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Thread: Explanation needed... playing scales over a Bmin7 and Bmin6 progression.. please help

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  1. #1
    Registered User nat_louie's Avatar
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    Explanation needed... playing scales over a Bmin7 and Bmin6 progression.. please help

    Hi to all,

    i recently watched this video of a fusion player named Theodore Ziras, and he played an improvisation througgh a backing track which had a progression of Bmin7 and Bmin6. He explained that he uses the bmin pentatonic scale, the b dorian, and the arpegios of bmin7 which he said that it was the relative arpegio for b dorian. He did use these scales while soloing and really sounded great. Now i understand that the bmin pentatonic scale would sound right over the progression. And my queastions are:
    Why did the b dorian mode sounded better when he played it over the progression knowing the b dorian mode is the second mode of the AMaj scale? isnt it like he played the Amaj scale in the Bmin7 chord progression which i dont know why, still sounded good.
    And how does the Bmin7 arpegio became the relative arpegio for b dorian? i really can't understand how that works, I'm sorry about this coz i really am confused and im not that huge on theory i just know how to play pentatonic scales and wanded to learn more about these in-depth stuff.
    please help me with this, i would gladly appreciate it.

    thanks and Godbless
    -louir

  2. #2
    Mad Scientist forgottenking2's Avatar
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    Hello there. If you look at the spelling of a Bm7 (B D F# A) and a Bm6 (B D F# G#) and then take a look over a B dorian scale B c# D e F# G# A, you will see why that scale sounds good over these chords. You could play B natural minor (aeolian for you mode guys) over the Bm7 but not over the Bm6 because the G natural of the natural minor scale would clash with the G# in your Bm6.

    Does this make sense?
    "If God had wanted us to play the piano he would've given us 88 fingers"

  3. #3
    Bedroom metalurgist LaughingSkull's Avatar
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    To say the same in different words. If you see m6 chords that usually means dorian. (melodic minor might be alternative). Other minor scales have b6.

  4. #4
    Registered User jimc8p's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nat_louie
    Why did the b dorian mode sounded better when he played it over the progression knowing the b dorian mode is the second mode of the AMaj scale? isnt it like he played the Amaj scale in the Bmin7 chord progression which i dont know why, still sounded good.
    When you think of the Dorian mode, you shouldn't immediately think of its relative ionian mode or 'parent scale.' The Dorian scale is a minor scale in its own right, with a minor chord. The only difference from natural minor is the raised 6th degree, thus the use of the m6 as laughingskull says. The minor/minor7 arpeggio and pentatonic are the simplest of note choices over a minor chord. All three minor modes (Dorian, Aeolian and Phrygian) share these notes. Filling in other intervals gives a certain flavor of 'minorness' or modal feel. The dorian 6 gives a brighter feel than standard minor.
    Quote Originally Posted by nat_louie
    And how does the Bmin7 arpegio became the relative arpegio for b dorian?
    The term 'relative arpeggio' is not technically correct in this context. Bm7 is the B dorian scale's tonic chord. (Obviously built from the first, third, fifth and seventh degrees.) As I said, all of the minor modes share the same chord/arpeggio.

    Pentatonics are a good place to branch out from since you can make them into each mode by adding various intervals.

  5. #5
    Registered User ashc's Avatar
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    It's all been said, but just to be totally explicit it's probably worth highlighting that the 6th in a min6 chord is a natural (major) 6th not a minor 6th. i.e. G# in this case, not G. Hence, the dorian mode.

    I kind of like the min6 / min7 chord combination and by coincidence I recently finished a track (a rare event in itself) with these two in the main progression...!

  6. #6
    bitter old fool Jed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nat_louie
    . . . . I'm sorry about this coz i really am confused and im not that huge on theory i just know how to play pentatonic scales and wanded to learn more about these in-depth stuff. please help me with this, i would gladly appreciate it.
    Louir,

    You really should start to learn a bit of theory . . .

    http://www.ibreathemusic.com/article/56/3

    The questions you are asking are quite simple to understand and resolve once you know the very basics of the harmonized major scale and the diatonic chord progression.

    Unfortunately, without an understanding of those concepts, I doubt if you'll really be able to understand and use the information that others are offering to you.

    cheers,

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