#1
heyo!

For my college audition for a bachelor of music (jazz major), I need to know harmonic and melodic minor modes

That's all well and good, but what are some chords I can just cram these over?

I know the harmonic minor you can do over minor 2 5 1's, but what of the melodic minor?

Cheers
Quote by BlitzkriegAir
1. Get drunk
2. play pentatonic scales fast
3. throw in some divebombs and pinch harmonics
4. Get killed onstage
5. become legendary guitarist instantaneously


Quote by Holy Katana

How dare you attack the greatness of the augmented sixth?
#2
Well harmonic minor is generally used when you take the 5 chord in a minor key, and make it major, that changes the minor third to a major third, which is your raised 7th in a minor key (harmonic minor).

Melodic minor is a bit more complicated. Basically, a chord needs to be used that would imply melodic minor. I'm going to let someone else explain, because I know I'll give you false information if I try. Try googling or youtubing it, there's probably quite a lot of stuff. Also, the whole ascending descending thing is usually disregarded when playing in melodic minor.
#3
yeah i figured theres a lot of theory monsters on here who would have a good idea (DimFifth, Seagull)
Quote by BlitzkriegAir
1. Get drunk
2. play pentatonic scales fast
3. throw in some divebombs and pinch harmonics
4. Get killed onstage
5. become legendary guitarist instantaneously


Quote by Holy Katana

How dare you attack the greatness of the augmented sixth?
#4
There are actually alot of applications of melodic minor over common chords. For example, a half diminished chord could imply the seventh mode of the major scale, or the sixth mode of melodic minor. If you saw a B half diminished chord, you could play C major over top (B locrian) or the sixth mode of D melodic minor. With the major scale mode, you'd be playing B, C, D, E, F, G, and A. With the melodic minor mode, you'd be playing B, C#, D, E, F, G, and A. You'll notice that the only difference is the raised 2nd in the melodic minor mode.

Melodic minor is only one note away from the major scale. It's literally the major scale with a minor third. Because of this, the harmony is also similar in some places. Compare the harmony of melodic minor with major, and you'll figure out lots of interesting ways to use melodic minor.
The guy's a beast, but he uses 8s. So he's shit.
-juckfush on Alex Hutchings.
#5
Minor ii V Is for some spice

Like the Em7b5/ A7b9/ Dmin cycles.

Also, you can use the melodic minor for Diminished chords with the altered scale (7th mode melodic minor). Like playing Ab ionian altered over a G7 for the diminished sub of Ab dim

Also looking at the melodic minor as Dorian, you could use those modes as chordscale subs for the major scale modes to step a little bit out. The Lydian augmented (2nd mode Melodic) is really nice because it's kinda halfway between lydian and the whole tone scale and you can use it a lot for Aug chords. Also the Mixolydian mode/ people call it the Lydian b7 mode (3rd mode of melodic) is also interesting on dominant chords.

There's a bunch of stuff you can do with the melodic minor other than that though. While in bebop it was used more for subs and stuff, its sound becomes more apparent in modal music, where you would alter the modal flavor by playing the corresponding mode. You just have to experiment with it to not only get its sound right, but to also get smooth transitions when doing the alterations.
Last edited by Pillo114 at Sep 7, 2010,
#6
so a III VI ii V i would be (with modes) in C:

Ebmaj7#5 Abmaj7 Dmin7b5 G7b9 CmM7
Ionian + Lydian #2 Locrian #6 Phrygian Dominant Harmonic Minor


am i right?
Quote by BlitzkriegAir
1. Get drunk
2. play pentatonic scales fast
3. throw in some divebombs and pinch harmonics
4. Get killed onstage
5. become legendary guitarist instantaneously


Quote by Holy Katana

How dare you attack the greatness of the augmented sixth?
#7
If they're asking you to know the modes I'm not really sure they're gonn want you to be able to use them effectively so much as regurgitate them on command.

In any case, both scales commonly work over dominant 7 chords. You can use the fifth mode of the harmonic minor scale(Phrygian dominant) over a 7th, especially if it resolves up a fourth to a minor chord. For, example, G Phrygian dominant(same notes as C harmonic minor) would work well over the G7 in Bbmaj7 G7 Cm7 F7. For some crazier 7th chords, particularly ones with altered fifths, the seventh mode of the melodic minor, or altered scale, is hugely popular. So, given Bbmaj7 G7b5 Cm7 F7 a G altered scale(same notes as Ab melodic minor) has some possibilities over the G7b5.

