Yardbird Suite - bridge question

Discussion in 'Music Theory [DB]' started by TonyD, Aug 18, 2012.

  1. TonyD


    Feb 5, 2012
    Netherlands, Den Bosch
    Hi guys,

    the bridge in Yardbird Suite (Cmaj) has the following possible chord progression:

    Em7 - || F#dim7 B7b9 || Em7 - || A7 - ||
    Dm7- || Edim7 A7 || D7 - || G+7 ||

    Am I correct that the minor mode over the first 2 bars is E melodic minor? So that includes a C# and D#?

    The C# sounds strange in my ears when constructing bass lines over these chords. Perhaps it should be the harmonic minor mode (which include a C), instead of melodic minor.

    Thanks for your help.
  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    It's just "e minor". The C# sounds funny because it clashes with the b5 of the F#mib5 chord and the b9 of the B7b9 chord, both of which indicate a C natural.

    A really simple way to think of E as a tonic minor is this:

    E, F#, G, A, B, CorC#, Dand/orD#, E

    The first five notes never change. Both versions of the seventh are valid over altered V chords (in this case the D would be the #9 and the D# would be the 3rd). The lower of the two sixths is indicated over the ii-7b5 to V7alt part of the progression, but over the tonic chord players may choose to play raised 6th and 7th (melodic minor), flatted 6th and 7th (pure minor), lowered 6th and raised 7th (harmonic minor), raised 6th and flatted 7th (dorian minor), or even lowered 6th, lowered 7th andraised 7th (I like to call this "bebop minor" although other people use this designation for another scale).

    I think of the 6th and 7th in the instance of tonic minor progression as "toggle tones", meaning they can either be raised or lowered like a light switch depending on what color is desired. Hope this helps.
  3. JGoldberg


    Jul 10, 2011
    Westchester, NY
    You have to think of it in terms of a minor ii V7 i. Harmonic/Melodic minor are more relevant over the V chord (B7) which features a D#.

    Spend some time working on minor (ii V i)s to get a good sense of how those chords work together. Their relationship is a very big part of Jazz.

    As for melodic vrs harmonic, it's really just a matter of personal taste. Being comfortable with both sounds will give you a wider palate to work from.
  4. macdeezy


    Jan 17, 2010
    Reno, Nevada
    Start shedding those ii v's
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  6. DoubleMIDI


    Feb 28, 2010
    Germany, Nordrhein-Westfalen
    Have a look at the chord extensions.
    Em7 means a D, not a D#.
    And since Em is the tonic (for the following turnaround) it is E aeolian (or natural minor with C and D).

    It helps a lot to make a functional and tonal analysis of the chord changes to find out which kind of scale fits best.

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