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That’s why we will use an expanded version of the scale to play over the dominant seventh chord A7: the A minor pentatonic scale with an added major third (see scale diagram below). These frustrations are shared by many guitar players around the world! All notes that are in the D7 chord are in the D dominant pentatonic as well. Additionally, if you have been soloing using the major pentatonic over the I chord, then switching to the minor pentatonic will add greater variety to your soloing. Chord tone soloing takes quite a lot of practice but stick with it and you’ll get there. Just as in improvising, or soloing, the pentatonic scale avoids problematic dissonance. To help with transitioning from one “pentatonic box” to the next, you can start to expand beyond just pentatonic position #1. Let’s just go with the higher octave because leads sound cooler when played up high :). Since the first chord of the progression is F#m, we can just go ahead and call this a “minor progression in the key of F# minor”. In this chord tones lesson we will learn to target the notes in each individual chord of the 12-bar blues progression and adjust our soloing approach slightly for each one. Prior to this, the fretboard just looked a mess, even for someone decently familiar. I could not put my ax down! For now though, just realize that you aren’t simply just playing the F# minor pentatonic scale over all of the chords within the progression. Basically, such a dominant seventh chord is built up using 4 notes: -    The Root note (R) : A-    The major 3rd (3) : C#-    The 5th (5) : E-    The flat 7th (b7) : GAs the A7 chord contains these four notes, they are also a great choice to land on when soloing. Once you get used to this whole “one pentatonic box per chord” method, you can then realize that there are only 3 shapes that you will need to remember. Let me break it down for you why this is.The A7 chord contains 4 notes, which we already looked at. 6:09 – Part 2: Expanding Beyond Pentatonic Position #1 into Neighboring Positions Brian, you put a warning sign on this lesson! This again is a way of thinking that is common among beginner/intermediate guitarists, but definitely not a good approach. Turned out to be a good way to tell your brain what notes are in whatever key you’re currently working on. You see these notes again in the left colomn below. Amazing how a lesson has the ability to trigger or complete some scattered idea you had all along but couldn’t quite nail down. As you mastered the minor pentatonic scale completely, you may have noticed that you got stuck and your soloing didn’t improve much anymore. How Practicing Chord Tone Targetting Will Get You A Better Guitarist. I wonder if it’s because I make C sound like Am and D like Bm cos I’m used to aiming for chord notes in the minor pentatonic. In this article specifically we’ll look at how to overcome these barriers by learning how chords and scales work together. This gives me a lot of fretboard visualization and I'm able to connect chord tones and create licks based off of what I'm seeing.? See Everything that Zombie Guitar has to Offer! Chord Tone Soloing Guitar Lesson – Level 4 – Overview and Chord Analysis Download the tab & notation for this chord tone soloing guitar lesson This is a bluesy ballad with a progression based around the tonal center of A, but it has some richer changes than a standard I-IV-V beginning with a D moving to a Dm (IV to ivm) and a bVII (G7) which is followed by a vii-ii-V from the key of A, namely (F#m-Bm7-E7). Chord tone soloing is one of those things that either eludes guitarists, or they shy away from it in favor of the one-scale-fits-all approach. To illustrate how chords and scales are very deeply intertwined, we start from a standard 12 bar blues progression in the key of A, with the following chords:The most common and basic approach would be to improvise over this progression using the A minor pentatonic scale. Here is what is included when you pay the one-time fee to upgrade your account. Determine the key of the chord progression that you will be soloing over, 2.) If we were soloing over an E7 chord (E–G#–B–D), our Mixo-pentatonic scale would be E–G#–A–B–D (1–3–4–5–b7). Pentatonic position #1 can either be major or minor. Therefore, I will leave it up to you (or you can just watch me do it in the video), to try and figure out how to confine your playing to just one area of the fretboard at a time. The only difference is where the scale root, or “tonal center” is located within the pattern: Notice that the only difference is where the root is located (the colored dot). Rather than trying to explain it to you, I will just show you some diagrams…. Chord tone soloing is a technique to make your solo sound "in" the backing track. We made it to the third video in the series where we take a moment to stop and really listen and analyze why each note in the pentatonic scale has a different flavor over each chord in a Blues progression. This means that you don’t play in one pentatonic scale over ALL chords, but you connect the chords being played in the progression with a certain scale. With this technique you are able to choose the notes that will sound best at any given moment in your solo. This isn’t always true for major chords, so only focus on the triad tones for those. Because many blues progressions utilize I-IV-V chord changes you will often be utilizing Minor Pentatonic & Blues and/or Major Pentatonic as potential lead playing avenues. Chord Tone soloing does not restrict you to play "inside" the track: you can choose to deliberately violate it to sound "outside" like some Jazz players do. Even better if one of the chord tones isn't in the pentatonic. For each of the 10 chord progressions, you can choose which key that you want to jam in as well as the concept that you want to work on – Pentatonic Scale, Blues Scale, Diatonic Scale, Scale Combining or Chord Tone Targeting. You have learned about the minor pentatonic scale and learned to improvise a bit, but you’ve come to a point where you don’t make progress anymore. There are 5 major and 5 minor chord progressions. There are 5 “pentatonic only” video backing tracks which will allow you to practice in each of the 5 pentatonic positions without focusing on chord tone targeting; There are then 5 “chord tone targeting” videos where the chord tones “light up” as the underlying chords change. When the chords change from C7 to D7, try going from F to F#, then play the D7 chord tones. Further on, I will elaborate on the correct approach and teach you how to apply it correctly. F# minor pentatonic over the F# minor chord, A major pentatonic over the A major chord, E major pentatonic over the E major chord, D major pentatonic over the D major chord. First off, let’s take a look at what a lot of beginner/intermediate guitarists think is the correct way of Chord Tone Soloing. To start, after messing around with the A minor pentatonic scale, try using a major pentatonic scale on the A chord, and when switching to the E7 chord, keep on the major pentatonic scale. The chord tone for the 5 chord – A major would still be the first finger on the 4th string. Applying what we explained in the previous paragraph, we can raise the F note in the D minor pentatonic to an F# and thus play the D minor pentatonic with added major 3rd, but there are even better ways. Beginner’s Guide to Expanding the Pentatonic Scale, Creating 10 Different “Sounds” Within Pentatonic Position #1, 1 video backing track which uses the same chord progression as in the video, The video contains a full fretboard diagram displaying the key of F# minor with “moving pentatonics” as the chords change in the rhythm section, For a minor chord, you would locate the “pentatonic box” with your index finger, For a major chord, you would locate the “pentatonic box” with your pinky finger. That’s the reason the article I refer to is called ‘How To Break Through Your Guitar Soloing Limitations – A Story About Chord Tone Soloing And The Dominant Pentatonic Scale’. They just ooze that minor bluesy vibe or sweet major vibe. For the first time, I have been able to lay out the entire fretboard by hand, starting with the root note on each string, then from there, knowing I’m in minor for instance, just fill in the pattern starting with each root note. I personally like to use the “upper extension” for each box as you can see here: By doing this, you are still “switching pentatonics” over each chord, but you are extending the range such that your playing sounds less jumpy. You can simply just “noodle around” within each of these pentatonic boxes as each chord is playing. It’s a slow minor blues with just a handful of changes; we can fall back on the minor pentatonic scale, and we don’t need to learn any new scales or patterns to be able to outline the chords. This is much easier than trying to memorize all the different CAGED shapes in conjunction with all the different scale shapes. 