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Thread: Modes( yes i know )

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    Remember "dominant" only means "5th step of the scale". A secondary dominant might well only be a triad.

    Yep, as you suspected, I was just thinking of dominant chords only as dominant 7th chords, but on reflection I realize that as you say “dominant” just refers to the V-chord of the scale. I think that was a “Freudian” slip on my part, ie indicating my ignorance about the role that different chords play in leading from one to another.

    In other words (admission!) I’m vaguely aware that, for example, dominant-7 chords sound as if they need to lead somewhere or “resolve” somewhere, and in fact I think that resolution is typically towards the chord or note that’s up a perfect-4th?

    So for example a typical resolution for C7 would be towards an F chord (major, or minor?), or B7 would resolve to an E chord, or in our example the A7 would resolve to a D chord (Dmaj or Dmin), is that right?

    Though I think that resolution to perf-4th has been used so often in so many songs that many people try to avoid that predictability and resolve to some other “interval”, and I think one possibility there is to resolve down one step? And perhaps to do that in two half-step intervals? … eg say Eb7 down to D7 and then D7 down to Db?

    I really don’t know about the way other chords like to move, eg whether the I-chord tends move towards the ii or the IV or whatever. Or whether the iii-chord typically sounds like it’s leading to another chord, eg to the vi or whatever?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    Now we're really starting to hear the A7 as V of D (with Em7 as ii), even though that Am7 intervenes; because at that point the expected D target chord turns into Am7-D7, a ii-V back to the original key. (This kind of thing happens in jazz all the time.).

    You mean (if I may put it other words) – “the borrowed A7 sounds as if it should resolve to a D chord, because the V-chord (ie A7 or Amaj) typically sounds as if it should resolve back to the tonic (ie the I-chord, which here is Dmaj or Dmin)” ? Is that right?

    Or more accurately perhaps I could describe that Dmaj or Dmin as a “temporary” I-chord, ie since you we’re talking here of that Rolling Stones progression where the primary key centre is G (ie “As Tears Go By”, G-A-C-D). Does that make sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    It depends on where the A7 is going. If going to a D major chord (or D7), then A mixolydian (D major scale) is best. If going to Dm (or Dm7), then there are a few options. A mixolydian is not a good idea, because it introduces an unnecessary F# note .

    OK, so A-mixol. will work fine over any Dmaj chord, because A-mixol contains the same notes as Dmaj scale anyway (ie because Amixol is simply the 5th mode of Dmaj, ie same notes as Dmaj but starting from 5th step=A). But A-mixol. will clash over any form of Dmin chord, because A-mixol contains the note F#, whereas the 3rd of a Dmin chord is F-natural, so that’s the clash, right? I suppose you could still play A-mixol as long as you either avoid that F#, or else just use it as a passing tone eg sliding up away from it?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    You could use D harmonic minor (which contains the C# of the A chord, plus the F of the approaching Dm). This also contains a Bb note, which may or not sound right - depends on how strong you want the Dm to sound as a new tonic.

    I didn’t understand what you were saying about using D-harmonic minor. Specifically I didn’t understand how the b-flat note of Harmonic minor might sound wrong against the Dmin chord? Is that what you were saying? In case anyone else is following this, let me just re-cap some basics here – the harmonic minor scale is the same as the major scale, except the 3rd and 6th are flat. So if we take the major scales as a “base” and represent the major scale notes simply as 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 then for the harmonic minor we have –

    Harmonic Minor 1, 2, b3, 4, 5, b6, 7

    And since the Dmaj scale is D, e, f#, G, A, b, c# , we’d have D-harmonic minor as follows –

    D-harmonic minor = D, e, f, G, A, bb, c#

    So that 6th degree of D-harmonic minor is b-flat (“bb”). However, we’re playing over the chord Dmin, which has notes D, F, A. So I’m not sure where the clash is? Why would the b-flat of the harmonic minor cause a problem over Dmin? Or maybe that’s not what you were saying? You said something like “it may not sound right, depending how strong you want the Dmin chord to sound as new tonic” ?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    You could use D melodic minor. In the key of C, this is a good choice because it's only one note different from C major: the C# needed by the A chord.

