#1
Hello,
when I write a solo or improvise in one particular key, let's say A, am I allowed to jump between scales in that key? From the Major Scale to the Pentatonic, to the Blues scale for example. Or am I locked down with one scale until that section of the song finishes?
#2
The actual scale you use does NOT matter. The key is the important part.

So, if you want to jump from major to pentatonic to blues...then do it!
#4
You can use all twelve notes in whatever key.
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#5
Quote by Jayerrr
Hello,
when I write a solo or improvise in one particular key, let's say A, am I allowed to jump between scales in that key? From the Major Scale to the Pentatonic, to the Blues scale for example. Or am I locked down with one scale until that section of the song finishes?


as always, it depends. Just saying the key of "A" doesnt tell you a lot.

It depends on how well defined the chord progression is. If it is a hardcore minor progression such as amin,G,F,amin...or amin,dmin,emin then you are pretty much going to be using an aminor scale or a minor pentatonic/blues. I mean, there is no gun to your head, you can play a major over those minor progressions if you like but do you think it will sound all that good?

and if it is a well defined MAJOR progression, say, Amaj7th, Bmin,C#min,Dmaj7th etc then you will generally be playing a major scale over that


If the chord progression is much less defined then you CAN play pretty much whatever you want. for instance over A5, D5 (power chords) you can play major, minor, whatever and u can mix and match

Sometimes the chord progression itself is "mixed" and then you can sort of mix your scales to match the chords. for instance this one Amajor, Dminor. Play amajor over the A chord and aminor over the d chord.

or this one Amaj,F,G,Amaj. Play a major over the a chord and A minor over the G and F
#6
You can play whatever you want over anything. But that doesn't mean it sounds good. But you can use all the 12 notes and make it sound good. What you need to do is look at the chords. Use your ears, listen to them. Listen to which notes sound good over those chords.

When you improvise, one of the most important things is knowing the backing track. It's good to know it so well that you don't need to think which chord comes next - you can just play. So listen to the backing track and get familiar with it. If you are not familiar with the backing track, it is hard to come up with any melodies because you don't know when the chords change and which chord comes next.

But yeah, I would figure out the chords first. Sometimes minor pentatonic will work, sometimes major will work. It's all about your backing track. If it's a major progression, the major scale will work most of the time. If it's a minor progression, the minor scale will work most of the time. You need to understand what it means to be in the key of A major or A minor.

If your chord progression is something like A-F#m-Bm-E, you are in A major and A major scale will work over it just fine. And minor pentatonic won't work over it. But if the progression is Am-C-G-F, you are in A minor and A minor scale will work over it just fine. You could also try playing the A minor pentatonic which is actually just A minor without the 2nd and 6th notes. You need to pick the scale that fits the chords (hint - figure out the chord tones and use them to build the scale. This will work especially if the progression is diatonic, ie only uses notes that fit the key signature).
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#7
It's generally important to keep the chord tones of the underlying harmony intact. IE. if you've got an A major chord, you can play the notes A, C# and E. The rest of the notes are more flexible. You might notice that if you play C, there's a strong pull to the C#. You might find that Bb is the worst note you could imagine. Or that you can hold the non chord-tone B over the whole A major chord and it just works. All the notes have their own flavours and colours.