The PERFECT Blues Scale!

If there was a "perfect" Blues Scale what would it consist of? Certainly it would have the primary chord tones of the key, (like the Root, Major 3rd, Perfect 5th and Minor 7th). But, it would also benefit from having other important color tones as well. Those additional tones would make the scale complete (Perfect)...

In order to round out the "Perfect" notes for the Perfect Blues Scale, we'll need to fill in the gaps of what is lacking from the notes contained in the standard Blues Scales, (Major and Minor). And, that is exactly what we're going to do in this video.


I want to introduce you to a Blues scale pattern that I always enjoy showing to my own students here in the studio. I’ve nick-named this one, the “Perfect” Blues Scale Pattern.

The cool thing about this shape is that it can cover almost any kind of Blues situation you’d need it to because it not only applies the primary chord tones of the key center, but this Blues pattern also offers a few interesting "Blue Note" options for us!

These "Blue Note," options are not a part of the basic Minor Pentatonic Blues scale.

What are Blue Notes?
A blue note is a note that gets played at a slightly different pitch than standard.

Typically the alteration to the pitch is between a quarter-tone and a semitone, but it will tend to vary depending upon the sound of the musical piece in which it will get used.

So, let’s get right into learning this pattern… We’re going to learn two root locations for this scale. One will be off of the 6th-string and we’ll also add a similar layout for this pattern off of the 4th-string.

First, here’s the pattern off of the 6th string - built off of a root note of, “A.”

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Next, we’re going to expand on this Blues Scale patterns’ layout by establishing a second octave on the neck. This will help by stretching out the range on the fingerboard. Here’s how this group of notes sits on the neck when built off of the 4th-string.

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Once you have learned and memorized the notes as related to the key of "A" (shown above), start taking the pattern along and across the fingerboard - treating it as a universal "moveable" scale pattern on the fret-board.

6th-String Moveable Pattern:

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4th-String Moveable Pattern:

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Now, that you understand how this pattern sits on the neck, the next step is to start learning how to control its sound.

As you can see diagrammed in the above shapes, there are a group of five tones on the middle string of the pattern that are all chromatic.

And, as I’m sure you also noticed I had highlighted the notes of “C#” and “Eb” because those tones are ones that you can bend and manipulate using different phrasing ideas to highlight some really cool sounds over any type of Blues Jam.

Use the classic 8-bar Blues jam progression given below to practice how you could put this "Perfect Blues Scale" fret-board pattern to use.

Download the MP3 Rehearsal Loop 
( right-click "Save link as" ), for at home study

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Well, I hope that you enjoyed this PERFECT Blues scale pattern video... You can download a FREE loop-track for the 8-bar Blues you heard me play over - via the link above.

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