What makes the minor scale minor?  It has to do with the first note and it's 'distance' from the third.  Unfortunately I don't feel I have the time to go into all these aspects of basic music theory.  I highly recommend that if you don't have a teacher you should take some classes or at least buy a book or two that describe the basics of music theory and composition as well.  They will be very helpful to you, believe me.  Check out this website for some great help in basic music theory:


After you've become familiar with the major scale, it is time to learn the minor scale.  The truth is that within the major scale, we can find the minor scale 'hiding' and vice versa.  Let's look at D major for example, starting on the fourth string.  Go ahead and play it ascending and descending.  Now play the same notes, but start a sixth higher, on B, and play the B octave.  You've just played B minor! 
Experiment like this in all the keys, and practice the minor scale as with the major scale, getting to know it by heart, and using it to know your instrument better.

Some examples:

Note:  The low D in this simple exercise cannot be played using the first Turkish tuning .  To reach it the 6th string must be tuned down to D.

Copyright Mavrothi T. Kontanis. All rights reserved 2008