Music Player Network Home Guitar Player Magazine Keyboard Magazine Bass Player Magazine EQ Magazine
Page 1 of 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 >
Topic Options
#2959448 - 11/24/18 07:49 AM Applying Modes Question
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
Hi folks:

It has been a while since I've been here, but I have learned so much from this forum and I am very thankful. Through being here, i have learned how to apply the pentatonic scales throughout the neck and also how to move it back three frets to create a happier sounding scale.

I also tried to learn the Aeolian, Dorian, Locrian etc modes, but I think I was chewing off more than i could chew all at once.

So now I am circling back to the modes and learning how to apply them. this is where I need help.

I found a youtube teacher who was very good at teaching the basics of the modes.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7lr_FlFS14s&list=PL2So5opWVIasylMLGGJKum-pHw9ymuiKD

So now I understand that the modes are implemented by having the "shape" start at the root note to "tonic" that you wish to start at. So for example, if i wanted to play the Dorian mode in A, I would make sure that I placed the first note of the Dorian 'pattern" on the A.

So, for example, i'd start at the 5th fret of the low E string and I'd place my first finger there. I would then place my third finger on the 7th fret on that same string, and my pinky on the 8th fret of that same string.

Then I would put my first finger on the 5th fret of the A string and my third finger on the 7th fret of that same A string.

The next location would be the same formation, starting on the 7th fret of the A string

I have three questions (to start with)

1. To continue with the Dorian scale, is it just a matter of continuing to place that shape further down the neck until you run out of frets? (understanding that when you get to the B string, you have to shift a fret) ?

2. What are the most common scales used in rock music? I heard it is the Dorian and Max.....? (however you spell that). Is that true?

3. What is the relationship between soloing with the pentatonic scale and the modes mentioned above? Can you start with a pentatonic approach and then switch over to a Dorian or Aeolian formation? Is that common?

Thank-you

Charles

Top
GP Island
#2959467 - 11/24/18 10:05 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
I think yer looking at these ideas in the wrong way, that is as rules about how to play (as in yer example of how to finger the notes).
Modes are simply various inversions of scales.
They developed over a long time (rather than being a single concept) as European church-based musos (who did have deep concerns abt rules) either developed ideas or accepted them from folk musicians & from other cultures.

There are a lotta books you should look through to find the historic contexts for all this but the most basic thing in actual practice is that the modes generally used are, in essence, versions of the major scale, staring on the notes other than the tonic (aka the 1).

Start w/ knowing what the major scale is & how it relates to the common minor scale.
Don't worry so much abt what's "the right way" to play as getting a mental concept abt how their sound & the effects they create musically.
That, rather than rules, is what will enable you to understand how they're structured & to use them effectively.

More later ...but to answer one Q you asked, the most common mode in rock music is the Mixolydian, which can be found by starting the major scale on the 5th & playing to the next 5th (or by playing the white keys of the piano from G to G).
If you examine it, it's just a major scale w/ the 7th shifted down to b7.

As far as shifting between scales or modes, yes you can do that b/c that may be what the music yer playing needs. You can also use notes that are outside a scale or mode, even while staying within that scale.
Know why ?
Because that may be what the music needs !
What music calls for is sounds & that trumps rules.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2959492 - 11/24/18 01:00 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
Hi D and thank-you. More and more, i am appreciating the value of listening to what my ears tell me, more than anything else. At the same time, i like to try to understand things like modes, scales etc in order to better guide my starting points.

I'm going to give the Mixolydian a go and report back once I have had a chance to.

Having played the Aelion mode, I find that it gives off a different feel than the pentatonic approach. More and more, i am finding that i mix the pentatonic approach with other approaches, my ears are getting better at predicting what would work and what wouldn't.

My biggest challenge seems to be how to call upon known 'rules' with my own ears.

My focus will now be in applying the various modes, so if there are any tips anyone can share, that would be great. tell me like I'm stupid. I won't be offended.

Top
#2959497 - 11/24/18 01:40 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Cool, MF ( shocked ) !

