# Jazz Improvisation Exercises - Practicing Scales

Learn different ways to practice your scales as related to jazz and other improvised music!

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1. Play the scale in

**3rds**. This means to play every other note, so if you gave each degree of the scale a number you would first play the root, then the

**3rd**, next you would play the

**2nd**, then the

**4th**. So your pattern would be:

**1, 3, 2, 4, 3, 5, 4, 6, 5, 7, 6, 8**etc. You would then do this backwards.

2. Practice the scale in

**4ths**,

**5ths**, and other intervals! So you could do:

**1, 4, 2, 5, 3, 6**etc. Or

**1, 5, 2, 6, 3, 7**etc.

3. Be able to sing the scale degrees you are playing while practicing the above intervals.

4. Use melodic patterns. There are a ton of different melodic patterns you could use or create. You could play

**1, 2, 3, 4**then

**2, 3, 4, 5**then

**3, 4, 5, 6**etc. You could also do a pattern such as

**1, 2, 3, 5**then

**2, 3, 4, 6**then

**3, 4, 5, 7**etc. Come up with your own patterns! The possibilities are almost endless, and as always, sing what you play!

5. Play the scale in triads. You would first play

**1, 3, 5**then

**2, 4, 6**then

**3, 5, 7**and so forth. I practice my scales in triads all the time. I find it is very good for technique as well as learning then hear the triads inside each scale. This is a great exercises for jazz guitarists who like a lot of triad motion in their solos.

6. Practice your scales over their related chord. You can record yourself playing a

**dominant seventh**chord for example. You might give it a rhythm or simply let it drone. You can then have that chord playing while you are doing the above exercises over it so that you can hear what the notes in the scale are supposed to sound like over that chord. This is absolutely essential for any guitarist learning jazz and hearing chord-scale relationships.

The above exercises should keep you busy for quite a while! Make sure you can always sing and hear what you play, it will go a long way in helping you learn and memorize these scales!

*By*

**Seth Holobaugh**guitarlessonsflowermound.com sethholobaughmusic@gmail.com### Trending lessons

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