#1
My guitar teacher asked me to make any kind of melody or anything using some basic blues pentatonic scale.... It goes like

e|-----------------------------------------5---8-----|
B|---------------------------------5---8-------------|
G|-------------------------5---7---------------------|
D|-----------------5---7-----------------------------|
A|---------5---7-------------------------------------|
E|-5---8---------------------------------------------|

then ascends from bottom to top(am just too lazy to write)

I cant think of anything..Can any of you think of any think and send me a tab or something..("only the notes that are in the scale are to be" used he said.. Off notes are not accepted)

Thank you in advance..
#3
The purpose of this exercise is obviously to get familiar with a scale; that you're able to build melodies with a limited set of notes. Now if anyone here would do this for you, the exercise becomes useless. I strongly recommend you to try to figure something out yourself. After all, it can't be that difficult right?
#5
You've got all the notes there, he never said it has to be some insane shred solo did he? I struggle making good solo's, but if he just wants a good melody or whatever then you'll be fine, just play around within the scale. Get your guitar and go!
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#6
pick like three notes off of that scale and play them.. bum bum bum.. you got a melody.
#7
Quote by ir0nmaid3nfan
You've got all the notes there, he never said it has to be some insane shred solo did he? I struggle making good solo's, but if he just wants a good melody or whatever then you'll be fine, just play around within the scale. Get your guitar and go!


Exactly, just fiddle around without only playing the scale ascending and descending. I mean you can play a note twice, three times etc, you can skip strings, you can do hammer ons/pull offs...Be creative man!
#8
Any of those notes will sound good toghether.
It's best for you to do it yourself, otherwise you won't progress.

I'd also experiment with other positions of that scale. I've found that when people stick themselves into one position of the scale (that being the most common one) they all sound the same (in this case, everyone ends up sounding like Eric Clapton! ).
But seriously, something that might help you, find a backing track in A minor, this will help you put the scale into context, then the notes will flow better.
Make sure you can play the scale fairly well up and down, then just play with it! Music isn't meant to be boring or clinical, just use those notes, and try all sorts of things.

I also think it's a VERY bad teaching technique to say "Only use these notes" I'd personally have suggested to try to use notes from the natural minor scale, the dorian scale and the blues scale, these are the ones most added in pentatonic improvisation.

http://www.fretmeup.com/rock-jam-track-a-minor/
A google search came up with this as a backing track so I thought I'd save you the time of searching, it's fairly simple due to no chord changes and you can easily just experiment using it
#9
Quote by deHufter
Exactly, just fiddle around without only playing the scale ascending and descending. I mean you can play a note twice, three times etc, you can skip strings, you can do hammer ons/pull offs...Be creative man!


Oh, I forgot, he said not to use hammer on/Pull offs, slides or stuff like that..Just plain stuff
#10
Quote by Punk_Ninja
Any of those notes will sound good toghether.
It's best for you to do it yourself, otherwise you won't progress.

I'd also experiment with other positions of that scale. I've found that when people stick themselves into one position of the scale (that being the most common one) they all sound the same (in this case, everyone ends up sounding like Eric Clapton! ).
But seriously, something that might help you, find a backing track in A minor, this will help you put the scale into context, then the notes will flow better.
Make sure you can play the scale fairly well up and down, then just play with it! Music isn't meant to be boring or clinical, just use those notes, and try all sorts of things.

I also think it's a VERY bad teaching technique to say "Only use these notes" I'd personally have suggested to try to use notes from the natural minor scale, the dorian scale and the blues scale, these are the ones most added in pentatonic improvisation.

http://www.fretmeup.com/rock-jam-track-a-minor/
A google search came up with this as a backing track so I thought I'd save you the time of searching, it's fairly simple due to no chord changes and you can easily just experiment using it



He is teaching us slowly, but he is a great teacher and an awesome guitarist... If ya dont mind could you tell me where the other notes are..( I dont know how scales work and wat they are for..Pls tell)
#11
I find it rediculous that you can't use hammer ons, pull offs or slides also :-/

