Pentatonic b3

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by flavaham, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    So, I had the book "Expansions" by Gary Campbell recommended to me so I picked it up. (around $13 on amazon after shipping). Anyhow, first scale in the book is "Pentatonic b3." It consists of 1-2-b3-5-6 or in the key of A (as I'm practicing it to start): A-B-C-E-F#

    Basically, it works really well over a minor chord with the root on 1 (Am), a Maj7#11 with the root on b3 (Cmaj7#11) and a 7#9 with the root a half step down from 1 (Ab7#9).

    I can doodle around pretty well around the fifth fret on this scale but there are a few intervals that make it so there is only one note on a string here and there. It is making it difficult for me to see the shapes and patterns that this scale has to offer. I'm trying to play it in as many positions as possible but I find that I will ascend the scale with one pattern but use a different pattern on the way down.

    How would you go about learning this scale up and down the neck? I'm sure I'll get it eventually if I noodle around enough, but maybe you've got a better idea?

    Anyhow, it's a pretty nice sounding scale. It's just the Melodic minor scale with the 4 and 7 omitted. (no tritone)
    Check it out! You might like it!
     
  2. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    Just realized that this is also Dorian with no 4 or 7 which means you could use Xm7 OR XmMaj7. Just thought I'd throw that in there.
     
  3. JonR

    JonR Member

    Messages:
    12,260
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    Location:
    London
    It's also good from the 5th of a dom7.
     
  4. randalljazz

    randalljazz Member

    Messages:
    388
    Joined:
    May 12, 2010
    Location:
    anchorage, alaska
    also works well over V7, from the 5th (Am over D7); over V7alt from the b9 (Am over Ab7alt) and over m7b5 from the 3rd (Am over F#m7b5). practice the different modes of this scale to find most useful pattern, as for example, using the Am over D7, start from the F#, and notice that it looks like a minor blues scale without the the 5...
     
  5. hangten

    hangten Member

    Messages:
    1,829
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    try playing it like a major pentatonic - 2 notes per string.
    you'll have to stretch a little, but it will help you visualize the shapes (at least it helped me) and then you can work on playing it up and down a single string or pairs of strings.

    very cool scale, I am digging it and the book!
     
  6. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

    Messages:
    14,732
    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    I like to use that over a D9 or D13 something. I forget the name I learned it as, just mixing minor/major pentatonics. Can't go wrong with the good old pentatonics.
     
  7. JonR

    JonR Member

    Messages:
    12,260
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    Location:
    London
    Take a major pent pent pattern and lower the 3rd.
    Or take a minor pent pattern, omit 4th and 7th and add 2nd and 6th.

    Or (perhaps better) remember how it works on all those chord types you mentioned, and which notes it means adding to the shape you know for those chords.
    Eg, on a dom7 chord, you're playing the 5th, 6th (13th), 7th, 9th (2nd) and 3rd of the chord: you need to know where those are for every dom7 shape you know. If you don't know this now, I suggest you work from there - learning chord shapes and how to add extensions and passing notes - rather than learning scale patterns.
    (If you learn scale patterns you have to learn how to link them back to chords later, so why not start from the chords?)
     
  8. guitarjazz

    guitarjazz Member

    Messages:
    17,474
    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Do the 'diatonic thirds' pattern that Gary suggests. You actually end up with combinations of thirds and fourths. Try playing them up and down a set of strings as well as across.
     
  9. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    All good ideas here. Thanks guys! This board is such a good resource. Combine it with any book and you can probably learn for days. We're putting private teachers out of business!!!!

    It's funny that I probably know all of the stuff that was posted to an extent but the change of perspective really helps. Pretty obvious to take the pattern that it is derived from and alter the 3rd, haha. I guess I just needed to see it from another angle.

    As for learning it "from the chords," I get that as well but without my guitar in hand right now I can't visualize it. I assume you are saying, take the chord that works over/under this scale and figure out what extensions it adds to the chord. So, over a minor 7 chord from the root I've got 1-2-b3-5-6. Over V7#9 from a half step down I've got b9-#9-3-#5-b7, etc. So I need to know what notes the scale adds to each chord. Correct?
     
  10. vhollund

    vhollund Member

    Messages:
    3,499
    Joined:
    May 30, 2004
    Personally i love the sound of that shape / penta /idea
    I've been using for about 7 years
    Many applications and it's a good starting point for improvisation

    Actually often i leave out a note. I'm a big fan of "quantatonics" ;-) More expressive i find
     
  11. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    So here's what I did - I fired up Garage Band and made a simple backing track with drums, bass and piano. I used to following chords - EbMaj7#11 - Cm - B7#9 - Am7b5. I play each for four bars and just loop it. All of these work with C pent b3. Now, playing along, even if I just play this scale straight up I can hear what it sounds like in relation to each chord.

    Also, I noticed that this scale made more sense to me for some reason when thinking of it from the minor. So rather than C pentatonic b3, I prefer A minor pentatonic b5. It's the same scale but I think I've always strayed toward minor pentatonics.

    Either way, that's where I am currently on learning this scale. I hope to have some more practical applications for it soon, and then on to the next one.

    Any more insight on this would still be appreciated.
    Thanks!
     
  12. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    That's interesting, so maybe leave out D from the C pent b3 and you have 1-b3-5-6. Or from the A minor b5 pent, leave out the 4 (D) and you have 1-b3-b5-b7 (or a m7b5 arpeggio essentially). Is that what you're getting at here?

    edit: Upon quick inspection of this idea, it gives it a very Dorian sound. For some reason, to my ear, more so than if you have that m2 interval in there (D-Eb). I guess it's all about the chord it's played over. In the book, he intends for this scale to be used in place of Melodic Minor, not Dorian. But, it seems there's no escaping it. haha.
     
  13. vhollund

    vhollund Member

    Messages:
    3,499
    Joined:
    May 30, 2004
    No I did'nt think of it that way, I just find it more natural sounding. Less "boxy" and more "moody".
    You can still move it around though

    The idea i'm thinking of is
    2 b3 5 6

    If you think of as a melodic minor thing it can be
    4 b5 b7 1 on iim7b5

    or
    b3 M3 b6 b7 on a dominant chord

    Or starting from the b7 of a V7 chord

    That's how I see it
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012
  14. AndyNOLA

    AndyNOLA Member

    Messages:
    62
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Yes, on the piano the looks like an Am7 add 2, and sounds good too with the D7. Or an Am7 add 4 which is the same as F#m7b5. Nice modal sound. Thanks very much for pointing that out. Great site this is, my jazz lesson for the day.
     
  15. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

    Messages:
    12,188
    Joined:
    May 30, 2007
    This might be a silly question, but how would you compare the combo of Expansions and Connecting Jazz Theory to Coker's Patterns For Jazz?

    I should probably start doing this too. I recall Gene advising people to do this here (and thus create a personalized "method book") several times,. Thanks!
     
  16. vhollund

    vhollund Member

    Messages:
    3,499
    Joined:
    May 30, 2004
    Or from the b7
     
  17. flavaham

    flavaham Member

    Messages:
    1,851
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Aurora, Co.
    Haha, I just got confused for a sec. So, I'm playing the A pentatonic b3 scale from the F# over D7 which gives me the 3-5-6-b7-9. Correct? I started thinking of this scale from that position actually. I like thinking in terms of F# Minor Pentatonic b5 rather than A Pentatonic b3.
     
  18. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

    Messages:
    12,188
    Joined:
    May 30, 2007
    Thanks! I didn't notice until I looked closer at the Patterns For Jazz cover that Campbell was a co-author of that book.

    I'll probably order that book before the Campbell books then.
     

Share This Page