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> Blues Guitar Theory Guide, Chords, arpeggios, pentatonics, progressions, mixolydian scale (etc)
The Professor
post Nov 11 2013, 01:41 PM
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Blues Guitar Theory Guide


Blues guitar can be a fun genre to dig into for any player looking to get into the bluesy side of the instrument. There is a lot of soloing and filling involved, great grooves, funky chords and a steady, though challenging, chord progressions associated with the genre.

While some might think that playing the blues is simply 3 chords and the minor blues scale, digging into the work of many of the great players such as B.B. King, Stevie Ray Vaughan and others, opens up a number of theoretical concepts that need to be understood before mastering this style of playing, including minor vs. major blues forms, major blues scales and dominant 7th chord-scale theory.

If you are looking to dive into the blues, and want to expand your music theory chops at the same time, then the following lessons are geared towards doing just that. Covering a wide range of topics, these theory lessons will give you all the info you need to expand your blues chops, and understand why the greats did what they did at the same time.



1. Blues Scale Theory and Application

To begin your exploration of how the blues works, the best place to start is the scales that you can use to bring a blues sound to your riffs, licks and guitar solos. There are a number of scales in this section to explore, so if you are new to the genre it is a good idea to begin with the Minor Pentatonic Scale and work down the list from there.

If you have played the blues before and are just looking to expand your knowledge, feel free to browse around and find a scale or two that you haven’t checked out before, such as the Mixolydian Mode, and dive in from there. If you are looking for a more traditional blues sound, stick to the minor pentatonic and minor blues scales, if you like jump blues and swing blues, check out the major pentatonic and blues scales, while those looking for a more modern blues/fusion sound should explore the mixolydian pentatonic and mode in your studies.

No matter what style you are going for, exploring any/all of these scales will enhance your knowledge of how blues soloing works, why it sounds the way it does, and how you can produce these classic sounds in your own playing.


1.1 Minor Pentatonic Scales

If you are just starting your exploration of blues guitar, or any guitar soloing, then the Minor Pentatonic Scale is the place to start. Used by just about every great rock and blues guitarist over the years, the minor pentatonic scale contains 5 notes, hence the name, and all of these notes will fit nicely over any chord in the blues progression. This is perhaps the biggest reason why this scale is used so much by blues players of all levels of experience, it is one of only two scales, along with the minor blues scale, that can be used over every chord in the major and/or minor blues chord progression.

After you have read up on the Minor Pentatonic Scale below, and begun to explore the various fingerings for this scale on the guitar, make sure to try soloing over a blues backing track in order to hear and feel how this scale sounds when applied to a blues chord progression.

To help you out, a major and minor blues backing track has been included at the end of this blues theory guide so you can practice jamming over the blues with this, and every, scale in this guide.

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To learn more about Minor Pentatonic Scales, how they are built, when you can use them in your solos and how to finger them on guitar, check out What Are Minor Pentatonic Scales and the Minor Pentatonic Scale video lesson.


1.2 Minor Blues Scales

Now that you have checked out the Minor Pentatonic Scale, you are ready to explore the most bluesiest of all blues sounds, the Minor Blues Scale. Built by adding in a b5, or #4 depending on how you want to think about it, to the Minor Pentatonic Scale, the Minor Blues Scale has an instantly recognizable sound that screams blues and classic rock right from the first note.

Though they are almost the same scales, there is only one note different between the two, learning where and when to use the Minor Blues vs. the Minor Pentatonic Scale in your soloing phrases is a key skill for any blues musician to master. If you use it too much, that dissonant b5 starts to lose it’s luster, and if you don’t use it enough you might be too rocky and not bluesy enough in your soloing lines and riffs.

To help out with this, try putting on a blues backing track, as in one of the ones provided at the end of this guide, and solo for one 12-bar chorus using only the Minor Pentatonic Scale, then one chorus with the Minor Blues Scale. When you can do that comfortably, try switching four bars of each, and then two bars, one bar, and finally switch at will as you move between both of these commonly used and important scale sounds.

