Blues Scale

Blues Scale

The Blues Scale is derived from the Minor Pentatonic Scale. It has an added #4th. This note gives the scale a bluesy feel. It is the only difference between the Blues Scale and the Minor Pentatonic Scale. As always, commit the pattern to memory because we will be using the Pentatonic Scale, the Blues Scale, and the Mixolydian Mode in the next lesson. We will, also, be using the 12 bar blues so get ready.

Blues Scale Pattern / Intervals

Root   b3 4 #4 5   b7 Octave
    W+H  W H  H W+H  W
(W - Whole Step, H - Half Step)

Blues Scale Box Patterns

Everyone learns the box patterns, but a couple are the most common.  The image below is the Eb pattern over 12 frets.  Don’t spend too much time memorizing all 5 patterns.  Pattern 5, which we’ll detail below, is the most commonly used.  It’s rooted on the 6th string, which pairs with some of the most common chords.  Pattern 3 is another good one to learn because it is rooted on the 5th string.  If you learn those two, and learn how to connect them on the 1st and 2nd string, you’ll be amazed at what you can play.

Full Pattern: D# Blues Scale

Soloing Over the 12 Bar Blues

To keep things simple, I’m going to give you a simple box pattern of the blues scale to start playing over a 12 bar blues progression.

E Blues Scale – Open Position Box Pattern

E Blues Scale - Open Position Box Pattern
E Blues Scale - Open Position

How to Improvise with the Blues Scale

I’m going to break this down into a very easy method for soloing right now!.  It’s called, “play any note in the blues scale but end the measure on the root note of the backing track chord.” 

  1. Play a backing track (We will use a 12 bar blues in E for this lesson – see below).
  2. For each measure play notes from the E blues scale that you just learned.  The note order is up to you
  3. At the end of each measure play the chord’s root note.  If you lose track of the measures, just use E.  E is located on the open 6th string, open 1st string, and the 2nd fret of the 4th string.
  4. If you know how to move the pattern around, try moving the pattern with the chord changes.  They should all work on the backing track below.

12 Bar Blues in E

Make sure you listen for the chord changes!

12 Bar Blues Shuffle in E

What’s Next?

As always, let me know if you have any questions or suggestions for improving this lesson.

Make sure you checked out my 12 bar blues lesson.  It covers the blues forms.  Also, I’ll be adding several blues backing tracks soon. Join my mailing list to find out when new content is arriving.

Subscribe for Free Content, Tips, and More!

3 Reasons to Subscribe to the GLW Newsletter:

  1. Free Stuff! You'll get free content that is exclusive to my newsletter subscribers!
  2. Content tailored to you. Over time, I'll get to learn more about you and deliver content that motivates you to learn, play and be inspired!
  3. No spam. Just real content that's meant to make a difference in your playing

Enter your name and email, and you're on your way!

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit
Hello again! You're already subscribed to the GLW newsletter. Thank you for being a part of the GLW community. If you have a question, just send an email using my contact page. I'd be happy to help!

2 Comments on Blues Scale

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*


tune half step down  martin dc-16rgte  what is a staff in music  how to read guitar tablature  guitar notation  pentatonic minor scale  everything you want chords  play guitar chords  7th chords guitar  fingerpicking exercises  how to figure out the key of a song  beginner fingerpicking songs  what does standard notation mean  best guitar chords  seventh chord  a minor 7 chord guitar  guitar string diagram  you and me guitar chords  string names on guitar  diminished chords guitar  guitar solo scales  d mixolydian  amazing grace on guitar  a chord guitar finger position  music note reader  guitar chord progression  guitar e string  minor scale chords  d minor chord progression  grateful guitar lessons  all notes on guitar  guitar training  tuning guitar strings  blank chord chart  how to play an f on guitar  musical staff notes  define guitar  secret guitar teacher  a 7 guitar chord  beginner chords  for who you are chords  what does diminished mean  the treble clef is used for  chord diagrams  modes guitar  a minor pentatonic  guitar chord diagrams  notes on a guitar fretboard  gutar chords  chord changes  how to play b on guitar  chord structure  guitar chrods  guitar d  beginner guitar exercises  d pentatonic scale  guitar sheet music for beginners  6 string guitar notes  drop tuning  how to play c on guitar  diatonic scale guitar  diminished 7th  a minor bar chord  rock guitar licks  12 bar blues form  easy chord progressions  where can i buy a guitar  guitar picking exercises  define fretted  half step down