Per the Mixolydian mode, if ya consider it, It's just the major scale w/ a b7, hence it ubiquity in blues-based rock---it's a natural fit.
Similarly the Aeolian, which is just the common minor scale.
I could list them all in order but you can find that in many books or even at Wikipedia.
[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mode_(music) ].

They all can be considered & experimented with by playing a major scale first on the tonic (Ionian), then the 2 of the scale (Dorian---which might be the 2nd most used in rock since it's just a minor scale with b7).
Go on down the line (major scale starting on the 3rd note, etc) & you have them all...although there are other more esoteric modes, as well, & if you wanted to you could create yer own.

I suggest to pick a few sources, book or online & use those as yer reference base.
It's good to look at more than one b/c sometimes terms an writer uses may be confusing or they may expound an idiosyncratic idea.
When I started studying theory it took me a while to realize that classical terminology used (uses ?) a lotta terms that could be much simpler or even excised from use.
For ex., when I read abt a "minor 7th" I thought of the chord when the writer meant only a b7 melodically or harmonically, not as part of a chord.

Also, while gtr is where we are as musos, a kb is the easiest way to get a fast idea of the diffs between modes b/c they all are variations on the basic major scale & can be compared visually & theoretically by playing the white keys---much easier & more apparent than they look on the gtr.

The downside is thinking that the theoretic understanding is the same as understanding their use.
That use, if based solely on theory, will always be sorta mechanical, which is kinda OK as a student, but will not allow you to develop as freely as working via yer ear.
There can be more uses of modes than conventionally applied.

Here're some ideas you may find helpful:
When studying any musical concept find practical examples of its use in songs & consider how it works in that context.
Pick some tunes & investigate what modes they use.

It can also be helpful to not try to do much at the same time.
Play a buncha tunes that all involve 1 mode in a single session & at another time test-drive another mode.
I think their distinctive qualities will sink in better that way.
Then when you get some of the more usual modes under hand, branch off into the odder ones.

Best of, Buddy !
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2959566 - 11/25/18 09:07 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
A mode is more about the sound, then the scale. in fact, you can use the same scale to hear all of the modes...Here is a simple way to understand/"hear" the modes:

Play the C Major scale on the 8th fret:
---------------------------------5----
--------------------------5-6-8-------
-------------------4-5-7--------------
---------------5-7--------------------
--------5-7-8-------------------------
----8---------------------------------
From here, we can do all of the modes. For example, Start on the fifth fret instead of the 7th and do 5-7-8 on the low E string, then the rest, the same. Suddenly, you have an A minor scale, from the same notes. The Minor scale is also known as the "Aeolian" mode. It's sound happens ever time you start on the 6th note of a scale and play the same notes. So, in C Major scale, starting on an A instead of a C, but playing the same notes, will make it sound like an A minor scale instead of a C major scale.

You can use this to hear all of the modes. Pick any note in the above scale and use it as your root note. If you start on the 2nd note, for example, the "D", you will get the Dorian mode in D. If you start on the 4th note, the "F", you will get the Lydian mode in F.

Here are the different note orders to hear the different modes:
C D E F G A B C - C Ionian Mode (Major)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1

...D E F G A B C D - D Dorian Mode
...2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2

......E F G A B C D E - E Phrygian Mode
......3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3

.........F G A B C D E F - F Lydian Mode
.........4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4

............G A B C D E F G - G Mixolydian Mode
............5 6 7 1 2 3 4 5

...............A B C D E F G A - A Aeolian Mode (Minor)
...............6 7 1 2 3 4 5 6

..................B C D E F G A B - B Locrian Mode
..................7 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2959567 - 11/25/18 09:13 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I have a section on modes and the sounds they make (what they are good for) in the theory section. You can find it here:
http://forums.musicplayer.com/ubbthreads..._Tr#Post1582022
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2959628 - 11/25/18 06:12 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
Thanks to all. It will take me a few days to a week to absorb this. I will post again once I have.

Top
#2959677 - 11/26/18 07:44 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
A String and D

I continue to read your posts and I have also reviewed the links provided.

i have decided to start with the Mixolydian Mode. The way i best learn is to actually apply it and start soloing to a background track. Can anyone recommend a background track or two, where this mode would work?

