Alex Skolnick on combining the Dorian mode with the minor pentatonic

Check out this video lesson with tab

Alex Skolnick is known for his jazz trio these days, but he started out as the fret-melting guitarist for Bay Area thrash legends Testament. Whether you want to make your rock playing stand out or want to venture into the world of jazz, Alex’s ideas can help you out.

In this video lesson, Alex shows you how to add modal notes to the E minor pentatonic scale.

Modes can be intimidating if you’ve never used them before, but Alex makes the Dorian mode a lot less daunting by relating it to the more friendly E minor pentatonic scale – there are just two extra notes to add. By mixing up the E Dorian and the E minor pentatonic scales, you’ve got a new set of tonal colours to play with and you’re still covering familiar ground.

Play through the scales as an exercise first (notated in our free tab) then start messing around and finding your own ideas. There’s more information on Alex at the official Alex Skolnick website.

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