Most Incredible Musical Sound

If you're ready for a brand new sound in your guitar solos, then this lesson is going to open a few new doors. This session will cover an alternate way of viewing and using scales. Doing this will help you to compose melody lines that will end up offering a slightly different perspective to the way melodic ideas are used on the guitar...


In jazz, we will often apply a principle called “Diatonic Substitution” with either chords or by using arpeggios. This is a really effective idea because it allows us to super-impose other arpeggios or chords, (like maybe using a Major arpeggio - over a Minor chord), or the same thing could be done going minor to major.

What a lot of guitar players don’t realize is that you can also do this using the Pentatonic scale. For example, let’s say that you had a, “Minor” chord. Over that chord, you could perform a substitute “Major Pentatonic” scale.

A nice one that I like is to apply is the Major Pentatonic scale performed from a root that’s located a Minor 6th away from that Minor chord. So, if for example, I had an “F Minor” chord, I could play a, “Db Major Pentatonic” Scale, and it would sound really interesting.

In respect to the music theory behind why this works so well, you’ll need to study the notes in that underlying chord of “F Minor” along with the notes of the “Db Major Pentatonic Scale.”

What you’ll discover is that the chord tones of the minor chord and the scale tones of the pentatonic scale generate some cool intervals that operate inside and outside of the chord-tones.

That “Db” Major Pentatonic scale has the “Fm” chords’ root, (F), and the minor third, (Ab), along with the diatonic flatted seventh chord tone, (Eb). The Major Pentatonic also gives us a, “Perfect 4th” (Bb), and there’s a slightly dissonant effect from the root of the Major Pentatonic scale (Db). That “Db” is actually an “Aug. 5th” on the “F Minor” chord. So, when you set out to apply this principle, you get a few choices of inside notes as well as, outside tones as well.

It’s a really interesting mix of note choices that winds up being a lot of fun to practice creating melody with.

So, let’s apply this idea with a short chord progression that I’ve composed in the key of, “F Minor.” It uses three chords.

On the “F Minor,” chord you can play “Db Major Pentatonic.” On the “C Minor” you can perform the, “Ab Major” Pentatonic scale. And, on the “Bb Minor” chord you can play the “Gb Major” Penatonic scale.

Watch the video clip below to hear what these chords sound like in that progression (using each of those specific Major Pentatonic scales – all played over top of the corresponding chords that they relate to). 

Listen to the melody line I've composed using the notes from the Pentatonic substitutes.




Applying this substitute pentatonic scale approach is a really interesting scale substitution principle to work on. It allows guitar players to compose melodic ideas that offer a slightly different perspective on the guitar than the basic diatonic scale offers.

Well, hey, thanks for joining me, If you'd like to Find Out What You Should Learn on Guitar - take a look at the courses over on my website at

My step-by-step; Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced courses will cover what you need to know, along with how to be able to move forward and become the best player that you can be.

I've worked on these courses since 1992 and I feel that all together they're the best guitar program you'll ever find. The courses will help you learn to identify what's required to get you up to the next level of guitar playing, in a very organized way, that makes sense.

I look forward to helping you further at ...Until next time - take care and we'll catch up again on the next video. Bye for now!



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