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FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / What are you thinking about when playing the pentatonic?

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Salty Waters

USA-Ohio-Akron

A splash of Blues & Surf
Aug 6th, 2003 11:50 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Certainly, I can play all 5 scale forms of the minor pentatonic (per Fretboard Logic method). Now I just noodle until something sounds decent. I'm getting to the point where I know where the roots are, and a 5th here and there. But isn't it better to associate the tones I'm playing to actual notes? Do you associate the tone with:

1) A letter note ("I'm playing a 'B' chord, so I think I'll bend from an E to an F")

2) A number note ("I'm playing the 'I' chord, so I think I'll bend from a 4 to a b5")

3) What sounds good ("I don't know chords or numbers, but I'm playing the blues and I know in this song that if I bend this string on this fret, I get that Mississippi Delta feel")

(This message was last edited by Salty Waters at 11:52 AM, Aug 6th, 2003)

John Evans

USA- Illinois

Breathe slow, pedal fast!
Aug 6th, 2003 11:54 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hmmm.. things I've thought of while playing the pentatonic....

"Why'd the drummer do that stupid triplet roll on his kick drumm just now?!"

"Wow- that redhead sure looks hot!"

"Man, I really don't want to play this song again."

"Oooops! Where'd THAT note come from!?"

"Boy that sounded pretty cool? How the heck did I do it!?"



5Strats
Contributing Member
***

Fairfax,VA/D.C.

Axe Victim -- Guitaraholic
Aug 6th, 2003 12:18 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"Thinkin' leads to stinkin'" when it comes to soloing.

Diminished

USA

Aug 6th, 2003 12:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

think about what's going on when learning about the theory and analyzing other people's tunes and solos. when you play don't think about notes or numbers but try to hear what you want to play in your head and then play it on the instrument. if you have to choose one of your three options i would go with number 3 when playing or practicing performance and both 1 and 2 when learning about what is going on.

Mr. L. Dedd

Vaguely is putting a

noose around my neck.
Aug 6th, 2003 01:51 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well at first I tend to get a warm, fuzzy feeling but as I continue, I start to visualize great, antediluvian beasts with sharp talons and teeth, spewing fire and mercilessly dispatching their victims, visiting great pandemonium and pestilence upon the land.

(This message was last edited by Mr. L. Dedd at 01:52 PM, Aug 6th, 2003)

DaverQ
Contributing Member

New York City

Aug 6th, 2003 02:13 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

You describe exactly where I am in my learning, and my conundrum. On other instruments, I know notes and read music. On guitar, it's just patterns and root notes (and, sadly, only the pentatonic pattern pretty much.)

Incidentally, I have Fretboard Roadmaps and haven't found it the epiphany I had hoped. Is Fretboard Logic better?

BruceRR

england

Aug 6th, 2003 02:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just play...who cares what scale it is.

Grapeshot
Contributing Member
**

Hogwarts

Go-Go-Gryffindor!
Aug 6th, 2003 03:37 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"Jeez, I really suck!"

Frank Hudson
Contributing Member

USA

Play! Don't Worry!
Aug 6th, 2003 03:46 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think melodic content (or try to, I'm not a great player). So knowing the pentantonic scale I think something like "I think it'd be an interesting melodic contour if I go up a couple of notes in the pentatonic scale, and then jump my hand down and climb up again from that lower point, then finish by decending from where I started at the beginning of the phrase."

I'm also trying to relate interestingly to the beat at the same time.

Of course I don't say all this to myself, I'm thinking/feeling/doing: make my contours interesting, make a "logical" melodic flow, dance with the beat. And I don't just stick to a pentatonic scale, though you can make plenty of interesting melodies with one.

To develop this listen to singers or other melodic instruments and learn to think in melody lines. The scales or modes are just way-points of a melody--it's melodic sense that gives them structure.


kcannon

texas

The OTHER Jeffrey Lebowski
Aug 6th, 2003 05:19 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"how come I sound like crap" or "This is all Albert King used, so what is wrong with me"

mark bjorke
Contributing Member
***

Annapolis, MD

I'm performing 4' 33" right now.
Aug 6th, 2003 06:38 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think about 5.

bagg

Oakland, CA

Aug 6th, 2003 06:46 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

kcannon - take it easy on yourself! Albert did use the pentatonics, but he also used non-scale "color" notes to add tension and interest. That's what I try to think about - how can I use notes that aren't in the scale to add some color?

A very common color note in the minor pentatonic is the flat 5th (b5). It's the note you get if you bend the 4th up a half step, which is why bending the 3rd string at the second fret sounds so good when playing E minor pentatonic in the "open position".

Another common color note is the 6th, which is really useful when playing over the IV chord (since the 6th in the scale is the M3 in the IV chord), it underscores the IV feeling.

Hope that helps!

shunka
Contributing Member
*

Willowick, OH,U.S.A.

Alll things in modulation
Aug 6th, 2003 07:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Did I just play the same three licks again?

jogo2000

finland

Musta Aukko- Jengi
Aug 7th, 2003 03:55 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

It's pretty much intuitive for me. I mean, I know where the notes are on the fretboard, but it's more and more playing by ear. I concentrate a lot more on getting a good tone than the actual melody lines. Sometimes I try to break from my usual ground just to make things different, and I switch to dorian, mixolydian, etc.

Also brief switches from major to minor and backwards sounds really cool, if used tastefully.

kcannon

texas

The OTHER Jeffrey Lebowski
Aug 8th, 2003 11:23 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks bagg, I am always learning and sometimes it does sound good when I solo. I sound best if I don't have to go more than 12 bars!

DaverQ
Contributing Member

New York City

Aug 8th, 2003 02:16 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"I wish I knew other scales"

werkmeister

SacTown, USA

Aug 8th, 2003 10:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Try looking at some intervals whiile playing those pentatonics. Maybe stop on a note, then find a third of it. Or a fifth or flatted something or other. Maybe, try playing a pentatonic in another key, right in the middle of a something else.

When it's all said and done, go into the kitchen, grab a sixpack (bottles) drink up then smash the bottles on your head. It always makes me feel better. Ok, forget the bottle thing. But never stick to the rule as you've learned it because you'll just get stuck.

Radcliff

Orange County, CA

Control for smilers can't be bought
Aug 9th, 2003 12:49 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I steal my licks, so I try to think of diff players, to change up the variety of licks and not repeat myself. Like Robben Ford to Scofield to Mike Stern to Duane Allman.

werkmeister

SacTown, USA

Aug 9th, 2003 01:04 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I forgot to mention, that when looking for intervals, go for the doublestop action. It sounds real cool. Check out Albert Lee or other country players for some real cool double stops. They can be used in just about any type of music.

Also, try playing the pentatonic in both major and minor. Jimmy Lyons (X-Eddie Money) used this alot and it always sounded good.

opdev
Contributing Member
*

Boston

I feel the need for tweed
Aug 12th, 2003 09:57 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Look ma.... I'm Wankin!!! I'm Wankin!!!!

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FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / What are you thinking about when playing the pentatonic?




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