Pentatonic RunDown | Pattern Lesson

In this tutorial I'll show you a cool and ultra multifuntional (obviously) pentatonic riff, run, lick, pattern, technique and how it transforms color in a multitude of different musical situations.

Hi Everybody! What's cookin'?

I figured it was time for a nice riff again. When I started conjuring up one, however, I fell into a nice little rabbit hole of how much value this one run actually held.

It funny how every (seemingly) "single" technique, can hold so many different musical meanings. Can be used in such a wide variety of musical situations. Looking at these things (runs, riffs and techniques) in this way, gives a nice theoretical (insight enhancing) twist to something that at a first glance seemed to be just a stand-alone pentatonic lick.

It's right up the alley of the multi functionality that I've always been a big fan of (in fact the whole Piano Couture method is built upon that) and what I've been talking about on a deeper level a bit more lately.

As for this run - it left me with a bit more to exemplify and talk about than simply the "dry" run-down note sequence. Apart from sharing a few examples on how altering it's timing can make all the difference in the world - make it a completely different run, in fact - I also give a quick peek into how changes in its underlying harmony (playing the lick over various different chords) converts its color and meaning to a whole new level.

In the end I therefore decided to classify it as a pattern/concept lesson still, rather than just a lick.

To not get too lengthy with the theoretical multi-angling though, I kept that aspect concise here. I have however been pondering about this quite a bit. A more insight-widening post about this diverse use of pentatonic value shifting is soon to follow.

Stay tuned!

For now, have fun and impress your listeners with this blazing fast (or super slow and smooth) pentatonic run-down riff. Lick. Whatever.

Comments are appreciated 🙂

Have fun!

Cheers, Coen.

Pentatonic RunDown | Pattern

Concept Tutorial




watch Tutorial Ad-Free and download the Full Chord Sheet & MIDI

  • A handout (.pdf) with all pics and explanation in this tutorial
  • Two MIDI files. The techique and the fast end run variation.
  • The audio-only file for when you want to learn on the go ("listen to learn" is golden, as Piano Hackers know)

Get all that and the video download included with the tutorial pack.

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About Coen

Founder of Piano Couture and creator of the Hack the Piano method. Coen is a musician, reader, writer, web-designer, eater and traveler. Find him at

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