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Chord Scales – Essential System for Guitar

I think you agree that guitarists spend most of their time playing rhythm and chords in a group setting.

Because of this, it’s essential to develop an understanding of chords, chord scales, and chord progressions in your studies.

After learning chords, the most important next step is to run those shapes through chord scales.

Chord scales are harmonized scales played in horizontal fashion across the fretboard.

Not only do chord scales expand your understanding of harmony, they provide a new approach to playing over chord changes.

By working diatonic chord scales, you always have 7 shapes for each chord you play.

With each shape providing a different harmonic color over the underlying chord.

This opens up your fretboard and creates new avenues of exploration in your comping, chord soloing, and chord melodies.

In this lesson, you learn to build and practice chord scales and how to use them to over common chord progressions and chord qualities.

There are also two chord studies that apply chord scales to full songs in your playing.

So, grab your guitar, crank your amp, and dig into one of the most important harmonic devices, chord scales.

 

 

 

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Chord Scales Sections (Click to Skip Down)

 

 

 

 

What Are Chord Scales

 

To begin, start by learning what chord scales are and how to build these harmonic devices.

In their simplest form, chord scales can be defined as:

 

Chord scales are built by harmonizing any scale or mode across a bass string on the guitar.

 

Here’s an example of how to build a chord scales over the F major scale, in this case on the 6th string.

The first step is to play the scale across one string, either the 6th, 5th, or 4th strings.

You can see how the F major scale sits on the 6th string in this example.

 

Click to hear chord scales 1

 

chord scales guitar 1

 

Then, harmonize those notes by adding diatonic chords on top of each scale note on that single string.

That’s about it.

Here’s how that looks when you harmonize the F major scale on the 6th string using drop 3 chords.

As you see, each chord is in root position.

But, as you move forward, you apply any chord inversion to a chord scale in your guitar practice routine.

 

Click to hear chord scales 2

 

chord scales guitar 2

 

You can use any chord type when harmonizing the single-string scale, and many common guitar chords are applied to the examples below.

As well, when playing single-string scales, start on the lowest possible note to take advantage of the entire fretboard when you harmonize that scale.

You see examples of this approach, starting on the lowest possible note on any string, below.

If that seems difficult right now, not to worry.

The exercises below clear up any issues that arise when mixing chords and single-string scales on guitar.

 

 

 

 

How to Practice Chord Scales

 

Now that you know what chord scales are, look at how to maximize your time in the practice room.

Chord scales can be applied to any chord shape that you work on in your studies.

Example of common chord shapes are:

 

 

To begin your studies, learn each example in the given key.

From there, work them in multiple keys to bring them to different areas of the fretboard.

As well, each chord scale example, except ii V I lines and tune studies, are written with a half-note rhythm.

This is done to make it easy to get these shapes under your fingers in the beginning.

But, once you have any chord scale down, add different rhythms to your chord scale exercises.

These rhythms include:

 

  • Quarter Notes
  • 8th Notes
  • Triplet
  • Dotted Rhythms
  • Ties
  • Mixed Rhythms – e.g. Dotted Quarter + 8th Note

 

Once you’ve worked out the first three examples, use the ii V I backing tracks to jam those chord scales in a musical situation.

As well, take any of these chord scales to a full tune, either one of the examples below or another jazz standard that you know.

As you can see, there are a number of ways to practice chord scales beyond memorizing shapes on the guitar.

The main goal of any of these exercises is to create and use chord scales in the moment.

If you memorize chord scales, then you can play them back on the guitar.

But, if you learn how to build chord scales in the moment, you can apply them to any chord, chord progression, or song in real time.

Building that skill takes time.

But, once you reach that point, you can confidently and accurately apply chord scales to any musical situation.

And that’s when things become really fun.

 

 

 

 

Dorian Chord Scales

 

The first chord scale is built by harmonizing the Dorian scale.

In the examples below, you use Drop 3 chords from the 6th string to harmonize a D Dorian scale.

