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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ive been looking for some help with the Bb Blues scale. Im planning on auditioning for the Sr. Jazz band and my high school, and one of the audition requirements is to be able to solo with the Bb blues scale. I was wondering what chords are used in the Bb blues, so that I can practice using the scale. I use band in a box to generate accompaniment, but I dont know what chords to enter! any help would be great, thanks!
 

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I can send you some BIAB blues files if you'd like. But you might want to dig in the software's library as I'm sure it has some blues charts.

Victor.
 

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I think the simplest version would be:

Bb7 - Bb7 - Bb7 - Bb7
Eb7 - Eb7 - Bb7 - Bb7
Cm7 - F7 - Bb7 - Bb7

You could spice it up the second line (bars 5-8) a little, and perhaps add a turn-back at the end like this.

Bb7 - Eb7 - Bb7 - Bb7
Eb7 - Em7b5 - Bb7 - G7
Cm7 - F7 - Bb7 G7 Cm7 F7
 

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Or, if you are just getting your feet wet and don't want to complicate things, you could make it even simpler:

Bb7///Bb7///Bb7///Bb7///

Eb7///Eb7///Bb7///Bb7///

F7///Eb7///Bb7///F7///

There are a million variations on Blues Changes Cranky Bear. If you are just starting out, I'd recommend going here:

http://www.saxontheweb.net/Rock_n_Roll/

and check out all the articles on blues scales,chords, etc.

Keep it simple, keep it fun and swing. Good Luck.
 

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When they say Bb blues, they mean Bb concert pitch, not your Bb.
so if you're on Alto, you would be in the key of G
on tenor, the key of C.

Alto sax blues scale in concert Bb...

G Bb C C# D F G

Tenor Blues scale in concert Bb

C Eb F F# G Bb C
 

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and now...the chords...Concert Bb blues
on Eb Alto sax (your Key of G)


G7 C7 G7 G7

C7 C#O7 G7 E7+9

a-7 D7 G7 E7 a-7 D7

Each chord is four beats long except the last 4 chords (turn around )They each get two beats.
 

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Are you required to play only notes from the blues scale? If so, you won't actually be playing the chords (although you will be playing some altered chords in a sense), so it's important to use phrasing effectively. The 12-bar blues is essentially three phrases, one phrase for each 4 bars. Listen for the chord change at the end of each 4-bar segment. Also listen to a blues singer to get the right idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The band director will be playing the chords on the Piano whilst I improvise, which Is why I wanted the chords so that I could generate an accompaniement in "band in a box," for practicing. He also said he might use some "interesting" chords to see how I could adapt to changes. Thank you everyone for all your help!
 

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Cranky Bear said:
The band director will be playing the chords on the Piano whilst I improvise, which Is why I wanted the chords so that I could generate an accompaniement in "band in a box," for practicing. He also said he might use some "interesting" chords to see how I could adapt to changes. Thank you everyone for all your help!
But are you required to stick to the notes of the blues scale? If not, you'll want to learn the important chord tones, etc. The original post sounded like you are only supposed to use the blues scale, which limits your note choices and would require a somewhat different approach than playing the changes.
 

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I love these basic blues threads!

Tip: when your practicing, make sure you practice starting from every note in the scale, not just up and down from the tonic. Also, try to think rhythmically too: think about moving your bar line so you create some pick-up notes leading to the strong one beat.

If you want some inspiration: check out the master of Bflat blues on alto:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFDcUY6HiAo

Cheers,
Rory

ps. what part of Canada?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
rleitch said:
I love these basic blues threads!

Tip: when your practicing, make sure you practice starting from every note in the scale, not just up and down from the tonic. Also, try to think rhythmically too: think about moving your bar line so you create some pick-up notes leading to the strong one beat.

If you want some inspiration: check out the master of Bflat blues on alto:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFDcUY6HiAo

Cheers,
Rory

ps. what part of Canada?


I'm In B.C
 

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Cranky Bear said:
I'm not required to stick to the blues notes, He just said he wants me to use them in order to demonstrate an understanding of them, but that I am also free to use other notes as well.


Ah ha, then in that case, do a search of blues or blues scale on this forum and you'll get a lot of good ideas. I guess your question on the chords has been answered, though.

Here's a tip that might help: Play off the Bb7 (using the maj 3rd) during the first 4 bars, then switch to the blues scale on the second 4 bars. Of course, as rleitch said, don't just run the scale; use the notes in a melodic fashion.

All the best on your audition.
 
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