1:31 – Intro to the “One Pentatonic per Chord” Approach 3. As you may have noticed, the A minor pentatonic scale doesn’t contain the C#-note. You can think of this scale as a pentatonic version of the Mixolydian mode, which has a formula of 1–2–3–4–5–6–b7. When soloing over minor chords using this “pentatonic box #1” method, the 7th is part of the pentatonic shape. Why not try both and see how it influences the tone? I’m old af now and still at it! Let’s look at how this happens and how to overcome these guitar playing barriers. Bravo Brian, we are spoilt by the quality and fantastic content included within your lessons. Want to seriously up your guitar game regardless of your level? So for instance I know that in Major pentatonic position 1 I can find 3 versions of a triad while in Major pentatonic position 2 I have only two possiblilites to play a triad. As these chords move, B.B.King is known to move positions with them, keeping things nice and simple. Why The Minor Pentatonic Scale Is The Most Overrated Scale To Solo Over Blues Chords, A minor pentatonic scale (with added major 3rd). Learn exactly how to master blues guitar with the. Your email address will not be published. this is so helpful, thank you! That is the way a lot of guitarists approach the whole concept of “soloing over a chord progression”, and that’s completely fine! If we analyze the D7 chord and the D minor pentatonic scale, we see that the chord contains an F#, while the scale comprises an F note. Required fields are marked *. A more advanced approach that comes closer to how great blues guitarists apply Chord Tone Soloing, is to use the D dominant pentatonic scale. if the chord progression is in A minor, then you would choose A minor pentatonic/A minor blues/A natural minor scale), 3.) How Your Blues Guitar Frustrations Are Tied To a Very Limited View of How Blues Scales And Chords Work. Most of these guitarists think they’re doing it the correct way, but actually they only use a very basic method of soloing. You can see this for yourself below. Next cames modes, in all my years of playing all across the country I have never needed About the author: Most guitarists are taught to play minor pentatonic or the flat 5 blues scale when soloing over a 1 4 5 blues progression. In this article we will talk about a few simple techniques to break through these limitations and take your blues guitar soloing to a whole new level. The beauty of this method is that for every major chord, the chord tones of the underlying chord will always be found in the “G-Shape”, and for every minor chord they will be found in the “Em-Shape: Note that for the minor chord, I also included the 7th scale degree (the blue dot) to be a chord tone. 17:51 – Taking the “Soloing with Pentatonics” Concept even Further…. You know your guitar playing can improve, but you have no clue how to do it. When the chords change from C7 back to G7, try going from B♭ to B, then playing the G7 chord tones. The white dot indicates the note ‘F#’: When you are soloing over the F# minor chord or the A major chord, you can always add in some additional notes by simply remembering this “pattern”: If an E major or C# minor chord occurs, you would shift to this box pattern: Finally, if a D major or B minor chord occurs, you would shift to this pattern: Now you see how these “pentatonic boxes” fit perfectly into the overall scalar framework of the key. In that case we raise the F note to an F# and also play the 9th, which is the E note. This chord progression is a simple I-IV-V in C major, it would also work very well with C major pentatonic scale or C major scale. You could call this the “shortcut method” if you’d like, because it involves simply moving this basic pentatonic box around to different areas of the fretboard: By doing this, you will still remain 100% in-key (provided that the underlying chords in the progression are all part of just one key). By doing this, you will still be playing 100% in-key, but you will notice that your playing will be sounding a bit more “connected” with each chord as the chord changes occur. Are you starting to see why beginner blues guitarists get stuck in their progress on the guitar? Over the IV chord, you also have the choice to solo using the minor pentatonic that relates to the IV chord. When you get to the D7 chord, try hitting either the F sharp note or the C natural, which is not in the A major pentatonic scale, but is in the D7 chord. The method given in this lesson is an alternative approach. Published August 30, 2020 by Graham Tippett. In the near future, I will be adding a course that goes much deeper into this topic into the Lead Guitar Improv Member’s Vault. Just transposing the minor pentatonic scale over the D chord is done by A LOT of beginner guitarists, but NO professional blues guitarist would ever dare to do this! 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