    Yes I see that D-melodic min. scale would be a good choice, ie a good fit, thanks that for explaining that.

    Quote Originally Posted by JonR
    Or you could use A altered, for a real jazzy tension scale resolving to Dm. This is the Bb melodic minor scale - a long way from either C major or D minor! But it does provide some real juicy bebop sounds.

    OK, well if I can again think out aloud here, and just explore that for a moment …. the melodic-minor scale is the same as the major scale, except it has flat 3rd (that’s the only difference), so we could represent it like this -

    Melodic Minor = 1, 2, b3, 4, 5, 6, 7

    And since were talking about the scale of Bb, we’d have the Bb-maj scale as Bb, c, d, Eb, F, g, a, … and therefore Bb-melodic minor would be = Bb, c, db, Eb, F, g, a … OK so far? But as you say, that’s very different from either Cmaj (no sharp or flat notes) or Dmin (one flat, ie the 6th = Bb) … so why does Bb-melodic-min. work quite well (yeah, I like Be-bop sounds well enough lol) … just to emphasise I’m not disputing it at all, quite the reverse, I’m just trying to understand why Bb-melodic minor should work in terms of the notes?

    Ian.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    And since were talking about the scale of Bb, we’d have the Bb-maj scale as Bb, c, d, Eb, F, g, a, … and therefore Bb-melodic minor would be = Bb, c, db, Eb, F, g, a … OK so far? But as you say, that’s very different from either Cmaj (no sharp or flat notes) or Dmin (one flat, ie the 6th = Bb) … so why does Bb-melodic-min. work quite well (yeah, I like Be-bop sounds well enough lol) … just to emphasise I’m not disputing it at all, quite the reverse, I’m just trying to understand why Bb-melodic minor should work in terms of the notes?
    It works like this:
    1. It contains the 3 essential basic chord tones (of A7): root (A), 3rd (C#/Db) and 7th (G).
    2. the other 4 notes represent the common alterations: b9 (Bb), #9 (C), #4/b5 (Eb), #5/b13 (F).

    So you can think of it as 1-3-7 of A7, with every other note (from the usual mixolydian scale) moved a half-step either way.
    (You can also think of the Bb and F as belonging to the normal D minor scale.)

    It works in context (resolving to either Dm or Dmaj), because it enables a few extra half-step resolutions on to chord tones. (These are the best "escape routes" from the altered scale.)
    So as well as the usual C#>D classic resolution to the tonic - and the G>F# move if going to Dmajor - you get Eb>D; F>F# (on D major); F>E or Eb>E if you want to resolve to the 9th of D, which is cool; Bb>A; or Bb>B or C>B if you want the 6th of D.
    How neat is all that?

    The other aspect is the absence of avoid notes. Bizarre as it may seem, all the scale notes work as chord extensions - and can be held as solo notes. The F would normally be an avoid note - but not if the chord has no perfect 5th (and an altered dom7 doesn't). The Bb is a bit of a strong tension (as a b9 against a lower A), but somehow on a dom7 this is OK, where it isn't on other chord types. (Go figure... )