I think my first step will be to feel comfortable playing the Mixolydian Mode, but I'll need a few tracks to solo over and need help selecting those.

A String: This is what you wrote after Mixolydian Mode description. " is a great scale for dominant and dominant-7 chords. Great to use after the pentatonic blues scale to add a cool jazzy feel.:

Based on that, does that mean I could use a backing track in Am for example, (like this one - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Yu9sN7E194


and solo using the pentatonic and then switch to Mixolydian Mode. Would that work?

Top
#2959697 - 11/26/18 09:29 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
While on record as looking at musical Qs as a bit outside The Rules, I'd be remiss if not pointing out that when using modes yer still just using scales & those still hafta fit the musical context.
If you try to fit a mode w/maj 3rd in over a minor chord, yer gonna hafta do some shifting.

As you already seem cognizant, also, as you play any piece of music yer gonna shift between scale concepts as the chords shift. Little music actually stays in one tonicity throughout.

I suggest that you use a slightly diff approach.
Pick the music you want to practice, play along enough to find the notes involved & consider which modes/scales would be involved.
That way yer investigating what the music naturally calls for.
Use that as yer main approach &, as a separate experiment, try applying particular modes to songs to see how they fit or feel in those contexts...which is what your plan sounds like to me.

Sometimes it will seem to fit perfectly, sometimes it will stretch the musical atmosphere, sometimes it will seem totally Out.
Those reactions you feel will be the determining factor in how applicable the mode/scale is in that context.

Sometimes what works in one section of a song is diff from what works in another section.
For ex., in the track you linked, if you matched Mixolydian directly to the chords, it would fit most conventionally over the 5 chord.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2959715 - 11/26/18 10:40 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Scott Fraser Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/05
Posts: 5293
Loc: Los Angeles
I have to say I've never understood relating modes to anything other than the key I'm in. Theoretically, yes, but practically, no. I learned the classical (church) modes as geometric patterns or shapes, which makes it easy to relate any mode to any key. But they're just scales, & any chord can have a scale played over it, & you just determine whether it needs a major or minor third, a major or minor seventh, & a major or minor sixth. And you're not going to play a minor second in most Western music, flat fifths, augmented fourths are colors mostly found in jazz & blues, etc. Theoretical concerns may complicate the process.
And, Music Fusion, be aware that any pentatonic scale is just a subset of a mode. They're not exclusive or different at all. Modes just add 2 more notes to a pentatonic. Play what sounds right over chords, i.e. no dissonant notes, & figure out what scale it is later.
_________________________
Scott Fraser

Top
#2959718 - 11/26/18 10:46 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Scott Fraser]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Good points, SF, esp abt the pentatonic being just a subset of larger scales that can vary as one select which notes to add.
&, if not too obvious, there are 2 pentatonic scale: the happy major one & the bluesy one.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2959767 - 11/26/18 03:00 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
"I suggest that you use a slightly diff approach.
Pick the music you want to practice, play along enough to find the notes involved & consider which modes/scales would be involved.
That way yer investigating what the music naturally calls for."

Thanks again folks. I understand the value of experimenting and simply playing modes and or scales over music to see which fits, but that would mean that i'd have to learn all the modes before taking that approach.

In the spirit of walk before you run, is there a piece of music that i can practice the Mixolydian to? I know my learning style and what works best for me is to carve out one piece at a time. Maybe I can get into experimentation with my ears. once I've learned a few modes, but I'd like to try starting with one. Any suggestions on music to play over?


Edited by Music Fusion (11/26/18 03:08 PM)

Top
#2959773 - 11/26/18 03:12 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Quote:
but that would mean that i'd have to learn all the modes before taking that approach

No, not really.
You will always only be working on one thing at a time, no matter how you try to approach this.
As I mentioned before, my suggestions are that you work on narrow areas & try to hear how they function.
Could it be that yer tryna get quick answers to Qs that don't work the way you hope ?
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2959931 - 11/27/18 06:35 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Found this for you:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XiV1zXaQG_w

You can use the A minor scale's notes on the fifth fret (So you don't have to memorize a new pattern) and this will result in you playing the G Mixolydian scale. (They are also the same notes as the C Major which the A minor is the relative minor of. This way, when you play the 5th mode of the C Major, you are also playing the G Mixolydian. I know it all sounds confusing, but I want you to see how these same notes can produce different sounds depending on the chords they are played over. That is what modes really are, IMO.)
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2959951 - 11/27/18 08:00 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Originally Posted By: A String
...This way, when you play the 5th mode of the C Major, you are also playing the G Mixolydian. I know it all sounds confusing, but I want you to see how these same notes can produce different sounds depending on the chords they are played over.


