Improv with Bossa Nova (Major) | Hub Guitar

Improv with Bossa Nova (Major)

Introduction

This chord progression is in the “Bossa Nova” style. The chord progression emphasizes the minor key, but with a tonicization of the relative major.

The Chord Progression

Materials to Use

This track is in B♭ major generally, but there are secondary dominants and other special chords which call for other scales.

If you find it difficult to improvise using so many different scales, you should probably consider going back to some earlier improvisation lessons, focusing on dealing with one non-diatonic chord at a time.

B♭ Major – for diatonic chords

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a sharp, b flat
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
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d natural
a natural
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c natural
g natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f natural
c natural
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d natural
a natural
f natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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B♭ Mixolydian – for B♭7 chord

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a sharp, b flat
g sharp, a flat
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
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d natural
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c natural
g natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f natural
c natural
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g sharp, a flat
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d natural
f natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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E♭ Melodic Minor – for E♭min6 chord

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

D Mixolydian ♭9 ♭13 – for D7 chord

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d natural
c natural
g natural
d natural
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d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
f sharp, g flat
d sharp, e flat
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g natural
d natural
a natural
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c natural
d sharp, e flat
a sharp, b flat
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f sharp, g flat
a natural
f sharp, g flat
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A♭ Whole-Tone Scale (from C) – for A♭7(♭5) chord

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c natural
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e natural
f sharp, g flat
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d natural
c natural
d natural
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a sharp, b flat
f sharp, g flat
g sharp, a flat
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e natural
d natural
e natural
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c natural
g sharp, a flat
a sharp, b flat
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f sharp, g flat
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Backing Track

When you’re ready, improvise along with the track.

Exercises

  • Play the chords along with the track.
  • Practice the indicated scales.
  • Play the indicated scales along with the chords.
  • Compose a short melody using the indicated scales with the track.

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