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To learn more about Minor Blues Scales, how they are different from Minor Pentatonic Scales, and how you can use them to enhance your blues soloing chops, check out What Are Minor Blues Scales and the following video lessons: The Blues Scale, Hyper Blues.


1.3 Major Pentatonic Scales

A closely related cousin of the Minor Pentatonic Scale, the Major Pentatonic brings a major sound, think swing jazz or jump blues in the style of Brian Setzer, to your blues soloing ideas.

Using the intervals 1-2-3-5-6, this scale doesn’t have a 7th in it, which is why it can be used to solo over both 7th and maj7 chord, or even major triads, in various improvisational settings.

Because this scale is more specific in nature, i.e. it outlines the chord more directly than the minor pentatonic scale which outlines the key, this scale can only fit one chord at a time.

This means that if you are soloing over A7, you use the A major pentatonic scale, and then when you switch to the D7 chord, you need to switch to the D major pentatonic scale.

For this reason, the major pentatonic scale takes a bit more time to get down in a soloing situation. Try putting on a two chord vamp once you have this scale under your fingers, A7-D7 four bars each for example, and then move between the two major pentatonic scales as you solo over each chord in the progression.

It will take a bit of time to get this scale into your solos, but if you are looking to bring a country, swing, jump blues sound to your lines, then this is the perfect scale to explore.

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To learn more about Major Pentatonic Scales, how to play them on the fretboard, and when you can switch between Major and Minor Pents, check out What Are Major Pentatonic Scales and Major Pentatonic Scale video lesson.


1.4 Major Blues Scales

As was the case with the minor pentatonic and minor blues scale, to build a major blues scale you take a major pentatonic scale and add in the b3, a blues note, to give it that distinct bluesy sound, this time in a major context.

Again, if you want to use this scale in your soloing ideas you will need to switch scales with each chord in the blues progression, so A7 gets A major blues and D7 gets D major blues etc. Though this can be tough to get down at first, if you’ve learned your major pentatonic scales already then this won’t be too tough a task compared to starting from scratch.

When you have this scale under your fingers, try putting on an A7 backing track and solo over that chord using the major pentatonic scale for 4 bars, then the major blues scale for 4 bars, in order to learn how to hear and use these two different scales in a blues soloing context.

From there, you can begin to bring the major blues scale into your blues soloing ideas as you apply this scale to each of the three chords in a blues chord progression.

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To learn more about Major Blues Scales, how they are different from Major Pentatonic Scales, and how to use them to bring a swing, jump blues sound to your soloing ideas, check out What Are Major Blues Scales.


1.5 Soloing With Pentatonic Scales

With the major and minor pentatonic scales under your fingers, you can begin to mix them up in your blues guitar riffs and solos as you combine these two commonly used, and highly important, scales in your playing.

To begin, try putting on an A7 backing track and move between the A major and A minor pentatonic scales, you can even throw in a few blues notes if you like as I did in the lick below just for good measure.

Once you can move between these two scales, major and minor pent, over one chord, try soloing over an A7-D7 backing track, and then move on to a full A blues progression after that. Though it is tricky at first to move between scales over one chord, or an entire chord progression, doing so will allow you to bring different colors to your blues and blues rock soloing ideas, breaking out of the standard blues scale approach that a lot of players get stuck in when first soloing in a blues guitar context.

Attached File  Mixed_Pent_Lick.mp3 ( 427.67K ) Number of downloads: 5712


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To learn more about soloing with major and minor pentatonics scales, how they sound similar and different to blues scales, and how to use these scales to outline different blues genres in your lines and phrases, check out Minor vs. Major Pentatonic Soloing Application, Solo Challenge - Major vs. Minor Pentatonic Scales and the following video lessons : Peter Green Style, Blues Shuffle Minor/Major 3rd, Blues Lines, Mixing Major and Minor Boxes.


