Category Archives: Scales For Lead Guitar

Guitar Scales Chart Book

Guitar Scales Chart

The Guitar Command Guitar Scales Chart Book is a comprehensive reference book for all lead guitarists. Featuring a huge collection of scales & arpeggios, this printable PDF eBook is available for instant download. You can view free sample pages below.

Learn new guitar scales all over the neck, introduce new sounds to your solos and improve your lead guitar playing!

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Japanese Scales

Japanese Scales

This page contains information on several Japanese scales, and includes guitar tab and fretboard diagrams.

There are several Western interpretations of Japanese scales. They are all pentatonic (i.e. made up of five notes). Each of them produces a slightly different sound, but all are instantly recognisable as being Japanese in origin. Continue reading

Byzantine Scale Guitar

Byzantine Scale For Guitar – Scale Patterns & Tab. Learn this amazing exotic-sounding scale today!

The Byzantine scale is the same as the Gypsy scale and the double harmonic scale. It is also related to the Phrygian dominant scale.

A quick look at Wikipedia tells me that the Byzantine Empire was ‘was the continuation of the Roman Empire in the East during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul, which had been founded as Byzantium).’ It existed from 330 to 1453 AD.

So there you have it, a history lesson as well as a guitar lesson! This scale’s eastern roots are immediately apparent the moment you start playing with it. It sounds even more exotic than the similar Phrygian dominant scale.

Try this scale over: a major chord with the same root; a power chord / 5th chord with the same root; a minor chord or progression with a root a perfect fourth higher (e.g. use an A Byzantine scale over a Dm chord or progression; or an ‘eastern’-sounding ostinato / riff / unchanging drone accompaniment.

The scale spelling for a Byzantine scale is: 1, b2, 3, 4, 5, b6, 7.

Byzantine Scale TAB & Scale Diagrams

Byzantine Scale TAB

Byzantine Scale TAB

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Byzantine Scale Diagram 1

Byzantine Scale Diagram 1

Byzantine Scale Diagram 2

Byzantine Scale Diagram 2

Byzantine Scale Diagram 3

Byzantine Scale Diagram 3

Byzantine Scale Diagram 4

Byzantine Scale Diagram 4

Byzantine Scale Diagram 5

Byzantine Scale Diagram 5

The Byzantine scale doesn’t exactly fall under the fingers, so take a bit of time practicing it and finding a way of playing it that works for you.

Because it contains the major seventh, rather than the minor seventh of the Phrygian dominant scale, the Byzantine scale sounds even more exotic than the Phrygian dominant.

It’s a great scale to use in order to spice up a standard rock guitar solo, and will really make your audience’s ears prick up!

Learn More Scales!

You’ll find hundreds more guitar scales in Guitar Command’s comprehensive scale reference section.

If you want to become a fretboard wizard, download our printable Guitar Scales book to have all the patterns at your fingertips!

Hirajoshi Scale

The Hirajoshi scale is a Japanese pentatonic scale. Its scale spelling is 1,2,b3,5,b6. Therefore, with a root of C, the notes are: C, D, Eb, G, Ab.

When played, the Hirajoshi scale produces an unmistakeably Japanese sound. Below is the TAB and several scale diagrams, so you can play this scale all over the neck.

Hirajoshi TAB

Hirajoshi TAB

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Hirajoshi Scale Diagrams

Hirajoshi Scale Guitar Diagram 1

Hirajoshi Scale Guitar Diagram 1

Hirajoshi Scale Diagram 2

Hirajoshi Scale Diagram 2

Hirajoshi Scale Diagram 3

Hirajoshi Scale Diagram 3

It is best to find a way of fingering these scales to suit you playing style – they can be quite awkward until you get used to them. Learn many more guitar scales using our huge reference site. See Guitar Scales to get started.

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Double Harmonic Scale

The double harmonic scale goes by several other names, including the Arabic scale, Gypsy scale and Byzantine scale. It has the unusual feature of two augmented second intervals; these, together with the half-step gap between its first and second notes, give the scale an exotic, Eastern sound. The scale spelling is: 1, b2, 3, 4, 5, b6, 7. TAB and diagrams for this scale are given below. It is not the most natural scale to play on the guitar – so find the shape you are happiest with and practice it to get your fingers around it.

Double Harmonic Scale TAB & Guitar Diagrams

Double Harmonic Scale TAB

Double Harmonic Scale TAB

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Double Harmonic Scale Diagram 1

Scale Diagram 1

Double Harmonic Scale Diagram 2

Scale Diagram 2

Double Harmonic Scale Diagram 3

Scale Diagram 3

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Double Harmonic Scale Diagram 4

Scale Diagram 4

Double Harmonic Scale Diagram 5

Scale Diagram 5

This unconventional scale is not the easiest to play on the guitar. There are some stretches involved, and you may have to find the best way of fingering the scale for your playing. It is worth persevering, however, as this scale can sound very special if used at the right time.

A similar scale, in both sound and construction, is the Phrygian dominant scale. There is only one note different in both scales, the Phrygian dominant having a b7 rather than a natural seventh degree. For more information on Phrygian dominant scales, visit: Phrygian Dominant Scale.

This scale could be used in jazz or rock solos to create some contrast between more traditional rock sounds. For more Eastern sounding scales, visit this page: Arabic Scale. Here you will be able to explore the differences between several exotic guitar scales. Sample some traditional Arabic music here: Traditional Arabic Music.

Discover more guitar scales in our ultimate scales guide: Guitar Scales. Here you will find many other types of scale which you can include in your playing. Whilst many guitarists make do with a few pentatonic shapes and some blues scales, if you can play a few bars using a more exotic scale it really separates you from the crowd and makes your playing more distinctive.