But, also apply this chord scale to any key, chord type, or string set in your studies.

Before learning this chord scale, look at the chords in a harmonized Dorian scale.

 

  • Im7 – Dm7
  • iim7 – Em7
  • bIIImaj7 – Fmaj7
  • IV7 – G7
  • vm7 – Am7
  • vim7b5 – Bm7b5
  • bVIImaj7 – Cmaj7

 

As you can see, D Dorian contains the same chords as C major, but with different Roman numerals as you build the chord scale from D, rather than C, in the C major scale.

Here are those chords in root position.

As mentioned earlier, start any chord scale with the lowest possible chord in that key, which is why this chord scale starts with Fmaj7, not Dm7.

After you learn this, or any, chord scale, put on the backing track and comp with any shape in the D Dorian chord scale.

 

Dm7 Backing Track Dm7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 3

 

chord scales guitar 3

 

Here’s the same Dorian chord scale written out with the first inversion of each chord.

 

Dm7 Backing Track Dm7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 4

 

chord scales guitar 4

 

In the next example, you play 2nd inversion drop 3 chords.

As you work inversions in your chord scales, visualize, or at least be able to find, the root in those inversions to keep track of which chord you’re on during the chord scale.

 

Dm7 Backing Track Dm7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 5

 

chord scales guitar 5

 

The final Dorian example uses 3rd inversion drop 3 chords to harmonize the chord scale from the 6th string.

When you can play all four variations, combine them in your comping and chord soloing.

 

Dm7 Backing Track Dm7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 6

 

chord scales guitar 6

 

 

 

Mixolydian Chord Scales

 

You now harmonize Mixolydian scales in your studies.

When doing so, you use the following chords, written in Roman numerals and in the key of G Mixolydian.

 

  • I7 – G7
  • iim7 – Am7
  • iiim7b5 – Bm7b5
  • IVmaj7 – Cmaj7
  • vm7 – Dm7
  • vim7 – Em7
  • bVIImaj7 – Fmaj7

 

If you worked out the D Dorian chord scales already, you notice that these chords are the same.

This is because D Dorian and G Mixolydian are both built from the parent C major scale.

Though they share the same chords, they have different functions, as you can see in the Roman numeral analysis.

When learning chord scales, memorize the Roman numerals for each mode you harmonize.

This allows you to quickly transpose any chord scale, as you can find the chords using the Roman numerals in any key.

Here’s a root position G Mixolydian chord scale that uses drop 3 chords from the 5th string.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 7

 

chord scales guitar 7

 

You now learn a G Mixolydian chord scale using first inversion drop 3 chords on the 5th string.

Once you can play the first two inversions, play them back to back to hear how they sound and sit on the fretboard.

Eventually you want to jump between inversions in your playing, so working this skill in the woodshed is helpful.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 8

 

chord scales guitar 8

 

Next you learn the second inversion G Mixolydian chord scale that uses drop 3 chords from the 5th string.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 9

 

chord scales guitar 9

 

Lastly, here’s the G Mixolydian chord scale using third inversion shapes on the fretboard.

After you can play one or more of these chord scales, put on a ii V backing track and comp over those changes with the chord scales you learned up to this point.

This prepares you for the ii V I chord progression studies below.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 10

 

chord scales guitar 10

 

 

 

 

Lydian Dominant Chord Scales

 

As well as using Mixolydian over 7th chords, a great second choice sound is Lydian dominant.

When applying the Lydian dominant chord scale to 7th chords, you bring out the 7#11 sound.

Here are the chords you use when harmonizing any Lydian dominant scale.

 

  • I7 – G7
  • II7 – A7
  • iiim7b5 – Bm7b5
  • #ivm7b5 – C#m7b5
  • vmMaj7 – DmMaj7
  • vim7 – Em7
  • bVIImaj7#5 – Fmaj7#5

 

Notice that there are a few funky chords in there, such as mMaj7 and maj7#5.

