#1
I've been messing around, trying to improve my blues soloing, and found that you can kind of lay the major and minor pentatonics on top of each other and throw in some other notes along with the blues scale to create this...


e-----------------------------------------------------------5--7--8--
b--------------------------------------------------5--7--8-----------
g-------------------------------------5--6--7--8---------------------
d---------------------------4--5--7----------------------------------
a-------------4--5--6--7---------------------------------------------
e---5--7--8-----------------------------------------------------------


Any help would be appreciated. I'd like to know what scale or mode I'm using so I can apply it better to writing music. Thanks for the help.
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#2
It's just a minor (or major, depending on the underlying harmony) pentatonic with a whole host of chromatic tones thrown in. No need to think of it as an entirely different scale.
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#3
Oh, sweet, thanks.
Edit: Yeah, I just saw my spelling error in the title. Should say "improvising."
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Last edited by BD 425 at Jan 31, 2009,
#5
Quote by Uglybassist
Well, it could also be E Harmonic Minor with the C# as a chromatic passing tone.


There's a whole lot more than just C#, and I imagine he's playing it over a progression in A.
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#6
Quote by Uglybassist
Well, it could also be E Harmonic Minor with the C# as a chromatic passing tone.


Melodic minor, since he has both the C and C sharp plus a D and a D sharp in the scale. Although since you start from A it'd then be considered A lydian dominant... Which is not really particularly useful.

Look up some paul gilbert videos, he does some nice licks with a similiar scale, i think he calls it the A hybrid minor scale. Basically just do what sounds good to you man, a good exercise would be to write down what the actual notes are and then find them everywhere on the fretboard, this will expand your improvisational abilities by alot.
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#7
Note like that are nothing on it's own.

People misunderstand music/scales/melodies.

Melodies are basically outlining or colouring the harmony.

Music = harmony.

Those notes on their own are nothing.

Although what Archeo said is right.

If you take hypothetical progression in A then it's that, but seriously I can make it almost EVERYTHING by just choosing which of those notes I use as my chordtones, and the rest will be chromatics.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Jan 31, 2009,
#8
I'm pretty good at finding other places for notes on the fretboard, 'cause I'm good at seeing the way a 3-note pattern shifts down or up onto another string. I have no problem with that.

And to those of you saying what chord progression I'm playing over, I'm not playing over any chord progression at all. This is just me, improving, with nothing underneath. Stupid, I know. I can't find any good backing tracks (just simple chord progressions), and I have no means of making my own.
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#9
Quote by BD 425
I'm pretty good at finding other places for notes on the fretboard, 'cause I'm good at seeing the way a 3-note pattern shifts down or up onto another string. I have no problem with that.

And to those of you saying what chord progression I'm playing over, I'm not playing over any chord progression at all. This is just me, improving, with nothing underneath. Stupid, I know. I can't find any good backing tracks (just simple chord progressions), and I have no means of making my own.


In that case, it's a bit more complicated. Your "scale" is highly chromatic and likely isn't resolving strongly anywhere on its own. You're going to be relying on the underlying harmony to establish a tonal center.

You could use something like Power Tab to write out a few chords progressions. The MIDI sounds terrible, but it will work just fine for establishing context.
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Last edited by Archeo Avis at Jan 31, 2009,
#10
Quote by BD 425
I'm pretty good at finding other places for notes on the fretboard, 'cause I'm good at seeing the way a 3-note pattern shifts down or up onto another string. I have no problem with that.

And to those of you saying what chord progression I'm playing over, I'm not playing over any chord progression at all. This is just me, improving, with nothing underneath. Stupid, I know. I can't find any good backing tracks (just simple chord progressions), and I have no means of making my own.



If it's played over a Static A note, then it's basically a hybrid of; Major pentatonic, and Blues scale (minor pentatonic + a tritone interval).

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#11
Quote by Archeo Avis
In that case, it's a bit more complicated. Your "scale" is highly chromatic and likely isn't resolving strongly anywhere on its own. You're going to be relying on the underlying harmony to establish a tonal center.

