Pragmatic Jazz Theory (how we use Tonal Jazz theory to actually make music in reality.)

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  1. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    Pragmatic Jazz Theory
    (how do we use jazz theory to actually make the music in reality?)

    Part I Jazz theory itself


    This Circle of fifths ALMOST contains all the "secrets" of Jazz theory.

    1. C major. (at first use C major to see how all other keys relate to it ,then you will be able to do the same from ANY other starting point.

    When we start with C major KEY we now look at the circel of fifths and looking at tthe top notes they go around clockwise beggining with F (lydian) we get

    F,C,G,D,A,E,B this is the order of the C major MODES from BRIGHT to DARK

    Ionian is the judge standard

    F Lydian sharp 4 (compared to ionian)
    C Ionian the standard
    G Mixolydian flattened seventh (compared to ionian)
    D dorian flat 7 and flat 3 (compared to ionian)
    A Aeolian flat 7 flat 3 flat 6 (compared to ionian)
    E phrygian flat 2 flat 3 flat 6 flat 7 (compared to ionian)
    B Locrian flat 2 flat 3 flat 5 flat 6 flat 7 (compared to ionian)

    THAT is the order of BRIGHT to DARK in a KEY.

    Because of this when we writing progressions and turnarounds we go in the opposite direction from DARK to BRIGHT ( resolve to IONIAN)
    so DORIAN to MIXOLYDIAN to IONIAN or ii V to I is the most common progression in jazz.

    I = vi = iii Ionian = aeolian= phrygian
    ii= IV dorian=lydian
    V=vii mixolydian=locrian

    {[I=vi=iii] ,ii=IV, (V=vii)}

    the next common progression is the MInor ii V to I

    this is Bmin7flat5 to E7 to Amin7
    or vii% to III7 to vi

    we introduce the G# note in order to have the dominant to consonant resolution .

    that makes our scale now

    C D E F G G# A B C

    if we then stack every other note we get ONLY 2 chords

    CEGA (Amin7 or Cmaj6
    D,F,G#,B (D dim7 in other words G7 flat9
    EGAC (A min7 or Cmaj6
    F,G#,B,D (F dim7 or in other words G7 flat9
    GACE (A min7 or Cmaj6
    G#,B,D F (G# dim7 or in other words G7 flat9
    ACEG (A min7 or Cmaj6
    B,D F,G# (B dim7 or in other words G7 flat9

    this progression played through by inversions is called (V7 flat9, to Imaj6)

    or in other words Barry Harris Maj6 diminished scale

    So we have Covered 3 important uses

    the ii V to I the minor ii V to I and then the maj6th diminished

    this is how we would actually use that
    step 1 pick a key to begin with lets say C major
    step2 lay down a ii V to I major progression
    Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7
    step3 at end piece on a minor ii V to I
    that gives us
    Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7, Bmin7flat5, E7 Amin7
    step4 at end piece on a maj6th dim scale

    that gives us

    Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7, Bmin7flat5, E7 Amin7(ACEG)
    ,CEGA (Cmaj6, D,F,G#,B (D dim7, EGAC (Cmaj6, F,G#,B,D (F dim7
    GACE(Cmaj6, G#,B,D F (G# dim7, ACEG (Cmaj6 , B,D F,G# (B dim7
    CEGA (Cmaj6,

    the order is maj ii V I, minor ii V I, then maj6th dim7 scale rising through inversions

    you can swap that order in a few ways.

    maj ii,v,i then min, ii,v,i, then maj6th dim or
    min ii,v,i, then maj ii,v,i then maj6th dim or
    maj6th dim (rising through inversions, then maj ii,v,i then min, ii,v,i,
    maj6th dim (rising through inversions, then min, ii,v,i, then maj ii,v,i

    next you can access other KEYS next to you (secondary dominants)

    think of how this works by starting from a note on the circle of fifths and going counterclockwise ALWAYS landing on a dominant chord


    B7, to E7 to A7 to D7 to G7 to C7 to F7 etc...

    take a snipet of this

    D7 to G7 to C7

    notice it similar to our dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7

    this can be substituted at any time

    , next when you do travel through circle on dominant 7ths you can also add in the ii v to I's at any point you want


