I'm a (work in progress) lead guitarist. I am into solo'ing and improv and I especially like the blues. However, It's time that I get technical and learn the scales and theory behind it all. I've learned and memorized the 5 positions of the E minor pent scale, but before learning other keys of it, what other scales should I be learning, or what should I learn next?

I just wanna know what I should learn next after learning the 5 positoins of the Em pent which I did.

you really dont have to learn "certain scales" or try msermerizing the top lead scales..makes ure own out of a chord
you should try learning different modes of the scale as it will add some variation into you solo'ing as they will create a different sound
You should know how scales are formed to know how to make any scale without having them memorized (this will help also in chord formation), for example, if you want Em scale, you know you'll play the E scale, with the third note being half-tone down, and E scale is E-F#-G#-A-B-C#-D# because the passages third-fourth and seventh-eighth of the scale should be half-tone...
Probably you won't understand what I'm saying, but ask a teacher or search in lessons and you'll find it better explained
learn where the flat 5th is, that way you'll also know the blues scale, and it's only one more note. you'll also want to learn where the 3rd is so that you can bend it a quarter tone sharp, but you can more or less work that out by ear.
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There's seven modes to a major scale.

If you're wanting to learn how to compose, learn the intervals between the notes in a scale. Learn how to construct chords and how to change keys with common tones and all that. If you're just looking for something to solo with and don't care to learn all the modes of the major scale, learn the pentatonic minor and add a few chromatic overtones in passing to add a little more color to your leads.

Barring that, lead work isn't terribly hard. Just make sure you don't have any nasty passing tones.
Quote by ruiner999
There's seven modes to a major scale.

I said positions, not modes. There may be 7 modes, but there are really only 5 positions (off the 1, 2, 3, 5, 6).
learn the major scale (same shapes as minor)...personally i used the pentatonics then fill it in with my own notes
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i'd say major scale, minor scale, and minor pentatonic. all positions of all so you can go all the way up and down the fretboard. obviously be able to play them in all different keys
Quote by jam979
I said positions, not modes. There may be 7 modes, but there are really only 5 positions (off the 1, 2, 3, 5, 6).

We might play the modes differently. The relationship between Lydian and Mixolydian leads to me doing a wider stretch for the low and high B respectively on the Es and Dorian and Ionian are much the same but I had the high F on the B string.

There may be seven modes, but there's not just generally five positions, you can start the major scale on any string in a variety of positions, the symmetry thereof not necessarily dependent on starting on the sixth and working your way to the first.

For a little flavor for the TS, I recommend learning the Harmonic Minor scale. Structurally it's the same as the Aeolian with the exception of a raised seventh.

Instead of ABCDEFGA you get ABCDEFG#A, adding a little Middle Eastern or Spanish flair to the leads themselves. You get some fun modes like Phyrgian Dominant as well.
Last edited by ruiner999 at Dec 21, 2008,