Theory

  • 17 Scale Choices For Improvising on Guitar

    What Scale to Choose for Improvising?

    Locrian bb7 mode for guitar

    One of the most common question a beginner asks when he wants to start improvising on guitar is : Which scale to choose over which chords? However, there is a lot of scale and a lot of chord, it is easy to get lost. That's why it is important to make the relation between them, trying to understand what is the appropriate scale that fit the chord and vice versa. 

    This guitar lesson provides the seventeen most important scales with shapes and formulas to know for improvising over the most used chord types in jazz music (major, minor, dominant and diminished).

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  • What Scale to Play Over 7b9 Chord

    Phrygian dominant scale guitar shapesDominant 7 flat ninth chords (7b9) are generally related to the fifth mode of the harmonic minor scale known as Phrygian dominant scale, which makes it the most obvious choice for improvising over 7b9 chords. However, we will see in this article that there are many other options.

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  • How to Practice Pentatonic Scales On Guitar

    How to practice pentatonic scalesWhat are Pentatonic Scales?

    Pentatonic scales are scales with five notes per octave. They are frequently used in music all over the world. The word "pentatonic" comes from the Greek word "pente" meaning five and "tonic" meaning tone.

    Talk of "the" pentatonic scale generally make reference to the major pentatonic scale and its relative minor. It's a mistake, indeed there are many types of pentatonic scales (Egyptian, Ritusen, Man gong, Altered, Locrian...).

    Pentatonic scales are considered earlier than heptatonic scales (seven-note scales) and can be divided into two categories :

     

    • Containing semitones (hemitonic)
    • Without semitones (anhemitonic)

    The purpose of this post is to propose some tips and ideas for practicing and develop pentatonic scales.

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  • How to Use a Tritone Substitution - 6 Guitar Licks

    6 tritone substitution guitar licksWhat's a Tritone Substitution?

    The tritone substitution is one of the most common substitution found in jazz. The basic application of a tritone chord substitution is to take any 7th chord and play another 7th chord that has its root a tritone away from the original. This guitar lesson demonstrates how you can play scales and arpeggios starting from the b5 (a tritone away) of the V7 chord in a II V I chord progression. This way you will highlight altered tones as the b9 and the #11. 

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  • What are Dominant Seventh Chords ?

    What s a dominant 7 chord

    Dominant seventh chords are the most important features in music, you can find them in many styles of music, especially in blues and, of course, in jazz. In this lesson, you will see how to construct drop 2, drop 3 and drop 2 & 4 dominant seventh chords, what is their harmonic function and how to play them on guitar.

     

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  • Drop 2 & 4 Chords - Advanced Guitar Voicings

    Drop 2 and 4 voicingsWhat Are Drop 2-4 Chords?

    Drop 2 and 4 chords are created by dropping down an octave the second and fourth note of a seventh chord in close position. They can be very important tools for composition and arrangement. This lesson with diagrams provides useful explanations on how to build and play drop 2 & 4 chords on guitar.

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  • What's a Tetrad Chord - Music Theory

    What are tetrad chordsWhat's a Tetrad ?

    A basic chord is built with three notes this is what we call "triad chords" or "triads". Tetrad chords aka "four note-chords" are simply chords containing four notes, “tetra“ is a Greek root meaning four. This means that tetrads have an additional note, a major seventh or a minor seventh. In other words , a tetrad is a triad with a supplementary note. This article will enlighten you on how these tetrad chords are built and how they can be classified.

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  • List and Comparison of Music Scales - Formula Charts

    List of music scalesHere is a list of the main musical scales and modes.

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