    D7 to G7 to C7

    D7 is V of G maj the ii,V to I of G maj is Amin7,D7, to Gmaj7
    G7 is V of C maj the ii V to I of C maj is Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7
    C7 is V of Fmaj the ii V to I of F major is Gmin7 to C7 to Fmaj7

    this means we can substitute out

    D7 to G7 to C7

    any at any time replace it to be

    Amin7,D7, to Gmaj7, C maj is Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7,
    Gmin7 to C7 to Fmaj7

    NEXT we can take this new progression make Cmajkey the center like before at end of it add the minor ii v to i and then the maj6th dim scale rising in inversions at the end of it giving us

    Amin7,D7, to Gmaj7, Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7,
    Gmin7 to C7 to Fmaj7,
    Bmin7flat5, E7 Amin7(ACEG)
    ,CEGA (Cmaj6, D,F,G#,B (D dim7, EGAC (Cmaj6, F,G#,B,D (F dim7
    GACE(Cmaj6, G#,B,D F (G# dim7, ACEG (Cmaj6 , B,D F,G# (B dim7
    CEGA (Cmaj6,

    (this would be an example of when you would be actually writing, once you began with a starting key and center point in this case C major)

    So far

    we have Covered

    maj ii V I
    minor ii V i
    maj6th dim
    and secondary dominants ( extending to keys next door)

    all related to a starting KEY center (C major)

    Next we will look at the minor ii V i secondary dominants.

    in Cmajor-Aminor the minor ii V I is Bmin7flat5(locrian, to E7 to Amin7(Aeolian

    we can look at the circle of fifths dominants

    B7, E7, A7 ,D7, G7, C7,F7

    now just as we did with the MAJOR ii V I we can add in the ii V I minor

    notice here how we have B7 E7 A7 then D,7,G7, C7,F7 the second half we use the major ii v i for the G7,C7 F7

    so we will take the first part B7 E7 A7 and add in the minor ii V i of each

    B7 is F#min7flat5, B7 , E min7 (minor ii V i of Gmaj KEY
    E7 is Bmin7flat5, E7, Amin7 (minor ii V i of Cmaj KEY
    A7 is Emin7flat5 , A7, Dmin7 (minor ii V i of Fmaj KEY

    this is what we get

    F#min7flat5, B7 , E min7,Bmin7flat5, E7, Amin7,Emin7flat5 , A7, Dmin7

    next at the end of this we piece on the major version that uses secondary dominants in
    maj ii v I's which we covered earlier

    F#min7flat5, B7 , E min7,Bmin7flat5, E7, Amin7,Emin7flat5 , A7, Dmin7

    Amin7,D7, to Gmaj7, Dmin7 to G7 to Cmaj7,
    Gmin7 to C7 to Fmaj7,

    NOW we have covered.

    maj ii V I
    minor ii V i
    maj6th dim
    and secondary dominants ( extending to keys next door) in both maj ii V i and minor ii V i
    and found the different ways that the maj ii v I and minor ii V i can be used together

    These are the CORE writing tools in jazz theory

    NEXT lets get into how to actually MAKE music in jazz.

    it all starts with a beat. and repeat

    we have 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and so on.

    the "number" is the ON beat the important beat
    the "and" is the "off" beat or the swung beat

    in jazz we use grace notes ( aka leading tones, chromaticism)
    on the "off" beat to embellish add depth to the music.

    the most important resolutions are the fifth resolving down and the half step resolving down.

    we begin with our destination in mind (say C maj7 chord) located at 3 and 4 and
    we than "fill in the blanks" with either the dominant v7 1 and 2 and
    or the ii V, ii as 1 and, dominant as 2 and then home as 3 and 4 and

    this comes out like this

    G7 ( 1 and 2 and) to cmaj7 (3 and 4 and)


    Dmin7 (1 and) G7 (2 and) Cmaj7 ( 3 and 4 and)

    NOW in jazz whether you stack all your notes together in one moment of time (chord)
    or play one note after another ( melody,harmony)
    the ear understands both the same way so both are different options at any time to accomplish creating feeling and emotion in jazz.

    lets take the 2 chords

    G7 ( 1 and 2 and) to cmaj7 (3 and 4 and)

    lets make a melody out of it......but how?

    our most important melody notes of any chord are the 3rd and seventh.

