Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
C Major (C)bIIIC, E, G

 IMPORTANT: In Fretboard Toolboxes, any time you see a chord or a note in italics, it means that something is outside of the key. 

Chord Name

Roman numeral in A Major

Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
D Major (D)IVD, F#, A
E Major (E)VE, G#, B

​This progression is another one that shows the power of scales to change the songs feel.  If you play the A Major pentatonic scale with this progression, it sounds warm & sweet.  However, if you play the A minor pentatonic scale, it sounds super dark! Try mixing and matching them and see what you come up with!

 Each "rule-breaking" note or chord has it's own sound.  When you recognize a rule is being broken, try to figure out how it's being broken & learn the unique sound of each"rule-breaker"! 

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A Major pentatonicA
B
C#D
E
F#
G#
A minor pentatonicA

C
D*E

G


Bar 1-4:  I-IV-I-I    Bar 5-8:  IV-IV-I-I   Bar 9-12:  V-IV-I-V

  • The "IV" chord in the second bar is the "quick-change".
Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A7)I(7)A, C#, E, (G)
D Major (D7)IV(7)D, F# A, (C)
E Major (E7)V(7)E, G#, B, (D)

All of this page's Tracks on Shuffle!


Track #9: A-E-D-

I-V-IV-bIII


Track #8: A-C-G-D

I-bIII-bVII-IV


Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A minor pentatonicA
BCC#D*E
F#GG#



Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A Major pentatonicA
B
C#D
E
F#
G#
A minor pentatonicA

C
D*E

G

To play dominant 7 chords (like A7), just add the note shown in parentheses in the "Chord Notes" column to the Major chord.

Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A7)I(7)A, C#, E, (G)
D Major (D7)IV(7)D, F#, A, (C)
E Major (E7)V(7)E, G#, B, (D)


-First try playing the minor pentatonic scale over this track to get a cool, dark, bluesy sound.  (The notes in WHITE BOXES on the even-numbered Blues key pages of any Complete Edition). 

-Next, try the Major pentatonic scale with the same track & you'll completely change the feel to sound warmer & more country-like. (All underlined notes in Complete or Essential Editions).

-Great blues players use both scales, often in the same song!

Track #7: A-G-D

I-bVII-IV


  • A I bVII I 043bpm2:11
  • A I bVII I 054bpm1:45
  • A I bVII I 072bpm1:23
  • A I bVII I 090bpm1:09

Track #6: A-G-A

I-bVII-I


  • A I bIII IV 064bpm1:50
  • A I bIII IV 080bpm1:28
  • A I bIII IV 100bpm1:10
  • A I bIII IV 120bpm0:58

Track #5: A-C-D

I-bIII-IV


  • A I bIII I 064bpm1:47
  • A I bIII I 080bpm1:25
  • A I bIII I 100bpm1:08
  • A I bIII I 120bpm0:56

Track #4: A-C-A

I-bIII-I


  • A V IV I 070bpm1:40
  • A V IV I 088bpm1:20
  • A V IV I 110bpm1:07
  • A V IV I 132bpm0:53

Track #3: E-D-A

V-IV-I


  • A I IV V 12BarBluesQC 077bpm1:58
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 096bpm1:34
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 120bpm1:15
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 144bpm1:02

  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 077bpm1:59
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 096bpm1:35
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 120bpm1:16
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 144bpm1:03

Some A Blues Chord Progressions- (blues keys in Complete Editions only)

Track #2: Quick-change 12 Bar Blues in A  

I-IV-V


Track #1: Simple 12 Bar Blues in A Major 

I-IV-V


A Major Chord Jam Track: All A Major

Progression in Roman numerals: I 

For these A Blues tracks, experiment with these scales:
A Major pentatonic: ABC#EF#
(underlined notes, pp. 13-14)

A minor pentatonic: A, C, D, EG  (notes in white boxes p. 14)

      See these scales with a Fretboard Toolbox:

  • Use pages 13-14 of any Complete Edition
  • note with (*) is the "flat-5"/"blues note"











  • A I 051bpm1:44
  • A I 064bpm1:24
  • A I 080bpm1:06
  • A I 096bpm0:55


Play this through once soloing with the minor pentatonic, then use the Major pentatonic the next time to hear a BIG difference!

Bar 1-4:  I-I-I-I      Bar 5-8:  IV-IV-I-I      Bar 9-12:  V-IV-I-V

  •  The "V" chord in the 12th bar is called the "turn-around".
Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A Major pentatonicA
B
C#D
E
F#
G#
A minor pentatonicA

C
D*​
E

G


Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A MajorIA, C#, E

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A minor pentatonicA
BCC#D*E
F#GG#

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A minor pentatonicA
BCC#D*E
F#GG#


Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
C Major (C)bIIIC, E, G
D Major (D)IVD, F#, A


Noodle around with the minor pentatonic scale while this track is being played, and then notice which notes sound best over which chord.  The best sounding notes are most often part of the chord that's currently being played.  It's like this in all keys!