Anyway, I'll write the additional notes (if you're focusing on the pentatonic scale I'd suggest using them as passing notes mainly (ones which you use to get to another note in the pentatonic scale) this may be easier at first).

e|---------------------------------------------------5--7--8-----|
B|----------------------------------------5--6--8----------------|
G|-----------------------------4--5--7---------------------------|
D|---------------------5---7--------------------------------------|
A|-----------5--7--8---------------------------------------------|
E|-5--7--8-------------------------------------------------------|

This is the A natural minor

e|-----------------------------------------------5---8-----|
B|---------------------------------------5---8-------------|
G|---------------------------5---7--8---------------------|
D|-------------------5---7---------------------------------|
A|---------5--6--7----------------------------------------|
E|-5---8---------------------------------------------------|

A blues (with this you really NEED to use the extra notes as passing notes to make it sound right, there are of course exceptions to this but right now just use these as passing notes)

e|--------------------------------------------5---8-----|
B|-----------------------------------5--7--8-----------|
G|-------------------------5--6--7---------------------|
D|-----------------5---7--------------------------------|
A|---------5---7----------------------------------------|
E|-5---8------------------------------------------------|

Dorian, though I'm fairly sure this is wrong...I Haven't used Dorian in a while.

Of course there are also notes to add from other modes, but right now stick with Blues, Dorian (mainly used in blues) and Natural minor, as well as the straight pentatonic.
Last edited by Punk_Ninja at Dec 7, 2009,
#13
Quote by CrimsonBizzare
Just improvise, anything played will sound good (as long as you don't make a mistake).


Really?! That's not the case with me...
#14
Quote by MaddMann274
My guitar teacher asked me to make any kind of melody or anything using some basic blues pentatonic scale.... It goes like

e|-----------------------------------------5---8-----|
B|---------------------------------5---8-------------|
G|-------------------------5---7---------------------|
D|-----------------5---7-----------------------------|
A|---------5---7-------------------------------------|
E|-5---8---------------------------------------------|

then ascends from bottom to top(am just too lazy to write)

I cant think of anything..Can any of you think of any think and send me a tab or something..("only the notes that are in the scale are to be" used he said.. Off notes are not accepted)

Thank you in advance..


You're teacher wanted YOU to do this, so that YOU could learn something from it.
Even if you fail, you will learn something. If we do it for you..... you'll learn nothing.
shred is gaudy music
#15
I'm guessing your fairly new to improvising and using scales. When I first started, my teacher asked me to do something similar. At first I just tried to play any random note in any order as long as it was in the scale, but soon realized the importance of phrasing. It really is a thing that just comes with practice but make sure that you have something in mind before you just play random notes.
I hate my sig
#16
Go to youtube - type in Guitar Jam Tracks and find anything that has the key of Am in the title, and in some cases A - then play it, plug in and start playing those notes. Youre task will be made very easy that way. Remember to LISTEN to what you are playing, invest yourself and your time into this and you'll definitely benefit.

Hope this helps!
#17
Quote by Punk_Ninja
I find it rediculous that you can't use hammer ons, pull offs or slides also :-/

It's not ridiculous at all - you're just completely missing the point.

It's an exercise in creativity, the idea is to get used to the pitches within that scale, how they work together and discover what can be done with them. That basic ability to create a simple melody is what's important, more so with limited resources - if you can't create something interesting with a handful of notes you won'y be able to do so with more at your disposal either.

There's no point you chucking extra notes at the poor guy or moaning about the exercise, that's not going to help one bit.
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#18
Quote by steven seagull
It's not ridiculous at all - you're just completely missing the point.

It's an exercise in creativity, the idea is to get used to the pitches within that scale, how they work together and discover what can be done with them. That basic ability to create a simple melody is what's important, more so with limited resources - if you can't create something interesting with a handful of notes you won'y be able to do so with more at your disposal either.

There's no point you chucking extra notes at the poor guy or moaning about the exercise, that's not going to help one bit.


I understand the point of the excersise, but to completely forbid any extra notes or techniques would possibly stifle creativity. I know that I can't work creatively if stuck within one set of notes, techniques, scale etc etc, it could be a similar thing for the threadstarter.