    take Cmaj7 the notes C tonic, E third, G fifth and B seventh

    compare to C7 the notes C tonic E third G fifth and A# flat seventh

    compare to C7flat5 the notes C tonic E third F# fifth and A# flat seventh

    and compare to Cmin7 C tonic D# flat third G fifth and A# flat seventh

    when we compare all the notes in these fundamentally different type chords

    we see they all share the root C so that note is not important to Cmaj7, because fundamentally different chords as you can get share the root,

    next if we look at the fifth of Cmaj7 G , the fifth is shared by

    Cmaj7( I from CKEY,
    C7(V from FmajKEY),
    Cmin7 ( ii from BflatmajKEY)

    but the third of Cmaj7 specifies whether maj or min
    the seventh specifies whether dominant minor or major

    so with JAZZ in a melody the third and the 7th are THE most important notes in the case of C maj the E and the B are most important notes of the chord.

    lets now take in the KEY of Cmaj the ii V I but only the 3rd and 7th of each chord

    Dmin7 ( DFAC
    G7 (GBDF
    Cmaj7 )CEGB

    the 3rds and 7ths are
    FC,to BF to BE

    what do we see here?

    FC to FB to EB

    what we see is that EVEN THOUGH the ii V I are chords traveling down by fifth
    the IMPORTANT melody notes are traveling down by half step
    which is the most powerful resolution the half step down
    second every time we travel to a new chord the 3rd and 7th flip

    so in Dmin7 DFAC the third is F and the 7th is C
    when we travel to G7 GBDF the 3rd is B the 7th is F
    they get flipped in order to FC of dmin to FB (flipped 3rd and 7th of G7
    next the EB of Cmja7 CEGB ( flipped again

    this is the first secret to jazz melody the power of the half step resolution.

    this is how chromatics or grace notes enter in the equation

    if my melody is F to C then F to B then E to B

    that is a simple ii V to I melody

    I can take arpreggio of dim7

    DFAC on the on beats and put a half step below on off beats

    D ,e ,F ,g#, A, b, C, c#,D ,e ,F ,g#, A, b, C, c#,
    1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and
    1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and

    the "off" beat "and" or AKA the "weak" beat in JAZZ is meant to set up the strong beat "on" beat "the numbers"
    the weak beat or "and" is swung to have its sound be brief to set up the resolution to the "on" beat or "strong" beat "the numbers"
    you ALWAYS have chord tones on the ON beat or string beat
    yo have non-chord tones and grace notes on the off beat or weak swung beat.
    WHEN you use grace notes you set them up to resolve to what is coming NEXT on the strong beat

    an example of this is take a G7 chord playing

    how can we travel down its scale utilizing grace notes in every place possible on weak beats

    so from High to Low starting on G we go

    G, f# , F, e, D, C, B, a# A, g# G,

    that gives us 3 grace notes descending the G7 scale starting from root

    but depending on if we alter our G7 tension chord we can have other tones as wells

    say a G7 sharp 5 ,flat 9, sharp 11
    are our chord tones on the ON beat

    this gives us different options for grace notes.


    and because we can use any altered dominant chord in a melody no matter what other instruments or melodies are doing(if the chord is dominant7th) this gives us amazing options.

    NOW lets say we in the KEY of C maj and have simple G7 to Cmaj7 progression
    lets look at the G7 with all its possible alterations


    G tonic, B third, D fifth, F 7th ,A 9th,C 11th , E 13th

    possible alterations

    C# flat fifth, D# sharp fifth

    G# flat 9th, A# sharp ninth

    C# sharp 11th

    D# flat 13th

    Next lets take that collection of notes and see how each one can resolve to which note of a cmaj7 chord

    G from G7 stays same G (5th of Cmaj
    G# flat 9th of G7 resolves to G (5th of Cmaj
    A (9th of G7 resolves up to B (7th of Cmaj7) OR down to G (5th of Cmaj
    A# (#9th of G7) resolves UP to B (7th of Cmaj7th or DOWN to A (of Cmaj6th
    B of G7 resolves up STRONG resolution to C of cmaj7 or B from G7 stays same B (cmaj7,
    C# (#11 of G7) resolves down to C of cmaj OR resolves UP to D of (Cmaj9
    D (5th of G7 resolves up to E (3rd of C maj, OR resolves down to C of cmaj
    D# (#5th of G7#5) resolves up to E (3rd of C maj or down to D (9th of Cmaj9
    F (7th of G7) resolves down to E (3rd of Cmaj) or up to G (5th of Cmaj

    we can see that these collection of chromatic notes

    G#, A#, C# ,D#

    can be used in any melody on the "off" swung beats in cases where they will resolve to the on beat chord tones of Cmaj, Cmaj6th, Cmaj7th, Cmaj9

    the ear will understand that as a V to I
    just as BF to BE
    ( 3rd and 7th of G7 resolves to EB 3rd and 7th of Cmaj7 Naturally

    this is the reason why in JAZZ chromatic grace note can be used on the weak swung "and" beat or in other words the "off "beats

    from this we can EVEN see how to lay out extended chord progressions, based on the way the dominant chords notes resolves to the tonic chord

    for example.