Good point abt modes technically in 1 key being applied to another.
That also reiterates that the modes mostly used are all just a series of shifts of the major scale.
In this case it could be said that using the Mixolydian mode 1 full step lower than the intended key is the equivalent to using the Aolian mode (the next higher mode in the series) in A.

But all that's a bit theoretical.
I again urge anyone studying this or any aspect of music to just start playing along some plan of study in order to begin grasping how all this functions, both aurally & conceptually.

As long as the approach is "tell me what to play over some chord" rather than "give me an idea how this works & how I can study it" (which has been done here, in several slightly diff ways) any student's just following directions, not learning how to hear what's happening.
Does that seem too persnickety ? grin
The best way to learn is a bit at a time & by active practice.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960025 - 11/27/18 12:26 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
@D. I used to get my students to learn the A minor scale on the 5th fret and show how you could start on the C on the fifth string to play the C Major scale; therefore teaching the idea behind the "Relative minor". Then, I would have them chime each note and play over it, using the same scale, only ending in the relative root note. So, hit a D and then play the same scale ending with the D. The sound would be a Dorian mode for D. Then Hit open E and play the same notes only ending on the E after each phrase. Then they were playing the Phrygian Mode of E. Etc. etc. It's a great way to hear how the modes sound, even though the notes are the same.
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2960051 - 11/27/18 02:14 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
& I think that's a good idea.
There've been several approaches offered here that are, in many ways, similar.
I have no criticism of any of the ideas offered so far
(other than, even in the case of my suggestions there's been no mention of singing the notes while playing as a way of deepening the internalization of pitch).

I am kinda getting the impression, however, that sometimes ppl want things defined for them w/out actually working to develop their understanding independently or recognizing that the "right" way to play music is somewhat mutable.
I could be wrong in the present instance, but I'm confused when someone keeps asking what seem to me variations on the same question.
idk
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960055 - 11/27/18 02:24 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
Hi folks:

I don't know if anything is being implied here, but last time I came here for advice on the pentatonic stuff, i took all the advice very seriously, worked very hard to learn it and I do not think i wasted anyone's time. So, I am not looking for quick answers to anything and having played by ear all of my life, and being a songwriter by trade, I realize the value of learning rather than memorizing.

So let me reset a bit.

On this page, toward the bottom, there is a diagram of the Mixolydian mode.

https://www.guitarworld.com/lessons/jazz-guitar-corner-learn-all-seven-major-modes-easy-way

I was planning,. as a starting point, to practice the fingering of this mode, and I thought it would be good to find a piece of music that it would fit over, in order for me to practise it.From there, you will notice on this same page, it shows you how to play the other modes.

In any event, i am sure I can find a backing track by looking on youtube and doing a search. i just thought someone may have thought of one to suggest.

Part of the issue is that i am not used to thinking of playing from a theoretical view at all. So, when folks refer to scales, major, minor etc., it is difficult for me to follow.

You might say I have an odd way of learning.

Top
#2960062 - 11/27/18 02:49 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Cool, MF !
Not implying yer wasting my or anyone's time, just that we may not be communicating eye-to-eye, if you see what I mean... grin

I just try to encourage ppl to develop their own identity as musos, ergo, take a gander outside the usual methods...for ex., one might finger any set of notes on any set of strings in various ways depending on where exactly they were going...dig ?
I trust you do !