This is because Lydian dominant is a mode of melodic minor, and both mMaj7 and maj7#5 chords are diatonic to melodic minor.

Here’s a G Lydian dominant chord scale in root position, using drop 2 chords on the middle four strings.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 11

 

chord scales guitar 11

 

In the next example, you learn first inversion drop 2 chords on the middle four strings.

After you have a few Lydian dominant chord scales down, put on a G7 backing track and move between the Mixolydian and lyd dom chords.

This gets your ears around the difference between these two scales, allowing you to choose in the moment when it comes time to apply them to a jam.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 12

 

chord scales guitar 12

 

Here’s the G Lydian dominant chord scale, built with second inversion drop 2 chords on the middle string set.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 13

 

chord scales guitar 13

 

The last Lydian dominant chord scale uses third inversion drop 2 chords to harmonize the underlying G scale.

After you work these Lydian dominant chord scales, put on a Dm7-G7 backing track and play D Dorian and G Lydian dominant chord scales over those changes.

 

G7 Backing Track G7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 14

 

chord scales guitar 14

 

 

 

Major Chord Scales

 

As you learn chord scales for the iim7 and V7 chords, it’s logical that you learn chord scales for the Imaj7 chord.

When doing so, you have two options for modes, beginning with Ionian.

The second option is explored in the next section.

When harmonizing Ionian, otherwise called the major scale, you produce the following Roman numerals.

 

  • Imaj7 – Cmaj7
  • iim7 – Dm7
  • iiim7 – Em7
  • IVmaj7 – Fmaj7
  • V7 – G7
  • vim7 – Am7
  • viim7b5 – Bm7b5

 

Again, these chords are the same as D Dorian and G Mixolydian, but they produce different Roman numerals because of their interval structure.

Here’s a root position Cmaj7 chord scale on the top four strings, built with drop 2 chord shapes.

As is always the case, put on the backing track and comp or chord solo with these chord scales to take them further in your studies.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 15

 

chord scales guitar 15

 

The next example features a first inversion Cmaj7 chord scale, built with drop 2 chords on the top-four strings.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 16

 

chord scales guitar 16

 

You now work the second inversion Cmaj7 chord scale on the top-four strings using drop 2 chord shapes.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 17

 

chord scales guitar 17

 

In this final example, you work out third-inversion drop 2 chords to build a Cmaj7 chord scale.

After you work any of these Cmaj7 chord scales, skip down and jam over the ii V I backing tracks in the ii V I section below.

Use the D Dorian, G Mixolydian or Lydian Dominant, and C Ionian chord scales to jam over those changes.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 18

 

chord scales guitar 18.2

 

 

 

Lydian Chord Scales

 

As was the case with 7th chords, you have two choices for modes when it comes to building maj7 chord scales.

The second choice to explore over maj7 chords is Lydian.

When applying the Lydian mode, you bring a maj7#11 sound in your comping and chord soloing phrases.

Here are the chords that are sounded when you build a Lydian chord scale.

 

  • Imaj7 – Cmaj7
  • II7 – D7
  • iiim7 – Em7
  • #ivm7b5 – F#m7b5
  • Vmaj7 – Gmaj7
  • vim7 – Am7
  • viim7 – Bm7

 

Here’s a root position C Lydian chord scale built with Drop 3 chords from the 6th string.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 19

 

chord scales guitar 19

 

In the next example, you use drop 3 chords in first inversion to build a C Lydian chord scale.

After you’ve worked out a few Lydian examples, put on the Cmaj7 backing track and move between C Ionian and C Lydian.

This gets your ears used to the differences between each maj7 scale, allowing you to apply them to tunes with confidence.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 20

 

chord scales guitar 20

 

The next example uses second inversion drop 3 chords to build a C Lydian chord scale from the 6th string.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 21

 

chord scales guitar 21

 

In the final example, you use drop 3 chords in 3rd inversion to build a C Lydian chord scale from the 6th string.

When you have a few of these chord scales under your fingers, skip ahead and jam over the ii V I tracks below.