    D# (#5th of G7#5) resolves up to E (3rd of C maj or down to D (9th of Cmaj9

    this can be turned into G7#5, to Cmaj9
    because that D# sharp fifth of G7 resolves down to D the 9th of C maj9

    another is

    A# (#9th of G7) resolves UP to B (7th of Cmaj7th or DOWN to A (of Cmaj6th

    so this can be turn into G7#9, to Cmaj6 ( also Amin7)

    because the A# (G7#9, resolves down to A (6th of Cmaj6, or tonic of Amin7

    another is

    C# (#11 of G7) resolves down to C of cmaj OR resolves UP to D of (Cmaj9

    this can be turned into G7#11, to Cmaj9

    because the C# (#11 of G7) resolves up to D of Cmaj9


    lets take the notes of Cmaj6 combined with Cmaj9
    CEGA and CEGBD
    put in an order


    now for each note ( strong beat) we have chosen we will precede it with a swung "off "beat a half step away that belongs to a G7 chord with possible alterations

    we will start with the swung off beat ( format = and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4)

    we take A

    and A and
    g#, A, a# the g# is G7flat9 the A# is G7sharp 9

    next take B
    and B and

    a# B a# the
    A# is G7sharp 9

    next take C
    b,C,c# b is 3rd of G7, c# is flat 5th of G7flat5

    next take D
    and D and
    c#,D,d# c# is flat 5th of G7flat5, d# is sharp 5th of G7

    next take E
    and E and
    d#,E,f d# is sharp 5th of G7, F is 7th of G7

    next take G
    and G and
    f,G,g# F is 7th of G7 , g# is G7flat9

    now starting from the beginning piece ALL these together

    remember the format is =
    and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and

    the whole thing

    g#, A, a#, B,a#, C,c#,D,d#,E,f,G,g#

    and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and 5 and 6 and

    the ands are swung and represent the g7 with alterations,
    the "on beat",string beats are the chord tones of Cmaj6 and Cmaj9

    this shows us how to use the chord theory to create melody and harmony

    lets take parts of those and make a melody based on the Cmaj7 on the on beats and on the "and" ,"off" beats (swung) an altered G7

    remember the format is=
    and 1 and 2 and so on


    next repeat that


    next we can see that if we switched to the format 1 and 2 and , instead of the "and", "off" beats first first

    we could organize that to be


    practice playing through this passage

    this single note passage is equivalent to playing
    V to I to V to I to V to I to V to I to


    I to V to I to V to I to V to I to V

    depending if you want the and first or the string beat first

    next lets add to this passage by adding the arpeggio for C maj7 before it.


    what we are covering now is in JAZZ your ability to be on a note and choose to mix up the interval distances you can travel by halfstep like shown, you can travel by 3rds (arpeggios) , you can travel by fifths or octaves
    this gives you the ability to mix things up depending what you wan tit to sound like with a melody (harmony)

    lets look at another simple combination

    C c#,D,d#,E,f,G,g#

    now same thing backwards


    now tack on arpeggio of Cmaj7 before it


    try making some patterns for your self

    remember 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and

    or and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4

    which ever you choose the "and" has to be the swung beat and the strong beats always have to be chord tones.

    an easy way to start is arpeggio up, ascending and scale down or descending .

    try different combinations.

    here is one for you to get ideas


    adding more before it


    When we play jazz ALL the instruments playing together add up to be the musical structure.
    say we are playing a simple major ii V I in C major

    Dmin7,(DFAC, G7(GBDF, Cmaj7(CEGB

    and lets say we have a standup bassist, a Sax player a drummer and a piano

    the bassist is going to play the root note
    that is their main focus ( they usually play a pattern 1,2,3,5, 1,2,3 leading tone)
    the piano will probably play a spread chord like drop 2 and 4
    the drummer will define the tempo and beat (swing)
    the SAX will play the melody notes (3rds and 7ths connected with grace notes and to fill in melody)

    so its important to understand when you see a chord it is a representation of many possibilities.
    it is giving the structure but what can actually be done with that is a lot of options.

