The Diminished Pentatonic Scale - Guitar Diagrams & Theory

What is The Diminished Pentatonic Scale?

The diminished pentatonic scale contains five notes, the formula is tonic (1) - minor second (b2) - minor third (b3) - diminished fifth (b5) and diminished seventh (bb7). It can be seen as a diminished arpeggio with an added b2 (or b9). It works perfectly over diminished 7 chords.

B Diminished Pentatonic Scale B C D F Ab
Formula 1 b2 b3 b5 bb7

Related Diminished Scales

We find the diminished pentatonic scale in the following scales.

The super Locrian bb7 scale, the seventh mode of the harmonic minor scale.

B super Locrian bb7 mode B C D Eb F G Ab
Formula 1 b2 b3 b4 b b6 bb7
Diminished pentatonic scale and super locrian bb7

The Locrian bb7 scale, the seventh mode of the harmonic major scale.

B Locrian bb7 mode B C D E F G Ab
Formula 1 b2 b3 4 b b6 bb7
Diminished pentatonic scale and locrian bb7

One Octave Shapes

Here are four one octave shapes to play the diminished pentatonic scale on guitar. The first shape has tonic on the sixth and fourth string. The second shape has tonic on the fifth and third string. The second form has tonic on the fourth and second string. The fourth diagram has tonic on the third and first string.

Diminished pentatonic scale guitar charts

Two Octave Shapes

These two diagrams show how to play the diminished pentatonic scale in position within the space of two octaves.

Diminished pentatonic scale guitar positions

5 Positions

Here are five positions showing the diminished pentatonic scale over the whole guitar neck

Diminished pentatonic scale guitar shapes

Diminished Pentatonic Lick

The example below show how you can use the diminished pentatonic scale. The chord progression used is a turnaroud variation. Cmaj7 (Imaj7) - C#dim7 (I#dim7) - Dm7 (iim7) - G7 (V7). The diminished pentatonic. scale is obviously played over the diminished 7 chord (C#dim7).


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Last edited: 2021-05-17

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