The pentatonic scale has no half steps...

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by charlie chitlin, Feb 13, 2020.

  1. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Disclaimer:
    I'm a GUITAR PLAYER...not a musician :p
    What tiny smackerals of theory I know, I've picked up along the way.
    Nobody sat me down and talked to me about this stuff, so I had to learn it on the street.
    Anyhoo...
    Blues is what got me into guitar, so I started right off with the pentatonic scale.
    When I started to notice that the chord I was playing over had a note in it that wasn't in the scale, things began to open up considerably!
    There's something about using half steps in a Blues/Rock solo that can be so cool!
    So...I was recently thinking about this...
    In "first position" in the key of G...index finger on the 3rd fret...
    On the 3rd string (G) you can play the 7th fret (5th), 6th fret (b5), 5th fret (4th), 4th fret (3rd), 3rd fret (b3) and, damn near all of the time, 2nd fret (9th).
    That's a LOT of half steps.
    A couple of those notes sound better over certain chords; other sound better in a certain context (what note you play before and/or after), but none of them, IMO, are just passing tones. They're all notes you can hang your hat on in a solo.
    I'm getting to my theory that, even in a Blues, you can play ANY note in the right context, and not just as a passing tone.
    Paging Larry....;)
     
  2. D'tar

    D'tar Friend of Leo's

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    [​IMG]

    The "blues" scale contains half steps but wouldn't that be the sex-atonic scale:twisted:
     
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  3. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Imho, there is nothing wrong with understanding a pentatonic, and there is everything wrong with NOT understanding something beyond the pentatonic. Charlie, watch out...you are going to be playing Jazz soon!!!!!
     
  4. Uncle Daddy

    Uncle Daddy Tele-Afflicted

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    Resolving the minor third to the major third is a pretty significant half step. Although the major third lies outside of the minor pentatonic scale it forms one of the scale tones of a dominant 7 chord, the backbone of the blues chords, so it fits right in.
     
  5. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Proof of the pudding is when you start bending notes of the scale or sliding into a scale note. Half and quarter steps come alive.
     
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  6. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    From G to G...
    G-1, G#/Ab-b9, A-2/9, A#/Bb-m3, B-M3, C-4, C#/DB-b5, D-5, D#/Eb-#5, E-6, F-b7, F#-M7, G
    Play on.....build some chords...they are all in there. The pentatonics...major and minor...are in there. The blues pentatonic is in there.
    The major scale is there. The various minor scales are in there. I keep trying to find ways to access things with which I am not yet familiar.
    I started trying to apply myself way late, Charlie. Ime, you are about to have daily revelations if you continue investigating more.
     
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  7. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I don't know much theory, I just slide around and bend until things sound good.
     
  8. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Sure it does! Just call it Jazz pentatonic and slide up or down into a note!
    "there are no wrong notes in Jazz, just transitional notes...."
     
  9. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    "atta boy!"
     
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  10. '64 Tele

    '64 Tele Tele-Holic

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    A friend of mine started playing a few years ago, is really into lessons, theory, etc.
    I'll play something and he'll want to know what it was....how did I do that.
    I'll tell him that I don't know I just play...
    I took two lessons in my life about 50 years ago.
     
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  11. midnight340

    midnight340 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    We are entering Victor Wooten territory now. When i started learning this would have been so confusing!! ...now making beautiful sense!!!
     
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  12. dougstrum

    dougstrum Tele-Afflicted

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    Just a half step away from where I'm going:)
    You can string a lot of stuff together with half steps, especially against a swing rhythm.
     
  13. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    When in doubt whole-whole-half-whole-whole-whole-half, and the rest is just relationships, right? :)
     
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  14. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Don’t gotta know nuthin to look like you don’t know nuthin!

    I’ve worked hard to figure out just how wrong a note has to be to be wrong.
    Gotta be pretty bad IME.

    Sweet is overrated we need sour and salty too!

    I did indeed start pentatonic plus bends then decided I could fret notes instead of bending to them. Boredom is a good a motivator as any, and I get bored when my guitar does the same stuff for too long.
     
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  15. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Listening to Coltrane illustrated the wonderful world of intervals and the fact that we don’t Red a next note to be anywhere near a last note!

    Easier on saxes because the hands don’t have to relocate to grab distant notes but once the idea got established it wasn’t much of a stretch to find ways around the physical distances on the fingerboard.
     
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  16. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Not just interval relationships, but directionality and motion relationships too.
     
  17. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I already know how to play out of tune.
    BAM!
     
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  18. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I think I know what you mean, lots of ways to create patterns and recognizable organization.
     
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  19. reckless toboggan

    reckless toboggan Tele-Holic

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    ...and if I hit a bum note, I make sure to hit it again so it becomes a tonal "theme".
     
  20. javiersson

    javiersson TDPRI Member

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    There are NO wrong notes. They are just oportunities to explore further. Jazz is a whole world of FUN, you'll eventually get there if you follow that path...

    Anyway, the joy is in the process of learning, IMO.

    And all that with just 12 notes!
     
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