  3. #33
    Registered User JonR's Avatar
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    Forgot these other bits...
    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    I’m vaguely aware that, for example, dominant-7 chords sound as if they need to lead somewhere or “resolve” somewhere, and in fact I think that resolution is typically towards the chord or note that’s up a perfect-4th?
    So for example a typical resolution for C7 would be towards an F chord (major, or minor?), or B7 would resolve to an E chord, or in our example the A7 would resolve to a D chord (Dmaj or Dmin), is that right? [/color]
    Exactly.
    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    Though I think that resolution to perf-4th has been used so often in so many songs that many people try to avoid that predictability and resolve to some other “interval”, and I think one possibility there is to resolve down one step? And perhaps to do that in two half-step intervals? … eg say Eb7 down to D7 and then D7 down to Db?[/color]
    Again, that's right. The word "cadence" actually comes from the Latin for "fall", and we experience a V>I cadence as a kind of fall, or relaxation. And we get an actual semitone fall from 4 to 3 anyway (if the V is a V7). Using the tritone sub (bII) just exaggerates this falling sound.
    But you can overdo it! It would be quite rare to down to Db if you'd already gone from Eb7 to D7.
    Jazz gets round this by using different chord types. E.g., you won't (often) see B7-Bb7-A7, but you might see F#m7-B7-Fm7-Bb7-Em7-Ab7. What this does is kind of "stagger" the descent, because some of the changes share chord tones. Eg, the D# of B7 becomes the Eb of Fm7. This makes it nicer to listen to than a crude half-step descent of plain dom7s.
    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    I really don’t know about the way other chords like to move, eg whether the I-chord tends move towards the ii or the IV or whatever. Or whether the iii-chord typically sounds like it’s leading to another chord, eg to the vi or whatever?
    V>I is the strongest "tendency".
    A weaker one is from subdominant to dominant, which might be ii>V or IV>V. There's no tendency for the tonic (I) to go anywhere.
    There's also the "plagal cadence", which is IV-I (known as "amen").

    Our familiarity with cycle-of-5ths moves (roots moving down in 5ths or up in 4ths) means we tend to expect other kinds of move.
    Eg, vii>iii>vi>ii>V>I>IV (all 7 chords in major key). But this has less to do with the character of individual chords, more to do with the sense of key conveyed. (IMO)
    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    You mean (if I may put it other words) – “the borrowed A7 sounds as if it should resolve to a D chord, because the V-chord (ie A7 or Amaj) typically sounds as if it should resolve back to the tonic (ie the I-chord, which here is Dmaj or Dmin)” ? Is that right?
    Yes.

    [QUOTE=Crossroads]
    OK, so A-mixol. will work fine over any Dmaj chord, because A-mixol contains the same notes as Dmaj scale anyway (ie because Amixol is simply the 5th mode of Dmaj, ie same notes as Dmaj but starting from 5th step=A). But A-mixol. will clash over any form of Dmin chord, because A-mixol contains the note F#, whereas the 3rd of a Dmin chord is F-natural, so that’s the clash, right? I suppose you could still play A-mixol as long as you either avoid that F#, or else just use it as a passing tone eg sliding up away from it?[/color]Er, yes, but better to use a different scale entirely.
    At least, you could simply lower the F# to F and - hey - you have D melodic minor.
    Quote Originally Posted by Crossroads
    D-harmonic minor = D, e, f, G, A, bb, c#

    So that 6th degree of D-harmonic minor is b-flat (“bb”). However, we’re playing over the chord Dmin, which has notes D, F, A. So I’m not sure where the clash is? Why would the b-flat of the harmonic minor cause a problem over Dmin? Or maybe that’s not what you were saying? You said something like “it may not sound right, depending how strong you want the Dmin chord to sound as new tonic” ?[/color]
    The Bb is what's known as an "avoid note" over a Dm chord. It clashes with the A below
    But in this context (scale over A7 resolving to Dm in key of C major), the Bb is not really relevant. The Dm is not a tonic in the key of D minor. Or is it? (That was the meaning of my comment - maybe you want to make Dm sound like a new tonic. Maybe you don't. If it's a Dm7, it's back to being a ii in C major anyway, and should have a B natural in the scale. A lot of this kind of decision is open to taste and judgement, in context.)
    Even so, Bb does occur in the A altered scale - see above - so it's certainly part of the language here.
    More to the point, the harmonic minor scale has a specific character - that "Moorish/Spanish" sound, which is not considered appropriate for jazz. (Hey, we're not Spanish, man, this is American music... )
    It would still suit some tunes (if they had a Spanish theme), but that's the main thing to bear in mind about using harmonic minor.
    (In Mark Levine's "Jazz Theory Book", which is around 500 pages, he spends just 2 pages talking about harmonic minor. That's how important it is in jazz - barely an afterthought...)
    Last edited by JonR; 05-18-2007 at 04:36 PM.

