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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I can run the scale well but I find myself doing the same root to wherever runs when I hit that chord/scale? How did you guys /gals get to where you could stick that into a solo in a way that made sense to what was going on. I've heard brecker do it well? Thanks Keith
 

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I think of b9 chords as a harmonic minor scale (G7b9 or G7b9b13 = C harmonic minor starting on G), and the altered scale (especially for #9 chords) as a half step up from the root, and play that melodic minor scale. So a G7 would be the Ab melodic minor scale, but starting on G (or B maj.7 b5). Then it's easier for me to think of those triads instead of 12 weird altered scales.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My teacher today told me to use them as sub chord scales. So if you see a G7 thing C#7 with the G subbing for the F#. So a lydian dominant scale starting on the sharp 4? I'll have to thing but I get how that leads you to easily sub chords. So you start thinking C#7 when you see a G7 resolving to C7. I also learning the harmonic minor way of looking at it but I think this will lead to new lines. also Im forcing myself to always go down the scale rather than all my patterns going up? K
 

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I try to think more about chords and adding passing tones than picking a scale for each type of chord. If you have an altered dominant (D) you get all the fun extensions if you lean into a minor seven chord on the b3 (F).
 

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This might be an over-simplified approach, but most of the time over a V7b9 chord I'm playing an arpeggio, usually off the 3rd of the chord up to the b9 (which is of course a diminished 7 chord), at least in a ii-V (or ii-V-I) situation. I realize that's not an altered scale, but it might be a start and some other altered tones could be added...
 

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I try to think more about chords and adding passing tones than picking a scale for each type of chord. If you have an altered dominant (D) you get all the fun extensions if you lean into a minor seven chord on the b3 (F).
+1 but I guess it helps me to think of the triads of the harmonic or melodic minor scales for some reason. I do wish I could stop thinking about all this stuff and get the sounds so solidly in my ears that my fingers just connect to my brain!!
 

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The altered scale contains lots of notes that add tension to the dominant 7th function (7, b9, #9, #11, b13). Maybe try working on where each of these "tension" tones should resolve to for the I chord. That gives you some targets to hit when you're building lines. After that you can work on delaying or anticipating the resolutions.
 

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I like to think of that scale as containing a pentatonic with all of the colourful notes: eg. over G7 play Bb minor pentatonic - gets you the #9, #11, b13, b7, b9.
 

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I can run the scale well but I find myself doing the same root to wherever runs when I hit that chord/scale? How did you guys /gals get to where you could stick that into a solo in a way that made sense to what was going on. I've heard brecker do it well? Thanks Keith
The more ways you can think about it the more approaches you can take to it. I'll take B7b9 for example because that is easy to talk about. Sometimes I think B altered scale which gives me certain lines. Sometimes I think C melodic minor which gives me other lines. Sometimes I think of the tritone of F7#11 which gives me totally different lines. Sometimes I even think of G7 bebop but with a b6 so GF#FEbDCBAG. So in that case I am thinking GBDFACEb. I play something different.

As an outside note, I think of altered different than 99% of other people. Early on I figured out that B7alt is Bb major scale but get rid of the root and substitute B. That is the way I think of it since my first year of college...... Thinking that way gives you 6 of the 7 notes immediately. Then you substitute a half step up note for the root and you are set.

If you rely on one approach you are limited in your lines. You want as many approaches to a sound or chord as possible to give you more options........
 

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Couple of other ways of generating lines on an altered scale are to play a minor 6 pentatonic a half step up (corresponding to the melodic minor scale), and major triads on the b5 and b6 (e.g., on Galt you would play patterns based on the Db and Eb major triads).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
that is cool and easy to remember
Couple of other ways of generating lines on an altered scale are to play a minor 6 pentatonic a half step up (corresponding to the melodic minor scale), and major triads on the b5 and b6 (e.g., on Galt you would play patterns based on the Db and Eb major triads).
 
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