Jazz Etude 1-Rootless Melodic Minor Scale In Triad Form

The ascending melodic minor scale, often referred to as the “jazz minor” is highly useful over V-I chord progressions. In this etude I’ve formed two triads from the scale without using the root of the scale. So for example, in C melodic minor (C, D, EB, F, G, A, B) I form two triads: D minor and Eb augmented (D-F-A and Eb-G-B). As you can tell I use only six notes of the scale, leaving out the root. The combination of these triads has a very distinct sound, melodic, but almost symmetrical or atonal sounding (for want of a better word, a more “modern” sound).

This particular triad pattern would work nicely resolving over several V-I progressions. For example, A7 to D Major, D7 to G Major and B7 to E Major (used most typically). Rather than putting one pattern in all 12 keys, I instead alter each pattern to give a variety of suggestions for you to practice. Some of the patterns are polymetric (e.g., 5/8 pattern over 4/4) but the entire etude is written in 4/4. This and many other ideas using the melodic minor scale in interesting ways is explored in great depth in my book, Melodic Minor Scale Jazz Studies: Tonal Organizations and Applications Over Dominant 7th Chords.

Rootless Melodic Minor Scale In Triad Form pdf