Remember: what sounds the way you want it to is what's right for the music.
wave
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960098 - 11/27/18 04:48 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Larryz Offline
10k Club

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 11899
Loc: Northern California
@ Music Fusion, The teacher in the OP is one that you had last time we heard from you. Glad to see you are sticking with it and he is very good at explaining things and providing charts. The answer to your question regarding switching in and out of Pentatonic is Yes! Line up you major Ionian and minor Aeolian with the pentatonic scales. As Scott pointed out they are one and the same with just a couple of notes added. As Astring and D points out, it's all about the major scale being shifted around. Each of the modes follows the same pattern of dots as the major scale and are a part of the major scale and/or relative minor scale. The Dorian portion is favored by a lot of rock players. Line it up on your tonal center, chart it out and hopefully you'll then do the same with any mode. The pattern does not change all the way to infinity up or down the fretboard...pick a key...pick a mode...and go.


Here is another approach by David Wallimann. Call him up on YouTube by name and you will learn all kinds of tricks and theory and quick learning methods. In this clip you can start at 5:45. You will see how you can use the Dorian mode, the octave pattern concept (in the OP training link you posted), switching in and out of the Pentatonic, etc. It is a journey that you must take to understand all the good comments you are getting from the forum members as you can tell they have taken the same ride before. Check this out at 5:45 and learn to use the Dorian over a 4chord pattern moving around or staying still:



Good luck and have fun with it! cool



Edited by Larryz (11/27/18 09:01 PM)
_________________________
Take care, Larryz

Top
#2960133 - 11/27/18 08:52 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Larryz]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
No offence taken

I will circle back to this thread soon. I always like to dive into what has been suggested here, when i have solid time to do so. I find that trying to read and then do this on the fly, doesn't work for me.

So, out of respect for the time you've taken to explain stuff to me, I am going to have a go at what you have all written as soon as I can find some solid time. Which i am hoping is within the next several days.

Thank-you I will be back once I have had a chance to think about what is said here.

Top
#2960252 - 11/28/18 10:53 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Originally Posted By: Music Fusion
I find that trying to read and then do this on the fly, doesn't work for me.





Well, attention is the primary tool to exercise !
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960277 - 11/28/18 01:00 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
So, I think I've figured out why I am getting so confused.

Here's where I have been:

I have learned how to play the pentatonic scale throughout the entire neck, and i believe I am proficient at it now . Or, at least, I can do so fairly easily now.

So now, i have turned my mind back to modes, and I thought I started understanding it based on what i read here and based on that Youtube tutor that I have been following.

But every time I try to go to that next step, I see references to major scales, minor scales etc, and how modes are variation to those scales.

But it occurs to me that the reason why I do not understand some of what is being said, is that i have totally skipped over learning basic scales. So while I can drum up a half decent solo now, using the pentatonic scale throughout the neck, the excitement of all that, resulted in my skipping the basics.

So, I guess my question is- before diving any further into the modes, should I take a step back and learn the basic scales? I am guessing the answer is yes.

Stupid question- so how do I approach that? What are the basic scales to learn? I know many of you have done a lot of great work posting info to this site in the past, so I am not asking anyone to reinvent the wheel.

if my assumption is correct that I need to step back and learn the basic scales, is there is link to these basics that someone has already created? I suspect there is, but I have seen so many good posts and links from this site, that I am losing track of where I seen what.

Advice please?

Thank-you







Edited by Music Fusion (11/28/18 01:03 PM)

Top
#2960295 - 11/28/18 02:33 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
There are many scales which are basically a pentatonic with extra notes or notes missing. However, a mode is basically a pentatonic scale played over a chord, other than the root. This creates a myriad of cool, different sounds.

For sure, learn the Major and Minor scales. Depending on your style, I would also learn the Blues scale (Which again is just a variation on the pentatonic). The Major is THE scale. The minor is actually just a mode of it. As for the other scales, I'd save those for when you understand modes. No need to convolute things.
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2960298 - 11/28/18 02:35 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
@d, your approach was perfectly fine. Just, when someone is having trouble with a concept, the teacher in me looks for other ways to explain. There are many ways to understand modes.
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2960311 - 11/28/18 03:28 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: A String]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Originally Posted By: A String
There are many ways to understand modes.



I guess I was stressing a learning method concept more than the desired A to the Q.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960315 - 11/28/18 03:50 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Originally Posted By: Music Fusion
So, I think I've figured out why I am getting so confused.

