Online tuition

Face-to-face, but over a video link ~ simples! Skilled, non-judgemental guidance wherever you are. Click for details.


If you live near enough you can come for face-to-face lessons in the comfort of my home, in the beautiful village of Arnside, Cumbria. Get in touch!


Any questions? Simply ask me using this form and I shall either reply to you personally or create a tutorial that answers your question :)


Scale box positions 

As guitarists we tend to regard scales as patterns that can be moved up and down the neck depending on which key we're playing in.

We refer to these movable patterns as boxes or box positions.
  As an example, below is the minor pentatonic box, with the root on the 6th string.

The bottom horizontal line represents the bottom or sixth string, which is the thickest one. Each black circle indicates where to place a finger for each of the notes from the scale in question.

The asterix represents the start fret…

The major pentatonic scale: what, where & why? 

This tutorial takes you through a major pentatonic run which covers three octaves and a 12 fret section of the neck ~ great for moving across the neck.

The video also takes you through several example licks, using notes from the major pentatonic scale.

One of the crucial things I'll show you is how every minor pentatonic scale contains the notes of a major pentatonic scale. Therefore, if you are familiar with your minor pentatonic, you already know your major pentatonic! ~ although you may not realise this.

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Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part Six 

The subtitle for this final part of my series on the minor pentatonic and blues scale is 'Pulling it all together'.

The focus here is on consolidating what you've learned in parts one to five and, hopefully, embedding it within you as concrete knowledge that you can call upon at any time when soloing and jamming.

I work through identifying the relationships of the notes within the scale, so that you begin to recognise which notes are the roots, flattened thirds, fourths, fifths etc.

No guitar required with…Read more

Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part Five 

In this tutorial we take what we've covered within the previous four parts and establish the minor pentatonic across the entire neck of a guitar.

We were almost there in part four, so we're only adding a few notes here.

As with all the tutorials in this series I provide you with example licks and this time my focus is upon licks that enable you to link the sections we've covered so far.

Grab your guitar, tune up, and select play on the following video.

Within the video I show you the last few notes to complete…Read more

Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part Four 

We are beginning to pull it all together within part four of this series!

Once again, I include example licks so that you can immediately begin to solo and improvise in these positions.

We've only really learned two box positions; one from the 6th string and the other from the 5th string. However, by adding just a few notes and extending these boxes slightly you can now improvise and solo from the open position, gradually moving right up to your 15th fret.

Grab your guitar, tune up, and select play on this…Read more

Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part Three 

In this tutorial we continue from parts one and two by simply adding an extension to the first box we considered. It's only a few notes, but it effectively begins to join the two boxes on the top strings ~ enabling us to play all the way up the first 12 frets. As with all the videos in this tutorial, example licks aid in developing your soloing and improvising.

Grab your guitar, tune-up, and select play on the following video. The remainder of the tutorial contains a box diagram and tab plus a backing track…Read more

Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part Two 

Continuing on from part one, this tutorial re-enforces the note relationships whilst taking you through the minor pentatonic and blues scales, root on 5th string.

You'll be given the opportunity to develop your licks and hopefully gain a bit of insight into how we improvise.

This time you'll see examples of how to adapt and develop what you know to create new licks and melody lines.

Tune up your guitar and hit play :)

Below is the blues box complete with the extensions that I took you through in the video. In…Read more

Minor pentatonic and blues scale ~ everywhere! Part One 

A great place to begin if you're new to single note playing (soloing/playing lead guitar), the minor pentatonic scale is simple - only 5 notes - but provides everything you need to solo over a huge number of songs. It's the first scale that many of us learn.

This series of tutorials will help you learn the minor pentatonic scale across your entire guitar neck in simple, 'bite sized' chunks - in addition to teaching you practical licks; many from popular songs that you may already be familiar with. Below the…Read more

The dorian mode 

Dorian mode is the second mode; constructed from the second note of the major scale. I provide a very brief explanation of modes within the below video tutorial. For an in-depth explanation that has received rave reviews on YouTube (and over 65,000 views) check out my 'Modes ~ What Are They?' tutorial.

Here is the dorian mode box. Play it from the 5th fret for the key of A; the key I use throughout this tutorial.
Notice that this scale differs from the minor scale by only one note. It's a hugely popular…Read more

Diminished for dummies 

Diminished is a strange old beast; unique and apart from anything else, to my mind. If it's all new to you then grab your guitar and let us demystify it for you!

A diminished chord is a series of minor third intervals: Every note is three frets (minor third interval) away from its neighbour.

Whilst every other chord is a combination of different intervals (often either major or minor third), diminished only has one interval. This makes for a glorious symmetry that you can play around with as an introduction…Read more

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