1.6 Mixolydian Pentatonic Scales

Though not as commonly used as it’s minor and major counterparts, the Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale is a great way to spice up your blues guitar solos, while outlining the exact chords you’re playing at the same time.

The Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale is built by taking the notes of the Major Pentatonic Scale, 1-2-3-5-6, and raising the last note by a half step to form the intervals 1-2-3-5-b7, which is why it outlines the 7th chords in a blues so accurately.

As was the case with the major pentatonic scale, you will need to switch the Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale for each 7th chord in a blues progression, so you play A mixo pent over A7, the D mixo pent over D7, and so forth.

Start exploring this scale by putting on an A7 to D7 backing track, four bars each, and moving between the A and D mixo pent scales as the chords change on the track. From there, take these same scales and apply them to a full blues progression, such as the backing tracks provided at the end of this lesson.

You can also mix together the major, minor and mixolydian pentatonic scales over a blues chord progression as you begin to hear and see how these three scales interact to produce slightly different sounds, while still outlining the blues chords and progression at the same time.

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To learn more about Mixolydian Pentatonic Scales, how these scales differ from major and minor pentatonic scales, which fingerings are best for guitar and how to add them to your soloing chops, check out What Are Mixolydian Pentatonic Scales, and Mixolydian Pentatonic Scale video lesson.


1.7 Mixolydian Scales

The last scale that we will explore in this section of the Blues Guitar Theory Guide is the Mixolydian Scale. The fifth mode of the major scale system, this 7-note scale is commonly used by country and rock players as they solo over blues chords and chord progressions.

Containing the intervals 1-2-3-4-5-6-b7-1, this scale contains all of the notes of the 7th chord, 1-3-5-b7, as well as the 2-4-6 extension notes that add color to your soloing lines in a blues context. For an example of how this scale sounds over a blues progression, check out the work of players such as Albert Lee, Brent Mason and Brian Setzer.

Since this scale outlines the 7th chord arpeggio, you will need to change this scale along with each chord in the blues chord progression. So, you will play A Mixo over A7, D Mixo over D7, and E Mixo over E7, if you were soloing over a blues progression in the key of A for example.

Because there are more notes in this scale than in the Pentatonic and Blues Scales that you’ve previously checked out in your playing, you will need to experiment with the Mixo Scale to see how you like to treat the notes of the arpeggio, 1-3-5-b7, as compared to the extension notes, 2-4-6.

Try playing over an A7 backing track to start, using only the A Mixo Scale to build your lines. Once that is comfortable, add in a D7 chord and begin to switch scales as you switch scales in your soloing practice routine. Finally, take the Mixo scale to your blues soloing ideas over the entire 12-bar form to see and hear how this scale fits over that chord progression when soloing.

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To learn more about Mixolydian Scales, how these 7-note scales differ from pentatonic scales, which fingerings sit best on the fretboard and how to add them to your blues guitar solos, check out What is the Mixolydian Mode, Mixolydian Soloing Concepts for Guitar and the following video lessons: Mixing The Mixolydian, Introduction to the Mixolydian Mode.



2. Blues Arpeggio and Chord Theory

Now that you have checked out, learned how to play and understand how to construct blues guitar scales, you are now ready to move on and explore arpeggios and chords in the blues style.

The fundamental blues chord is the Dominant 7th, which is built from the 5th note of the major scale and contains the intervals 1-3-5-b7, which is where we’ll start in this section as you explore 7th chords and arpeggios on the guitar.

From there, you will also learn how to play other important arpeggios and chords for the blues, such as 9th and 7#9 chords and arpeggios on the guitar. Learning to play a few different dominant based chorus and arps, such as 7ths and 9ths, is a great way to outline the blues chord progression, while providing ample variety for you and your listeners at the same time.


2.1 Dominant 7th Arpeggios

To begin our exploration of blues arpeggios, you’ll be looking at dominant 7th arpeggios, which directly outline each chord in a blues chord progression, and contain the intervals 1-3-5-b7.

