Country School: Major Pentatonic Scale-Chords

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The definitive scale-chord pairing in country music is the Major Triad and its parallel Major Pentatonic Scale.

Applied to the “big three” chords (I, IV, V) in the key of C, we get three sets of matched “scale-chords” or “chord-scales” as follows :

The C Chord (I) is paired with the C Major Pentatonic Scale

piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-notation-solfege-c-chord
piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-keyboard-solfege-c-chord

Time and time again, you are going to discover and rediscover that scales and chords are intimately inter-related. Knowing your chords helps you know your scales and knowing your scales helps you know your chords!


The F Chord (IV) is paired with the F Major Pentatonic Scale

piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-notation-solfege-f-chord

Ear Training Tip: The key center has not shifted to F. C is still the key center Do.

piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-keyboard-solfege-f-chord

 

The G Chord (V) is paired with the G Major Pentatonic Scale

piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-notation-solfege-g-chord

Ear Training Tip: The key center has not shifted to G. C is still the key center Do.

piano-ology-country-school-major-pentatonic-scale-chords-keyboard-solfege-g-chord

Understanding such scale-chord relationships is a prerequisite to fluent improvisation and will also pay huge dividends for sight reading, memorizing, transposing, and playing by ear! Stay tuned for more!

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