The melodic minor is perhaps one of the most useful scales in modern jazz. This etude is a sample from some of the material in my book, Melodic Minor Scale Jazz Studies: Tonal Organizations And Applications Over Dominant 7th Chords. There are 5 melodic minor scales that fit well over every dominant 7th chord. They fit well because they contain various upper partial tension tones, like +11, -9, etc., (as well as diatonic tension tones) that call for resolution to tonic.
In this etude I demonstrate 10 different ways to apply these scales. Each idea is based upon the ii7-V7-I progression in the key of C major (D-7/G7/C Major 7) to give you a sense of comparison between each application of the scales. The first 5 patterns in the etude are based upon the use of each single scale (D minor, C minor, F minor, Bb minor, Ab minor, respectively) and the last 5 are based upon combining the scales in various ways.
See if you can analyze these 5 and determine which scales are being used. By working with minor scales this way, not only can you broaden your understanding of other modern jazz tonal concepts, such as triad pairs, altered pentatonic scales, etc., but also, you can approach modern jazz harmony and linear improvisation from a slightly different perspective. Click the links below to download the pdf and to hear a midi version of it: