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> Pentatonic vs Major Fingerings
Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 9 2007, 04:32 PM
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Hi guys, I have a question about fingering for Pentatonic vs Major scales ...

I'm very familiar with the basic pentatonic scale, in this case, in Am.

E||----------------------|----------------------|------------5----8----||
B||----------------------|----------------------|--5----8--------------||
G||----------------------|------------5----7----|----------------------||
D||----------------------|--5----7--------------|----------------------||
A||------------5----7----|----------------------|----------------------||
E||--5----8--------------|----------------------|----------------------||


Since A is the relative minor of C, using the CAGED system 'G' position, a scale of C major can be played as:

E||----------------------|----------------------|----------------------||
B||----------------------|----------------------|-------5----6----8----||
G||----------------------|------------4----5----|--7-------------------||
D||----------------------|--5----7--------------|----------------------||
A||-------5----7----8----|----------------------|----------------------||
E||--8-------------------|----------------------|----------------------||


Now, to my lazy way of looking at things, these are really the same thing - the Am Pentatonic just has a few notes missing. However, they are fingered differently - the 3rd string for the major scale requires you to drop down a fret. The problem appears for other scale combinations as well. Until now I never really noticed this as I tended to play major and pentatonic in different positions. Now I am learning CAGED I am starting to see this.

So, my question is, should I treat Pentatonic and Major scales as different fingerings to help with speed, or should I try and use the same fingerings for both scales (for the notes that are common)? In the case above this would mean using my middle and pinky fingers for the notes on the G string instead of first and ring as I have been doing since time immemorial.

What do you guys do?

Regards,

Andrew


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Zee Deveel
post Feb 9 2007, 04:38 PM
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I generally consider the pentatonic as a different scale to the major scale when I'm playing although as I've been using the major scale (+the other modes) so much in my playing lately, when I try to play something pentatonic I usually end up throwing in some of the other notes by mistake.

This post has been edited by Zee Deveel: Feb 9 2007, 04:38 PM


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fretdancer
post Feb 9 2007, 05:25 PM
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I have always *tried* to follow the mantra of one finger per string, so I would always use my Pinky.
That said, its not always practical or easy to do.

I am not good with bending with my pinkie, so if the string under the pinkie requires bending, then I would stretch my ring finger along and bend the note. - It does make things a little awkward though and its a matter for me of having to plan ahead what I will do and practice it to get it right.

Gilmour and Clapton both do a lot of 13th fret second string bends and pull offs to the 10th fret so it make using the pinkie difficult. Layla is a definate pinkie song though with pinkie hammer ons and pull offs where as Another brick is ring finger 13th bend/realease to 10 pull offs.

I guess at that fret position I should forget the pinkie and keep stretching but it sometimes is easier to use it.

Above the 12th fret I tend to used only the first 3 fingers due to the closeness of the frets.


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raqroso
post Feb 9 2007, 08:03 PM
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If it is the 'b' at the 4th fret g string giving you trouble
you could play it at the 9th fret on the D string -
right? (I don't my guitar with me)
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fretdancer
post Feb 9 2007, 10:11 PM
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re my last post, I meant, 1 finger per *fret* not per string....


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Why
post Feb 9 2007, 10:17 PM
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Hey fretdancer, can you have a look at your New project thread? Thanks.
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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 9 2007, 11:06 PM
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thanks guys - I am thinking I should bite the bullet and just treat them as different scales - I was just trying to be lazy I guess smile.gif


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