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Altered Minor Scales: Introduction

 

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Altered Minor Scales

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In this tutorial we will learn how the minor scale can be altered to make different scales, chords and harmonies. We'll build a minor chord progression and learn how to play the natural diatonic minor scale as melodic lines along with those chords. Then we'll alter the chords and scales to show the different possible minor sounding flavors that are used in music.

The diatonic minor is formed by using a specific interval forumla.

1st note, whole step, 2nd note, half step, 3rd note, whole step, 4th note, whole step, 5th note, half step, 6th note, whole step, 7th note, whole step, 8th note (which is one octave higher than the first note).

Let's use this idea to play an A minor scale.

  • A = 1 (1st scale degree)
  • B = 2 (2nd scale degree)
  • C = 3 (3rd scale degree)
  • D = 4 (4th scale degree)
  • E = 5 (5th scale degree)
  • F = 6 (6th scale degree)
  • G = 7 (7th scale degree)
  • A = 8 (1st scale degree again one octave higher)

    Next, let's assign all the notes numbers, the term "scale degree" and a unique name:

  • A = 1 (1st scale degree) - root note
  • B = 2 (2nd scale degree) - second
  • C = 3 (3rd scale degree) - minor third
  • D = 4 (4th scale degree) - fourth
  • E = 5 (5th scale degree) - fifth
  • F = 6 (6th scale degree) - minor sixth
  • G = 7 (7th scale degree) - minor seventh
  • c = 8 (8th scale degree) - octave of root