    we looked at how to start with the simple C major key and from there see the order jazz is layed out in, how the musical structure works.
    first you habe the most common progression the major ii V I
    next you have the second most common progression the minor ii V I
    next you have Barry harris , major6th, diminished scale inversions.
    we then looked at how to travel through related keys next door using secondary dominants.

    we covered how the swung beat works
    we seen the most important notes in any chord are the 3rd and 7th notes
    we dealt with how grace notes are used in the melody
    we seen how chromaticism works in jazz
    we looked at how the Dominant chord has many possible alterations and how each note of a dominant chord resolves to a note of the tonic chord.

    the next thing natural thing to cover about jazz deals with the aspect of substitutions.
    just like secondary dominants

    ( KEY of Cmaj ii V i = Dmin7, G7,Cmaj7 turns into D7,G7,C7 in order to access the keys right next door and then turn into appropriate ii V I's GmajKEY Amin7,D7,Gmaj7, CmajKEY Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7, FmajKEY Gmin7,C7, Fmaj7
    = Amin7,D7,Gmaj7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7,Gmin7,C7, Fmaj7 )

    The next substitution is called TRITONE SUBSTITUTION.
    and it has to do with Dominant chords.
    Lets look at G7 (from Cmaj KEY)
    G7= G root,B third, D fifth, F seventh
    we know that the 3rds and 7ths are most important
    if we look at the circle of fifths and start at C maj KEY of we go 180degrees what key do we see? it is the F# Major KEY notice it is located a tritone (flattened fifth) away from C?

    we take G7 the dominant from C and we take C#7 the dominant of F# major (tritone away from C major)
    Now lets compare the notes in each dominant chord

    G7= G root,B third, D fifth, F seventh
    C#7=c# root, F third, G# fifth, B 7th

    notice in C#7 ( tritone away from G7)

    we have F 3rd and B 7th
    and in G7 we have B 3rd and F 7th

    they are same notes but are flipped just like when we looked at the 3rd and 7th how they travel in ii V I
    Dmin7 DFAC F third C 7th, G7 B3rd F 7th Cmaj7 E 3rd B 7th

    just like the melody notes alternate between 3rd and 7th

    the tritone away from G7 C#7 shares the same 3rd and 7th just flipped around

    G7= G root,B third, D fifth, F seventh
    C#7=c# root, F third, G# fifth, B 7th

    they actually share the important notes

    this makes it possible to use a substitution
    how this "Tritone substitution" works in JAZZ is that you take an ordinary ii V I

    so say Cmaj KEY Dmin7,G7 Cmaj7 DFAC,GBDF,CEGB
    you swap out the G7 for the dominant chord a tritone away from C
    in this case the tritone substitute is C#7 ( with keeping in mind all the chords in F#major KEY)

    lets see what we have now

    Dmin7,G7 Cmaj7 DFAC,GBDF,CEGB


    Dmin7, C#7, Cmaj7 DFAC,(C#FG#B,) CEGB

    you can see that this gives us a halstep resolving down motion in the bass line notes of the roots of the ii V I.
    Normally those notes the D to G to C are resolving a fifth down each time
    with the tritone substitute the bass notes of the roots resolve down by halfstep
    D to C# to C
    (Notice how we seen this with the 3rd and 7ths of standard ii V I ,Dmin7( FC),G7(FB),Cmaj7(BE)

    Next lets look at the notes from C#7 (tritone sub) through perspective of G7 dominant chord's alterations.

    C#7=c# root, F third, G# fifth, B 7th

    G7 Groot,B3rd, D5th, F7th A 9th, C 11th E 13th

    so the C# is G7 #11, the G# is G7 flat9th ,

    we had looked at earlier how these notes resolve to the upcoming tonic

    the C# of G7#11thflat9th resolves up to D of Cmaj9th
    the G# og G7#11th flat 9th resolves down to the fifth of Cmaj9th

    we can see that when using this tritone substitution based on how the alterations of the G7 we need to make the I chord a Cmaj9th this gives us

    Dmin7, C#7, Cmaj9th

    we will now continue seeing all possible substitutions based on the dominant chord and all 12 keys.

    the Dominant chord is the foundation of tonal JAZZ music ( as well as blues and funk and many other)

    the dominant chord has the most tension and the most use of chromatics giving you the most options for melody harmony chords extensions substitutions.

    to fully cover everything related to JAZZ with the Dominant chord

    we have to start at the beginning of sorts. the chromatic scale. it contains all 12 tones.

