The Minor Pentatonic-Scale

by Dirk Hagemann

Well, the probably most used Scale in improvising is the Pentatonic
Scale. The Pentatonic Scale consists only of 5 Tones and it exists
in a major and minor type. And in this exercise you become knowledgeable
about the keytones on the fingerboard and which notes you can play in
a solo without playing out of tone. And with the knowledge of these 5
patterns of the Minor-Pentatonic Scale, you can shift them up and down
the fingerboard into any key!

Minor Pentatonic

It s the oldest scale and consist of five tones. That s why it s
called Pentatonic (Penta is greek = five)

Basic knowledge: There are 12 whole-tones and semitones on the
fingerboard, that means that these notes are repeated from the
13th fret.

(E.g. you have the keytone F on the 1st and 13th fret). The difference
between these two notes is called an octave.

1. Notes on the fingerboard.

Fret         1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9    10    11    12
Keytone e |--F--|--F#-|--G--|--G#-|--A--|--A#-|--B--|--C--|--C#-|--D--|--D#-|--E--|
        B |-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|
        G |-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|
        D |-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|
        A |-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|-----|
        E |--F--|--F#-|--G--|--G#-|--A--|--A#-|--B--|--C--|--C#-|--D--|--D#-|--E--|

Now you re ready to learn the five patterns of the Minor-Pentatonic
Scale. Each pattern is moveable over the complete fingerboard.

E.g. In the keytone G the first pattern starts on the 3rd fret, in the
keytone A it starts on the 5th fret, in keytone C on the 8th fret etc.

1. Pattern:


In the keytone A (from the 5th fret, because the keytone A is on the
5th fret) the first pattern looks like this:

    1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   
e |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|---|-x-|
B |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|---|-x-|
G |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|-x-|---|
D |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|-x-|---|
A |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|-x-|---|
E |---|---|---|---|-x-|---|---|-x-|

Practise: Play from the the high E-string to the low E-string and back.
Use one finger for each fret.

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

If you want to move the pattern into another key, just use the tab
above where you can see the keytones on the fingerboard.

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