Here's where I have been:

I have learned how to play the pentatonic scale throughout the entire neck, and i believe I am proficient at it now . Or, at least, I can do so fairly easily now.

So now, i have turned my mind back to modes, and I thought I started understanding it based on what i read here and based on that Youtube tutor that I have been following.

But every time I try to go to that next step, I see references to major scales, minor scales etc, and how modes are variation to those scales.

But it occurs to me that the reason why I do not understand some of what is being said, is that i have totally skipped over learning basic scales. So while I can drum up a half decent solo now, using the pentatonic scale throughout the neck, the excitement of all that, resulted in my skipping the basics.

So, I guess my question is- before diving any further into the modes, should I take a step back and learn the basic scales? I am guessing the answer is yes.

Stupid question- so how do I approach that? What are the basic scales to learn? I know many of you have done a lot of great work posting info to this site in the past, so I am not asking anyone to reinvent the wheel.

if my assumption is correct that I need to step back and learn the basic scales, is there is link to these basics that someone has already created? I suspect there is, but I have seen so many good posts and links from this site, that I am losing track of where I seen what.

Advice please?

Thank-you!



In re the highlighted text in the quote, I don't think you need to that.
First, that looks to me like another diversion from directly pursuing what yer intent is.
Moreover, & to paraphrase John Lennon, who wasn't the most schooled musician but was extremely skilled at expressing himself musically
(& who, FWIW, unlike McCartney, was never recorded singing off pitch),
"No matter where you start, it's where you start."

Anywhat, I think you should stick with this idea:
The 2 pentatonic scales can be considered the basis of the other scales.
Yer already proficient at that.
Think of the main modes & everything else as just the pentatonic scales w/a couple other notes added (as has been mentioned above).

I think that will actually help you w/understanding the structures of modes/scales b/c instead of tryna reconceptualize a buncha new note sets, you'd simply be taking the basic pentatonic forms (which you already have a grasp of) & test-driving the added notes.

I think that would both save you a few steps & emphasize more clearly the diffs those added notes make.

In any case, don't worry so much abt how you learn but realize that if yer learning something, yer learning & sooner or later yer concepts will deepen & that ("Oh, Man !") even then you'll never know everything abt music's possibilities. grin
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
#2960372 - 11/28/18 09:16 PM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: d / halfnote]
Music Fusion Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/27/15
Posts: 160
Loc: Ontario
Hi folks

Everything you all said makes sense. So, it is not a matter of your teaching skills or styles. Its just a matter of it clicking, and sooner or later it will. I'm a very determined learner.

SomethingnD last said, sounds like it can work for me. If I think of modes as just variations on the pentatonic scales, it will take a lot of the mystery out for me. So, if that light, let me start by asking the following:

1,\. You mentioned the two pentatonic scales. I know the minor scale, and i know moving those shapes 3 frets back, produces a happier sounding solo- is that what you mean by the two pentatonic scales (the minor pentatonic, and then the movement of those shapes 3 frets back)?

2. If i understand this whole thing correctly, modes are accomplished by starting a particular"shape" on a particular root note. So starting that same shape on a different root notes, produces the same mode, but starting at a different root.

But, at the same time, rather than thinking of it that way- you can also think of a mode as a variation on the pentatonic scale.

Correct?

So.......I need to find a logical place to start. Maybe with the aeolian? Maybe find a picture of that mode and determine how it relates to the pentatonic? And hopefully that will resonate and stick?

Yes?

Top
#2960426 - 11/29/18 08:23 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
A String Administrator Offline
Admin
10k Club

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 12215
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Okay, working with what you have...
The reason that dropping the scale down three frets give you a "Happier sound" is because you are playing a mode; the Ionian Mode or Major scale.

Let's specify to simplify. So, playing the Minor scale in A, from the 5th fret. You get a minor sound. However, you have noticed that, when you drop the same pattern down three frets, you get a "happier sound". Let's look at why and how this can be used to understand modes:

When you move a scale around, you are simply changing it's key. So, dropping the A minor scale, down one fret, will give you the Ab Minor scale (G# minor). Dropping it down two frets will give you the G minor scale and dropping it three frets will give you the Gb (F#) minor scale. You can see how the note you land on becomes the new key.