  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 120bpm1:16
  • A I 064bpm1:24
  • A I 080bpm1:06
  • A I 096bpm0:55
  • A I bIII bVII IV 088bpm1:26
  • A I bIII bVII IV 110bpm1:08
  • A I bIII bVII IV 132bpm0:57
  • A I bIII I 080bpm1:25
  • A I bIII I 100bpm1:08
  • A I bIII I 120bpm0:56
  • A I bIII IV 080bpm1:28
  • A I bIII IV 100bpm1:10
  • A I bIII IV 120bpm0:58
  • A I bVII I 054bpm1:45
  • A I bVII I 072bpm1:23
  • A I bVII I 090bpm1:09
  • A I bVII IV 088bpm1:26
  • A I bVII IV 110bpm1:08
  • A I bVII IV 132bpm0:56
  • A I bVII IV V 096bpm1:25
  • A I bVII IV V 120bpm1:07
  • A I bVII IV V 144bpm0:56
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 096bpm1:35
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 144bpm1:03
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 096bpm1:34
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 120bpm1:15
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues QC 144bpm1:02
  • A V IV I 088bpm1:20
  • A V IV I 110bpm1:03
  • A V IV I 132bpm0:52
  • A I 051bpm1:44
  • A I V IV bIII 064bpm1:43
  • A I bII IbVII IV 070bpm1:47
  • A I bVII IV 070bpm1:47
  • A I bVII I 043bpm2:11
  • A I IV V 12BarBluesQC 077bpm1:58
  • A V IV I 070bpm1:40
  • A I bIII I 064bpm1:47
  • A I bIII IV 064bpm1:50
  • A I IV V 12 Bar Blues 077bpm1:59

  • A I V IV bIII 064bpm1:43
  • A I V IV bIII 080bpm1:22
  • A I V IV bIII 100bpm1:05
  • A I V IV bIII 120bpm0:34

  • A I bII IbVII IV 070bpm1:47
  • A I bIII bVII IV 088bpm1:26
  • A I bIII bVII IV 110bpm1:08
  • A I bIII bVII IV 132bpm0:57

  • A I bVII IV 070bpm1:47
  • A I bVII IV 088bpm1:26
  • A I bVII IV 110bpm1:08
  • A I bVII IV 132bpm0:56
Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
C Major (C)bIIIC, E, G
D Major (D)IVD, F#, A
E Major (E)VE, G#, B

The whole goal of Fretboard Toolboxes is not to memorize all of the notes of each key, scale, and chord -- it's to help you build mental & visual maps of the common shapes you'll use for chords & scales, which leads to strong ear and muscle memory!

Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
G Major (G)bVIIG, B, D

 Flat-7 chords (bVII) get used lots in all kinds of music including bluesy-rock, bluegrass, country, and more.  They're used WAY more often than the "real" 7 chord, called a "diminished" chord. 

Experiment with the A minor pentatonic, and then the A Major pentatonic (adding in some D & G notes) for different sounds!

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
D Major pentatonicD
E
F#G​​
A
B
C#
A minor pentatonicA

C
D*E

G

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A minor pentatonicA
BCC#D*E
F#GG#


Chord NameRoman Num.Chord Notes
A Major (A)IA, C#, E
C Major (C)bIIIC, E, G
D Major (D)IVD, F#, A
G Major (G)bVIIG, B, D


Take a look at all of the chords listed on this page, and then look at the five minor pentatonic notes in white boxes.  The root note of all of the (Major) chords on this page are minor pentatonic notes!

Chord Name

Roman numeral  in D Major

Roman numeral  in A BluesChord Notes
D MajorIIVD, F#, A
G MajorIVbVIIG, B, D
A MajorVIA, C#, E

​If you think of this progression as a V-IV-I in D Major, and play the D Major pentatonic scale, it sounds warm.  But if you think of it as a I-bVII-IV in A Major, you can play the A minor pentatonic (sounds dark) OR A Major pent. (also sounds warm)!

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A Major pentatonicA
B
C#D
E
F#
G#
A minor pentatonicA

C
D*E

G


  Now see how many of these chord progressions you can play along with when you don't know which track is coming up next! Use the Roman numerals that show up in the audio player as your clues & practice learning those Roman numerals here!  

  This is where you really start going a long ways towards training your ear and building the muscle memory you need to play songs "on the fly"! 

Scale degree1
2b334b55
6b77
A minor pentatonicA
BCC#D*E
F#GG#