Since these melodic devices are directly related to each separate chord in the blues, you need to treat them in the same fashion as you did the major pentatonic and mixolydian scales, where you switch arpeggios with each chord in the tune.

This means that if you are soloing over an A blues form, you solo with the A7 arpeggio over A7, the D7 arpeggio over D7 and the E7 arpeggio over E7. Again, since this can be tricky to do, start by soloing over an A7 vamp, then expand to A7-D7, and finally to the whole blues form.

Arpeggios are a great way to outline any chord in a blues directly, while breaking out of the more common scale sounds that many blues players stick to when first exploring blues soloing concepts.

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To learn more about Dom 7th Arpeggios, how these shapes differ from scales, which fingerings are best for various octave shapes, and how to mix them with your blues scale ideas when soloing, check out How to Build Dominant 7th Arpeggios and Dominant 7th Arpeggio Boxes video lesson.


2.2 Dominant 9th Arpeggios

When looking to add a bit of color to your blues guitar solos, but still sticking to each chord outline in your lines, Dominant 9th arpeggios are a great place to go.

Containing all of the notes of the 7th arpeggios that you previously explored, 9th arpeggios also contain the 2nd note of the scale, though raised an octave, which adds more color to your riffs and solos when applying this arpeggio to a blues progression.

Since they are an arpeggio, as you have learned in previous sections of this guide, you will need to change each 9th arpeggio to fit the underlying chord, which means that A9 can be used to color A7, D9 can be used to color D7 and so forth.

As well, you don’t have to wait until there is an A9 written in a leadsheet to use this arpeggio, 9th arpeggios can be used any time you have A7 written in a chart as the two come from the scale and are just different shades of the same chordal color.

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To learn more about Dom 9th Arpeggios, how these shapes differ from 7th arps, which fingerings are best for these arps on the fingerboard, and how to mix them with your scale ideas when soloing, check out How to Build Dominant 9th Arpeggios.


2.3 Minor 7th Arpeggios

Switching gears now, we’ll be looking at m7 arpeggios, which you can use when soloing over the Im7 and IVm7 chords in a minor blues chord progression.

Built with the intervals 1-b3-5-b7, these shapes are only one note different from the 7th arpeggios you learned earlier in this guide, the 3rd is now flat compared to the major 3rd in the dom 7th arp.

As is the case with any arpeggio, try soloing over the minor blues backing-track provided below and switch arpeggios with each m7 chord in the progression. This means that you solo over Am7 with an Am7 arpeggio and solo over Dm7 with a Dm7 arpeggio for example.

Soloing over a minor blues progression can be a bit monotonous when using only the minor pentatonic or minor blues scales, so learning and applying the m7 arpeggios is a great way to break up your scale work in a minor blues situation.

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To learn more about m7th Arpeggios, how these shapes differ from 7th arps, how to play them on guitar, and how to apply them to your solos, check out How to Build m7th Arpeggios and Minor 7 Arpeggio Inside Pentatonic video lesson.


2.4 Minor 9th Arpeggios

As was the case with the 7th and 9th arpeggios, you can add a 9th to the m7 arpeggio to form a m9th shape that can be used to color m7 chords in a minor blues chord progression.

Again, you don’t have to wait until a leadsheet says Am9 to use a m9 arpeggio. You can apply a m9th shape to your solos over any m7th chord as the 9th is a diatonic color over a m7 sound.

Once you have worked out a few shapes on the fingerboard for the m9th arpeggio, practice applying it to the minor blues progression using the backing tracks below to hear how this sound can be used to spice up your m7th chord soloing ideas.

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To learn more about m9th Arpeggios, how these shapes differ from m7th arps, which fingerings are best for these arps on the fingerboard, and how to use them in your blues soloing ideas, check out How to Build m9th Arpeggios.