  4. #34
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    OK Jon, thanks very much for all that...really appreciate you taking the time and trouble to set that out so clearly…it all makes perfect sense straight off (ie without me having to struggle over it) ... except parts of the last para. re. the Bb, melodic min, & harmonic min., which I think will be clear to me with a more careful read-through .

    I have some tutorial DVD’s with various examples of solos in harmonic minor, and I rather like the sound of all of them …. but perhaps I’m not sufficiently Jazzy (though I did first latch on to Holdsworth as far back as Gazeuse and One of a Kind, 1976 & 79, if that counts at all … hmm perhaps not, since I never figured out to play like that ).

    Ian.

  5. #35
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    Harmonic minor is very popular - as you may know - in heavy metal and neo-classical guitar genres.
    It's only in jazz that it doesn't seem to be used much. Levine doesn't make any value judgment on it - he simply points out that you can't hear it being used by any of the great jazz soloists. (Well, any instances of it are vanishingly rare.) Therefore, it isnt part of the conventional jazz language. (Jazz theory derives from what jazz musicians do.)
    We can then go on to speculate why that might be (because actual jazz musicians don't tend to talk too much about why they choose certain scales and not others... ) - and the usual 2 answers are (a) it has 1 or 2 avoid notes; (b) it sounds too Spanish.

    IOW, if you like the scale, use it. No one says you have to follow jazz convention. You don't even have to like jazz!
    Even within contemporary jazz, it could provide an interesting colour. Contemporary jazz is "post-modern" anyway - that is, anything goes, basically. It's only in vintage jazz genres - such as be-bop, swing, dixieland, modal, post-bop, etc - that we need to follow rules in order to sound correct.

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    "I don't think Joe Pass said "When the chord changes, you change." I believe he said "when the Key changes, change Keys". The reason being is, in describing the famous I-vi-ii-V progression in C (Cmaj7-Am7-Dm7-G7), he thinks of the Cmaj7 and Am7 as JUST C Major, and he thinks of Dm7 and G7 as JUST G7. So, he's grouping chords by function kind of, as opposed to splitting them up any further."

    What would you use over this progression? The C maj scale, while following the chord tones of the chords? C maj scale and then the G7 arpeggio? I'm a little confused.

    I'm not even sure why he divided the first two C maj and the second two into G7. Aren't they all C maj?

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by tullamondo
    "I don't think Joe Pass said "When the chord changes, you change." I believe he said "when the Key changes, change Keys". The reason being is, in describing the famous I-vi-ii-V progression in C (Cmaj7-Am7-Dm7-G7), he thinks of the Cmaj7 and Am7 as JUST C Major, and he thinks of Dm7 and G7 as JUST G7. So, he's grouping chords by function kind of, as opposed to splitting them up any further."

    What would you use over this progression? The C maj scale, while following the chord tones of the chords? C maj scale and then the G7 arpeggio? I'm a little confused.

    I'm not even sure why he divided the first two C maj and the second two into G7. Aren't they all C maj?
    I agree, but the reason he's separating it into two things things is for Tension and Resolution. Tension being the ii-V(Dm7 and G7) and Release being the Imaj7(Cmaj7).

    In doing so he also changes the Am7 to a A7(alt) as a Tension and Release to the iim7, which he changes to a II7. So, A7 to D7 creates a V-I to the D7 chord, then he uses the D7 to G7 as a V-I for Tension and Release to the G7, then of course the G7 to Cmaj7 as the Tension and Release to Cmaj7.

    So, Joe usually ends up taking a I-vi-ii-V and changing it to a Imaj7-VI7(alt)-II7(alt)-V7(alt).

    So, Cmaj7-Am7-Dm7-G7 turns into Cmaj7-A7-D7-G7.

    Starting on A7 it creates a series of V-I's all the way to Cmaj7.

