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Minor pentatonic scale: the dice effect

New Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 2
Topic starter  

Have you ever noticed how dots are positioned on a dice? Always the same way: 1 opposite 6, 4 opposite 3 and 5 opposite 2, so the sum of the dots of opposite sides is always 7. What does this have to do with guitar? Well, it actually helps you play the right pentatonic for the position you're in for any key you desire.

The following explanation might be very confusing, long-winded and potentially completely useless: I'm a beginner guitarist and theorist, but I'm sure somebody will be able to formulate it better than me, if it has any interest. Prior knowledge of the different forms of the minor pentatonic scale is required.

The minor pentatonic scale in any given position only has two notes on each string. Starting from the low E string, let's number the first 5 notes from 1 to 5. If your root note is in position 2, i.e. on the 6th string, bridge side, you should play the pentatonic with the 5th position (2+5=7). If your root note is in position 3, 5th string head side, you should play the pentatonic in the 4th position (3+4=7), and so on. Of course, if your root note is in position 1, you should play the pentatonic in 6th position, which is the first position, since it's only a circle of 5.

Example, if I want to play a minor pentatonic in the key of A, and I happen to have an A handy under my pinky on the 5th string (note 4), I will play it using the third form of the pentatonic (4+3=7).

This is probably only interesting for beginners like me who are still trying to figure out where to play the pentatonic, but it's also extendable to other scales, though only 5-tone scales will qualify for the dice comparison.



Lao-Tseu l'a dit : il faut trouver la voie

Famed Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 3297

That is really great! Thanks for the tip.

"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."

Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 188

I want this to make sense to me. Ive tried really hard for an hour or so. Reading and re-reading the post.

I played with some dice for a while. My cat ate it. Read the post again, got a soda, watched my cat throw up, commenced playing with dice again...still dont get it.

Note this is a dig at my stupidity, not yours.

Im sure there is some awe inspiring theme to this concept. And im really pissed I dont see it.

Always respect contributions!

Keep the think tank filling, so morons like me can still swim.


Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 196

Perhaps I'm really think but I don't get what you're saying. Are you making reference to a method to detirmine the relative minor of the key you happen to be playing in, and thus a minor pentatonic scale you can use?

"You want WHAT on the *&%#ing ceiling?" - Michelangelo, 1566