Now, If you strum an F# minor chord and play that pattern on the 2nd fret, you will hear that it is clearly the F# minor scale. However, as you noticed, it also seems to have a happy sound if you play it over an A Major. This is the basis of modes. Different sounds/moods from the same notes, depending on what you are playing it over.

Now, let's look at what's going on:

When you play those notes on the third fret, over an A chord, you are playing the A Major scale. The notes A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G#, A. So that's why it has a "Happy sound" here but why does it also has a minor sound if you play it over the F# minor chord? Well, have a look at the modes I listed. You can see that the 6th note in the A Major scale is the F#. This means, when you are playing over an F#, you get the Aeolian Mode, also known as the Minor scale. Boom. The sounds have changed, using the same notes. What if we played that same pattern on the 2nd fret over an E? Well, the E is the 5th note in the A Major scale so the "Sound" we would get is more jazzy. It is known as the Mixolydian Mode.

You can see that, moving the same pattern up and down the neck and varying the root note you are using in the scale can suddenly provide endless sounds.
_________________________
Craig
The String Network Forums
My Music
My Pics

Top
#2960455 - 11/29/18 10:10 AM Re: Applying Modes Question [Re: Music Fusion]
d / halfnote Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 7594
Loc: no longer lexington, Kenfunky,...
Originally Posted By: Music Fusion
1. You mentioned the two pentatonic scales. I know the minor scale, and i know moving those shapes 3 frets back, produces a happier sounding solo- is that what you mean by the two pentatonic scales (the minor pentatonic, and then the movement of those shapes 3 frets back)?

As AString's already answered,that's yes.
& that's b/c all this stuff is just shifting the view one takes of any mode's tonic note.

Originally Posted By: Music Fusion

2. If i understand this whole thing correctly, modes are accomplished by starting a particular"shape" on a particular root note. So starting that same shape on a different root notes, produces the same mode, but starting at a different root.

But, at the same time, rather than thinking of it that way- you can also think of a mode as a variation on the pentatonic scale.

Correct?

Mostly correct. I think you have the concept in general.
But the starting point gives the mode a diff name, so while they're all kinda like a DNA helix that repeats, each sequence segment gets its own ID.
{BTW, in identifying notes there are 3 ways:
--- the sound they have (which is,I think,the most important to internalize);
--- their note name (A...B...C...etc);
--- their position in a scale set designated by number [1 = tonic, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 (octave)]
That last is also maybe a better way to realize their overall relationships than by letter names...& is handy for when you get to analyses of multi-octave lines & some pianist is talking abt 10ths (an octave + 3rd) & other extended intervals. grin

See, the 2 versions of the pentatonic (or the whole system of modes) are just variations in how some of the notes relate to each other aurally.
The way a b3 differs from a M3 or how a b7 or M 7 give the music being played diff emotive or expressive feels.
That same effect comes when any notes in the scale are varied.
Octave & 5th, octave &b5 or octave & #5---all give a diff feel.
Same w/varying the 6th (which will come into play later when you start considering the variant forms of minor scales, a subject made overly complicated in trad theory & one which you needn't get hung up abt right now).

Originally Posted By: Music Fusion

So.......I need to find a logical place to start. Maybe with the aeolian? Maybe find a picture of that mode and determine how it relates to the pentatonic? And hopefully that will resonate and stick?

Yes?

That's basically what I meant, however I think that's still tryna look at this from the destination rather than the starting point.

I'd start by taking some tunes/chord progs/pieces of music that you like & are already familiar with
& examining the notes involved to see/hear how they make themselves distinctive to you.

That will give you a direct idea of the effect these note variations make you or others feel
(which will not always be the same for everyone but will tend to be similar)
& yer familiarity w/them will make it both easier to recognize these effects
as well as make the study more fun than if yer starting w/material that yer not familiar with or may not even like
.

Never make yer studies into chores.
_________________________
d=halfnote

Top
Page 1 of 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 >


Moderator:  A String, Bluesape, myles_rose