Author Topic: I know minor pentatonic - I'mstruggling to learn major pent. & major scales  (Read 523 times)

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Offline GregB

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A little advice please folks.

I’m just starting out on scales and I’ve learnt minor pentatonic ok and now just learning to speed it up so all good.

For the major pentatonic I’m reading you just move up the neck so your first finger moves goes in the position your fourth finger was in for the minor p but isn’t that just the minor played in a different key or do you play in a different order.

Second question, I’m trying to learn my first, e shape, master scale but I’ve noted there’s two options, one with and one without open chords. Is there value in both or should I focus on the non open string version ?
« Last Edit: July 27, 2020, 09:13:59 pm by close2u »

Offline KasperFauerby

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Re: Scales
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2020, 06:21:16 pm »
If you move your hand *down* the neck, so the little finger now plays the note that the index finger started on when playing the minor pentatonic - then you are playing the notes of the major pentatonic... AND the minor pentatonic in a different key :)

This is why it's a very bad way of thinking of the major pentatonic.

The pattern your fingers play might be the same as when you're playing the minor pentatonic - but each note has a different meaning. The root note, for example, is at a totally different location.

It's much, much more useful to play - for example - the A minor pentatonic at fret 5, and then learn how to play the A major pentatonic around that same area of the neck. Then the patterns will no longer be the same, but your ears will hear the difference between the two scales much more clearly...

Offline GregB

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Re: Scales
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2020, 07:42:32 pm »

It's much, much more useful to play - for example - the A minor pentatonic at fret 5, and then learn how to play the A major pentatonic around that same area of the neck. Then the patterns will no longer be the same, but your ears will hear the difference between the two scales much more clearly...

Thanks Kasper, this is the part I’m not understanding.

Offline close2u

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Re: Scales
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2020, 09:12:48 pm »
A little advice please folks.

I’m just starting out on scales and I’ve learnt minor pentatonic ok and now just learning to speed it up so all good.

Stop there.
Don't learn any more scales.
Once your fingers can go to the correct places for that scale you need to teach them to start it on different notes, to play it backwards, forwards, up and down, 3-notes-in-a-row, 4-notes-in-a-row, skip notes, skip strings, play double-stops.
Most importantly learn to speak with it.
The scale is not music.
It is a tool to make music and be expressive.
You need to learn licks, then use licks.
Lots.
Read this:
https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=47340.0

Quote
For the major pentatonic I’m reading you just move up the neck so your first finger moves goes in the position your fourth finger was in for the minor p but isn’t that just the minor played in a different key or do you play in a different order.
Forget the major pentatonic. See above.

Quote
Second question, I’m trying to learn my first, e shape, master [edit to correct - you mean major right?] scale but I’ve noted there’s two options, one with and one without open chords. Is there value in both or should I focus on the non open string version ?

This makes no sense I'm afraid. There is only one pattern for E-shape major scale. Just one. And it contains notes, not chords.

Also, see above.

Offline CT

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No need to over think this stuff or make up arbitrary rules. This is pretty straight forward. Let's take A minor pentatonic:

Now look at A Major pentatonic:

Don't start and/or end every solo on the root note or on the 1 beat. Mix it up.
Sliding down from minor pentatonic to Major pentatonic is what pros like Tim Pierce do all the time (go to 1:44 in the clip below):




Offline GregB

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Re: Scales
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2020, 12:12:24 am »
@ close2u

Thanks Richard and yes I got some terms wrong.

So for the major scale do I need to learn the e shape major scale and the major scale with open notes too or just the former. As you become more accomplished are you likely to use both those options or would the scale with open notes become little or unused.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 10:32:19 am by close2u »

Offline GregB

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@CT

Perfect, thanks CT. the diagrams help a lot.
So does that mean A minor pent and C major pent use the same notes ?
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 10:32:37 am by close2u »

Offline CT

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There are surely different notes between the Major and minor scales:


Stick with minor while in a minor key and Major in a Major key until you have your head wrapped around this.



 

Offline adi_mrok

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I can give you a nice tip to learn quicker perhaps all positions in minor pentatonic (assuming you at least tried to play them a few times before and sort of remmeber where those patterns are but not quite), consider it to be like this.

Think of your guitar as it has 5 different strings and the thinnest E string being a copycat of the thicker E and likewise. Now you have always the same pattern - 3 strings in a row being frets 1-4 and 2 strings 1-3 and depending what is your thickest/thinnest string (either 1-3 or 1-4) it copies the pattern to another one! So on a real example in case it's not clear.

Let's say you want to play A min pent in first position so you start by looking either double 1-4 or triple 1-3. So if you played it before you know it's going to be double 1-4 on a thinnest strings, so string 3,4,5 are pattern 1-3 and the thickest replicates the thinnest.

