** As featured in issue 61 **
In my previous columns, I've have talked about the vital role that sequences play in expanding our musical vocabulary. In Guitar Interactive issues 59 and 60 we looked at some pentatonic sequences in E major, moved around the fretboard, repeated some sequences to create licks and mixed up the rhythms to sound less predictable with our patterns. In this lesson we’re going to switch to E minor and add the blues note to our minor pentatonic licks.
Keep in mind that a sequence is when you play the notes of a scale in a specific repetitive pattern as opposed to randomly playing scale tones. The more of them you know the more you will be able to say on your instrument.
So let’s get IT STARTED IN HERE….
EX 1 - This first example is an 8 note pattern that is then repeated starting on a new string. If this is new to you I would recommend practicing the first 4 notes over and over, then add the next 4 notes and put those 8 notes together. The first 4 notes can even be a useful lick by itself! Check out the tab and the video and go slow at first.
EX 2 - Are you ready to stretch? This lick is a descending group of 4 notes but with a big stretch that will allow us to play 3 notes per string. It sounds great with the pentatonic scale alone but becomes even more of an ear twister when adding the blues note.
EX 3 - is similar to ex 2 but takes us higher on the fretboard while continuing this idea of a descending group of 4 using the E minor blues scale.
EX 4 - If we repeat part of a sequence create some cool licks. This example uses a 3 note per string pattern.
EX 5 - This last lick is reverse group of 4 using the E minor blues scale. Kind of like climbing the stairs backwards. This one can be a little tricky so take it slow at first.
And now for the fun part...your homework:
Learn at least one sequence
Repeat a few of the notes to create a lick
Mix up the rhythm to sound less predictable
Next up….diatonic sequences. Stay tuned!