Why Pentatonic rather than Major scales for soloing?

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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 17825
    Rocker said:
    Today, merely out of curiosity, I worked out the notes on the Pentatonic scale key C.

    C, Eb, F, G, Bb, C etc.

    Hard to believe that actual music can be wrung out of those notes.
    A little game for you to play.
    Play C minor pentatonic in the root position, then stay around the 8th fret and play the F minor pentatonic without sliding up or down the fretboard.
    The play the G pentatonic minor.
    This gives you a I IV V in one section of the fretboard.
    I am the juice of four limes.
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  • ellangusellangus Frets: 188
    This may be of interest:


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  • danowensdanowens Frets: 4
    Rocker said:
    Today, merely out of curiosity, I worked out the notes on the Pentatonic scale key C.

    C, Eb, F, G, Bb, C etc.

    Hard to believe that actual music can be wrung out of those notes.
    It's worth noting this is the minor pentatonic scale; the major pentatonic has a different set of notes and it's worth being able to describe both:

    Minor: C Eb F G Bb
    Major: C D E G A
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  • RockerRocker Frets: 2653
    Thanks guys, as you can see I am a novice in music theory. 


    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. [Albert Einstein]

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  • ModellistaModellista Frets: 725
    Rocker said:
    Today, merely out of curiosity, I worked out the notes on the Pentatonic scale key C.

    C, Eb, F, G, Bb, C etc.

    Hard to believe that actual music can be wrung out of those notes.
    Nah, all you're missing from the diatonic scale is the 2nd and the 6th, which are easy to fling in there as passing notes.

    That's what great about the pentatonic, you've got the big hitters in there (minor 3rd, 5th, 7th), which are all very cool, especially played as double stops, but you're only a couple of passing notes away from the entire scale.
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  • ModellistaModellista Frets: 725
    edited March 21
    octatonic said:
    Rocker said:
    Today, merely out of curiosity, I worked out the notes on the Pentatonic scale key C.

    C, Eb, F, G, Bb, C etc.

    Hard to believe that actual music can be wrung out of those notes.
    A little game for you to play.
    Play C minor pentatonic in the root position, then stay around the 8th fret and play the F minor pentatonic without sliding up or down the fretboard.
    The play the G pentatonic minor.
    This gives you a I IV V in one section of the fretboard.
    The reason this works is the Fm pent contains all notes from Cm except Ab which is the 6th of C, and ditto Gm except it contains D which is the 2nd of C. 

    So an alternative way of thinking about this is, when you want to shift to the IV sharpen the G to Ab, and when you want the V flatten the Eb to D, keeping all the other notes the same. 

    Then you can do really clever stuff like using B instead of Bb over the V which sounds major but gives an even stronger feeling of resolution when you move back to the I.
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  • ModellistaModellista Frets: 725
    ^ and when you've got the hang of introducing the 2nds and 6ths, try leaving out the root note C.  Seriously.  It forces you to land on the 2nd or 5th or whatever, which means the whole thing has a feeling of ambiguity and aches to be resolved.
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