Latin Improvisation!

Key: A minor.  Below is the exact scale I am using!  (I do use a little bit of the blues scale as well fyi)

A natural minor

Connecting the Pentatonic Patterns

What’s up guys!?  Today I wanted to give ya something that is HIGHLY effective if you’ve been playing around with the pentatonic patterns for a bit.  Listed below are two diagrams that will show you how the pros often connect all the different patterns.  Be sure you are comfortable with ALL the patterns first.   Enjoy!

The Minor Pentatonic scale is one of the most widely used scales in improvisation in every musical style so it makes sense to know it well all over the guitar neck. When it comes to moving beyond the first pattern learned the next step is usually to introduce five overlapping patterns, each staying strictly in position on the neck. In reality, most Blues and Rock soloists connect these positions in very repeatable ways creating just two patterns that cover the entire neck. These are shown below in the key of A:




Andrew is an Orange County based guitar/ukulele instructor with experience in playing live, theory, recording, and teaching.  With nearly a decade of experience as a guitar instructor, why choose anyone else to help you reach your goals!?

Call Andrew at 714-955-3278 or email at

Thanks for visiting!

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How to Play Radioactive by Imagine Dragons



STRUM PATTERN:    Down     Down    Down    Down Up

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3 Guitar Gadgets You MUST Own!



Heyo rockstars!  Today I wanted to briefly mention 3 things that will dramatically enhance your guitar playing. Think of them as tools in your toolbelt, but instead of fixing the awning, you are MELTING FACESSS!  Okay, haha..  What you need is:

1.  A Tuner

You absolutely MUST own a tuner.  No matter how good are bad you are at guitar, if it’s out of tune, you wont sound good!  Sure some people can tune by ear, but that takes years and practice.  What’s great about today’s technology and it’s abundance of free apps is that you can download one for free on your phone!  I personally, however, prefer a Snark tuner.  I use those for gigs, lessons, and just jamming at home.

2.  A Capo

A capo is, essentially, a clamp for your guitar.  It will raise the pitch of all the notes at the same time.  This will help you to play tougher songs and avoid bar chords in the beginning stages of learning.  It will also help you to adjust the key or pitch of a song to more properly suit your vocal range.  So get one!

3.  A Metronome

A metronome is simply a time keeper.  It is VITAL in learning any instrument.  Keeping a steady tempo is highly underrated and almost always forgotten by “self-learners” on guitar or ukulele.  I personally use the metronome when I’m running through exercises and warm-ups as well as with EVERY student I have.  Also, much like the tuner, you can download a metronome for free on your phone!


Okay, that’s it!  Keep rockin!



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How to Play The Joker by Steve Miller Band









Questions on this song?  Email me/call me for free!


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How to Play Creep by Radiohead





Call me for questions on this or any video and I’ll answer them for free!  


Tell a friend!


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How to Play Smoke on the Water for Complete Beginners


All the numbers represent the fret.  For example:  3 will be on the 3rd fret (first dotted fret), 5 will be the 5th fret (2nd dotted fret), and 0 will be open string (don’t play any fret).

0  3  5

0 3 6 5

0 3 5

3 0

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The Big 3 Tuning Tips

  1. Avoid leaving your guitar in areas with extreme temperature changes, this will definitely mess up the tuning. Dropping or bumping the guitar will also make it go out of tune. Carry your guitar in a case as any damage to it could effect how well it tunes up.
  2. In a noisy environment you will definitely want to use a guitar tuner. You should purchase a quality tuner. You don’t need to spend a lot. An inexpensive tuner or tuning fork is definitely good enough to start out (I personally use a Snark tuner). Always bring it to gigs and jam sessions. But, remember try to develop your ear by using the traditional guitar tuning method when you can. In the long run you will be just that much better of a musician. Only use a guitar tuner to tune the Low E string and then tune the rest by ear. This will help develop your ear as a musician.
  3. ALWAYS TUNE UP! When you tune a guitar string, always start below the desired note and tune up to pitch not down to pitch. This will help prevent the string from going flat during play. Even if the note is too high you can stretch the string to give it some slack then tighten it.Play a chord that you know well to test the tuning, if it sounds odd or out a bit it probably is, remember always trust you ear.


Andrew McCormick


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