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Pentatonic Scales

pentatonic scale charts

The Pentatonic scales are a staple of modern rock, blues and pop music. They are usually the first scales beginner guitarists learn to play. This article and interactive web app help you learn all of the Pentatonic scale diagrams. For your convenience, I have included a PDF of all the Pentatonics. The download link is at the end of the article.

Pentatonic scale chart generator

The interactive app below lets you generate fretboard charts of Pentatonic scales in all keys with custom tunings.
Make sure you have JavaScript enabled in your browser for the generator to work correctly.

Select a tuning (default is standard tuning) then choose one of the keys.

Switch to:
7 string guitar
6 string guitar
Bass Guitar

Change tuning - Current tuning: E-a-d-g - reset to Standard Bass
Tune by string:
4 3 2 1 go
*** Change a string then press "go" then choose scale to view

Turn off pattern box Turn on moveable pattern box

isolatorcheck guitar fretboard tuning
flip - L R

Pentatonic Major keys

C | G | D | A | E | B | F | Bb | Eb |Ab | Db | Gb

Pentatonic minor keys

A | E | B | F# | C# | G# | D | G | C | F | Bb | Eb

What are Pentatonic scales?

Pentatonic scales are five note scales. There are many types of Pentatonic scales. However, the scales we are concerned with here are the most commonly used for guitar, the Major and minor. WikiPedia has a nice article on these scales (including the others) HERE.

How to learn the Pentatonic scales with 5 box patterns

The easy way to learn the pentatonic scales is with the 5 box pattern method. The 5 box method cuts the scale up into 5 distinct patterns that you learn individually. You only have to learn the 5 patterns in one key. Then apply the 5 patterns to all the other keys listed above.

The 5 box pattern method assumes you are using standard tuning on a six string guitar. Below is an interactive app that shows you the 5 patterns to learn in standard tuning in the key of C Major / E minor. Use the moveable box in the first app widget above to help learn other keys by moving the box to isolate the 5 patterns. See also how to play pentatonic scales.

A minor Pentatonic scale pattern 1

Box pattern 1 | Box pattern 2 | Box pattern 3 | Box pattern 4 | Box pattern 5

Pentatonic scale chart diagrams PDF download

In case you are not able to use the apps above, I have also included all the fretboard diagrams for the Pentatonics in standard tuning for all keys in a downloadable PDF. Just click the download image below.

pdf download Pentatonic scales for guitar

I have more guitar scale generators coming soon so be sure to subscribe below if you want to be notified when they are released. Also feel free to drop me a line via my contact page (link at bottom of page) if you have any feedback / just want to say hello or need any help whatsoever. See you again soon!

pentatonic scales

Posted December 16, 2015, 10:53 am in: Scales


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