Chord Scales

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by stephanie, Mar 19, 2002.

  1. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    Ok, I'm gonna have a hard time explaining what I mean so bear with me:

    I am working on a practice method for chord scales, playing along with a metronome. There are 5 different exercises I have to's basically playing the modes of the scale, starting with C Major (2 octaves).

    Step 1 is playing CDEF then going down FEDC, DEFG GFED, etc. I have no problem with this 1st step, playing 8th notes against the metronome. It's the next steps that follow:

    Step 2 is playing for the first measure CDEFG and back down GFEDC, second measure DEFGA AGFED, etc..So each measure is split up into 2 groups of 5 notes. I don't understand fully the rhythm I'm supposed to be playing. My teacher said to no longer think of it as "1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and...etc". I'm very off with the metronome. Ugh.

    Step 3 is 2 groups of 6 notes in each measure. Step 4 is 2 groups of 7 notes in each measure. I'm having the same problem with Step 4. Step 5 is not so bad b/c it's just playing 16th notes: CDEF GABC and back down CBAG FEDC, etc.

    Any suggestions on how to play those other steps? Hope this doesn't seem like too stupd of a question, heh. :D

  2. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Don't forget that you can vary the rhythm. The rhythm of the notes can be played by feel in this drill. This is your chance to take what could be a mundane drill and make it musical. I think these are some of the building blocks to soloing. Check out Jamey Aebersold's Vol. I for more on this.

    The attachment might give you a bit of an idea about what I mean by the variations in rhythm.
  3. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    If your teacher actually wants you to practice rhythms in the ratio of 5:2 and 7:2, he's asking you to do something very difficult. Remember that all rhythmic subdivisions can be broken down into math, but then you have to learn to feel the math.

    Before knocking yourself out on this, I'd suggest asking him/her exactly how they want you to do this. Ask your teacher to play it for you, and if you still don't get it, ask teach to break down the math for you...I find this exercise a little odd, unless it was suggested in passing as a warmup or something. If your teacher really wants you to get into these complex polyrhythms, he/she should be prepared to explain HOW they expect you to do it.

  4. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    Yeah, I understand what you mean. It's like at my lesson when he shows me how to do these things and then I get home and I'm like "uhhhhhhhh", you know, totally forgetting what I've been shown. I've been practicing this all day (well, not all day, heh, and I thought I had it figured out. I was playing a pretty good rhythm with the 5:2 then *poof* I lost it.

    I'm definately gonna have to figure this out. LOL. By the way, my teacher is very big on scales. This really isn't exactly a warmup, but a technique builder and to help me learn the scales. He reallllly presses learning the scales. I'd say he's obsessed. :D

    By the way, Jazzbo, my system here couldn't play the zip file. :(

  5. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    Stephanie, the file Jazzbo made available needs to be "un-zipped" it's a compressed file.

    What your teacher may be after is this:

    1e&a2 3e&a4

    In other words CDEF as sixteenth notes and the G as a quarter note, GFED as sixteenth notes and C as a quarter note.

    For the six notes:

    1e&a2& 3e&a4&

    CDEF as sixteenth notes, GA as eight notes.

    For the seven notes:

    1e&a2e& 3e&a4e&

    CDEFGA as sixteenth notes, B as a eight note.

    This is one possibility, does it sound like the patterns that your teacher played?

    PS: Here are some other ideas

  6. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    Thanks Phil.

    Actually, my teacher was playing what sounded like 8th notes, but then he's like "don't think of them as 8th notes". It was kind of like this:

    1+2+3 +4+1+ etc...

    But somehow I am not clicking in right with the metronome.

    My teacher gave me this exercise photocopied from a book. I wish I knew what book it was it'd be a little easier to explain if someone has the book. All I know is it's page 14. And the title of the exercise is Practice Method For Chord Scales and the description starts with "The following section deals with a way to gain fluency of technique and familiarity with each of the scales on the chord-scale chart..." Then it shows the exercise in Steps.
  7. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA

    The file I included was just zipped for size. See, I wrote some rhythmic ideas out on Finale's Notepad, but I could only attach it as an image, but the image was too big, so I compressed it. If you unzip the file, you can open it as an image, to possibly lend some rhythmic ideas, but it's pretty much what Phil was saying.
  8. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    Thanks Jazzbo,

    I am unable to 'unzip' it myself b/c I'm on WebTV and can't do such things. :(

    Ugh. Today I tried again playing the exercises against the metronome. I thought I had it, I was getting it in my mind correctly, but still I couldn't play it against the metronome. Blech! :mad:
  9. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    I'll see what I can do to post it.
  10. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    From the way you described it, sounds like quintuplets. IMHO, a similar "gallop" feel to a triplet except with more notes...

    to count 'em, try: (was this suggested before? If so, sorry)

    1 2

    3 4
    tri-pl-et-an-a etc...

    (edit: the formatting really screwed this up!)

    If you do the math, the 2nd and 4th beats should come halfway between the 2nd and 3rd notes in the 'tuplet.

    Hope that makes sense... this does sound like a weird way to learn scales...
  11. from my experience a CHORD SCALE is actually an arpeggio...not a modal linear scale.

    i know this doesn't help you with your question, but, i've found this to be commonly accepted.

  12. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    I've never heard it used that way before.....
  13. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    Like BLINKY, I have never heard of this definition before.
  14. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Me too neither. IME, the whole point of an arpeggio is that it is NOT a scale, and vice versa.
  15. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    True. Ok, thought I was gonna get more confused than I already am here. :confused: :D

    Actually, I am beginning to get the hang of this exercise. I want to thank everyone who gave their suggestions here. It was a hard exercise to explain.

    EX: Step 2 asked for 5 notes. CDEFG GFEDC, DEFGA AGFED, etc. I set my metronome at a nice pace of 80bpm, playing 8th notes. CDEFG was simply '1 and 2 and 3'. The 'and' after the 3-beat would be the G descending back down. So GFEDC would be 'and 4 and 1 and'. So i was confusing to think of it as a simple '1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and' pattern, because it isn't. And I was not able to play that 'and' (G) in synch with the metronome so it was throwing the rest of the beats off.
  16. here's how some "pros" view a chord scale:

    C - E - G - B - D - F - A - C.

    as opposed to a linear scale:

    C - D - E - F - G - A - B - C.


    it don't really matter.


  17. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    I guess it's debatable on the definition of 'chord scale'. I was just calling this subject that b/c that was what the exercise was titled. The exercise was saying something about a chord-scale chart. :confused:

    But, basically, this exercise was going through the modes.

    But, anyway, just an update on the exercise. I had my lesson on Monday, and what I was doing in my last post my teacher said was correct. I can't believe I actually played them perfect too. :)
  18. stephanie,

    i was just stirring up the pot with meaningless definitions.


    congrats on the lesson!!!!