All those pentatonics

Discuss playing styles and techniques, or share your own here.
smj
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I realized there was one typo in one of my names... should have been Bbmaj/Gmin

What I meant was Bb major pentatonic/ G-7 pentatonic inversion.

Once you say Major pentatonic, people usually know you mean 1 2 3 5 6
which is a major 6(9) chord.

When you say Min7 pentatonic scales... it's assumed that one means
1 b3 4 5 b7 or a Min7(11) chord.

Again, I'm not dismissing your presentation... but simply presenting how I and a lot of other improvisers conceptualize them. When improvising, offen you're superimposing chord on chord. It's easier to think of them as min7/maj6 chords.

c d e g a - Am7/Em7


Am7 yes..... Emin7....sorta.... but you have a b6 in there. That only works over certain minor7 chords.... ie III-7 or VI-7. It wouldn't work in a dorian context....

From a compositional standpoint, it's entirely useful to see each pentatonic scale inversion as it's own entity and not derivative of another chord/scale. Some have more tensions than chord tones. You can construct pentatonic voicings out of them which can really add an unusal flavor.

Again with the sharps vs flats.... it only matters on paper. Sonically they sound the same.

If you are as you say writing a book... the ultimate goal is to make it useable and understandable as possible.... not to show how musically grammatical you are.

Sometimes rules like sharps ascending and flats descending get in the way. That's used mainly for actual music notation... not musical spelling.

IE G Bb C D F vs G A# C D F

you can immediately see the G-7 application in the former... it then becomes a lot more useful. You would never write the spelling of G-7 as G A# C D F.

If I was comparing your method with Jerry's... I would relate a lot more to the way Jerry presents them. He's a world class improviser and he actually uses the stuff. The way he presents them in chord fashion is really easy to see their applications.

Double flats and double sharps gets even more pointless because we're talking theoretical keys. They're simply impractical in most (not all) situations.

Sean Meredith-Jones
http://www.seanmeredithjones.com
Stringbreaker
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By posting a set of pentatonics in one "key" I am not dissing any other method of presentation. I do not know all of the names of the various forms of pentatonic scale.

While I made lists in every key I decided to present it in C. This is to avoid duplication. If any of you have seen that something I have listed as an enharmonic equivalent to a more useful form that is fantastic.

As for Jerry's system of naming, I agree that his naming system is more useful than what I have come up with. Double sharps and double flats (and worse) are what I was using to normalize the 7 note scales - ie compare them as closely to the major scale. This is for eyeballing the maximum displacement of notes from their proper place, as it were, not for subjecting a performing musician to.

To begin adjusting for the preferability of flats over sharps is to start projecting a musical context into them. You are absolutely right, but that step comes after what I prepared. I just haven't gotten that far yet.

Really, this is testing the water time, not presenting a finished product. Would a properly prepared list with simultaneous descriptions in sheet music and fretboard charts be useful for this?

The breaking of strings is the beginning of wisdom...
smj
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Stringbreaker wrote:
Really, this is testing the water time, not presenting a finished product. Would a properly prepared list with simultaneous descriptions in sheet music and fretboard charts be useful for this?
Absolutely. If you're really going to make a go of providing a reference that you want people (including myself) to actually buy you really have to give people some options as to how they are going to internalize them.

I remember Mick Goodrick in is book "The Advancing Guitarist" said his students would always ask him "should I do it this way or that way".... his response was quite simply..."why not do both?"

Having gone through Berklee for four years, often one concept would be presented in one class... and often another teacher would shed a different light on how to think of it.... and it would really get me excited about something to go and actually try and use it

Brett Wilmott in his book "Mel Bay's Complete Book of Harmony, Theory and Voicing" went through the exhaustung process of writing out all the enharmonic equivalents for each of his voicings. It's a great book.

I admire your knowledge, precision and enthusiasm.... if you can find a way to present the stuff in a few different formats and personal insight/applications that haven't been done before I think it would make a great book.

Sean Meredith-Jones
http://www.seanmeredithjones.com
Last edited by smj on Thu Nov 15, 2007 12:23 am, edited 1 time in total.
Stringbreaker
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Thank you.

I have Wilmott's book. I got diverted in my studies of it because of learning I was missing some basics, which lead me directly to the study of scales. This started from an analysis of alternate tunings, which in turn became a study of chord types. Inevitably it pointed me at scales, which is where I am now. Call me an advanced beginner if you like.

My musical education has very small formal components. I grew up listening to thousands of hours of classical music with very few explanations. I have been putting the pieces together myself for years. My best music teacher was a well set up guitar: it was quite frank in explaining what did not sound good and showing me that what sounded bad was my fault.

I am compulsively fascinated by large sets of information and how to organize them. When I start writing about them it is a way to organize what I am thinking about. I am a trained graphic artist and a computer geek. This means I always want a visual description to cross check what my ears are telling me.

Incidentally, the idea IS to present scales and chords in multiple formats. I remember being frustrated with sheet music for years and wanting stuff for the guitar in TAB. I have grown to the point of being frustrated with TAB and wanting more in sheet. But I will almost always draw up fretboard charts. My original notebooks were covered with hand drawn fretboard charts for alternate tunings. I feel that by properly combining all three representations it will make learning the others easier.

The breaking of strings is the beginning of wisdom...
Stringbreaker
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Including alternate spelling using flats for this one.

The breaking of strings is the beginning of wisdom...

c d e f# g# - C D E Gb Ab - 2 2 2 2 4 - M2 M2 M2 M2 M3
c d e f# a# -C D E Gb Bb - 2 2 2 4 2 - M2 M2 M2 M3 M2
c d e g# a# - C D E Ab Bb - 2 2 4 2 2 - M2 M2 M3 M2 M2
c d f# g# a# - C D Gb Ab Bb - 2 4 2 2 2 - M2 M3 M2 M2 M2
c e f# g# a# - C E Gb Ab Bb - 4 2 2 2 2 - M3 M2 M2 M2 M2
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