Let me preface this by saying that I know basic diatonic theory (major scales and modes), blues based music theory and some other scales (harmonice minor etc.), but I have not yet studied jazz!! I wrote an instrumental that I'm working on recording. It's mostly a simple vamp in Am (dorian actually) with a main theme in the beginning and the end (is that called a head?). There's also a transition section that's used a few times and the first four bars use some phrases based on what I think is a diminished arpeggio. The notes are F#, A, C, Eb. I believe this is a diminished arpeggio for each note in the phrase, right? So my question is regarding the chords used behind the phrases in this transition. I settled on something that I think sounds ok, but I hope there's not some bad dissonance happening that I can't hear. There is some obvious dissonance, which makes sense when you analyze it, but it so far it sounds ok to me. The first note of the phrase in the first bar is F#, the 2nd phrase A, the third C and the 4th also C. The first three phrases go up and the 4th goes back down. I wanted the chords to kind of descend as the phrases ascend. The chords I have been using are the dom7#9 (Jimi Hendrix chord) descending chromatically from F# in bar 1, to F, to E and then in the fourth bar Eb to E. Eb7#9 is really almost a passing chord as it goes back to E7#9 after 1/2 a bar. When I compare these chords to the related diminished scale, using the diminshed scale of the note that starts the phrase (for lack of any better approach that I'm aware of), I get some funky dissonance on paper. In the first bar, the chord (F#7#9 = F# Bb E A) has the 3rd (Bb) and dom7 (E) of F#, which are not in the F# diminished scale. The chord in the 2nd bar (F7#9 = F A Eb Ab) seems to have only notes that are in the Adim scale (b6-1-b5-7), but it's a strange chord (I don't knowwhat you'd call it!) in comparison to that scale. And the the chord in the 3rd bar (E7#9 = E Ab D G) has the 3rd (E) and 5th (G) of C, which are not in the C diminished scale. I'll treat the Eb7#9 in bar 4 as passing chord, since it lasts for 1/2 a bar and goes bak to E7#9, but then bar 4 has the same "problem" as bar 3. I was attempting to create some tension and dissonance in this passage, but have I created any "unmusical" dissonance here? Sorry for being so longwinded, but this the best way I can describe it.