EDIT: In retrospect that was quite redundant. Regarding this however:
so a III VI ii V i would be (with modes) in C:

Ebmaj7#5 Abmaj7 Dmin7b5 G7b9 CmM7
Ionian + Lydian #2 Locrian #6 Phrygian Dominant Harmonic Minor


am i right?
My only complaint here is that the changes and the scale you use don't have to line up so neatly. Just try playing a G augmented arpeggio over a plain old Ebmaj7 or Cm7 and you can suggest that particular color without relying on what's explicitly in the changes. Also, breaking it down chord by chord to scales that are synomymous sort of defeats the purpose. A more big picture approach might be "Ok, it's in C minor, and I wanna throw in some raised 7s to suggest harmonic minor". If you're looking at substitutions a chord by chord analysis could help though.
Last edited by grampastumpy at Sep 7, 2010,
#8
Quote by Tominator_1991
heyo!

For my college audition for a bachelor of music (jazz major), I need to know harmonic and melodic minor modes

That's all well and good, but what are some chords I can just cram these over?

I know the harmonic minor you can do over minor 2 5 1's, but what of the melodic minor?

Cheers


You should know your triads and extended chords. That way you can look at any scale and extract the possible chords that are in them.

Also Pillo's example for Melodic Minor this is one of the most common uses. The answer is generally going to be involving Altered chords.

If you are auditioning anytime soon, Id get going fast. If you are like one of my students from UG that I'm currently coaching for their college application (which is due in March), and have some time before the application audition deadline....I'd suggest get yourself a teacher fast, and start working on areas of deficiencies.

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Sep 7, 2010,
#9
The easiest way to remember how and when to commonly use the Melodic Minor scale are these:

1. If a dom7 chord is functioning as a V7 chord and is moving to the I chord, play a Mel min scale a "half step up" from the root of the dom7 chord.

2. If a dom7 chord is not functioning as a V7 chord but as a stand-alone or non-functioning dom7 chord, play a Mel Min scale a "5th up" from the root of the dom7 chord.

Those two little rules will cover a lot of basis for as you'll be playing against the function of the chord instead of just a chord.
#10
Quote by Sean0913
You should know your triads and extended chords. That way you can look at any scale and extract the possible chords that are in them.



Especially for Bebop and straight jazz. Most of that music is based on a lot of arpeggiations and the actual use of the scale and chromatic approaches is for connecting the dots. I think further on too, it's easier to think of the variety chords rather than scales you can play for options because it gives you another perspective on the fretboard and will get you out of that scalar sound. You'll also be able to reduce range of notes to the ones you want instead of just having the vague "Over this chord I'll play D Melodic Minor." versus a "Over this chord I'll backcycle with A7b9 and then land into the Dmin halfway on the bar." Both will get you the result you want but having both gives you a choice.

I think it just makes it easier to zoom in, look at and understand the substitutions, on top of being able to be a lot freer with time like the example above where you break the chords into multiple chord superimpositions. There's no limit to that either, since you can sub the superimposed chords as well to even get a sound thats further out.

This stuff is easy to visualize but is extremely hard to apply and takes a lifetime to pull off. Try it on a blues and your favorite standard over and over till you get an idea. I think more than wanting to hear specific melodic minor lines, the colleges want you to expand a little further away from the major diatonic lines so stuff like this will really help.
#11
Quote by MikeDodge
The easiest way to remember how and when to commonly use the Melodic Minor scale are these:

1. If a dom7 chord is functioning as a V7 chord and is moving to the I chord, play a Mel min scale a "half step up" from the root of the dom7 chord.

2. If a dom7 chord is not functioning as a V7 chord but as a stand-alone or non-functioning dom7 chord, play a Mel Min scale a "5th up" from the root of the dom7 chord.

Those two little rules will cover a lot of basis for as you'll be playing against the function of the chord instead of just a chord.


I posted that from my phone...to continue...

The "half step up" is commonly referred to as the Super Locrian or Altered Scale with the Root being that of the dom7 chord. But it's only used when the function of the dom7 chord is a V7. So when a G7 chord is functioning as the V7 of C Major and on it's way to the C chord, a "Mel Min a half step up" could be called an Ab Melodic Minor, G Super Locrian, or G Altered.

The "5th up" is commonly referred to as Lydian Dominant. Lydian Dominant is used for non-functioning dom7 chords, IOW that aren't harmonically related to or moving to the I chord. FOr a stand-alone G7 the "Mel Min a 5th up" could be called D Mel Min or G Lydian Dominant.

