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Author: admin | Category: Learn Piano Online | 24.07.2015

A half step, also called a semitone is the distance from one pitch to the nearest pitch either up or down. As long as you understand the formula for forming a major scale, you should be able to start on any key on your piano and form a major scale. In a natural or pure minor scale the formula is whole step - half step - whole step - whole step - half step - whole step - whole step or W-H-W-W-H-W-W. Before we end let's take a look at one of the most straightforward scales one can form on the piano.
Hopefully, you now have a clearer understanding of how to form major scales, natural minor, harmonic minor and melodic minor scales, and chromatic scales. Check out How To Read Music Fast: A 4-Step Beginner's Guide To Reading Music Quickly And Easily. In this article we are going to take a look at how we can take all of the scales and arpeggios we have learned over the years and turn them into "jazzy" sounding phrases.
The first bar of this example uses what is normally referred to as the dominant bebop scale, played over a major chord. The third and fourth bar are the same chromatic idea applied to two different scale tones. Once you have these under your fingers in the key of C we are ready to move on to example 3.
Here we have a bebop sounding line written in the key of C major using the patterns outlined above. Now that we can apply these two beat ideas we can add some basic harmonic substitutions to the chord progression.
In this line we are now adding an Ab7 chord that resolves to the G7 chord (tritone substitution as well). We are now at the limit of adding chromatic approach chords with the Bb7 resolving to the A7b9.
The first idea is what is commonly referred to as "1235", where each chord is outlined using the 1st , 2nd , 3rd and 5th note of the scale or mode that corresponds to it. The second idea is the arpeggio, 1357, on each chord in the progression, and the last idea is the arpeggio with a chromatic approach tone below the root. In the next line we will add the chromatic approach chord leading into the Cmaj7 chord in bar 3.
Here is a solo written out over the chord changes to a famous Miles Davis tune, here it is called Tune Down, see if you can guess the original name. Once you have these exercises under our fingers try playing them in different keys, and if you haven't already, play them on different parts of the neck. Therefore the distance between each note of the scale and its neighbor would be half a step.
Level One scales are intended for beginning clarinet students, and introduce both scales and long tones suitable for the first few weeks of study. In the key of C, you start with the root note C, then you move one whole step to D, a whole step to E, a half step to F, a whole step to G, a whole step to A, a whole step to B, and lastly a half step to C. In the key of G, you start with the root note G,  then you move one whole step to A, a whole step to B, a half step to C, a whole step to D, a whole step to E, a whole step to F#, and lastly, a half step to G.

For example, in the key of E minor, you start with the root note E, then you move one whole step to F sharp, a half step to G, a whole step to A, a whole step to B, a half step to C, a whole step to D, and finally a whole step to E.
Similar to the natural or pure minor scale, the harmonic minor scale starts on the sixth degree of its relative major. Like the natural minor and harmonic minor scales, the melodic minor scale begins on the 6th degree of the relative major scale. All of these riffs will be two beats (four eighth notes) long in order to get them under our fingers quickly and transpose them easily. This is where we start on the third, in this case E, of the major scale and then play #1, 2 and back to 3. The best way to approach these licks is to think of it as connecting the two half steps within the major scale. You can practice punching them into scale fingerings you already know, or treating them as separate entities and thinking of them as individual units that you can move around to different chords. In the first bar there are the 1st and 2nd line (from example 1), the second bar has the 3rd and 4th line, the third bar has the 1st and 2nd lines and the last bar has the 3rd line. The chords that we will be adding will be one half step, one fret, above the following chord.
Even though we are stepping further "out" with this and the following lines, the fact that our two beat motives outline the harmony so well helps to keep the idea from falling apart.
Once we have these substitutions under your fingers and in our ears we can choose which ones we want to use and when we want to use them. As was mentioned above, playing out only works if we define what is in, so these three ideas are great ways to outline the harmony and help "setup" our outside ideas. Though these ideas have been written out over the chords in the progression, they can be used over any chord in the key we are playing in. This idea is similar to what we have already done but notice how the arpeggio in the first half of the 2nd bar really sets up the substitution nicely. As before, now that we have all of the chord substitutions added we can choose which ones we would like to play at any given time.
Try and read through the solo with a play along CD or Band in a Box to get a sense of how each line sounds against the underlying harmony.
Learning to play a line from memory is only the beginning of the process, once we can manipulate a line, by changing the rhythm, playing it in different octaves and different areas of the neck, we have truly ingrained the concept. These scales should be practiced both slurred and tongued, increased in speed to moderate cut-time, and memorized.
Breathe and then immediately play both minors in one breath, one of them slurred and one tongued.
The only difference between the natural minor and harmonic minor scale is the 7th tone of the scale. Hopefully by working through this material we will be able to use simple and comfortable material to hip up our lines.
Think of it as starting on the third and playing back to the third using a chromatic approach to the 2 nd note, D, of the scale.
The first connects the 4th note, F, of the scale to the 3rd note, E, by way of two chromatic approaches from below E.

So in this example we have added a Db7 that resolves to the Cmaj7 in the next bar (tritone substitution). Remember just because we know all of these cool harmonies does not mean that we have to saturate our lines with them.
So for example in this progression, in the key of C, we can outline Cmaj7, Dm7, Em7, Fmaj7, G7, Am7 and Bm7b5, all of the chords found in the key of C major. Notice how each bar starts off sounding inside on the first two beats and then is led into a more chromatic sound in the last half of the bar before resolving on the downbeat of the following bar. Sometimes a really simple, well placed "outside" lick is much more effective than a longer more complex line that weaves in and out against the harmony.
Alternate slurred and tongued; for a better workout play once through slurred and once through tongued.
Memorize the set, and remember to play them in different orders so you don't become dependent on seeing them in this order. Examples of whole steps are the distance between C and D, D and E, F and G, G and A, and A and B.
The last example is the same concept, only this time applied to the root, C and the 7th , B. At this point we are trying to get these shapes under our fingers and these sounds into our ears. Again for the purposes of this exercise the line is written in eighth notes, once you have this line down try changing the rhythm to gain more interest in the line.
The biggest lesson to learn is that "out" lines only work when they are played after or in between "in" lines that give them their contrast. This helps create a tension and release element to the line and makes the major scale that we are basing our lines off of sound much more in the jazz idiom.
The root is followed by a whole step, then another whole step, a half step, a whole step, a whole step, a whole step and finally a half step. In other words if you move to the key to the immediate left of a key on your keyboard, what you're doing is moving a half step or semitone lower.
While the notes of the A natural minor scale are A B C D E F G, in the harmonic minor scale it's  A B C D E F G# A. The formula for a melodic minor scale is whole step - half step - whole step - whole step - whole step - whole step - half step. The descending formula is the natural minor scale formula backwards.For instance, in an A melodic minor scale the notes are A B C D E F# G# A (ascending), and A G F E D C B A (descending). The relative minor of C major, A minor starts on that sixth note, A and moves to B C D E F G, then back to A.

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