Watch the Breakdown 1 online guitar lesson by TrueFire from Play Blues Guitar 6: Soloing Principles

Breakdown 1 - Alternating Major & Minor is a video guitar lesson presented by Andy Aledort and is sourced from Slow Blues Power.


I begin this solo by sliding up to 13th position and the notes of an F major triad—A, C and F. The first note is the major third, A, which firmly establishes the major tonality of the song and the solo. On beat one of bar 1, I bend the second (or ninth), G, up one whole step to the major third, A, and vibrato (in Breakdown Part Six Of Slow Blues In E, I offer a full explanation of adding vibrato to a bent note).

When applying vibrato to a bent note like this, I oftentimes block all of the other strings with the palm of the pick-hand; in this way, only the high E string will be heard and all of the other strings will be silent.

I follow the reference to F major pentatonic (F G A C D) with F minor pentatonic (F Ab Bb C Eb) in bar 2 and the beginning of bar 3. Alternating between major and minor pentatonic is an essential element in the soloing of all of the blues greats.