Yeah, I know. I need to find some good, simple backing tracks.
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#12
Quote by xxdarrenxx
If it's played over a Static A note, then it's basically a hybrid of; Major pentatonic, and Blues scale (minor pentatonic + a tritone interval).


as I mentioned, "basically" it is A lydian dominant. That's what you get if you bring together all the factors you have mentioned.
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#13
So one last question: can it be used with a basic blues progression?
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#14
Quote by dark_gilbert
as I mentioned, "basically" it is A lydian dominant. That's what you get if you bring together all the factors you have mentioned.


A nine tone scale is not "basically lydian dominant", especially not without some pretty unique harmonic context.

So one last question: can it be used with a basic blues progression?


Absolutely. Try it over a I7-IV7-V7 in A.
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#15
Quote by Archeo Avis
A nine tone scale is not "basically lydian dominant", especially not without some pretty unique harmonic context.


Absolutely. Try it over a I7-IV7-V7 in A.


I wasn't saying it was.
All those notes are found in E melodic minor, the fourth mode of which is A lydian dominant, is it not? Correct me if i'm wrong, and don't act so nonchalant.
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#16
Quote by dark_gilbert
I wasn't saying it was.
All those notes are found in E melodic minor, the fourth mode of which is A lydian dominant, is it not? Correct me if i'm wrong, and don't act so nonchalant.


All of those notes are not found in melodic minor or any scale. What he's playing is extremely chromatic.
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#17
There's part of a Stevie Ray Vaughan solo (Mary Has A Little Lamb) that goes something like (transposed to A for comparison):

e|---------------------------
B|-5-5-----------------------
G|-5-5-----------------------
D|-----7p5---5~--------5h7---
A|---------7-----6p5-4-------
E|-------------------------5-


Notice the 4th fret A string outside of the usual blues scale. You can recreate something very similar inside the blues scale by doing this instead:

e|---------------------------
B|-5-5-----------------------
G|-5-5-----------------------
D|-----7p5---5~--5-5-5-5h7---
A|---------7-----------------
E|-------------------------5-


Making sure you get the right articulation (b-duh-duh) on the repeated note. Hence, I think the chromatic run is there as a rhythmic feature; the exact notes don't matter so much. The first version is much easier to play however, given that the rhythm comes straight from the pulloff, and you can't play legato with repeated notes of course.

So yeah, I don't think any single note is illegitimate in blues. You've got to be aware of what you combine (or exclude) though. A passage with all notes taken from the major pentatonic is highly suggestive of major tonality, with the minor pentatonic likewise suggestive of minor tonality. It's ok to put the two back to back, as this is what blues is all about. Putting the two together in a single lick (particularly the major 6th from the major pentatonic and the minor 7th from the minor pentatonic) can be suggestive of modes (specifically Dorian and Mixolydian), which is not always desirable.

Just taking the notes you're using, you can make a lick like this...

e|----------------------
B|----------------------
G|-6h8p6---6------------
D|-------7---7-4---4/7~-
A|---------------6------
E|----------------------


...which is suggestive of the Lydian scale; not recommended for blues.

Chromatic runs on the other hand are always "safe", in that they do not really suggest anything at all.
#18
Quote by Archeo Avis
All of those notes are not found in melodic minor or any scale. What he's playing is extremely chromatic.


sorry to sound like an ass, but, i think they are.

E melodic minor, ascending and descending contains : E Fsharp G A B C Csharp D Dsharp E

His progression, note-by-note: A B C Csharp D Dsharp E Fsharp G A C Csharp D Dsharp

So where exactly am i going wrong?
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#19
E melodic minor, ascending and descending contains : E Fsharp G A B C Csharp D Dsharp E


Uh...no. It doesn't work that way. Melodic minor is a convention within minor tonalityr in which the sixth is raised when leading into the major seventh and flattened when leading away from a minor seventh into the fifth. It is not "1-2-b3-4-5-b6-6-b7-7".
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#20
Quote by Archeo Avis
Uh...no. It doesn't work that way. Melodic minor is a convention within minor tonality in which the sixth is raised when leading into the major seventh and flattened when leading away from a minor seventh into the fifth. It is not "1-2-b3-4-5-b6-6-b7-7".


Alright, cheers for the explanation. Couldn't you have done that earlier?
i know it warns people in your name, but you are quite an ass

I'm going to go learn about melodic minor.
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#21
Alright everyone, thanks for the help. I've learned quite a bit just from your answers.
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