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New to the board. Scales that bands like Iron Maiden uses?

22 Apr 2010 16:29 | Quote
Joined: 22 Apr 2010

I'm new to the board and have been playing off and on
for years. Music is quite big in my family.

It's only been just recently that I've really got serious
about my guitar.

For years I had focus/attention issues that I much later found
out was a medical issue and is now corrected.

I guess that's why I never had the motivation to keep

I do have a great ear for music. Some times when listening to
soloing I can pretty much figure out the licks they're playing,
but maybe not the right key or scales they're using.

Up until late last fall it was a year that I barely practiced.

The past several months I've been focusing on mostly major
pentatonic scales and have 10 and counting of all the
positioning on the guitar. My teacher taught me to keep the
same scale patterns and simply change up or down the root.

I will address the title of my thread now.

I am very much into Chicago/Texas blues, some jazz, and

I am also into classic rock/hard rock, and very much 1980's
classic Metal bands.

I have been into Iron Maiden for a long time and want to start
learning their scales.

From what I'm understanding is they mix scales.

My perdicament is that I've looked up Iron Maiden guitar
tabs, even a book of note for note tabs, along with googling
"what scales does Iron Maiden use?" and I can't get a solid

I've asked a few friends and they say Major Pentatonic scale,
another one says Major scales so I'm confused.

As mentioned I had been focusing solely on blues tracks
to learn.

If someone can be of help, that would be great.

Thank you for your time
22 Apr 2010 16:31 | Quote
Joined: 27 May 2008
Lessons: 2
Licks: 1
Karma: 25
i think they most use pentatonic, major, and natural minor scales. maybe occasionally some harmonic minor

but welcome here man! the knowledge that some of the people here have is pretty incredible, so ask anything you like
23 Apr 2010 06:01 | Quote
Joined: 23 Jun 2008
Lessons: 4
Karma: 35
J9779 says:
I can't get a solid answer.!

I think theres none. It depends much on song and chord progression so there cant be a single answer for bands like Iron Maiden. Pentatonic works on most cases thou and its good to practise first.

Warm welcome to the site.

23 Apr 2010 07:27 | Quote
Joined: way back
United Kingdom
Lessons: 1
Karma: 20
It's all fairly standard stuff - minor pentatonic, natural minor, harmonic minor, major and maybe some locrian/diminished stuff.

What would be good is if you post an example of a song you like the sound of, and we can all have a listen and tell you what's going on it :)

24 Apr 2010 10:43 | Quote
Joined: 14 Apr 2010
Karma: 3
I hear a lot of harmonised natural minior licks. Unsure of the intervals. Lots of 5th chord riff-ing, key changes and a hell of a lot of attitude.

If I was to explore this music, I'd start small. There are a bunch of backing tracks here:


Load a simple one into Reaper and get a few bars to repeat. Keep playing the riff until it sounds correct. Then start on various licks and solos.

A lot of the sound comes from harmonised guitars, which might be difficult to replicate. I'd YouTube Dave Murry. There are a bunch of interviews and lessons.


Outside of that. I would really try to get inside their thinking. Just read up everything you can. Interviews, back stage videos, everything. Pull apart their music note by note.

The fact is, no one scale defines such a band like Iron Maiden. If it did, their music would be classed as "predictable" and therefore they wouldn't be a great band.

Catch 22.

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