For m7b5 chords you play a Mel Min chord a "min3rd up" from the Root of the m7b5 chord. IOW, for Bm7b5 play D Mel Min, or the Mel Min scale a min3rd up from B. I don't really bother with the name of this scale as it can have many names when related to the basic Diatonic names, ala Lorcrian #2, Aeolian b5, etc...)

Another common place the Mel Min scale is found is over maj7#5 chords. The third chord built from the Mel Min scale creates a maj7#5 chord. So, if you run into a maj7#5 chord, play a Mel Min scale a "min3rd below" the Root of the maj7#5 chord. IOW, for Cmaj7#5, play A Mel Min.

So with these ideas, and the relationship between a G7 and a Bm7b5 (a rootless G9 chord), you can really start banging some Mel Min application.

Take a Minor II-V-I such as ||: Dm7b5 | G7 | Cm | Cm :||

Play F Mel Min for Dm7b5, play Ab Mel Min for G7, and play C Mel Min for Cm.

Yes, this progression can be seen through the Harmonic Minor scale too, but this "all Mel Min" approach is very common too, and you'll see it very applicable. Mix the two together and you'll be able kick in new sounds before you start repeating yourself

Because of all this relating only to the ascending portion of the Mel Min scale, the Mel Min scale is commonly referred to as "the Jazz Minor scale" since it doesn't include the Mel Min up and Natural Min down principle.

And...the reason the theory of the scale has the Mel Min up and Natural Minor down is because the leading-tone found in the ascending portion is ONLY in play when the scale ascends, and never in play when it descends.

Here's an exercise I used to do a lot with the arps/chord names found in the A Mel Min scale, it may be of use to someone.


An acsending up/down seqeunce the chords/arps of the A Melodic Minor (Jazz Minor) scale:


   Am/Maj7     Bm7        Cmaj7#5     D7          E7          F#m7b5      G#m7b5      Am/Maj7

E--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
B----------------------------------------------------------------------------------7--9------------
G-------------------------------------5--------------------7--9--5--------------7--------9---------
D-----------6--7----------------6--9-----7-----------6--9-----------7-----6--9--------------10--7--
A--------7-------9--5--------7--------------9--5--7--------------------9---------------------------
E--5--8----------------7--8------------------------------------------------------------------------


A Decending up/down seqeunce the chords/arps of the A Melodic Minor (Jazz Minor) scale:
   
   Am/Maj7      G#m7b5      F#m7b5      E7          D7          Cmaj7#5     Bm7         Am/Maj7

E---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
B------------9--7-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
G---------9--------7--------------5--9--7--------------------5--------------------------------------
D--7--10--------------9--6-----7-----------9--6-----------7-----9--6-----------------7--6-----------
A---------------------------9--------------------7--5--9--------------7--------5--9--------7--------
E------------------------------------------------------------------------8--7-----------------8--5--
#12
Quote by Tominator_1991
heyo!

For my college audition for a bachelor of music (jazz major), I need to know harmonic and melodic minor modes

That's all well and good, but what are some chords I can just cram these over?

I know the harmonic minor you can do over minor 2 5 1's, but what of the melodic minor?

Cheers

Melodic minor is perhaps even more useful than harmonic minor in jazz. Its modes are incredibly colorful, and are among my favorite scales.

You can play a minor iiø-V-i with only melodic minor scales. Over the ii7b5, you could play the 6th mode of melodic minor, which is Locrian with a major second. Although starting on the root is sometimes considered to be unhip, so you could play off the b3 and just think of it as playing a melodic minor off the fourth of the tonic. Then, on the V chord, you have a couple of options. You could play the altered scale (also often called Super Locrian), which is the seventh mode, so you'd play off the b9 of the V chord. You could also play the fifth mode, Mixolydian b6, but I wouldn't think of it as playing a melodic minor scale over something, since you'd be playing it off the 11, which is generally considered to be an "avoid" note, and therefore generally shouldn't be played except as a passing tone, preferably not on the beat. So you'd probably want to think of it as just Mixolydian b6. Then you could play a melodic minor off the tonic, which has the same notes as the Mixolydian b6, and that might sound a little too diatonic, so you'd probably just want to stick with the altered scale when you play over the V. Alternately, you could play some patterns from the half-whole diminished scale over the V, which is something I often do when I play jazz.

Something I've read that Mike Brecker liked to do was to ignore the harmony of the ii7b5, and just play the altered scale from the beginning of the iiø-V-i. In that case, you'd play the melodic minor off the b5 of the ii7b5. I remember seeing it in a PDF that had an analysis of Brecker's style. It had some pretty cool example licks. I'll try to find it.
Last edited by Holy Katana at Sep 7, 2010,