When doing so, use the following chord options for each change.

 

  • Dm7 – D Dorian
  • G7 – G Mixolydian
  • G7 – G Lydian Dominant
  • Cmaj7 – C Ionian
  • Cmaj7 – C Lydian

 

As you can see, even with just a handful of chord scales you can outline any ii V I with confidence and creativity.

 

Cmaj7 Backing Track Cmaj7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 22

 

chord scales guitar 22

 

 

 

Major ii V I Chord Scales

 

Here are five examples of using chord scales to play over the major ii V I chord progression.

After learning these examples, take them to other keys in your studies.

As well, put the jam tracks on and comp and chord solo over Dm7-G7-Cmaj7 in your studies.

Though the examples are played at a medium tempo, it can be tricky to get them up to speed with the audio track.

So, go slow, use a metronome, and work the tempo up over time.

Each of these examples uses root-position chords to introduce you to these concepts over a ii V I.

The tune studies expand those shapes and use inversions to take these ideas further in your studies.

This first example uses the following chord scales.

 

  • Am7 = A Dorian
  • D7 = D Mixolydian
  • Gmaj7 = G Ionian

 

As you can see, these three chord scales use the same chords; they’re all from the G major parent scale.

But, it’s the underlying chord that makes an F#m7b5 sound different when played over Am7 compared to D7.

This is a good lesson to learn when studying jazz guitar.

The underlying harmony is what defines the sound of the shape you’re playing, not the shape itself.

 

Major ii V I Backing Track G ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 23

 

chord scales guitar 23

 

In the following example, you bring tension to the V7 chord as you use the following chord scales.

 

  • Am7 = A Dorian
  • D7 = D Lydian Dominant
  • Gmaj7 = G Ionian

 

Notice the D7#11 sound created by the Lydian dominant brings out a sense of tension to the second bar.

This tension is resolved to G Ionian in the following measure.

Using tension in your comping is perfectly cool; you just have to resolve that tension in your playing.

 

Major ii V I Backing Track G ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 24

 

chord scales guitar 24

 

In the following sample ii V I, you add a few drop 2 & 4 chords to the line.

You haven’t seen these shapes yet as they’re introduced in the next section.

So, this line is a taste of things to come in the article.

As well, you add tension to the Gmaj7 chord as you use the following chord scales.

 

  • Am7 = A Dorian
  • D7 = D Mixolydian
  • Gmaj7 = G Lydian

 

You may or may not like the sound of Lydian over a Imaj7 chord, it’s different for every player.

Try it and see what you think.

If you dig it, use it in your playing.

If not, come back to it later to see if your ears change and warm to the sound of the Imaj7#11 chord.

 

Major ii V I Backing Track G ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 25

 

chord scales guitar 25

 

In this steady quarter-note example, you create tension over both the V7 and Imaj7 chords.

You do this by using the following chord scales.

 

  • Am7 = A Dorian
  • D7 = D Lydian Dominant
  • Gmaj7 = G Lydian

 

Again, these sounds may or may not be for you at this stage in the game.

But, they’re worth experimenting with to see how and where you want to use them if you decide to adopt them into your harmonic language.

 

Major ii V I Backing Track G ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 26

 

chord scales guitar 26

 

The last lick mixes drop 2 and drop 3 chords, as well as uses tension to create interest in the line.

Often times you isolate one type of chord in your studies.

This is a great way to work on new shapes.

But, make sure you integrate those chords into your overall harmonic concept.

This line is an example of mixing various chord types as you build your vocabulary and chord scale knowledge at the same time.

The chord scales used in this lick are.

 

  • Am7 = A Dorian
  • D7 = D Lydian Dominant
  • Gmaj7 = G Lydian

 

Once you work these sample lines, jam over the backing track and build your own lines over these ii V I changes.

As well, write out phrases of your own, as this is helpful tool when working new concepts such as chord scales.

