Etude 34-Major Triad And Major 7+5 From Melodic Minor

Here is a simple way to organize the melodic minor scale into a pair of tonalities that creates an interesting melodic color. Take a look at the example below:

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The first four notes spell out the F major triad (which is the IV chord of C minor) in an inversion starting from the 5th of the chord. The next four notes are an inverted Eb Maj7+5 chord (which is the III7 chord of C minor), starting on the 3rd of the chord and descending.

The pattern continues, making variations in its inversions. The last four-note group of the pattern make an angular shift (the Eb ascending up a major 7th to D) to lend a sort of bebop contour to the line. I end the line on the tonic note (C), in order to put it back into the tonal context of the minor key from which it was organized.

As you play through it, you’ll hear that the line has a bit of a dominant quality. This is because of the push/pull tendency between the triad and the more symmetrical quality of the Maj7+5 chord, which together, imply a 13th chord with a raised 11th (F13+11, in the example). For this reason, this organization of the scale works well, not only as a tonal color over minor tonalities, but also as a harmonic reorganization over dominant 7th chords.

If you’d like to explore more in-depth how to apply the melodic minor scale over dominant 7th chords to create a vast array of tonal possibilities, please consider at my e-book, Melodic Minor Scale Jazz Studies: Tonal Organizations and Applications Over Dominant 7th Chords, or take a look at some of the other jazz etudes I’ve posted on this site that address melodic minor scales.

Click the links below to get a free, downloadable pdf copy of this etude, and to hear a midi version of it:

Major Triad And Major 7+5 From Melodic Minor-pdf

Major Triad And Major 7+5  From Melodic Minor-midi