2.5 Dominant 7th Chords

The most fundamental chord when learning how to play blues guitar is the dominant 7th chord. Containing four notes, the root, 3rd, 5th and b7th, this chord has one more note as compared to the major chords you may have already explored up to this point, and it is that added b7 note that gives this chord it’s “bluesy” sound.

Learning how to build, play and apply 7th chords will allow you to smoothly outline the chords in a 12-bar major blues chord progression, as well as write and compose your own blues tunes using this important chord in your guitar work.

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To learn more about Dom 7th Chords, how they differ from Dom 7 arpeggios on the fretboard, what chord inversions are, and how to mix them with your triads when comping, check out How to build 7th Chords for Guitar and the following video lessons: 7th Chords, Melody workout - Dominant 7th Chords.


2.6 Dominant 9th Chords

Just as you colored your 7th arpeggios by adding in the 9th, you can do the same for your 7th chords, by adding the 9th to make them Dominant 9th chords. Functioning in the same way as 9th arpeggios, these shapes are used to add color to your 7th chords, and so you don’t have to wait until you see A9 on a chart to play that chord, you can play A9 whenever you see A7 written as they are from the same family of dominant chords.

To get you started, here are four different 9th chord shapes to learn and apply to your blues guitar comping. After you’ve worked through these grips, try playing through an A blues chord progression while using 7th chords the first time through, and then 9th chords the second time through, in order to hear how each of these dominant chord colors sounds in a blues situation.

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To learn more about Dom 9th Chords, how they differ from 7th chords on the fretboard, how to play them on guitar, and how to apply them to a jazz blues context, check out How to build 9th Chords for Guitar.


2.7 7#9 Chords

While the 7th and 9th chords are great ways to spice up your blues chord work, another cool sound to check out is the 7#9 chord, which is often used for the V7chord found in bars 9, 10 and 12 of the basic 12-bar blues form.

Because it has a #9 in it’s construction, 1-3-5-b7-#9, the “blues note” sound comes out when that note clashes with the major third in the lower octave. Try playing through a blues chord progression and when you get to the V7 chord, E7 as in the example below, try playing E7#9 and see how it sounds to your ears.

As well, this chord is also used as the V7 chord in a minor blues chord progression, which you can see in bar 10 of the minor blues example near the end of this blues guitar theory guide.

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To learn more about 7#9 Chords, how to use them in your blues playing, where they fit best in a blues form and how to finger these chords on guitar, check out How to build 7#9 Chords for Guitar.


2.8 Minor 7 Chords

Whereas 7th chords are the bread and butter of the major blues chord progression, m7 chords are essential to navigating any minor blues tune as they are used to outline the Im7 and IVm7 chords of a minor blues form.

Containing the intervals 1-b3-5-b7, these chords use all the same notes as the m7 arpeggios that you explored earlier in this guide, only now you are playing all of these notes together rather than one at a time in an arpeggio situation.

Here are a few m7 chord shapes to get you started on your exploration of these harmonic grips and the minor blues form. After you have them under your fingers, try playing along with the minor blues backing tracks below as you begin to apply m7 chords to a real-time musical situation.

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To learn more about m7th Chords, how these shapes differ from 7th chords, which fingerings are best for these chords on guitar, and how to apply them to chord progressions, check out How to Build m7th Chords and Minor 7th Chords video lesson.


2.9 Minor 9 Chords

Again, we are going to take a four note chord, in this case the m7th chord, and add a 9th to begin coloring your m7 chord shapes. The m9th chord, built with the intervals 1-b3-5-b7-9, is a great way to bring color and upper extension notes to your minor blues chord work.

After you have these chord shapes under your fingers, try playing along with the minor blues backing tracks provided below, using m7 shapes for the first time through and then m9th shapes for the second time around. This will help get the sound of both m7 and m9 chords in your ears, as well as getting their grips under your fingers.

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To learn more about m9th Chords, how these shapes differ from m7th chords, which fingerings are best for these chords on the fingerboard, and how to mix them with m7th chords over a minor blues, check out How to Build m9th Chords.