 

Major ii V I Backing Track G ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 27

 

chord scales guitar 27

 

 

 

Watermelon Man Chords

 

Now that you worked scales over single chords and a major ii V I progression, you can take this concept to a full tune.

In this study, you apply chord scales to Watermelon Man as you mix drop 2, drop 3, and drop 2 & 4 shapes over each chord in the progression.

Go slow with this study, learning it in four-bar phrases as you work through the 16-bar etude.

From there, bring the phrases together to jam the study as a whole.

There’s also a Watermelon Man backing track (bass-drums) to practice this etude, and comping in general, over this progression.

 

Watermelon Man Backing Track Watermelon Man Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 28

 

chord scales guitar 28

 

 

 

Locrian Chord Scales

 

Now that you worked on major ii V I progressions, you can move on to minor ii V I’s.

The first chord scale in a minor key is based on the Locrian scale.

When building a Locrian chord scale, you create the following Roman numeral chords.

 

  • im7b5 – Bm7b5
  • bIImaj7 – Cmaj7
  • biiim7 – Dm7
  • ivm7 – Em7
  • bVmaj7 – Fmaj7
  • bVI7 – G7
  • bviim7 – Am7

 

Often times, comping over m7b5 chords involves running through inversions.

But, with the chord scale approach, you expand your m7b5 harmonic colors by adding extensions over this common chord.

Here’s an example of drop 2 & 4 root position chords from the 6th string.

If you’re new to drop 2 & 4 chords, these shapes might pose a technical challenge for your picking hand.

You have to play with hybrid picking, pick and fingers, or fingerstyle as strumming these shapes can cause you to hit unwanted open strings.

 

Bm7b5 Backing Track Bm7b5 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 29

 

chord scales guitar 29

 

Here’s the B Locrian chord scale from the 6th string, built with drop 2 & 4 chords in first inversion.

 

Bm7b5 Backing Track Bm7b5 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 30

 

chord scales guitar 30

 

Here are 2nd inversion drop 2 & 4 chords used to build a B Locrian chord scale from the 6th string.

After working these inversions, mix them together as you comp over the backing tracks in your jazz guitar studies.

 

Bm7b5 Backing Track Bm7b5 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 31

 

chord scales guitar 31

 

The final Locrian example uses 3rd inversion drop 2 & 4 shapes from the 6th string in its construction.

After learning these four inversions separately, play them back to back as you develop your memory and harmonic practice routine.

 

Bm7b5 Backing Track Bm7b5 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 32

 

chord scales guitar 32

 

 

 

Phrygian Dominant Chord Scales

 

With the iim7b5 chord scale under your belt, you apply chord scale techniques to the V7alt chord.

If you studied 7alt chords before, you know that you have options when it comes to choosing scales over that chord.

These scales include 3 common choices:

 

 

In this lesson, you explore the Phrygian dominant scale.

This scale is commonly heard in the soloing of Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass, and Johnny Smith.

Because the altered scale is so popular, this expands your harmonic vocabulary beyond that important scale.

When harmonizing Phrygian dominant scale, you produce the following chords.

 

  • I7 – E7
  • bIImaj7 – Fmaj7
  • iiidim7 – G#dim7
  • ivmMaj7 – AmMaj7
  • vm7b5 – Bm7b5
  • bVImaj7#5 – Cmaj7#5
  • bviim7 – Dm7

 

Here’s a root position E Phrygian dominant chord scale that is built with drop 2 chords on the middle four strings.

 

E7b9 Backing Track E7b9 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 33

 

chord scales guitar 33

 

The second example moves to the first-inversion chord scale.

If you’re new to this sound, put on a 7th-chord backing track and comp between Mixolydian and Phrygian dominant.

This might not be something you do in a jam, but it teaches your ears the difference between each harmonized scale.

Hearing this difference allows you to add these chord scales into your playing with confidence.

 

E7b9 Backing Track E7b9 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 34

 

chord scales guitar 34

 

The next example features second inversion drop 2 chords used to build an E Phrygian dominant chord scale on the middle four strings.

