This is a very important scale in all ďadvancedĒ music (jazz, classical ...)

We must master it perfectly, despite the complexity of tones it can generate ( eg altered scale )

You can use it on the II / V / I minor sequences when the degree II is not of type X-5b7, or on the chords of type X7 ( Bartok scale ) , or on bebop phrases ( altered scale ) .

It is constructed as follows :

W     H     W     W     W     W     H

One note differs from the harmonic minor scale, this results in a series of four consecutive tones, which will give a special and modern sound to the melodic minor scale and its various modes.

For example , in G , it will be :

G     A     Bb     C     D     E     F#     G melodic minor scale of G (that we will note Gmm for convenience)

Letís take the chords generated by the melodic minor scale of C :


We see that we can exploit this scale on II / V / I minor sequence ( here D-7 / G7 / C- ) when the degree II is not a D-5b7.

Obviously, it is welcome in a simple V / I minor sequence .

The degree III ( here Eb5#M7 on which we will play Cmm) is often found in jazz or modern bossa nova .

The degrees IV and V are two 7th chords separated by one tone , a situation that may be encountered and where the melodic minor scale may prove to be practical (by G7 / F7 on which we play Cmm).

The degree IV, called Bartok scale , operated by the musician of the same name, also used in jazz music , can be played for example on an isolated 7th chord ( here F7 on which one will play Cmm ) .

The degree VI, a minor 5b7 chord where you can play melodic minor (A-5b7 here on which one can play Cmm) .

The degree VII is the altered scale : this 7th chord is both minor and major ( it can be seen as a major chord with a # 9 and 9b, the latter being a minor third! ), This results in an encryption F#5b5#7/9b9# !! hence the name of altered chord and altered scale , one of the most interesting use of the melodic minor scale: for example , on a V / I sequence as follows: B7 / E- ( or B7 / E ) , we will play Balt , so Cmm ( Balt is the degree VII of Cmm ) .

This will create a large tension, because of all the alterations, which will resolve and relieve the audience on the degree I.

The melodic minor scale is a critical scale when one wants to change his musical playing to greater richness .

We must know it on the full extent of our instrument, have assimilated all the contexts where we can use it, and learn how to phrase on it, thatís not obvious, given its complex sound.

Work of the melodic minor scale

We will work on the two most important variations of the melodic minor scale, namely the Bartok scale and the altered scale .

(doc13) : phrasing on the Bartok scale ( Cmm on a F7 chord )

As usual, I play 1: 30 minutes to illustrate the climate that the Bartok scale generates , then it Ďs your turn ...

(doc14) : phrasing on the altered scale (Cmm on a B7 chord )

As usual, I play 1: 30 minutes to illustrate the climate that is generated by the altered scale, then itís your turn ...