JRS Survival Guitar Lesson 5: The Major Blues Scale

The third Survival Scale to learn is the Major Blues Scale.

Click on theĀ Major Blues Scale to hear a midi file example.


The Major Blues Scale is shown here, arranged to span two octaves on the guitar. To make it easier to play, I’ve written it so the “blue” note only appears in the second octave (on the third string).

The Major Blues Scale is a modified Major Pentatonic Scale. Penta-what? A pentatonic scale is a scale that contains five notes. The Major Pentatonic Scale is therefore a five note Major Scale. To create this Major Blues Scale, we take the Major Pentatonic Scale and add a “blue” note (a flatted third–more on that later). The result is a sound that is often used in blues, and country music.

If you’ve been going through the other lessons, you’ll recognize that what your looking at closely resembles the plain old Major Scale. Well, you’re right! The Major Blues Scale, and the Major Pentatonic Scale it derives from, are both based on the Major Scale.

So, now you’ve had some theory behind the scale thrown at you. Again,don’t worry too much about the technical stuff right now; I’ll explain more later. For now, commit this thing to memory.







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