    C, C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B C

    next from the chromatic scale we slice it evenly in 2, These are called the Whole tone scales.

    the C wholetone Scale
    C D E F# G# A#

    the C# wholetone scale
    C# D# F G A B

    if we look at them we can see that our C major KEY contains the first 3 notes of the C whole tone scale and the last 4 notes of the C# whole tone scale.

    But lets compare to our G7 dominant chord of C major keeping in mind our alterations.

    the C# wholetone can be called G whole tone if we start on G

    so G A B C# D# F
    the C# is our G7flat 5th, or #11th
    the D# is our #5 of G7#5 or flat 13
    the A is 9th the B is 3rd F is 7th
    this makes the G whole-tone scale useful over a G7#11#5

    the G whole-tone scale has some special attributes also.

    each note of it is actually a dominant7#11#5 chord
    because all the notes are equal distance form each other

    G7, A7 ,B7 ,C#7 ,D#7, F7, each with a #11and #5
    have a way to be connected to each other

    earlier we had seen that traveling around the circle of fifths counterclockwise to the fifth below was a way to have dominant 7th chords resolve to another dominant7th chord ,
    (ex. D7, G7,C7)
    now we can see that from the structure of the whole-tone scale we can travel downward by step in DOM7th chords also.
    (ex. F7,D#7,C#7,B7,A7,G7

    lets take a potion of it

    now add in the ii V i of each
    B7 = F#min7,B7,Emaj7
    A7 = Emin7, A7, Dmaj7
    G7= Dmin7, G7,Cmaj7

    now we add in the ii before the V7 and the I after the V7 to be

    F#min7,B7,Emaj7,Emin7, A7, Dmaj7,Dmin7, G7,Cmaj7

    the G wholetone scale can be played over this entire progression

    lets go back to it again

    F#min7,B7,Emaj7,Emin7, A7, Dmaj7,Dmin7, G7,Cmaj7

    we can see another type movement happening.
    the Emaj7 chord turns into a Emin7 chord right after
    the Dmaj7 chord turns into a Dmin7 chord right after
    this is another type of Resolution starting from Bright to Dark ( just as traveling ii V I)
    we can have a maj7 change to dom7th to a min7 to a min7flat5 to a Dim7 chord as a resolution.

    depending on which place you start if you start on say Cmaj7 you can resolve to C7 (then Fmaj7)
    if you start on C7 you can go Cmin7 (then to F7 then to A#maj7)
    if you start on Cmin7 you can go Cmin7flat5 F7 , A#min7
    or with the same Cmin7 go to Cmin7flat5 , G#7, C#maj7
    say you start with Cmin7flat5 you can go Cdim7 A#maj7

    you can do more than one of these types resolutions as well in a row
    for example

    looking at our circle of fifths

    we can find what keys are changing when we change chord type of the same name

    so going from Cmaj7 to C7 (KEY of Cmaj to KEY of Fmaj
    going from C7 to Cmin7 ( KEY of Fmaj to KEY of A#maj
    going from Cmin7 to Cmin7flat5 is (KEY of A#maj to KEY of C#major

    Now going back to G wholetone

    G A B C# D# F

    we now know each of these is a dom7th chord

    we see our C#7 ( tritone substitute of G7)

    but lets try something else we will start with basic ii V I

    Dmin7 G7 Cmaj7

    swap the G7 out for any of the other dom7th chords in the G wholetone scale

    G7 A7 B7 C#7 D#7 F7

    and then play the appropriate maj7th chord after the new dom7th chord lets try that.
    (note these are each isolated ideas not connected as one play them hear what they sound like and feel like)

    Dmin7 A7 Dmaj7

    Dmin7 B7 Emaj7

    Dmin7 C#7 F#maj7

    Dmin7 D#7 G#maj7

    Dmin7 F7 A#maj7

    we can now precede each with the Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7 Progression (before it)

    Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7,Dmin7 A7 Dmaj7

    Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7,Dmin7 B7 Emaj7

    Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7,Dmin7 C#7 F#maj7

    Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7,Dmin7 D#7 G#maj7

    Dmin7, G7, Cmaj7,Dmin7 F7 A#maj7

    i will continue to add more soon hope that helps to see that anything you need is contained in the circle of fifths.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
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  3. Cashmeere

