Best "Gospel Blues" Shape Ever!

The Gospel Blues scale shape for lead guitar /soloing is an interesting scale pattern that blends the Blues Scale with another scale tone that's more widely associated with the Dorian mode, (the Major 6th)...

The shape of this scale on guitar is quick and easy to both recall and to apply. It works extremely well over Gospel Blues influenced progressions due to the scales common-place sound and its popular form (neck layout) upon the fingerboard.


In this lesson, I've organized two fretting positions for the "Gospel Blues Scale" on the guitar neck (upper and lower region). 

These positions are taught separately, and then I combine them together to create a larger neck shape for more coverage along and across the fret-board.

I've also included a "Gospel Blues" chord progression that you can record and use at home as a backing track.

Blues based Gospel music has been around since the inception of blues itself. The sound of this Blues style is very moving, it has a ton of emotion and a very soulful edge to it.

The guitar is a featured instrument across this style, and it performs all kinds of interesting combinations of great blues guitar riffs and licks. Plus, we can’t forget all the fascinating storylines that get woven through the lyrics.

There’s a large group of notable gospel blues performers as well including; Blind Willie Johnson, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Reverend Gary Davis, Blind Lemon Jefferson and Blind Boy Fuller. In this lesson, we’re going to focus on learning about the scale that gets used by these guitarists.

We’ll cover the patterns on the neck, the unique sound that they generate and we’ll learn how to make some fantastic music with them as well.

Let’s get started by learning the first layout on the neck of this Gospel Blues scale shape.

The pattern below is demonstrated in the key of “E” and further down the page I provide the lower register pattern as well.

This first pattern, that we’re going to study, will sit on the neck between the 4th and 5th positions. We’ll learn how the shape operates up on the fret-board from the root of an “E” played up at the 2nd guitar string’s, 5th fret.


Fingerboard Geometry:

Notes on the Neck:

The next shape that I have for you will be down an octave lower in the 2nd position. This Gospel Blues pattern will still retain the root of “E” however, this time located into a lower register down on the 2nd fret of the fourth guitar string.


Fingerboard Geometry:

Notes on the Neck:

Now that you understand how to start practicing the upper and lower registers of the Gospel Blues scale shape, (if only in the key of “E”), let’s connect them together and produce a large two octave pattern.

In the video lesson, I also run through how you can start changing the key and how to begin getting the shape moving along the span of the neck.


When it comes to practicing any scale you’ll need something to play it against so that you can start learning how to make some music with it.

The goal with any new scale is to become as familiar as possible with how it sounds so that you can better comprehend how it can be applied musically.

As we’ve mentioned in other lessons, this is generally best done using jam-tracks. So, to help you with gaining a better idea for applying this scales sound, here’s a nice group of "Gospel Blues" chord changes in the key of “E” that you can learn and use as a Jam-Track.


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