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The Blues Scale (Minor Pentatonic) and the Major Pentatonic Scales on the Guitar



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okay so in this lesson we're going to

learn two scales the minor pentatonic

scale and the major pentatonic scale and

with these two scales you can play just

about anything you need to play on the

guitar in fact I'll be honest with you

those are the only two scales that I

know how to play and I've been playing

guitar for years and can play a country

and rock and blues and everything I do

is made up of those two scales this is

the only two that I ever really learned

because I was able to do everything I

wanted to with those two scales so we're

going to start with a minor pentatonic

scale which is in the key we're going to

be in the key of E by the way and the

minor pentatonic scale for in the key of

E we're going to go up to the twelfth

fret because that's an e there and

that'll be the beginning or the root

position of this scale and you'll see

what I mean by root position as we go

over it most of the notes in this scale

you're going to see are going to land on

this twelfth fret here so this is kind

of the root position for the key of e

for the e minor pentatonic scale also

known as the blues scale by the way some

people refer to that minor pentatonic

scale as the blues scale

same thing okay so let me show you how

to play this

this pattern of the minor pentatonic

scale by the way scales are made up of

different patterns so you'll have you'll

be able to play that scale you know that

if we're in the key of E for example

you'll be able to play it here then

you'll be able to play some of it down

here and then down here and then down

here and all different positions on the

neck they're all the same notes you're

just play them in different positions on

the neck but this pattern that about to

show you is the main pattern the one

that you'll hear most solos come from

and so I think that's probably the best

place to start so here we go so we're

going to start on the 15th fret

then down to the twelfth fifteen twelve

fourteen twelve fourteen twelve fourteen

twelve fifteen twelve I just you could

see I just changed strings after every

two notes one two three four five six

six strings okay

and with those notes in that position

you can play all kinds of really cool

solos as you know blues solos in the key

of E so for example you know you got a

rhythm going

that was all done using that scale

now there's obviously some bins and some

vibrato but the notes that I'm playing

are all in that a minor pentatonic scale

so that's that's now obviously I'm not

going to explain note for note what I

just did there but the point of this

lesson is to show you that you now know

the boundaries of how to play the blues

in this position in the in the e

position

for the E minor pentatonic scale now

here's what's really cool and what I

remember when I first learned this it

kind of blew my mind is to how this even

works but it does so that's the blues

for the key of E now if we want to play

the E major pentatonic scale we can do

the exact same pattern remember where

you go fifteen twelve you know our 15th

fret 12th fret 15th fret twelfth fret

fourteen twelve fourteen twelve fourteen

twelve fifteen twelve so remember that

little shape there I think of that whole

box that I just did as a shape or a

pattern well if we slide everything down

three frets one two three we're going to

play those exact same that exact same

box so this time it's going to be twelve

nine twelve 911 911 911 9 12 9 I hope

that makes sense what I just did there I

just shifted everything down three frets

and what that is is that's the major

pentatonic scale that same pattern move

down three frets will now allow you to

play a major or a happy sound so the

Blues is kind of kind of sad but this

much happier it's the exact same pattern

just shifted down so I thought that was

pretty cool when I first discovered that

so now what I'm going to do is I'm going

to play along with the I've got kind of

a jam track here that's not really blues

or my I guess you could consider it kind

of like almost a southern rock sounding

thing but and I'm going to show you the

difference how you can take this same

chord progression it's just going to be

e D and a those are the chords in this

and you can play blues the the minor

pentatonic scale and the major

pentatonic scale over those same chords

and you can get completely different

sounds so let me show you what I'm

talking about here okay turn it up a

little bit I apologize for the audio

quality on this but what to make do okay

so now the first thing I'm going to do

is I'm going to go to the blues

see that's on that scale

okay now I'm going to shift everything

down three frets and listen to the

difference in sound the difference so

you can have all kinds of fun just going

between those two scales and then what

you do the better you get you start to

mix the two scales and there's certain

points where you're going to be in the

major pentatonic scale certain points

where you're going to be in the minor

pentatonic scale and certain points

where you're going to blend the two

here's an example of kind of blending

them kind of in the blue scale kind of

in the major scale

so see what I'm talking about

so that is how you get you know you go

back and forth between a blue scale

minor pentatonic scale and a major

pentatonic scale and the key of E and

really that's that's all there is to

that now let me a good practice for this

by the way would be playing the scale

I'm going to include with this lesson if

you go to active melody calm you can

download the jam track I just played

there and so you can practice along with

this but let me show you a really good

little practice technique that will help

you in learning these scales play along

with it here so we're going to start

with a minor pentatonic let me let it

play through one time here

okay here we go

we're gonna go so that's just repeating

that over and over again playing the

minor pentatonic scale just practicing

getting those notes now you can do the

same thing I'm going to shift it down

and do the major

so that's a really good practice and

then do you can kind of switch you know

back and forth between the two all kinds

of things you can do with that