    Cashmeere Guest

    Just about to give this a read :wink:
  4. Moogerfooger

    Moogerfooger Rock Star

    Jun 11, 2016
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    Modes came before tonal music. Modes are not scales. Period... Berklee and other high brow universities indoctrinate they’re students into robots by drilling hem with this modal B.S... This where the term “Berklee Jazz” came from. Need proof? Just listen to Snarky Puppy or any other stale groups with Berk students... Barry Harris is the only REAL jazz cat alive today that teaches harmonic/melodic methods cats like Bird and the other originators used to improvise and move from chord to chord by use of scales. Which are where chords come from, not the other way around.

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  5. Cackwizard

    Cackwizard Ultrasonic

    Aug 14, 2017
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    So, OP can you swing by later and sit down and show me this stuff?
  6. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    maybe someday when i get my private jet haha
    (need gas money for it though)
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  7. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    Barris harris a true legend and student himself as of course the best teacher ever ( as was dizzy)

    “Berklee Jazz” has more gaps in their teaching than a toothless crackbleep oops haha
    serious though i think about the days when louis armstrong being taught by his older peers, all young kids got taught more in person by people back in day than any genric berklee type school today
    the knowledge of dizzy Gillespie and bird the knowledge of sonny rollins they lived it everydfay was "school" being alive playing was their school

    this kids today think if you learn the theory of a Beethoven song and "all done" nothing left to learn haha if only that easy there would be be birds everywhere instead of breakbeats and record players
    and empty beer bottles all over.

    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  8. zorgbop

    zorgbop Noisemaker

    Nov 20, 2013
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    Hi there,
    What a big work you did by writing all of this stuff down !
    What some people do not understand is that "information is information" .It is nothing to agree or argue about .
    You wrote a lot of info that is true , period .I think that this info deserve links with wrtitten music and sound for each topic .

    Ex :
    -About the cycle of 5th , the natural tendancy of root movement to go up a 4th or down a 5th and the importance of 3rds and 7ths
    to define harmony .
    -Just take the first 8 bars of the well know standard "All the things you are" by Jerome Kern and have it played with only the
    root of the chords (going through the cycle) and the melody (3 rds) !

    Once i was telling about this to a student that came to me for the first time (Cycle of 5ths and guide tone 3rd and 7th)
    And played for him just the roots and the melody "All the things you are", he was amazed !...
    Amazed by how powerful and efficient this theorical statement : "cycle of 5th" "Guide tone 3rd and 7th" was in reality !!!
    Music speaks for itself ...

    You did not write about modal interchange , another key concept that we hear the whole time , but one can't resume
    everything about music on a few pages (hopefully !) .

    Anyhow , this was my contribution and remarks to the work you was doing : To my point of view , the most
    important is to show students the connection between theory and music in "real life" .Then it (theory)can be understood
    for what it is : a help .Help to see and hear some key concepts , because the musical universe is so huge and
    we have so many things to appreciate and learn from the masters and geniuses that have been creating great
    music .
    One last thing to the idiots that are creeping here :
    -That you don't know anything is not important no one can blame you for that .
    -But talking ,being critic , arguing about something you don't know is not wise , not at all .
    Just showing others that you are an idiot .
  9. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    Please periodically refresh this thread i will be updating the very first comment to keep all the information together out of simplicity thank you for your time.
  10. metaller

    metaller Rock Star

    May 28, 2016
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    @MMJ2017 Thank you very much for these types of posts. Very useful. :mates::headbang:
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  11. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    more on ii V I

    in jazz it is common to either shrink down the ii V I or expand it.

    If we take KEY of C maj
    and EXPAND the ii V I FULLY

    we get Fmaj7, Bmin7flat5,E7,Amin7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7(or Cmaj6th
    this combines our ii V I of minor and major and includes all diatonic chords(note for a minor ii V I the iiimin7 becomes III7)
    this is our full progression in the key of C

    Fmaj7, Bmin7flat5,E7,Amin7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7

    practice playing this and looping this trying things with it

    going back to ii V I

    we can shrink it to ii V

    Dmin7 G7,Dmin7 G7 Dmin7,G7 etc.

    we can shrink ii V to just V7
    G7,G7,G7 (blues for example does this)

    next we can have V,I


    say we travel through circle of fifths with dominant 7ths with just ii V's ) no I

