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I think the haar begins to lift!

Jul 17, 2017 - 9:19:33 AM

haggis

Scotland

272 posts
Joined Oct 19, 2009

Does this make sense to anyone? Trying to improvise over a jazz blues jam track in Bb I found that I was getting a pretty good jazzy sound using the major scale of the 4th degree and also the major scale based on the 4th degree of this second scale. In other words Eb and Ab scales over Bb. Is there any logical musical theory behind this?

Jul 17, 2017 - 11:05:33 AM
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890 posts
Joined Jun 13, 2011

Just a guess. The Eb major scale: Eb F G Ab Bb C D

The Bb pentatonic: Bb C D F G Bb

 In other words; if you use a Eb major scale; you may be using every note in the Bb major pentatonic. Just depends on which notes you start and end the phrase on.  

My two stupid rules/ thoughts on Jazz improv (your milege may vary):

1) If you hit a wrong note; you will always be only 1/2 step either way from a right note.

2) If you hit a wrong note; do it twice...own it.

: )

Jul 17, 2017 - 1:08:37 PM

131 posts
Joined Dec 2, 2013

As always I have a chart, look at rules at bottom and try pluging it in the chart at the top, your beginning key is on the left.


Jul 17, 2017 - 2:46:45 PM
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DougD

USA

8285 posts
Joined Dec 2, 2007

Of course these are all closely related scales. Referencing the Bb scale, Eb adds Ab, which is the. seventh of the Bb scale, and Ab also adds Db, which is the third. So by thinking you're venturing into these keys, you're playing a Bb scale with a flatted third and seventh, both very common "blue" notes. The Bb minor pentatonic scale is Bb, Db, Eb, F, Ab - see the flat third and seventh?



If this way of looking at it helps you, fine, but to me it seems a very convoluted approach to a simple musical problem.


Jul 17, 2017 - 9:32:13 PM

Loup

Australia

65 posts
Joined Nov 24, 2012

This topic on jazz playing,is out of my league.Although I do like jazz fiddling,I've yet to understand,then perchance I

might reach Stephan Grapelli level of playing.At my age,it's an illusion.lol Love reading your chats and comments though.

Jul 18, 2017 - 6:41:25 AM
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1270 posts
Joined Oct 22, 2007

What do they say? "Talking about Music, is like dancing about plumbing."

We that play(at) the fiddle, are (or should be) the most aural bound, because we are the note. We are the double stop. There's no fret, it's us. When i read stuff that's seems a bit over my head, i remember this: When i put on a Steph Grapelli, or John Luc Ponte recording, if i can't play along, at least i understand, at a base/aural level, much more easily. C#minor is easier to play in than to think about. Key of B is another.  I keep reading too. Sometimes it clicks. Sometimes not.

Here's another music thingy/dealy about modes & degrees:

https://www.mandolincafe.com/niles2.html

I still have a circle of fifths printed out. I leave it out all the time. The second i put it away, i'm digging it out again. I should tack it to the wall.

Jul 18, 2017 - 7:38:44 AM
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1736 posts
Joined Oct 1, 2008

Closed position scales arpeggios and pentatonics are the ticket to "those " keys. B to Ed to F straight across the up a whole step. A single finger across two strings locates your position and there you go. Single tones and double stops Play on .....

Jul 18, 2017 - 8:01:32 AM
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DougD

USA

8285 posts
Joined Dec 2, 2007

haggis - Just in case I wasn't clear, the "logical musical theory" behind this is that you are improvising in the Mixolydian and Dorian modes of the key. Consider Eb: Bb is the fifth degree of the scale, and if you use the notes of the Eb scale but start on the fifth its the Mixolydian mode (of the key of the fifth, Bb in this case. And for Ab, Bb is the second degree, and if you start there but use the notes of the Ab scale it will be the Dorian mode of the key of Bb.



We often think of "dropping a sharp" when going to these modes, i.e. writing an A tune with only two sharps instead of three if its in Mixolydian mode, but "adding a flat" amounts to the same thing. In this case you would probably just think of it as Bb with some altered notes, but if the whole piece were like this it could be written with three flats (for Mixolydian) or four flats (for Dorian) instead of the usual two.



As I said, if the idea of fourths helps you, fine, but it seems a roundabout way of approaching it to me.


Jul 18, 2017 - 9:11:30 AM

741 posts
Joined Apr 6, 2014

This guy seem to make quite a lot of sense to me,(jazz wise) although he may be "dancing about architecture",(or plumbing)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qvv2YIH9u7I

Jul 18, 2017 - 9:35:19 AM

haggis

Scotland

272 posts
Joined Oct 19, 2009

quote
: Having read your first post it got me thinking so I looked further into it and yes I came to realise what you are saying about the modes.
Originally posted by DougD
 

haggis - Just in case I wasn't clear, the "logical musical theory" behind this is that you are improvising in the Mixolydian and Dorian modes of the key. Consider Eb: Bb is the fifth degree of the scale, and if you use the notes of the Eb scale but start on the fifth its the Mixolydian mode (of the key of the fifth, Bb in this case. And for Ab, Bb is the second degree, and if you start there but use the notes of the Ab scale it will be the Dorian mode of the key of Bb.

 

We often think of "dropping a sharp" when going to these modes, i.e. writing an A tune with only two sharps instead of three if its in Mixolydian mode, but "adding a flat" amounts to the same thing. In this case you would probably just think of it as Bb with some altered notes, but if the whole piece were like this it could be written with three flats (for Mixolydian) or four flats (for Dorian) instead of the usual two.

 

As I said, if the idea of fourths helps you, fine, but it seems a roundabout way of approaching it to me.

 
Jul 23, 2017 - 5:10:50 PM

149 posts
Joined Apr 22, 2009

Does this make sense to anyone? Trying to improvise over a jazz blues jam track in Bb I found that I was getting a pretty good jazzy sound using the major scale of the 4th degree and also the major scale based on the 4th degree of this second scale. In other words Eb and Ab scales over Bb. Is there any logical musical theory behind this?
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It doesn't make sense to me, because it doesn't emphasize the chord changes. Playing on scales which work on all chords in a key, is a "generalization". Playing notes which best define the chords and chord movement is a better strategy [IMO] than "Eb and Ab scales over Bb". The blues reduced to its most basic components is 4 chords. The 1, 4 and 5 chords plus the 1 chord with a flatted 7th. Using the 2 scales you mentioned doesn't emphasize the root b7 in the 4th bar to signal the change to the 4 chord. Also it doesn't steer you to using the 3rd and 7th tones to define the chords as you are playing over them. These things would "ground" one's playing in the structure of the music.

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