Now in Pattern two you should memorize bottom two strings are pattern 1-3, that means string G is going to be 1-3 as well. Strings 4,5 are 1-4 and 6th replicates the first. Easy I think isn't it?

Another useful trick is that if you know octave shapes you can easily find the root note (in this case A) and from A the second note is always 3 semitones apart so pattern 1-4 is applicable. Also rember to move your patterns by one fret everytime you cross string B.

Try to do the same thing with different positions, it works out. Below is a quick shortcut to all patterns:

https://www.justinguitar.com/guitar-lessons/minor-pentatonic-the-5-patterns-sc-304

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app


Offline stitch101

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What  CT didn't tell you is if you start the A major pentatonic that he posted
on the F# you will be playing the F# minor pentatonic and ir you start the A minor
that he posted on the C on the 8th fret you will be playing the C major pentatonic.
So playing patterns won't help you if you don't understand what the root notes
are.
You must use the A note as your tonal center.
So you better of sticking to Close2U advice until you can use the minor pentatonic
in your playing and soloing.

The thing that makes the Blues and a lot of Rock  is playing the minor pentatonic
over a major or major 7 chord progression.

Offline GregB

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What  CT didn't tell you is if you start the A major pentatonic that he posted
on the F# you will be playing the F# minor pentatonic and ir you start the A minor
that he posted on the C on the 8th fret you will be playing the C major pentatonic.

Thanks Stitch, yes I think I alluded to similar in my response above, thanks for confirming.

The reason I moved onto the major scale is having completed the classic beginner course although whilst recognising I still have plenty of consolidation to do I’ve starting dipping my toes into the new beginner course where Justin teaches both the minor pent and the major C scales. However in both cases he teaches them in the open position. As I’ve already learnt the minor pentatonic in the Classic course Is it worth relearning it in open position ? I then thought the C major scale in e is pretty easy to memorise so should I just do that or do I need it in open position too ?

Offline close2u

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So does that mean A minor pent and C major pent use the same notes ?

Yes, technically speaking.
But they use different intervals.
They have different qualities and uses.
If you try to play your minor pentatonic licks using major pentatonic it just won't work.
You need to learn how to use each one in its own right.
If all you can do with a minor pentatonic at the moment is play the pattern with muscle memory then the next step is learn to play it with ears, with music, with backing tracks.
Until you can do things with pattern 1 minor pentatonic you should not be moving on to major pentatonic.
And after pattern 1 is pattern 2, 3, 4, 5.
Watch and follow Justin's lessons on blues lead using the five patterns, licks, bending, vibrato etc.

Offline Majik

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IMO it's worth learning scales in open positions.

Open position scales, especially pentatonics, are quite commonly used in songs. A great example of this is Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" which is a mixture of open chords and open major pentatonic phrases.

And whilst, at the end of the day, they are the same scale shapes as anywhere else on the neck, learning to play them is often quite different as you have to tune your brain and fingers into when to fret a note and when to leave it open.

Also, open position major scales fit nicely under open chords to allow some ornamentation or even to pick out a melody whilst strumming the chord. That's a bit more of an intermediate subject you will eventually come across, but its a good reason to learn open position scales.

Cheers,

Keith
Guitars: PRS Singlecut S2, Fender Tele Lite Ash, G&L Legacy Tribute, Freshman Apollo 2 OCBX, Gibson SG Special P90
Amps: Bugera G5 Head, Boss Katana 100
All sorts of other stuff.

Offline Majik

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So does that mean A minor pent and C major pent use the same notes ?

Exactly as Close says but another way of putting this is to say they have a different "tonal centre". That is about which of the notes in the scale you spend more time on and keep coming back to, which of the notes is acting as the root note or "home".

I did a short post several years ago which might help you get your head around this:

OK, here is a specific example.

The first 4 bar song is A minor pentatonic (1st shape):



It uses this shape:


The second one is C major pentatonic (5th shape):



It uses this shape:


Try playing these both. You should see that they both use the same notes, but one sounds minor, and the other major.

Cheers,

Keith
Guitars: PRS Singlecut S2, Fender Tele Lite Ash, G&L Legacy Tribute, Freshman Apollo 2 OCBX, Gibson SG Special P90
Amps: Bugera G5 Head, Boss Katana 100
All sorts of other stuff.

Offline close2u

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Re: Scales
« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2020, 11:10:08 am »
So for the major scale do I need to learn the e shape major scale and the major scale with open notes too or just the former. As you become more accomplished are you likely to use both those options or would the scale with open notes become little or unused.

Learn the E-shape G Major scale first.
In the future, you will be able to connect it in a different way to A minor pentatonic.
But that is not for here and now.

