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  1. #1

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    Hi all


    Here is a new lesson focusing on the Altered Scale.


    There's tab for two fingerings, practice exercises and an etude. I hope you all enjoy it!


    Altered Scale Jazz Guitar Guide - Jamie Holroyd Guitar - Jamie Holroyd Guitar


    Thanks
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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Hi Jamie! Thanks for the link, fits right into my studies on "Tune Up". I wish there'd be a printable version on your site so I could practice on the couch instead of in front of the pc.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    A long journey starts with the first step...and although I have long forgotten about my destination I'm still enjoying the journey.

  4. #3

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    I really like stuff like this which gives you the actual info of why to play something. Seems like a lot of things that I read and watch are simply "Here's a line I play over X chord" with no reason why. The explanation of playing a Melodic Minor 1/2 step up from the resolving 7th is a nice trick (And I liked the lines too, the 2nd lick with the short descending, then ascending MM line is something I'm sure I'll use in the future).
    Last edited by Bahnzo; 03-26-2019 at 01:16 AM.

  5. #4

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    Two important points about using altered which Jamie covers in his lesson, but I just wanted to emphasise further, and add a thing.

    Thing #1 - the altered scale used just upwards and downwards in steps as Jamie uses it here, is a surprisingly good sounding and powerful resource. I know people say things like 'don't play scales step wise' but a quick transcription of even modern players like Mike Moreno show that stepwise scales are used all the time.

    For me, one of the main reasons it sounds good as with any outside or chromatic scale or idea, is how it resolves to a more familiar major or minor chord.

    If you go up and down G altered you'll find loads of opportunities to do neat little semitone/half step moves into C chord tones, C E G. Study Jamie's lines and the etude for classic examples on how to do this, and come up with your own.

    (BTW resolving into the note G on C, the move G-Ab-Bb-Ab-G is B is VERY common.)

    An important trick is to think of these things in forward motion. What that mean is, instead on thinking of the bar line separating each chord into a separate world, make sure you play into the next chord. So for the first example in the article, Exercise #1, make sure you join up the Ab and the G, the last two notes. You might actually want to pull off here, or slide the note. In lines, harmony and rhythm are highly interrelated, and the setting up of tension of the altered scale is then resolved BOTH rhythmically and harmonically by having that G on beat one.

    This is very important for making the scale sound good, and helping your phrasing swing. The last note is always the most important of a phrase, Miles would compare it to the last punch in boxing combination.

    Thing #2 - when playing faster II-V-I's where the Dm7 and G7 last two beats each, just ignore Dm7.

    Thing #3: if you are pushed for time play an Ab minor arpeggio into C. This always sounds great.

    The altered scale is hard to hear on its own, it's not something you can sing at first like a major scale or pentatonic. Check out the melody Night in Tunisia for how altered sounds can be used in a melody. (There are also some excellent examples of how to use the harmonic minor dominant in the bridge.) Segment is another, and Green Dolphin Street. Working on tunes will make it much easier to recognise the key sounds by ear.

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOMMO View Post
    Hi Jamie! Thanks for the link, fits right into my studies on "Tune Up". I wish there'd be a printable version on your site so I could practice on the couch instead of in front of the pc.
    I could export it as PDF on my iPad. I‘m sure you can print it from the browser, too. Try Ctrl+P (that‘s Strg +P on German keyboards).

    Hope that helps, Stephan


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  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by docsteve View Post
    I could export it as PDF on my iPad. I‘m sure you can print it from the browser, too. Try Ctrl+P (that‘s Strg +P on German keyboards).

    Hope that helps, Stephan

    Thanks!
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    A long journey starts with the first step...and although I have long forgotten about my destination I'm still enjoying the journey.

  8. #7

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    Thanks for the kind words Tommo. I am looking into getting a printable feature added. The material will be part of downloadable PDF eBook which I hope to release this year at the very least. Thanks for the support.
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  9. #8

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    Great points Christian! I agree with them all.
    Last edited by jamieh; 03-25-2019 at 04:14 PM. Reason: typo
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  10. #9

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    There is a third way which issues the altered sound as a mode of Lydian Dominant rather than Melodic Minor.
    The resolving dominant of a ii-V-I may be interpreted as the harmony of the tri-tone substitution bII7#11sus2.

    ii-V-I with the Altered Scale's tonic on the V's root
    interpreted as
    ii-bII-I with the Lydian Dominant's tonic on the bII's root
    (same notes with a natural tonic projection)

    Lydian Dominant also "contains" both diminished and augmented substitutions, so three harmonic possibilities in one.
    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  11. #10

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    So...do you mean playing a Lydian Dominant a 1/2 step below the ii? as in Dm/G7/CM for the progression, playing a Db Lydian Dom over the G7?

