Help with soloing using scales

Guitar Tricks Forum > Music Theory > Help with soloing using scales

New Member

Joined: 12/17/00

Posts: 1

I need help! I would like to know when I am able to play major scales. Like what are the keys its works in? I can play well with pentatonics but I want to get away from the bluesy sound.

#1

I need help! I would like to know when I am able to play major scales. Like what are the keys its works in? I can play well with pentatonics but I want to get away from the bluesy sound.

New Member

Joined: 12/19/00

Posts: 3

soloing in major keys

hey, i just signed up @ guitartricks today, so i hope i can help..

basically, if the songs in a major key, you use the corresponding major scale.. example, if the song is in the key of C major, you use the C major scale.. and if you are playing in a major key, you can always use the major penatonic scale if you work well with the pentatonic:

E Major Penatonic. (9th position)
e:-----------------------------------9--12
b:----------------------------9--12-------
g:---------------------9--11--------------
d:--------------9--11---------------------
a:-------9--11----------------------------
e:9--12-----------------------------------
You have the right to remain silent, anything you say will be misquoted and used against you.

#2

soloing in major keys

hey, i just signed up @ guitartricks today, so i hope i can help..

basically, if the songs in a major key, you use the corresponding major scale.. example, if the song is in the key of C major, you use the C major scale.. and if you are playing in a major key, you can always use the major penatonic scale if you work well with the pentatonic:

E Major Penatonic. (9th position)
e:-----------------------------------9--12
b:----------------------------9--12-------
g:---------------------9--11--------------
d:--------------9--11---------------------
a:-------9--11----------------------------
e:9--12-----------------------------------
You have the right to remain silent, anything you say will be misquoted and used against you.

Senior Member

Joined: 06/25/00

Posts: 104

the major scales or modes work very well when soloing over latin type styles of music, but you can use them anywhere.
"You know, we do more than just sing and dance. We've got a brain, too."
Backstreet Boys

#3

the major scales or modes work very well when soloing over latin type styles of music, but you can use them anywhere.
"You know, we do more than just sing and dance. We've got a brain, too."
Backstreet Boys

Member

Joined: 12/28/00

Posts: 40

Basically, if you learn the major scale, you can play all scales! (almost)
Start with one possition only (you deside which fits you the best) and then practice descend and ascend, from all keys! Then, as you may have read here on guitartricks.com, there are relatives to the major scale.
There are 7 notes in the major scale. The first note is the root, ex. you play a C-major scale, the C-note is the root.
Second note is the D. If you now play exactly the same scale, but start on the D and work your way up to the octave, you've just played the D-dorian scale/mode.
So now you just play the same scale all over, just changing the root-note and applying the octaves above.
The modes of C-major is: (in brakets, the overall tonality)
Root = C-Ionian (major)
second = D-dorian (minor)
third = E-phrygian (minor)
fourth = F-lydian (major)
fifth = G-mixolydian (major)
sixth = A-aolian (minor)
seventh = B-locrian (minor, not really a cool scale for much other than jazz progressions)

That's it! All this is writen in thousands of books and you can find the scales here on the site and start from there.
Don't forget other possitions, all keys and most important: memorise the sound of the scales and try at all time to train your ear, ex. move the scales around by yourself rather than take a peek in a book.

Good luck!

Fiddles
Trolle

#4

Basically, if you learn the major scale, you can play all scales! (almost)
Start with one possition only (you deside which fits you the best) and then practice descend and ascend, from all keys! Then, as you may have read here on guitartricks.com, there are relatives to the major scale.
There are 7 notes in the major scale. The first note is the root, ex. you play a C-major scale, the C-note is the root.
Second note is the D. If you now play exactly the same scale, but start on the D and work your way up to the octave, you've just played the D-dorian scale/mode.
So now you just play the same scale all over, just changing the root-note and applying the octaves above.
The modes of C-major is: (in brakets, the overall tonality)
Root = C-Ionian (major)
second = D-dorian (minor)
third = E-phrygian (minor)
fourth = F-lydian (major)
fifth = G-mixolydian (major)
sixth = A-aolian (minor)
seventh = B-locrian (minor, not really a cool scale for much other than jazz progressions)

That's it! All this is writen in thousands of books and you can find the scales here on the site and start from there.
Don't forget other possitions, all keys and most important: memorise the sound of the scales and try at all time to train your ear, ex. move the scales around by yourself rather than take a peek in a book.

Good luck!

Fiddles
Trolle

Senior Member

Joined: 06/22/00

Posts: 207

Trolle gives good advice. One thing I'd like to recommend, though, is getting used to the seventh chord arpeggios that go along with each scale. The reason is, with those different modes, you can call them by different names, but when you play them, they'll often just sound like the major scale, it's hard to get them to resolve at a different spot. If we're going to talk about jazz, I definitely don't think about switching scales for a ii V I. People who say dorian/mixolydian/ionian for a ii V I, I think that's kind of funny, it's all the same notes. I think in this situation, and in many where you're playing over moving harmony, thinking more about the arpeggios based on these scales can help with soloing. When playing over a vamp, it's hard not to think modally, and use scales, because how long can you stick to chord tones if there's a 16 bar vamp on dm right?

#5

Trolle gives good advice. One thing I'd like to recommend, though, is getting used to the seventh chord arpeggios that go along with each scale. The reason is, with those different modes, you can call them by different names, but when you play them, they'll often just sound like the major scale, it's hard to get them to resolve at a different spot. If we're going to talk about jazz, I definitely don't think about switching scales for a ii V I. People who say dorian/mixolydian/ionian for a ii V I, I think that's kind of funny, it's all the same notes. I think in this situation, and in many where you're playing over moving harmony, thinking more about the arpeggios based on these scales can help with soloing. When playing over a vamp, it's hard not to think modally, and use scales, because how long can you stick to chord tones if there's a 16 bar vamp on dm right?

New Member

Joined: 01/10/01

Posts: 28

Modes

To learn soloing you can do a number of things.

1) Learn patterns, box scales, blues scales, majors, minors, modes etc. (From pictures)

2)or Learn why the patterns work and when to use them, this is the study of music theroy. Start learning music theroy on the guitar in the key of C.

In fact here's your first lesson plan.

A) What are all of the notes in the key of C?
B) What is an interval?
C) What is the formula for a major scale (intervals)?
D) What interval is flatted to make a minor interval?
E) What note is flatted to make a minor chord?
F) What is the interval spelling for a major chord?
G) What is the relative minor in the key of C?
H) What is another name for Cmajor pentatonic?
I) Why do pentatonic scales work in minor keys?
J) What is the interval spelling for a box pattern?

#6

Modes

To learn soloing you can do a number of things.

1) Learn patterns, box scales, blues scales, majors, minors, modes etc. (From pictures)

2)or Learn why the patterns work and when to use them, this is the study of music theroy. Start learning music theroy on the guitar in the key of C.

In fact here's your first lesson plan.

A) What are all of the notes in the key of C?
B) What is an interval?
C) What is the formula for a major scale (intervals)?
D) What interval is flatted to make a minor interval?
E) What note is flatted to make a minor chord?
F) What is the interval spelling for a major chord?
G) What is the relative minor in the key of C?
H) What is another name for Cmajor pentatonic?
I) Why do pentatonic scales work in minor keys?
J) What is the interval spelling for a box pattern?