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Complete Major / Minor Scale Using Penatonic Scales (Guitar Lesson)


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Chris Liepe

Complete Major / Minor Scale Using Penatonic Scales

Chris demonstrates how to complete the major and minor scale by using pentatonic positions based on the roots of the I, IV, and V chords.

Taught by Chris Liepe in Rock Guitar with Chris Liepe seriesLength: 14:52Difficulty: 4.5 of 5


Video Subtitles / Captions


Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.


bunkybunky replied on March 19th, 2012

Can you apply this in a modal context. Suppose you playing A Dorian and alternating Am Em chords. I would assume the Minor scale pattern works in Am and Em then you shift A-Dorian over the D. Any Comments.

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on March 26th, 2012

yes you can! you could play A dorian over an Am /// D major /// progression using the pentatonic position. For added taste, insert the natural 6th and it will sound truly dorian. see my lesson on modal pentatonics later in the series

gabe dgabe d replied on October 6th, 2011

I get it!!! AWESOME

krazyfngazkrazyfngaz replied on May 21st, 2011

Can you add the blues note to 1 4 5 pentatonic shapes or does that ruin the tonality of the parent minor scale?

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on May 23rd, 2011

the blues notes can sound cool, but it will not be "major scale" sounding at that point. We added those in on one of my live chats and it works very nicely if you're playing over the right stuff. the can work a lot of the time as passing tones, but you'll want to be really careful if your targeting one of them and your not playing over a bluesy track

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied on May 21st, 2011

Glad you guys are enjoying this!

krazyfngazkrazyfngaz replied on May 21st, 2011

I lied about your last lesson being the best lesson ever. This was the best lesson ever.

dearlpittsdearlpitts replied on May 21st, 2011

good job-your really helping me man thanx

meganmegan replied on May 20th, 2011

Ha, and I was just talking with someone about this stuff on Jamplay the other day. Hope he finds his way here. Lots of people seem to be wanting to find ways to improvise with the pentatonics these days - so improvising across chord changes and such has come up. This lesson is a big help for sure. But, now I've got to go to work - I'll have have to sit down with this later.

fredz483fredz483 replied on May 20th, 2011

Wow.. super awesome lesson. Very interesting!!!

Rock Guitar with Chris Liepe

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Instrumental Rock carries with it many creative aspects both in writing and playing. By the end of this series, Chris will have covered almost everything you will need to know to create and play your very own melodic instrumental rock piece, with emotion!



Lesson 1

Rock Essentials Introduction

Chris Liepe introduces his Phase 2 Rock Essentials lesson series. By highlighting specific instrumental rock styles and techniques, Chris will help you become a more melodically creative player.

Length: 3:57 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

3 on a String Scales

Chris Liepe starts off his Rock Essentials series with a lesson on 3 on a string scales. Utilizing 3, 4, and 6 note sequencing, Chris begins to dive into instrumental rock style phrasing and provides several...

Length: 37:00 Difficulty: 3.5 FREE
Lesson 3

Pentatonic Scales, Sequencing, and Lick Ideas

Chris introduces the pentatonic scales as well as some of their basic applications.

Length: 19:35 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 4

Chord Numbering

Chris Liepe takes some time to explain chord numbering. Understanding how chords are built will only help in your overall knowledge of the guitar.

Length: 16:25 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 5

The CAGED System

Chris breaks down the CAGED system and its chord chemistry. He covers both major and minor chord forms.

Length: 35:06 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 6

Sweep Picking

Chris digs into the sweep picking technique. He uses the C, A, and E forms introduced in the previous lesson to help with finger synchronization.

Length: 27:15 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Introduction to Modes

Chris moves on to the subject of modes. He explains where modes come from, how they sound, and how they are used.

Length: 30:04 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 8

Modal Pentatonic Scales

This lesson demonstrates how to modify the old trusty 5th fret A minor pentatonic position to make it sound modal.

Length: 10:30 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 9

Modal Chord Progressions

How do you know which mode to use? There are giveaways with every chord progression, and Chris covers them in this lesson.

Length: 17:12 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 10

Complete Major / Minor Scale Using Penatonic Scales

Chris demonstrates how to complete the major and minor scale by using pentatonic positions based on the roots of the I, IV, and V chords.

Length: 14:52 Difficulty: 4.5 Members Only
Lesson 11

Melodic Development

Chris Liepe utilizes everything he has taught in the series so far to demonstrate how to create catchy lead lines over a backing track.

Length: 15:30 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 12

Implied Tonalities

Chris Liepe delves into the world of implied tonalities. This lesson details how a single arpeggio can be implied over various chordal sounds.

Length: 25:40 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 13

Series Introduction Solo Lesson (Composed Soloing)

Chris teaches the solo that was used in the introduction lesson for this series. He uses the solo as an example of how to effectively compose your own solos.

Length: 22:09 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 14

2 Hand Tapping

It's time to give the right hand hand some work with two hand tapping on the guitar neck.

Length: 31:26 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 15

Thoughts on Practice

With so much material out there, what should you focus on? How much time do you spend on a certain topic? How do you progress? How do you measure progress? Chris covers all of these topics in this lesson.

Length: 17:16 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 16

Get to Know Chris Liepe

Chris Liepe offers up some insight into his past. Hopefully this lesson will help you further your own goals as a guitarist.

Length: 11:42 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only

About Chris Liepe View Full Biography Chris Liepe was born on September 17th, 1981 in Portland OR. His first instrument was piano which he pursued until discovering his love for the electric guitar in high school. He became fans of such groups as Soundgarden, Collective Soul and U2 inspiring him to start singing, songwriting and helping others in their musical endeavors with teaching, co-writing and album production.

Having moved to Colorado with his family, he began gigging, recording and teaching in a number of music stores as well as out of his apartment until deciding to pursue music full time. He moved to Denver, CO to complete a Bachelors in Music Technology and was then hired on by Sweetwater Productions, a division of Sweetwater Sound and one of the largest, most successful recording studios in the Midwest.

Chris spent nearly 4 years at Sweetwater as a producer, recording engineer, studio musician and writer. During this time he had the privilege of working with many artists including Augustana, Landon Pigg, Jars of Clay, and Mercy Me. He also wrote for and played on numerous independent albums and hundreds of radio/TV commercials.

Wanting to get back to his favorite State in the world (Colorado) and feeling the urge to 'go freelance', Chris moved to Greeley, CO and opened his own recording and teaching studio. He continues to write and produce music for artists and agencies and is happy to be among the proud JamPlay.com instructors.

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