As I get into practicing scales I have found that my ear prefers some over others. The pentatonic was great when all I wanted to do was play like Dickie Betts, but eventually one can get bored with it. This weeks blurb is the first installment of an example of a scale that my ear loves and that is utilized in more songs than you would think at first glance. Below is a video of me playing some songs with the harmonic minor scale in the meat of the melody.
I am gonna make this weeks short and sweet. The harmonic minor scale can be analyzed and put under the microscope but it’s sound is what I like most.
The formula for the harmonic minor is: 1, 2, b3, 4, 5, b6, 7.
The large interval between the b6 and 7 really make it unique.
Because of the natural 7 it is best used over the V (5 chord).
For example the E harmonic minor scale sounds best over a B7 chord. Both contain the Eb, which is the 7th degree of E and the 3rd of B.
Play with this scale and more tips on how to use it coming. Keep in mind and Flamenco, Spanish, or Gypsy music really uses this.
Next we will talk about the Spanish Phrygian: 1, b2, 3, 4, 5, b6, b7
this is also know as the Gypsy scale. For you theory nuts, yes it is also the 5th mode of the harmonic minor scale.