3. Blues Chord Progressions

While learning how to play blues scales, chords and arpeggios is a vital part of becoming a well-rounded blues player, probably the most important aspect of the blues is the 12-bar major and minor blues form.

Though they contain mostly 3 chords, which some exceptions, and fit within a dozen bars, the 12-bar minor and major blues form has produced countless class blues songs and arrangements by players such as B.B. King, Albert King, Freddie King, basically all the “Kings,” and even rock blues players such as Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and the Rolling Stones.

Check out both the minor and major blues forms below to ensure that you’re ready to go out and jam with a blues band, write a song in a traditional blues style, and dig into the 12-bar form that changed the way music was played over the past 100 years.


3.1 Major Blues Progressions

The 12-bar major key blues form, otherwise known as a I-IV-V blues, contains three chords and has been the basis for thousands of great songs over the years. From Crossroads, to Moby Dick, to Red House, you can hear this progression in the writing of many of your favorite blues and blues rock bands.

Referred to as the I-IV-V blues because those are the main chords used in a 12-bar major blues progression, there are some common adaptations to this basic form worth checking out, such as the IV7 chord in bar 2, the IV7 chord in bar 10 and the V7 chord added into bar 12.

If you are new to this progression, you can start with the basic form presented in the example below, and then explore further options for expanding and altering this commonly used and important chord progression.

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To learn more about Major Blues Chord Progressions, what Roman Numerals are, and how to transpose these important chords to different keys, check out Major Blues Chord Progression Theory and the following video lessons : Blues Shuffle, Blues Rhythm Guitar, Robben Ford Style, Blues Duet - Rhythm and Solo, Slow Blues Solo.


3.2 Minor Blues Progressions

Though not as commonly used as the major blues form, the minor 12-bar blues is a fun and interesting progression that expands upon the I-IV-V progression to keep to 12 bars in total, but explore some new harmonic areas at the same time.

The Im7 and IVm7 are found in the same place as the I7 and IV7 chords from the major blues progression, but now you have a bVI7 chord in bar 9 and a V7#9 chord in bar 10, giving the minor blues a distinctive sound that separates it harmonically from it’s major blues cousin.

You can hear this form, and variations of the minor blues, in songs such as Tin Pan Alley, The Thrill is Gone and I Heard it Through the Grapevine, which are three great starting points for exploring minor blues repertoire for those who are just beginning to explore this fun song form.

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To learn more about Minor Blues Chord Progressions, how it differs from the Major Blues from, and how to play these chords in various keys on the fretboard, check out Minor Blues Chord Progression Theory and Blues Rhythm video lesson.



4. Blues Backing Tracks

To help you get started, here are four different backing tracks, two in major keys and two in minor keys, that you can use to practice any of the improvisational or chordal concepts covered in this blues guitar theory guide.


4.1 Major Blues Backing Tracks

Both of these major blues backing tracks, in A and E, follow the I-IV-V blues chord progression and feature a classic shuffle groove in the rhythm section, allowing you to work on your blues feel at the same time as you shed your soloing chops.

Attached File  A_Blues_Backing_Track.mp3 ( 4.54MB ) Number of downloads: 5659

Attached File  E_Blues_Backing_Track.mp3 ( 4.54MB ) Number of downloads: 2680



4.2 Minor Blues Backing Tracks

The following minor blues backing tracks, in Am and Dm, follow the I-IV-V minor blues chord progression with a bVI-V turnaround in bars 9 and 10. If you are unfamiliar with the minor blues, as it's not as commonly used as the major blues form, check out the minor blues form lesson in the previous section of this guide for more background info and theoretical info on the chords used in this fun to solo over progression.

