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Improvise with chord tones

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    Go here » Scales You Can Use When You Play The Blues, instant download or on DVD. Learn how to use my Hybrid Scale approach to solo over 1-4-5 progressions - I use it all the time.

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Guitar Lesson Overview

If you feel stuck with the pentatonic or blues scale, and you are running out of ideas, then you have to watch this video. Using chord tones when you are improvising over a blues can really open up your playing. This lesson shows you how to using arpeggios over a I-IV-I progression (A7 | D7 | A7 | A7). Target the chord tones instead of rambling up and down a scale, and voila - your improvising will sound much better!

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Comments on this video lesson:

Tommy Choquette said...

A very informative lesson. You are a great instructor. Thank you.

Comment added on June 22, 2012
peter hamilton said...


I want to thank you for this lesson.

Everytime you do a lessson it seems to open a fundamental door and your instruction is clear that it is easy to follow

For a while now I thought the way to improve the minor pentatonic was to include some parts of the major pentatonic but which parts and how would you do that and where would you do that in the scale?

I found out that by moving down two frets from the A minor pentatonic you could find the
A major pentatonic but it is never as simple as that. A friend told me this only works ifyou know the right intervals between the major and minor and therefore the fret spacing will be different depending on the patterns from 1-5 that you are using at whatever position you are on the neck!

Now things began to get complcated again so a lesson on the relationship between the minor and major pentatonic in different positions would be very useful.

Whenever you think you have a handle on this stuff another door opens and you are left grasping for meaing if you know what I mean!

But as I said you are one of the genuine lights in the tunnel for those of us slow learners desperate to play the blues late in life.

So Thanks


Comment added on June 10, 2012
James said...

Robert, your emphasis on starting and ending phrasing on chord tones solved a piece of the puzzle for me. While most here understand the Blues 1-IV-V progression, the 1-3-5 structure of chord tones as in tone-tone-semitone-tone-tone may be a bit more obscure. Of course, I know this comes under the heading of music theory, and that's probably not what you want to be teaching here, but if there was a place on your website explaining how chords are constructed, you'd be able to refer people to it for an explanation of what you are playing.

This lesson is a great, great step forward, I think, and I urge you discuss further and make more like it.


Comment added on March 30, 2012
Matt said...

Very good! I love how you get in to some details and explain what you're doing. Keep dropping that knowledge down on us.

Comment added on August 19, 2011
Peter Trentacoste said...

Another great lesson. Would be nice to see what you right hand is doing on all your new videos coming to view. I can see and feel what it is doing but for our new players would have a hard time with it I would think. Again thanks for sharing with all of us

Comment added on May 20, 2011
Justin said...

A bit too complicated for me. I don't understand arpeggios and theory,etc. But still a great video!

Comment added on February 12, 2011
Robert Renman said...

Thanks Vince. You may want to check or any of the other blues lessons, under the heading Blues, on the right side here.

Comment added on October 27, 2010
Vince said...

And want very much to learn how to play it
Also Love watching and listing to you playing, Since i,am only a beginner been playing about eight months,Practice every day for 3 to 4 hours
This lesson is a little to advance for me, Right now all i can play is cords, Need help tell me Where do i go from here?

Comment added on October 25, 2010
Jere said...

Robert, your lessons are always great, easy to learn and juicy..perhaps next time you can show us to the 5 and back

Comment added on August 26, 2010
gabriel Clement said...

this is very cool, and also with a good explanation go with it. thank you. next time add I, iv, v progression

Comment added on August 20, 2010
m smith said...

would be nice to have some tab for your improvisation

superb lesson, as always ... :))

Comment added on August 20, 2010
Mark said...

Thanks Robert,always looking for other stles,techniques and the like and you just caused a brainstorm.
Thank You

Comment added on August 19, 2010
Micheal said...

thanks for helping me get out of the scale rut. This lesson was outstanding.

Comment added on August 19, 2010

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Free Guitar Lessons
New Course - Comping with Triads -

Learn 6 common chord progressions.

NEW - T-Bone Walker Lesson

"You are simply the best teacher on the internet. Always cool, explain things well, and relevant stuff for beginners to advanced players. Even my kids are into your lessons now!"

I was chosen as the 2013 Next Top Guitar Instructor at Truefire!