The G Major Pentatonic Scale

The G what-now? Lets take a second to look at what the words mean….

Pent = 5

Tonic = First note of a scale; in this case G is the first note

Scale = A sequence of notes ordered Low to high then vice versa

A scale can be seen as a musical alphabet that we can create melodies with. Confusion can be happen because different scales give us the notes for different styles, genres or chord sequences.

So, the G major Pentatonic Scale is a set of 5 notes played up or down. It works best over any chord sequence in the key of G (Covered in Level 6 01!) and it sounds great over all common pop styles such as acoustic or rock music. Songs it is used in include the intro riffs of ‘Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd and My Girl by The Temptations.

Guitar melodies are written in TAB (short for Tablature). This is where every line represents a string on your guitar, and the numbers are the fret numbers

 G Major Pentatonic in TAB


G Major Pentatonic Diagram

Scale diagrams help visualise the scale on your fret board. Each black dot shows where to place your fingers.  The circled dots are the G notes, these show you where you should start and end the scale.

G major pentatonic scale shape

Click here for a free Backing track in G below for you to improvise over!

5 Stage Method:

1. Change direction at random

2. Keep the rhythm interesting. Unlike rhythm guitar, lead guitar can change rhythm anytime. Stick to a similar theme for best results

3. Only play 3 or 4 notes before pausing- similar to how a singer would pause to breath between phrases

4. Add hammer ons and flick offs for smoother and faster sequence’s

5. Add 2 fret slides on the thinnest 3 strings to add phrasing and a lyrical quality