 

E7b9 Backing Track E7b9 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 35

 

chord scales guitar 35

 

The final example moves on to 3rd inversion drop 2 chords when building an E Phrygian dominant chord scale.

After you work these chord scales, put on a iim7b5 V7alt backing track and comp using Locrian and Phrygian dominant chord scales.

This sets you up to move to the full ii V I minor progression.

 

E7b9 Backing Track E7b9 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 36

 

chord scales guitar 36

 

 

 

Melodic Minor Chord Scales

 

The final chord scale is built by harmonizing melodic minor.

When doing so, you produce the following chords.

 

  • ImMaj7 – AmMaj7
  • iim7 – Bm7
  • bIIImaj7#5 – Cmaj7#5
  • IV7 – D7
  • V7 – E7
  • vim7b5 – F#m7b5
  • viim7b5 – G#m7b5

 

Here’s the root position melodic minor chord scale using drop 2 chords on the top four strings.

As is the case with every chord scale, work it through other chord types and string sets in your jazz guitar practice routine.

 

AmMaj7 Backing Track Am7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 37

 

chord scales guitar 37

 

Here’s the A melodic minor chord scale written in first inversion on the top-four strings.

 

AmMaj7 Backing Track Am7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 38

 

chord scales guitar 38

 

The next example brings second inversions as you expand on the melodic minor chord scale.

After you work out melodic minor chord scales, put on a m7 backing track and switch between Dorian and melodic minor.

This helps you hear the difference between these two harmonic devices when learning how to play jazz guitar.

 

AmMaj7 Backing Track Am7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 39

 

chord scales guitar 39

 

The final example features third inversion drop 2 chords on the top four strings.

 

AmMaj7 Backing Track Am7 Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 40

 

chord scales guitar 40

 

 

 

Minor ii V I Chord Scales

 

To finish your study minor-key chord scales, you now bring them together over a minor ii V I progression.

Each phrase is written in the key of D minor.

From there, work them in other keys around the fretboard, as well as write out minor ii V I phrases of your own.

Often, writing lines is helpful when organizing your thoughts around a new concept.

From there, jam over the backing tracks using material you learned in this section of the lesson.

Each line uses the following chords scales in their construction.

 

  • Em7b5 – E Locrian
  • A7alt – A Phrygian Dominant
  • Dm7 – D Melodic Minor

 

To begin, here’s a line on the top-four strings, using drop 2 chords to create a four bar phrase in D minor.

 

Minor ii V I Backing Track Dm ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 41

 

chord scales guitar 41

 

The next minor ii V I line uses drop 3 chord scales on various string sets to outline these chord changes in the key of D minor.

 

Minor ii V I Backing Track Dm ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 42

 

chord scales guitar 42

 

In the next phrase, you use drop 3 and drop 2 & 4 shapes to create a D minor ii V I line.

 

Minor ii V I Backing Track Dm ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 43

 

chord scales guitar 43

 

In the next line, drop 2 chords are used to build a phrase on the middle and top-four string sets.

To take things a further with this line, you introduce inversions to the phrase.

 

Minor ii V I Backing Track Dm ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 44

 

chord scales guitar 44

 

In this final ii V I line, you use drop 2 chords as you navigate this four-bar phrase.

As was the case with the previous lick, you use inversions as you outline these changes.

 

Minor ii V I Backing Track Dm ii V I Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 45

 

chord scales guitar 45

 

 

 

Blue Bossa Chord Scales

 

Here’s a chord etude written over the changes to Blue Bossa.

When working this Brazilian jazz song, you use a Samba rhythm.

As always, break this study into smaller phrases as you get the shapes and rhythms under your fingers.

Then, when comfortable, bring the phrases together and play the study as a whole.

To help you practice these Blue Bossa chords, there’s a backing track below.

 

Blue Bossa Backing Track Blue Bossa Backing Track No Piano

 

Click to hear chord scales 46

 

chord scales guitar 46

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