth. In this case that means we would "throw out" B Natural and F Natural so the resulting scale would be spelled like this: A, C, D, E, G. That is A minor pentatonic. Pentatonic scales are at the very root of heavy metal (minor pentatonic) and hard rock (minor pentatonic) soloing as well as country music (major pentatonic), but we will get into that later.

These will form the basics for just about any guitar solo or riff. You can also make them major just by changing a few notes around. For example the notes of A minor are spelled out above, to make these A Major pentatonic patterns just change a few notes. Instead of spelling it out A, B, C, D, E, F, G, A (A minor diatonic) simply spell it out as A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G#, A (A Major diatonic) and discard the 4th and 7th scale degrees. You will end up with A, B, C#, E, F# (A Major Pentatonic). That is the only difference between the two: Major pentatonic = 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 intervals of a Major scale. Minor pentatonic: 1, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th intervals of any minor scale.

Please note that ALL of these examples are in the key of A minor. To make them A Major simply substitute the notes C, and G with C# and G# respectively.







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As always start slowly and build up speed. Doing this will not only improve your musical vocabulary it will also improve your technique as you are not only training your brain to remember these you are also training your muscle memory as well as your ears. Once you get these down you can mix up the notes anyway you like and things will start to sound more musical and less like an exercise. It is also a good idea to practice these for a while and then try to make them sound more musical as to break up the monotony of doing the same thing over and over again and putting your mind to sleep. These can be moved into any key on the neck. Any questions? Feel free to ask. Don't spend more than one hour working on any given thing at a time. I got that last tip from Joe Satriani, an hour is about all the information your mind will be able to process at one time so don't force it. It will come naturally. And if you do not have a metronome...GET ONE! You can find plenty you can download on the internet for free. And again start slowly and once you have it under your fingers increase the tempo on your metronome in small increments of say 10bpm. If 10bpm is too much no sweat, simply try to increase less than 10bpm. As always this is not a contest so don't rush and learn at your own pace.


*There is an error with pattern #4. The ascending finger pattern is correct. The descending is NOT. To descend reverse the ascending pattern and ignore the descending pattern as you should only be playing notes in the 9th, 10th, 12th, and 13th frets. The 8th fret while correct in terms of key is NOT the correct position.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2012, 05:04:02 PM by SadisticKeith »


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Offline Caine

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Re: Five Minor Pentatonic Scale Patterns
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2011, 09:16:49 PM »
Karma  ;u  :G

« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 09:52:05 PM by SadisticKeith »

Offline SadisticKeith

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Re: Five Minor Pentatonic Scale Patterns
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2011, 09:52:38 PM »
Maybe I will tab this out in three or four notes per string patterns as well for a great exercise in hand co-ordination.

Karma  ;u  :G



Thank you sir! That can be applied to any instrument.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 10:36:23 PM by SadisticKeith »
This my BOOMSTICK!

"Oh, that's just what we call 'pillow talk' baby, that's all"

Ash