Blues Scales

The Blues Scale is similar to the Minor Pentatonic Scale but has an extra note, this is a Diminished 5th and is known as the 'Blue Note'

Let's recap on the Minor Pentatonic...

A Minor Pentatonic

A Minor is made up from: A, B, C, D, E, F and G. In Degrees: A(I), B(II), C(III), D(IV), E(V), F(VI), G(VII).

We construct all Minor Pentatonics by using the I, III, IV, V and VII Degrees of the Minor Scale giving us: A(I), C(III), D(IV), E(V), G(VII).

A Minor Pentatonic: A, C, D, E, G (Root, Min 3rd, Per 4th, Per 5th, Min 7th)

A Blues Scale

The Blues Scale is made up from the same Intervals as the Minor Pentatonic, but we add out 'Blue Note' the Diminished 5th

A Blues: A, C, D, Eb, E, G (Root, Min 3rd, Per 4th, Dim 5th, Per 5th, Min 7th)

A Blues scale in the C position

Here's the first of our 5 CAGED positions of the Blues scale. Memorising these positions will enable you to play the blues scale (and if you miss out the Bb 'Blue Note', the Minor Pentatonic also) across the entire fretboard.

A Blues scale in the A position

Personally I find this the easiest position to remember as it's an A Blues Scale at the A Position.

A Blues scale in the G position

Next we move onto the C Scale in the G Position (below left). Note the G Chord Shape contained within the C scale. Root notes denoted by a red halo.

A Blues scale in the E position

This is the A Bluesr Scale in the E Position.

A Blues scale in the D position

Here's the last position in the CAGED Scale System, the D Position.

Other Blues Scales

Here's a table of all the other Blues Scales in each key...

KEY / INTERVAL I III IV bV V VII
A# A# C# D# E E# G#
D# D# F# G# A A# C#
G# G# B C# D D# F#
C# C# E F# G G# B
F# F# A B C C# E
B B D E F F# A
E E G A Bb B D
A A C D Eb E G
D D F G Ab A C
G G Bb C Db D F
C C Eb F Gb G Bb
F F Ab Bb Cb C Eb
Bb Bb Db Eb E F Ab
Eb Eb Gb Ab A Bb Db
Ab Ab Cb Db D Eb Gb