Melodic Minor Guitar Scales & Modes | Hub Guitar

Melodic Minor Guitar Scales & Modes

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We're going to talk about the melodic minor and its various modes.

We're going to play all of these modes with a root of C, but it's a great idea to practice them as modes of each other; for instance, F melodic minor, G dorian flat nine, and the like.

Here are the scales

These scales can give you some new sounds that you've never encountered before. So learn all of the fingering patterns, and practice them all from the root of C, and also as a group of modes relative to each other.

It may take a long time to apply these to your playing. But that's okay, sometimes it just takes a long time.


Here, all of the modes of the melodic minor scale are presented as they would be if beginning from C. But remember the patterns are all derived from the first one. For instance, D Dorian b9 would be the same as the second mode of the C Melodic Minor scale.

Note

While the melodic minor is a very old scale, the scales here fall under the category sometimes known as the “Jazz melodic minor”, which is slightly different. Traditionally the melodic minor was formed as a major scale with a flat 3 ascending, and a pure or natural minor descending. In other words, it was only melodic minor on the way up, and reverted to regular minor on the way down. Most musicians playing contemporary styles would practice it in the jazz way, which is the same up and down.

Melodic Minor (First Mode)

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c natural
d sharp, e flat
f natural
c natural
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b natural
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d natural
a natural
f natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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d sharp, e flat
d sharp, e flat
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b natural
g natural
d natural
a natural
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Dorian b9 (Second Mode)

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c natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f natural
c natural
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c sharp, d flat
c sharp, d flat
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a natural
f natural
c natural
g natural
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d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
c sharp, d flat
d sharp, e flat
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g natural
a natural
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Lydian #5 (Third Mode)

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c natural
c natural
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g sharp, a flat
e natural
b natural
f sharp, g flat
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d natural
a natural
c natural
d natural
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f sharp, g flat
g sharp, a flat
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e natural
b natural
d natural
a natural
e natural
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Lydian ♭7 (Fourth Mode)

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c natural
a sharp, b flat
c natural
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e natural
f sharp, g flat
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d natural
a natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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a sharp, b flat
f sharp, g flat
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e natural
g natural
d natural
a natural
e natural
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Mixolydian b13 (Fifth Mode)

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c natural
a sharp, b flat
f natural
c natural
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g sharp, a flat
e natural
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d natural
f natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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a sharp, b flat
g sharp, a flat
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e natural
g natural
d natural
e natural
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Aeolian ♭5 (Sixth Mode)

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c natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f natural
c natural
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g sharp, a flat
f sharp, g flat
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d natural
f natural
c natural
d natural
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d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f sharp, g flat
g sharp, a flat
d sharp, e flat
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d natural
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Super Locrian (Seventh Mode)

Super locrian refers to a locrian mode (1, b2, ♭3, ♭5, ♭6, ♭7) where the fourth is flatted as well. Super, indeed.

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e natural
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c natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
c natural
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c sharp, d flat
g sharp, a flat
e natural
f sharp, g flat
c sharp, d flat
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c natural
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d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f sharp, g flat
c sharp, d flat
g sharp, a flat
d sharp, e flat
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Key Tasks

  • Memorize all seven scale patterns, as well as their names.
  • Learn which chords are associated with which scale by identifying the chord created when the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 7th are combined.

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