There are five patterns corresponding to CAGED ...
C-shape
A-shape
G-shape
E-shape
D-shape

For any given major scale, it will have a lowest possible pattern on the guitar neck that maintains the entire pattern, below which, the notes of the pattern get pushed off the edge, below the nut.

For G-Major scale, the lowest possible entire pattern, using the CAGED patterns, is the E-shape.
The G-shape G Major scale would require one single note that is beyond the nut, so the pattern available there is incomplete.
That does not mean you cannot play using the G-Major scale in an open position. In practical terms you would simply forsake 'the pattern' and play what works. Plus, you can make use of open strings which can sound really good sometimes in your play.
But the pattern itself is not complete.
So we say the lowest possible pattern for G Major is the E-shape.

In other keys, the lowest possible patterns will vary.
For C-Major the lowest possible pattern happens to be the C_shape major scale.

For A Major. the lowest possible complete pattern is the G-shape.

Look at these diagrams. And as you do so, remember that as you progress up or down the guitar neck, each of the five major sale patterns overlap and interlink with one another. Moving up away from the nut the patterns go in order C-A-G-E-D. Going back down they reverse that order.
On the left I have put a diagram of the lowest possible complete CAGED major scale pattern for the A, C and G Major scales.

A Major scale - G-shape pattern. If this G-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become an A-shape (A comes before G in CAGED).
But looking at the A-shape A Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

C Major scale - C-shape pattern. If this C-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become a D-shape (D comes before C in CAGED when it cycles back around).
But looking at the D-shape C Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

G Major scale - E-shape pattern. If this E-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become a G-shape (G comes before E in CAGED).
But looking at the G-shape G Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

So the diagrams on the right show the patterns that can not be played as COMPLETE patterns in open position. The yellow highlighted notes get pushed off the guitar neck.

That said, some of those notes are available, including open strings for many of the major scales. And so eventually you will benefit from knowing which notes you can use from the 'open position'.

But again, that is not really for here and now.



You are looking to get unstuck and for some guidance on how to use what you have just learned.
If you are learning to play lead guitar using a scale, as stated, start with minor pentatonic.
It is the easiest of all to start playing lead guitar with, especially over backing tracks and 12-bar blues style.

You can learn the major scale too and I would encourage you to do this if you are learning theory, chord construction etc.
It is the fundamental of the musical language.

Offline CT

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What  CT didn't tell you is if you start the A major pentatonic that he posted
on the F# you will be playing the F# minor pentatonic and ir you start the A minor
that he posted on the C on the 8th fret you will be playing the C major pentatonic.
So playing patterns won't help you if you don't understand what the root notes
are.
You must use the A note as your tonal center.
So you better of sticking to Close2U advice until you can use the minor pentatonic
in your playing and soloing.

The thing that makes the Blues and a lot of Rock  is playing the minor pentatonic
over a major or major 7 chord progression.
Haha! Yeah, in simplifying a concept there will be plenty of aspects that are left out --intentionally. Alternatively, offering an info dump can really muddy the water. If the OP is able to apply some of the concepts provided here, then I think it's a worthwhile discussion, there isn't an information conflict, just detail omissions in the interest of brevity and ease of use. It's the answer to the age old question: How do you eat an elephant? Answer: One bite at a time.

Offline GregB

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Thanks folks, lots of useful info for me to get my head and fingers around.

Offline close2u

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Re: Scales
« Reply #17 on: July 28, 2020, 02:35:50 pm »
...

Look at these diagrams.

Whoops.
It would have helped if I had actually put the diagrams in. Sorry about that.



Quote
And as you do so, remember that as you progress up or down the guitar neck, each of the five major sale patterns overlap and interlink with one another. Moving up away from the nut the patterns go in order C-A-G-E-D. Going back down they reverse that order.
On the left I have put a diagram of the lowest possible complete CAGED major scale pattern for the A, C and G Major scales.

A Major scale - G-shape pattern. If this G-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become an A-shape (A comes before G in CAGED).
But looking at the A-shape A Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

C Major scale - C-shape pattern. If this C-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become a D-shape (D comes before C in CAGED when it cycles back around).
But looking at the D-shape C Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

G Major scale - E-shape pattern. If this E-shape pattern was to be moved lower down it would become a G-shape (G comes before E in CAGED).
But looking at the G-shape G Major scale around the 12th fret you can see that some of the notes within that specific pattern would be pushed beyond the nut and off the guitar neck.

So the diagrams on the right show the patterns that can not be played as COMPLETE patterns in open position. The yellow highlighted notes get pushed off the guitar neck.

That said, some of those notes are available, including open strings for many of the major scales. And so eventually you will benefit from knowing which notes you can use from the 'open position'.



 

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