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FDP Forum / Performer's Corner / Emaj7 - Bm soloing



Jun 20th, 2016 10:45 AM   Edit   Profile  

OK been talked into jamming with the object to gig with a Deadhead band. Never really been a big DeadHead guy but it's a challenge and something different. There's one song, We Are the Eyes of the World and the soloing is done over the Emaj7 -> Bm in how they want to play it. OK the Emaj7 the major pentatonic scale with 7th being focused on works but then going to the Bm having trouble getting the Bm pentatonic to really work or just not using it right.

Any suggestions?

Te 52

Laws of Physics

strictly enforced
Jun 20th, 2016 11:32 AM   Edit   Profile  

I think you'll find pentatonics too limiting.
Try a full E major scale over the E and B Dorian over the Bm. The E major scale will let you get in plenty of sevenths (D#). When you go to Bm, the scale is the same except the D# becomes a D natural. So you can play similar phrases with only that one note being different.



Jun 20th, 2016 08:50 PM   Edit   Profile  

The pentatonic is just the starting point sorta like when I play blues.

Tyrone Shuz


I'm all in!
Jun 20th, 2016 11:20 PM   Edit   Profile  

Emaj Pent is not a good choice for Emaj7 chord. The root (E) clashes badly with the 7th (D#) in the 2nd octave and up. Believe it or not, the G#m pentatonic is a much better choice, and really tells the story of the chord.

Bm Pent should be fine for the Bm, but the F#m Pent would also be a fine choice to imply a Bm9 chord.

So then you'd have a G#m pent over Emaj7 then down a whole step to F#m Pent over the Bm. That would bring about some cool ideas.

For full-on scales, Te (AS ALWAYS) is correct. You could call it E major to E mixolydian if you'd like, it's easy to see (if you know your modes) with those names that you simply lower the D# from E major to D natural for E mix. B dorian is the exact same scale as E mixolydian, it's merely from the Bm chord's point of view.

This is a key change, simple as that. There isn't one traditional scale that will accommodate both chords. The tonal center is still E, but as noted, the D# must be used over the I chord (Emaj7) and the D natural must be used over the v chord (Bm7).

Get thee to thy woodshed!

Contributing Member


Jun 21st, 2016 08:22 AM   Edit   Profile  

My visualization is that the E note could work as a pulloff note on the I, resolving more comfortably to the Eb. Then making for some interesting options dropping to the 3rd on the v chord. Yeah, this is a chordal structure I wouldn't try working scales into.


LA-la-land, CA

Insert clever comment here
Jun 21st, 2016 11:21 AM   Edit   Profile  

Go listen to some recordings! Hear how Jerry approaches it. He always plays melodically. I don't think he's thinking of scales, but melody. Try singing something to yourself, and then figure it out. He's very much a gut player.

(This message was last edited by gdw3 at 01:23 PM, Jun 21st, 2016)


Irishman in Paris

Forget Tone - go with Note Choice
Jun 24th, 2016 04:57 PM   Edit   Profile  

Like Te and Tyrone says, this a temporary key change from E Major scale to B Dorian (which has the exact same notes as A Major / F# minor scales).

B minor and F# minor pentatonics are not an incorrect choice over the B minor chord but will miss the cool G# and Eb note and not reflect the sound of the key change very well. But do look at/make fingerboard charts and compare the B dorian mode with B minor pentatonic. You can use the minor pentatonic as a skeleton to hang the dorian mode on.

As a useful rule of thumb for future reference, for any minor chord that's not in the key you were just in uses a dorian mode from the root note of the minor chord.

As a secondary choice for this pregression you could also look at it as a change from B minor (on the B minor chord) to B major scale (EMaj7 chord is the IV chord of key of B Major). That's why Tyrone's G# minor pentatonic idea works (as G# minor is the relative minor scale of B Major scale).

Major pentatonic scales rarely work well, (because they miss the all-important 4 and 7 scale degrees), and without adding extra notes, they really only work well if a 6 or 6/9 chord would sound good (and the major pentatonic is in fact a major 6/9 arpeggio).

Pentatonic scales can be very useful but they are simplified versions of 'full' scales they can have problematic limitations, as this thread attests.

(This message was last edited by DrKev at 07:25 PM, Jun 24th, 2016)



Jun 28th, 2016 03:06 PM   Edit   Profile  

ALl sounds good guys. Yes trying to play around the Eb when going to the Bm as it sorta sets the mode and the tonal change. I approach it as ok where is the pentatonic scale for that key and then how much of the whole scale to add in and play with.

Contributing Member

Delco, PA

"I'll take a simple C to G
Jul 7th, 2016 10:19 AM   Edit   Profile  

I play Eyes Emaj7>BmDim7. I think...
To be really Jerryesque, switch to G#m for a few bars during the jam at the end and back to the Emaj7

FDP Forum / Performer's Corner / Emaj7 - Bm soloing

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