The A Minor Pentatonic

Strings will break however careful you are with them. I was just taking my high E string down a semitone and it snapped.

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If you have string breakage when bending it is possible that you have a sharp edge on your saddle or you have an old and corroded string.
Under normal tension strings can bend a long way without snapping.

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I fitted Ernie Ball Extra Slinky 8-gauge strings to my strat when I started string bending, because the 9’s that were on it were murder on my fingers. I have broken two of the high-e strings while bending. I ended up buying a few individual EB 8-gauge strings, so I didn’t have to buy a whole set when I only needed 1 string.

After reading all these comments about how easy people find it I feel very discouraged. I can’t get my fingers to stay far enough apart to get in the right frets so I’m sliding around trying to reach with my pinky then sliding back to first finger and it sounds horribly uneven.

Don’t let any posts get you down. For every one that makes me feel awful, i find 10 in other topics that if feel better. This particular technique is just a weak one for you! no worries - you got lots you CAN do just fine!

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Don’t fret it (excuse the pun) as this will come as you stretch your fingers. Try the fingers gyms. It took me ages to get my fingers to stretch over four frets. It will come, but a bit of patience and plenty of practice is required :slight_smile:


Finger Gyms???

Try this one


Thanks Stuart and Karende! Lol at the pun. It’s so hard to be patient, especially when practicing something boring like a scale…

They may be but opening up things to a whole new world!!

When playing two notes on one string, e.g. starting with moving from A (1st finger, 6th string) to C (4th finger, 6th string), you need to lift your 1st finger off of note A before fretting note C, correct? You can’t leave your 1st finger on A when you move your 4th finger to fret C?

It is perfectly fine to leave your finger down … often desirable.
Good luck practicing.

Thanks. But by “down”, do you mean fretting? So at one point, you’re playing two different notes on the same string?

You won’t be playing two notes because (as in your example) when your 4th finger goes down at fret 8 of the low E string, the note that your 1st finger is holding down will no longer be sounding it - it is behind the fretted note.

You can’t play 2 different notes on the same string at the same time. Ideally when playing scales you want a smooth transition from note to note. Play first note A then fret and play second note C preparing to lift and move index finger to land on 3rd note D on the next string and so on. It’s a rocking back and forth motion.
You want to leave the previous played note fretted until you play the next note but be prepared to play the next note.

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How would you mute using your fretting hand for the Am pentatonic scale?

Your question isn’t very clear. It depends if you are wondering about muting all strings thinner than the one being played. If so, just lay your fretting finger a little flat to reach its string instead of being curled and upright.

2 posts were split to a new topic: Can a song contain three different scales?

I know Justin mentioned it is a bit controversial to introduce string bending so early, which is why I wish he had spent a little more time on how to do it properly here. “Practice makes permanent, so practice perfectly” and all that. :wink:

There is a link to a more advanced lesson that covers string bending in this lesson’s description, but if that’s where we are expected to go, it might also be worth mentioning in the video lesson if he ever revisits this topic.

At the very end of this lesson, Justin mentions we’ll put the A minor pentatonic into practice at the next lesson. But the next lesson is about palm muting. Does anyone happen to know the next lesson he’s referring to?