Pentatonic Scale Diagrams and Fingerings

A brief rundown of familiar and not so familiar pentatonic shapes.

Pentatonic Scale Diagrams and Fingerings
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In this very short article, we will cover a number of minor pentatonic scale fingerings.

The pentatonic scale is often used in a lot of music styles and genres from blues, country, metal, pop to traditional music so it is one of the scales worth mastering.

In a lot of soloing situations, pentatonic scales are often associated with bends, vibrato and slides so other fingering possibilities which utilize the 3rd finger or pinky are drawn separately in this installment.

The context of usage for this scale in improvisation is countless and so for simplicity, I've just drawn the shapes to get your fingers and pick moving in the next ten minutes. For consistency, all diagrams will be based on the E minor pentatonic scale (E, G, A, B, D) and you can transpose them to other keys later. You could use any pattern to improvise to create your own solos or may somehow encounter a particular shape in the course of transcribing a real guitar solo. Have fun!

Open Position:
0-|---|---|-3-|
0-|---|---|-3-|
0-|---|-2-|---|
0-|---|-2-|---|
0-|---|-2-|---|
0-|---|---|-3-|
2nd fret:
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|

2nd fret:
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|


3rd fret:
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|---|-2-|---|---|
|---|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|---|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-4-|
4th fret:
|---|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|---|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|---|
5th fret:
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|---|
|---|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
7th fret:
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|

7th fret:
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|

9th fret:
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|-2-|---|-4-|

9th fret:
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|
|---|-1-|---|-3-|

10th fret:
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
|---|---|-2-|---|---|
|---|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|---|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|

12th fret:
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-4-|

12th fret:
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|
12th fret:
|-1-|---|---|-3-|---|
|---|---|---|-3-|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|-4-|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
|-1-|---|-2-|---|---|
|-1-|---|---|-3-|---|

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