Major scale usage in a Dominant Blues- Bebop

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by bluejack, Feb 6, 2008.

  1. bluejack

    bluejack Member

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    I know the title of this thread sounds dangerously close to the other one being discussed currently but it's a different question.
    So i'm reading Robben Ford's column in the March/April issue of Guitar Edge. He's showing some ways to 'add some spice to your blues playing' He's taking a line and showing how to develop it. The line he's developing is based on the major scale of the I chord.
    He goes on to state " Using the A major(the ex. is in A) scale in a flat-7 blues may not be your first thought, but it's common practice in bebop. It's up to you to make it musical."
    I totally understand the difference between a major(ionian) scale and dominant(mixo).
    My question is, could anyone point me to some examples(artists and/or tunes) of beboppers using the major scale in a blues.
    I think the obvious answer is Charlie Parker, esp. a tune like 'Blues for Alice".
    But any others, i'd like to bathe in this flavor!
    Thanks.
    J
     
  2. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    This is tough as I've never seen the lesson, so I could be explaining something completely irrelevant. But this info I think will be useful to someone anyone and I'm bored, so here goes:


    Most jazzers don't think in terms of scales (at least, not the classic ones). That's a topic that can get me flamed, so for now I ask the naysayers to just bear with me. So if the idea is to get to major 7th over a I7 in a blues, you do it with chords.


    Here's a 12 bar blues in F:

    F7 | Bb7 | F7 | F7 |

    Bb7 | Bb7 | F7 | F7 |

    C7 | Bb7 | F7 | C7 |



    Here's a "jazz blues" in F:

    F7 | Bb7 | F7 | Cmin7 F7 |

    Bb7 | Bdim | F7 | D7b9 |

    Gmin7 | C7 | F7 D7b9 | Gmin7 C7 |



    And here's a Parker blues (such as Blues for Alice):

    Fmaj7 | Emin7b5 A7b9 | Dmin7 G7 | Cmin7 F7 |

    Bbmaj7 | Bbmin7 Eb7 | Amin7 D7 | Abmin7 Db7 |

    Gmin7 | C7 | Amin7 D7b9 | Gmin7 C7 |


    Now here's the thing, while these are the basic changes to these tunes, you can sub these for each other at will. So you could something like this:

    F7 | Bb7 Bdim7 | F7\C | Cmin7 F7+5 |

    Bb13 | Bbmin9 Eb9 | Fmaj7 | Eb7#11 Db9 |

    G7#9 | C7alt | F7 Ab7#11 | Gmin7 C7 |


    If you look at bar 7 over a basic 12 bar blues that would usually be F7 there. But by playing that descending ii-V stuff in the previous bars you're setting up the move to a Imaj7 sound.

    Another thing I really like is in the beginning of the form to wait to play any 7th untill the bar 3 (the bar before the IV7 chord). This makes the move to that chord stronger. But you can do the same thing by playing it as a maj7 chord- try this line:

    1)
    2)
    3)5
    4)--7-------8---5------7--5-----------------------------5
    5)----8------------7-----------8--7---------5--6--8--------6
    6)----------------------------------------8

    Anyway, this is a very basic line, but I hope you get the idea. That line is strong enough to work over an F7 chord even though it use a maj7th. But it resolves to a dom7th, which is what makes it interesting.

    As for examples- I can't think of any off the top of my head, but it's done all the time. The whole point of what I've tried to explain is jazzers mix between these blues forms (and several others) at will in a solo. Especially piano players- as they can throw chords in with the left hand to make the subs stronger. As for if this will fit at a blues jam with 3 guitarist comping- let's just say I'd probably stick to the SRV licks in that situation. :D
     
  3. Lucidology

    Lucidology Member

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    Though not necessarily a Be-Bop player.. (but the roots thereof)
    Louis Armstrong did this all the time when playing songs with blusey formats ...
    Never landing on a major 7th over a dominant chord,
    but playing Ionion (Major scale) lines that often did not include a flat seven ....
     
  4. bluejack

    bluejack Member

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    Hey RR,
    Thanks for laying that all out. I follow what you're saying. Esp. can see where a measure with a ii V can lead the ear to a Imaj7. But it just as well could be a I7 also.

    I know it's hard without us all referencing the same lesson. And in his example(again in the key of A), Robben just flat out starts measure 1 of a simple 12 bar with a very A major scale line, g# and c#, although he's quick to throw in a g natural too.
    .
    Supposedly this lesson's at their site but i just checked and last month's is still up. Maybe soon go to www.guitaredgemag.com click the 'hear it online' icon and it's under the 'blues and beyond'. The lesson is called ' Fancy Phasing '.

    I guess it falls under the endless sub possibilities and what i've come to regard as the ' if it's a melodically strong enough idea, it'll just about fit anywhere'. Sorta what Robben says " It's up to you to make it musical"

    Have to go back to the Omnibook. Remember working on some of those solos and coming across lots natural 7ths over Dominant 7 chords and natural 3rds over minor chords. Thinking that doesn't fit any rules.

    Oh well, i was just trying to dig up some aural examples. Louie is a good call, Lucid.
    Thanks again,
    J
     
  5. JonR

    JonR Member

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    I think the answer here is the "bebop dominant" scale. I can't give examples, but this is an 8-note scale containing both b7 and M7.
    The idea is that it allows 8th note runs which will land easily on chord tones. The M7 is passing tone, IOW.

    Other bebop scales are:
    "bebop dorian" = 1-2-b3-3-4-5-6-b7
    "bebop major" = 1-2-3-4-5-#5-6-7
    "bebop melodic minor" = 1-2-b3-4-5-#5-6-b7

    In each case the extra note is an odd sound in context, but allows passing between good notes, and wouldn't be stressed or held.
     
  6. K-man

    K-man Member

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    Charlie Christian played major scales over dominant chords all the time.
     
  7. Lucidology

    Lucidology Member

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    Whoops .. dere it is ,,,:BEER
     
  8. tkozal

    tkozal Supporting Member

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    half step leading to roots is part of this..listen to the bass players (i know that is not usually done here..but what the hey...:rolleyes:)
     
  9. Poppa Stoppa

    Poppa Stoppa Member

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    Yes - a lot of the time if you play the major seven of the tonic chord, you are implying the five chord (Because it's the third of that chord).
     
  10. Kappy

    Kappy Member

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    But isn't the only diff betw. ion. & mixo. the 7th? So how do you know he wasn't thinking mixo? ;)
     
  11. hacker

    hacker Member

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    Some of these ideas are prevalent in rockabilly and early R&R. Think "Rock Around the Clock" or Stray Cats stuff.
     
  12. jzilla

    jzilla Member

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    even bb and albert use the natural 7th as a passing tone...
     
  13. Mike T

    Mike T Member

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    The natural 7 is a leading tone that implies the dominant chord a 5th above because the natural 7 is actually the 3rd of the dominant that wants to resolve to where you are. This can be used affectivey to introduce movement into an otherwise static line. I use it all the time. As just a passing tone at the right spot in a line the whole V-I resolution can be implied and heard by just sounding one note. It is also very affective to spell the dominant triad or 1-3-5 which would be 5, natural 7, and 9 in your home key, and the continue with then sound of the home key.
     

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