    And you can Alter all of those Dominant/"7" chords to reinforce reslution through tension.

    Try and pickup his Jazz Solo Guitar DVD. You'll want to watch a number of times to pickup on everything he shows. This kind of info is irreplacable and you remember/use it the rest of your life. It's a GREAT DVD.

  8. #38
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    so then what would I do over C maj 7 A7 D7 G7 as far as making lines?


    how would I follow this progression?
    outline each chord with an arpeggio? could I use one scale, or would you use two scales? or ...

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by tullamondo
    so then what would I do over C maj 7 A7 D7 G7 as far as making lines?


    how would I follow this progression?
    outline each chord with an arpeggio? could I use one scale, or would you use two scales? or ...
    It's pretty wide open scales wise. It can be more understood from a chord substitution perspective than trying to think of a ton of scales...because once you get to all those Dominant chords and V-I movements (and ALL the alterations) there are literally a TON of scales approaches you can use.

    Personally the chord/sub approach is simpler to get a grasp on.

    Are you familiar with b5 substitutions for Dominant chords???

    That's where you can substitude/replace any Dominant chord with another Dominant chord a b5 from the original, IOW...the b5 of A is Eb, so you could use a Eb7 for the A7.

    Using the same concept you'd use a Ab7 for the D7 and a Db7 for the G7...

    Now you have: Cmaj7-Eb7-Ab7-Db7

    You can also mix the original dom7 chords with the b5 subs...

    Cmaj7-Eb7-D7-Db7 (notice the chromatic movement from Eb->D->Db->C!!!)

    Or

    Cmaj7-A7-Ab7-G7

    Cmaj7-Eb7-Ab7-G7

    Just about any combo will work.

    You can also you "Diatonic Substitution" to get more chord ideas...a big one is, substitute a Em, Em7, Em9, or Em11 for the Cmaj7 chord. These chords all act as "Extended Chords" of Cmaj7.

    Another Diatonic Substitution would be playing the dom7 chords as dom9, dom11, dom13.

    So, you could now have...

    Em11-Eb9-D9-Db9 (Completely chromatic!!)

    A GREAT way to burn this in is to play all of these ideas in order as ONE progression, like so...

    ||: Cmaj7 | Am7 | Dm7 | G7 | Cmaj7 | A7 | D7 | G7 | Cmaj7 | Eb7 | Ab7 | Db7 | Cmaj7 | Eb7 | D7 | Db7 |Cmaj7 | A7 | Ab7 | G7 | Cmaj7 | Eb7 | Ab7| G7 | Em11 | Eb9 | D9 | Db9 :||

    Make sure you repeat, because it'll bring it all home, resolving completely. These aren't any "particular way" I , or Joe, plays these it's just the idea used ANY WAY you can think of. But, it should all work.

    Beyond that you can use Diminished Subtitutions for EACH of those dom7 chords!

    NOW, hopefully you see how MANY different chords you can apply to that basic I-vi-ii-V???

    Just think if you had to keep track of SCALES throughout that!!! OUCH!

    My suggestion is to learn that full chord progression, then slow things WAY down and play chord tones through them using any arpeggio you know for the maj7 and dom7 chords.

    "Thinking scales" though that progression will sound "calculated" or ridged" in most hands. But, playing chord tones can really help you "play over the changes" much better.

    Most people would not use a scale approach over this type of progression, especially if you want it to sound like Jazz.

    Have fun.
    Last edited by gennation; 05-26-2007 at 08:04 PM.

  10. #40
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    Here's another...since we changed the Cmaj7 to a Em7, and E is a 5th/4th from A (as in Em7->A7)...we can also make the Em7 a E7!!! And, you can alter it. So now you can have some cool things happen...

    E7#9-Eb7#9-D7#9-Db7#7

    Those chords replace Cmaj7-Am7-Dm7-G7!!!

    Also, along the lines of "don't get too bogged down with scales...

    lay any one of those substitution progressions and just play a C Major Pentatonic over it for a scale.

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