Pentatonic scales

Connecting pentatonic scales together


Trichords with note repetition

1-2nd degrees

2-3rd degrees

3-4th degrees

4-5th degrees

5-1st degrees


The combination of normal and trichord pentatonic scales


Trichords with note repetition


If you take a look at the one-string pentatonic scales illustrated using my own scale software called OSIRE... will certainly find the five notes of the E pentatonic scale, namely E-G-A-B-D. These notes happen to be located seemingly scattered along the fret board, in which you will have to find the system in them; it's pretty much what my guitar methodology is about. Pentatonic scales I. section describes the scale degrees severally. But now let's just make an attempt to connect the E pentatonic scale's first and the second degree together.



Apparently, in case of disregarding the open-string pickings, you will find that it's very hard to see the system behind these notes. That's the reason why one should learn the scale degrees one by one first.

Here's a little help on what is to be taken note of in the above picture:

  • high thirds (always with a 1-2-4 fingering, example here: G string, G-A-B notes)

  • low third - low second (with a 1-3-4 fingering, example here: B string, B-D-E notes)

  • low second - low third (with a 1-2-4 fingering, example here: D string, D-E-G notes)

  • as the interval of the notes connecting the two scale degrees together is most of the time a perfect fourth, there will be a note repetition when changing strings. Regardless, it's considered a really helpful exercise as it makes your fingers stretch, plus practicing you will get to see the consistency between the degrees; last but not least these scales are very important for your blues improvisation skills (boxes).

1st and 2nd degrees connected


2nd and 3rd degrees connected


3rd and 4th degrees connected


4th and 5th degrees connected


5th and 1st degrees connected




Applying the same trichord technique as you did for the basic scales, i.e. three notes for each strings with no note repetition, will get you a very weird scale structure, see below. This structure however may seem familiar to some guitar fanatics; fast-handed American metal guitarists with a past in blues music really fancy this formation of trichords.



The scale structure, as you can see here, is pretty stretched to the upper parts of the fret, making it only possible for electric guitarist to play the complete scale.


The combination of normal and trichord pentatonic scales


Now let's combine the normal and trichord pentatonic scales. There are many ways to combine these scale structures. This example here demonstrates one where the scale starts with a first degree open-string scale, as described in Pentatonis scales I. section, and ends with the normal pentatonic scale structure in the fourth degree. The scale structure in between is apparently the trichord scale structure. - Pentatonic scales - Connecting pentatonic scales together