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A newcomer's question about scales

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25 Jan 2007 01:15 | Quote
Posts: 11
Hello all!

First I'd like to say this is the greatest site I've been to for guitar training. I dont have the finances for private lessons, and the only guitarists I know live far away from me. So this has taught me more about this instrument than anywhere else I have been, or any viedo I have seen. So thank you.

On to my question...

I would like to know what scales I should start memorising, and in which order.

I have learned A major (5th fret), and A Major Penatonic (5th fret), and was looking at where I should set my sights to next. (And I dont even know if those were good choises, but I heard that you can transpose key easy from those scales)

Thank you for any responces in advance!!

P.S. If your wondering what kind of stuff I like I'm very heavy into Progressive stuff (Tool, Dream Theater, Coheed & Cambria), and Jazz style of playing and solo's. (Yea, I know I have along way to go before I can even think about touching the stuff I like to listen to) I dont know if that info will help you point me in the right direction, but you have it none the less.

25 Jan 2007 10:53 | Quote
Joined: 04 Jan 2007
United Kingdom
Licks: 1
Karma: 11
hi, glad you like the site.

the minor pentatonic is used loads. I recommend you learn it. in A it is:

5 6 7 8
E # #
B # #
G # #(#)
D # #
A #(#)#
E # #

the #s are to show the shape. if you play the notes in brackets as well, you are playing the flattened 5th, which turns the minor pentatonic into the minor blues scale. Two scales for the price of one! And you can also move them up and down the neck to play them in other keys. In fact, this applies to any scale without open strings in it. You might notice that if you start the minor pentatonic at the 8th fret on the low E string, you are actually playing the C major pentatonic scale, because A minor is the relative minor of C major. The minor pentatonic is great because it is used in so many genres of music, and is the basic of many classic riffs such as "Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin. Be careful you don't over use it though! Experiment with adding passing notes to make it sound more exotic. If it sounds good, it is good - its as simple as that.
25 Jan 2007 11:02 | Quote
Joined: 04 Jan 2007
United Kingdom
Licks: 1
Karma: 11
hmm i think that scale diagram is a bit confusing. this is it in tab: (two octaves)

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

and the minor blues scale is:

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

there are also other ways to play the minor pentatonic - you can start in one position and slide up to another position. check out the scales link at the top to see all the positions of the minor pentatonic.
25 Jan 2007 23:09 | Quote
Posts: 11
Thank you for the insite!

A minor Penatonic, Check!

So now that I will get the minor penatonic, what after that?

What scales will I need the most? Are there some I should skip? I know I need to know the Penatonic for most rock and pop stuff. But what else is primarally used? Which minor scales should I learn? Harmonic, Melodic?? Accending, Decending???

When I looked at all the options for scales, there were so many, its kinda intimidating. I dont know which scale is used for what... or even why there are so many. Perhaps it will take 20 years of theory to answer, could someone try to point me in the right direction?
26 Jan 2007 01:52 | Quote
Joined: way back
Karma: 2
harmonic minor is mostly used by neoclassical guitarists like yngwie malmsteen , melodic minor is not very much used i think , sometimes by blues or jazz musicians maybe (correct me if i'm wrong)

the normal pentatonics , normaal major/minor and the blues scales will make the three most valuable scales i think

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