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bahnzo View Post
    So...do you mean playing a Lydian Dominant a 1/2 step below the ii? as in Dm/G7/CM for the progression, playing a Db Lydian Dom over the G7?
    Yes, that's tritone sub harmony, and to further enlighten on altered dom7 harmony, a G7b5 and Db7b5 are inversions of each other with the same four notes, G, B, Db, F. The possibilities...

  13. #12

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    Now if anyone could remind us what or who Lydian Dominant is... aw well.

  14. #13

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    The mixolydian on bII is better, more options for resolving into chord I

  15. #14

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    Here's my attempt to demonstrate these concepts


  16. #15
    Fun fact (slight derail to the chords side of the alt scale):
    Picking 4 random notes from the alt scale as a chord will never produce ugly dissonance
    Unlike diatonic.. which can produce chords that may sound just horrible.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by emanresu View Post
    Fun fact (slight derail to the chords side of the alt scale):
    Picking 4 random notes from the alt scale as a chord will never produce ugly dissonance
    Unlike diatonic.. which can produce chords that may sound just horrible.
    I pick the 1, b2, b3, and 3 as a chord. Lovely consonance

  18. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by docsteve View Post
    I pick the 1, b2, b3, and 3 as a chord. Lovely consonance
    Its a nice heavy tension dissonance.

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    Last edited by emanresu; 04-03-2019 at 07:47 AM.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    The mixolydian on bII is better, more options for resolving into chord I
    More than LD? I'm hearing ten or fifteen, depending on what counts, and those are the more inside ones; there are about four more that sound a little outside depending on careful phrasing.

    Lydian Dominant (for Dm-G7-Cmaj7):

    Db LD, includes G aug, related F w-h dim
    Bb LD, includes E aug, related D w-h dim
    G LD, includes Db aug, related B w-h dim
    F LD, includes B aug, related A w-h dim
    Eb LD, includes A aug, related G w-h dim

    I was beginning to think something the other day that this closer look answered - for resolving into chord I, with some attention to phrasing, all twelve of the whole-half diminished may be used...
    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by pauln View Post
    More than LD? I'm hearing ten or fifteen, depending on what counts, and those are the more inside ones; there are about four more that sound a little outside depending on careful phrasing.

    Lydian Dominant (for Dm-G7-Cmaj7):

    Db LD, includes G aug, related F w-h dim
    Bb LD, includes E aug, related D w-h dim
    G LD, includes Db aug, related B w-h dim
    F LD, includes B aug, related A w-h dim
    Eb LD, includes A aug, related G w-h dim

    I was beginning to think something the other day that this closer look answered - for resolving into chord I, with some attention to phrasing, all twelve of the whole-half diminished may be used...
    I don’t think we are thinking about this in the same way. I think I’m being a bit simpler.

    My thinking here isn’t based on harmony so much as melody. Of course harmonic principles follow from melodic so it’s not either/or.

    I just mean from the point of view of the way the scale - Db mixolydian or tritone Dominant In bebop parlance - sets up melodic enclosures if move through it by step.

    You could use many scales - harmonically related to G7 or not - to do this. It just so happens Db mix in combination with the C6 chord includes every note of the chromatic pitch set

    C E G A
    Db Eb F Gb Ab Bb B

    So you can enclose every note of the tonic chord using this scale B Db C,Eb F E, Gb Ab G and Ab Bb A

    What the altered scale has over the tritone dominant is the diminished tetrachord G-Ab-Bb-B which is such a common feature of bop lines. You obviously don’t have to consider that pitch set as part of the altered scale as it belongs to a few different scales but it has obviously has become common to do so.

    But you also often see F# Ab G

    So my interest here I suppose is not on the harmonic analysis but on the ways you can generate jazz language from stepwise scales. Jamie’s example all do this.