What Are Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scales, Learn to build and play augmented 7 pentatonic scales
The Professor
Jun 12 2013, 02:41 PM
Theory Instructor
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What Are Augmented 7th Pentatonic Scales

Usually the first scale that pops to mind when you see a 7b13 or 7#5 chord symbol is the Whole-Tone Scale. While this is a great first-choice scale to use when soloing over 7#5 or 7b13 chords, sometimes you want a smaller scale shape to play with over this chord in your improvisations.

This is where the Augmented 7th Pentatonic Scale comes in.

In this lesson, we’ll take a look at the theory behind the Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale, how it is built, how to apply it to your soloing and a few common fingerings that you can explore in the practice room.

How to Build an Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale

The Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale is built from the following interval pattern.

Root - 2 - 3 - #5 -b7

You can see these notes laid out in tab and notation for an C Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale here.

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You can also think of the Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale as a Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale with the 5th raised by 1 fret.

So, if you have a C Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale, C D E G Bb, you simply raise the 5th by 1 fret and you get a C Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale, C D E G# Bb.

This scale, the Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale, can be used to solo over 7, 9, 13, 7#5 and 7b13 chords in your improvisations.

2 Common Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale Fingerings

To help get you started, here are two common fingerings for the C Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale, one with a 6-string root, and one with a 5-string root.

Try memorizing these scales in the key of C first, then take them to the other 11 keys around the neck as you expand on these scale shapes in your guitar practice routine.

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Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale Practice Guide

To finish up, here are a number of ways that you can practice Augmented 7 Pentatonic scales in order to get the fingerings, and theory, behind these scales under your fingers and into your guitar playing.

1. Sing the root note, C for example, and play the corresponding Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scales over that root.
2. Play a root note on the guitar, C for example, and then sing the corresponding Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale over that root note.
3. Say the note names, or interval numbers, such as C D E G# Bb or 1 2 3 #5 b7, as you play and sing the notes in the above exercises.
4. Put on a static vamp, C, C9, C7 or C13 for example, and practice soloing over those chords using the related Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scale as the basis for your solo.
5. Repeat any/all of the above exercises in all 12 keys.

Do you have a question or comment about Augmented 7 Pentatonic Scales? If so, share them in the comments section below this thread.

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