Changing scales during a song- or stay with one scale?

Posted by DCO on Tue, 04/30/02 - 12:18:21.

I've learned the 7 modes of the major scale, and I use them now and then for forming chords or playing leads, and I also like the harmonic minor. And ofcourse the blues/minor pentatonic.
But knowing scales and knowing how and when to use then are two different things. Lately instead of playing standard chords then using a seperate scale to play fills, I've been thinking in terms of just the scale, meaning- I build chords out of the scale, then use surrounding notes to create melodic fills - you can't go wrong. Its been allowing me to play things similar to "Little Wing" by Hendrix, which sounds like the chords and fills are just one continuous flow and not separate.
But I'm confused about something.I'll be playing this way and it'll sound good (very melodic and flowing) but then I can't seem to make a "change" - meaning even if I use the scale and go to the IV or V(or some other progression) it doesn't sound like a change, it just sounds like I'm still playing the I (root). Do I need to shift the whole scale to a different key for every chord change?
First of all, I'm not talking about playing a specific song, but just jamming/composing/adlibing (which I think is important to be able to do.)
I just figured that if a song is in a certain key, then according to music theory, all the chords are usually derived from the key scale anyway. So I try to just stay in one scale and chose the right notes (and build the right chords) everytime I want to shift/change the progression. I keep experimenting but I seem to be on the wrong track. When it comes time for a shift or change (like from I to IV) do most advanced players shift to a whole new scale?
Any advise would be greatly appreciated. This is a rut I'm in and I can't seem to get past it.
Thanks, DCO



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Re: Changing scales during a song- or stay with one scale?

in terms of most rock, the scale used does not change. Your best bet will be resolving to the chord you are using, ie if playing in C major, and you go to chord IV, then resolve your soloing line licks to F. Try exerimenting with modes, for example using mixolydian instead of major, and dorian in place of minor and so on and so forth. Its just experimentation, dont be afraid to think outside the circle.

Re: Changing scales during a song- or stay with one scale?

well this is a bit to get into with a message but here are a few tips.
-chord progressions work for a reason. it is because of something we music geeks call pitch tendancy. like the tendancy of the V to go to I or ii to V. Because of this think of each chord as an area to work in. All the piches in the chord give you possible places to rest in your phrasing. But it is the notes in between , that fall ito the cracks, and how you use those notes ,that make you tastefull.
- To get a better feel of this look at two of the chords you are going between. See where al the pitches start in the first and resolve to in the second.
-dont be afraid to play notes not in scale. Marty Friedman is god, and he is all over the damn place.
-if you need some specifics. get a book by a freind of mine. "Mean Gene's metal lead" or somthing like that . Gene is a good guy, and the book has a lot of good advice. KEEP PLAYING!!!

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