Also he asked for the extra notes, though he may not use them for this excersise it may help his improvising later on in his practice.
#19
You aren't doing the exercise to "promote creativity." Clearly its about hearing tones against a progression and the observations gleaned from that.

Why not try this instead. Do what he says, as he says, that way you go where he is leading things - if you start fighting and stressing and second guessing about things that are not material to what he is trying to teach, and deviating from the lessons, then you aren't going to get the point.

A big roadblock to learning is ones own attitude about things, before they've even tried it they've already presupposed they know whats going to come next.
#20
Quote by Sean0913
You aren't doing the exercise to "promote creativity." Clearly its about hearing tones against a progression and the observations gleaned from that.

Why not try this instead. Do what he says, as he says, that way you go where he is leading things - if you start fighting and stressing and second guessing about things that are not material to what he is trying to teach, and deviating from the lessons, then you aren't going to get the point.

A big roadblock to learning is ones own attitude about things, before they've even tried it they've already presupposed they know whats going to come next.


+1 well said.
shred is gaudy music
#21
Quote by pepsi1187
pick like three notes off of that scale and play them.. bum bum bum.. you got a melody.
This.

Seriously, imo the hardest part of starting to improvise is going 'omg I don't know what note to play!!'

Start off just using the 2 notes on your D string - that gives you the root and one other note to play with. Just play about with them in different rhythms until you are comfortable and are starting to come up with some really simple little licks that sound like you meant them. Then add your G string into the mix, and just stick to those 2 strings til you are comfortable. Once you start getting into the groove with those few notes you can start adding more in without going back into panic mode of not knowing what to play next.

And remember, if it sounds good to you it will sound good to other people - you can't go too far wrong if you stick to the scale he gave you and listen to what you're playing, so have some fun with it and don't stress that you haven't come up with an earth shattering solo - if you did first time out that'd just be scary
#22
well, the 1, 4th and 5th notes are always major, and the second, third and sixth will always be minor. try going up and down between those notes and branching off from there.
#23
Ok, I need a really bluesy feel.. Should i just keep playing notes until i find one which sounds bluesy or will playing either minor or major notes help..

Sorry for asking this but am new to scales, What are scales used for??
#24
Your teacher just wants you to play that box shape. So just play it. He's not asking you to write a real song. Just play some of the notes. Practice going up and down the scale and when you get good at it just play notes that sound good. Since that is the A minor pentatonic don't forget to end on an A note.
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#25
Scales create melodic content across a set of chords.

Blues feel Id say tend towards the minor, but since you dont have a b5 in that box Id recommend trying various note bends...and let your ear tell you if its a good bend or not. Some work and some dont - Ill let you discover that - I could tell you which work, but Id rather teach you how to fish than just give you a fish.
#26
An excercise in improvisation then yes? A very important skill that i tend to find a lot of people don't actually practice; even though like anything it needs practicing to get good at.

So your improvising in an A minor Pentatonic scale.

As a rule to start with it would be a good idea to learn at which frets in the scale the notes A, E and D are; as these are important notes to be ending phrases with (especially in a more bluesy progression).

Once you know where the notes are set about learning sounds within the scale and practice ending each phrase on one of those three notes (as these will give the most satisfying resolution to each phrase) once you can figure this bit out you can begin to become more elaborate with your phrases.

I strongly advise you revise Caedences!! Very important for improvisation!!

Good Luck!!

Last edited by Boomjosh at Dec 7, 2009,
#27
thx to all your help i was able to come up with a cool melody... but problem is no matter how cool it may be it doesn't sound like blues it sounds like some Chinese ching chong..
#28
^ Blues music likes to use bends and slides. Especially pre-bends, so making it sound like blues isn't going to be easy unless you are allowed to use some techniques.

Quote by Punk_Ninja
I find it rediculous that you can't use hammer ons, pull offs or slides also :-/


Learn to walk before you run. If Ts can't come up with a melody without hammer-ons or pull-off's, how is he going to be able to come up with a melody with the techniques?

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Last edited by osXtiger at Dec 11, 2009,