Attached File  A_Minor_Blues_Backing_Track.mp3 ( 4.54MB ) Number of downloads: 4535

Attached File  D_Minor_Blues_Backing_Track.mp3 ( 4.54MB ) Number of downloads: 2742

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Do you have a question about these blues guitar theory lessons, or a suggestion for a future addition to this theory guide? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

This post has been edited by The Professor: Nov 12 2013, 06:32 PM


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Hajduk
post Nov 11 2013, 07:34 PM
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This is great smile.gif Thanks Professor


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The Professor
post Nov 11 2013, 09:17 PM
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No problem, glad you dig it and thanks for checking it out!


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tonyk
post Nov 12 2013, 08:20 AM
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Thanks for this great summary.I struggle to make my mixolydian licks sound good.Should I be using the 6th as a passing tone to flat 7th? Should I mainly resolve to chord tones.thanks
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The Professor
post Nov 12 2013, 09:44 AM
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Hey

Thanks, I wouldn't use the 6th as a passing tone all the time, but you can check it out. The best way to learn how to make this scale sound good is to learn licks and phrases from the great players. Check out some Albert Lee, Brent Mason and SRV licks that use Mixo and try learning those first, to get the sound of a good mixo line in your ears. Then come up with your own after that. Good way to dig deep into a scale right away.


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Kristofer Dahl
post Nov 12 2013, 11:29 AM
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QUOTE (tonyk @ Nov 12 2013, 08:20 AM) *
Thanks for this great summary.I struggle to make my mixolydian licks sound good.Should I be using the 6th as a passing tone to flat 7th? Should I mainly resolve to chord tones.thanks


When playing the mixolydian scale I often see the Dominant 7 arpeggio (=chord tones) as the landing notes.

If you are having problems I would suggest playing a "nearby" scale or arpeggio instead - and occasionally try to add the extra "mixo" notes. As an example you could have the major pentatonic (and all the classic blues licks that come with it) as your basis. Then try changing or adding a note here and there to make it sound more "mixo". The mixolydian scale contains all the notes of a major pentatonic scale.

In many situations you can do the same with the major blues or minor pentatonic scale, which share the notes of mixolydian scale, except for the b3 (minor third).

Again, try to find a closely related scale which you are comfortable with, and then take small but doable steps towards the new scale you're aiming for.


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Headbanger
post Nov 12 2013, 12:17 PM
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Thanks for doing this guide Professor, its really helpful to have all this blues theory in one place. Hopefully it will be easy to find in the future. smile.gif


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The Professor
post Nov 12 2013, 12:21 PM
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No problem, glad you dug the guide, just bookmark it and it'll always be close by! smile.gif


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Dieterle
post Nov 12 2013, 12:59 PM
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Thank You for this Great Guide !

Its always a good idea to look into it - Never forget the Roots smile.gif
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The Professor
post Nov 12 2013, 02:53 PM
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no problem, thanks for checking it out, hope it's helpful!


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tonyk
post Nov 12 2013, 09:24 PM
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QUOTE (Kristofer Dahl @ Nov 12 2013, 10:29 AM) *
When playing the mixolydian scale I often see the Dominant 7 arpeggio (=chord tones) as the landing notes.

If you are having problems I would suggest playing a "nearby" scale or arpeggio instead - and occasionally try to add the extra "mixo" notes. As an example you could have the major pentatonic (and all the classic blues licks that come with it) as your basis. Then try changing or adding a note here and there to make it sound more "mixo". The mixolydian scale contains all the notes of a major pentatonic scale.

In many situations you can do the same with the major blues or minor pentatonic scale, which share the notes of mixolydian scale, except for the b3 (minor third).

Again, try to find a closely related scale which you are comfortable with, and then take small but doable steps towards the new scale you're aiming for.

Good advice.Basically with most new scales I try to improvise with ie Mix, lyd dom etc I end up trying to use the whole scale with poor results.I will then see someone elses lick where they have omitted a note here or there and it sounds great.I have always wondered how they knew which notes to omit. So will try your advice. thanks
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The Professor
post Nov 14 2013, 12:59 AM
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Great advice Kris!


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