So now that you know the first 2 patterns of the Minor Pentatonic Scale it’s time to get your fingers on the 3rd pattern.
Many blues guitarists focus primarily on the first 2 patterns of the scale, but if you want to be really good you need to learn to play all over the fingerboard. The 3rd pattern of the scale is the trickiest because it involves shifting positions to play the 7th fret on the 3rd string and the 11th fret on the 2nd string.

Here it is in the key of G:

The Minor Pentatonic Scale Pattern 3

Notice that I start with my 2nd finger so that I can get that 7th fret note on the 3rd string, and then I shift up a fret on the 2nd string so that I can get the 11th fret note on the 2nd string. The truth is that it’s more difficult to go from the 2nd finger to the 4th finger than it is is to go from the 1st finger to the 3rd finger. But it’s more economical to do it this way, and practicing like this helps to strengthen the 4th finger.

In actual playing I may play those lower string notes with my 1st and 3rd finger, depending on the lick and whats going on around it. Stay tuned, I’ll be posting some licks soon that illustrate what I am talking about.

Minor Pentatonic Guitar Scale - C From

 

 

In actual playing I may play those lower string notes with my 1st and 3rd finger, depending on the lick and what’s going on around it. Stay tuned, I’ll be posting some licks soon that illustrate what I am talking about.

Also, notice that this pattern fits over this Dominant 7 chord shape:

g7-cform-chord

At this point you should be able to play the first 2 patterns easily. So here are some practice suggestions:

  1. Once you get this pattern under your fingers play it all 12 keys around the circle of 4ths. For more information about his practice technique be sure to subscribe to this blog and get the free Blues Rules course.
  2. Practice playing all three patterns of the scale that you know so far, up and down, starting from the first pattern. Pay close attention to how they are connected. Once you get that down do it around the circle of 4ths.
  3. Practice going back and forth between the Dominant 7 chord form shown above and the scale. And once again, do it aound the circle of 4ths.
  4. Have some fun with it! Put on a blues play-along and make some music.

So get to work. I will be posting the 4th pattern very soon!