Thursday, February 09, 2006

NAF Playing Tip #8: Playing with a guitar

It’s important to realize that when playing with a guitar, the guitar must tune to the flute that you are playing, since it is impossible to “tune” a Native American Flute.
(What’s the old saying? You can tune a piano but you can’t tuna fish- or a Native American Flute for that matter)

Guitar Minor Pentatonic Scale
There is a minor pentatonic scale that exists on the guitar. It can be fun to play along with a guitarist who knows how to play the minor pentatonic scale. The same rules apply as if you are playing a duet with another flutist. Experiment with 'echoing' with the guitar player, where one person plays a short phrase and the other follows, or echos the phrase.

Figure 1 - The Minor Pentatonic Scale for Guitar

Note to guitarist: For ease of playing, a capo could be applied on the guitar at the appropriate fret that corresponds to the key of the flute being played. The root note of the pentatonic scale correlates to the lowest note on the bass string (string 6). In Figure 1, this would be compatible with a flute in the key of E. For practical purposes this means playing flute between E and A.

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