Pentatonic Side Stepping
Pentatonic Side Stepping Three Note Patterns
Pentatonic Side Stepping is playing a parallel pentatonic scale “down a half step,” “up a half step” and a “tritone away and then returning back to the pentatonic in the key center. Side stepping usually incorporates three and four note patterns. It is common in Jazz and Progressive Rock to use side stepping with many types of pentatonics. The best way to think about this is a pentatonic scale creates a key center but also creates an intervallic sound because of the intervals contained within the scale. These intervals consist of seconds, minor thirds, thirds and fourths. When you access the parallel scales via side stepping you are using the same intervals so your ear hears this as a pleasant pattern as long as it is played fast enough for your ear to hear the relationships. You can notice the importance of tempo by listening to the slow versions of the études. In most cases the tempo is moving too slowly to hear the side stepping relationships. By listening to the intermediate and fast versions of the études the side stepping will make sense to your ear because it is fast enough to pick up the interval patterns.
Pentatonic Side Stepping with Three Note Major Pentatonic Patterns
Just to review with any three note group of notes there are six ways they can be played. If we had the notes C, D, E from a C major pentatonic you can see below how you could combine them:
C, D, E
C, E, D
D, C, E
D, E, C
E, C, D
E, D, C
So now we need to move these patterns “down a half step,” “up a half step” and a “tritone away. Below is an example of playing a major pentatonic down a half step in the key of C Major. Usually you need to play these melodic lines fairly fast so that your ear can pick up on the pattern. Below are four patterns:
Make sure to also check out pentatonic scale side stepping with four note groups.
Much of the material presented on this website is from the Pentatonic Scale Lexicon Volume One: Major by Bruce Arnold and is used by permission. All rights are reserved on all information found on this website. For visiting this site you will receive a 10% discount on this course when you purchase it. Just use the promo code: lex when checking out via the cart system.