    F#min7,B7, Bmin7,E7,Emin7,A7,Amin7 ,D7,Dmin7 ,G7,Gmin7 ,C7Cmin7, F7

    say we travel through circle of fifths with dominant 7ths with just V to I

    B7,Emaj7, E7,Amaj7, A7,Dmaj7, D7,Gmaj7,G7,Cmaj7,C7,Fmaj7,F7,A#maj7

    lets on the other hand take our largest progression ( in KEY of Cmaj)

    Fmaj7, Bmin7flat5,E7,Amin7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7

    this pattern is called IV,vii%,III7,vi,ii,V,I

    but take D7 ,G7, C7,
    and add this longest one to each of these dominant chords

    D7 is V of Gmaj KEY

    so Cmaj7,F#min7flat5,B7,Emin7,Amin7,D7,Gmaj7

    G7 is V of Cmaj KEY

    so Fmaj7, Bmin7flat5,E7,Amin7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7

    C7 V of Fmaj KEY

    so A#maj7,Emin7flat5,A7,Dmin7,Gmin7,C7,Fmaj7

    NOW we connect them together and play as ONE progression

    Fmaj7, Bmin7flat5,E7,Amin7,Dmin7,G7,Cmaj7,
  12. sir jack spratsky

    sir jack spratsky Producer

    Apr 22, 2017
    Likes Received:

    i made this track over 10 years nuendo daw....played the drums and all the bits....just for the sake of a balanced view do i present this
    i guess as a drummer of 40 years, trying to understand both groove and harmonic beauty my journey is one of discovery....... foster i find your posts pseudo intellectual and shallow....if i were you i would stay quiet and study that circle of fifths till you get a headache...then go ahead and make whatever music you like.....dont mistake the info from MMJ as a trap or prison....instead it is a liberation from the bindings of ignorance...a gift....
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  13. sir jack spratsky

    sir jack spratsky Producer

    Apr 22, 2017
    Likes Received:
    now here is my gift to MMJ
    my discovery was to take a nylon string guitar and tune it (low to high} DGBDGB then using my "harmonic scale" many of which i have arranged around the circle of fifths in the sketch above..... i can compose and experiment with harmonic and melodic movement without getting stuck........ if you want to freshen up.....change whatever chord u are on to a dom seventh and play the tonic chord from that key to solidify....then play with those chords in that circle.....i find travelling in my harmonic circle in a clockwise direction better than 4ths.....seems like more of a journey......perhaps this will explain why i have found such joy in MMJ posts...and many happy correlations and affirmations of my own discoveries......peace brothers and sisters...i wont be posting again...
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  14. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    thank you sir, i love it great to have you
  15. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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  16. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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  17. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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  18. dragonhill

    dragonhill Guest

    @MMJ2017 thank you for taking the time to write all this. As I mentioned before, the format you have chosen makes it a little hard to read but you are a wealth of information and an asset to this forum.

    We should all utilize the ' ignore ' function which is there precisely for these ' forum goodwill succubi ' .
  19. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

    Mar 12, 2017
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    What does the two words "Music Theory" actually mean?

    it is a shortcut to mean ( the way music actually works in reality)
    I mention reality because it is possible to misunderstand or be wrong about how music works
    reality just means (not fiction)

    what is the value of having knowledge of "Music Theory" ( means the way music works)

    replace the words music theory with what the words MEAN
    what is the value of having knowledge of the way music works?
    answer is to have you aware of all your options the millions of possibilities you can do.
    Music theory is the foundation that sounds hang on the scaffolding of a song

    if you ever wrote a song there was music theory as the foundation and scaffolding of that song EVEN IF you had or have no awareness of it or how it works.

    if you are a brain surgeon, what is the value of having knowledge of the way brains work?

    see if you can answer now.

    if you are a biologist, what is the value of having knowledge of the way life works?
    if you are a carpenter, what is the value of having knowledge of the way tape measures work?
    if you are a human being what is the value of having knowledge of the way human beings work?
    if you think inside of your thoughts each moment from birth till death, what could possibly be the value in having knowledge of the way the human thought process works?
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2018
  20. Pipotron3000

    Pipotron3000 Rock Star

    Mar 13, 2013
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    This guy didn't known theory. Probably not even circle of fifth. Just listen.

    PS : and before any smart*ss ask "How do you know he didn't ?", he said it on his instructional video.
    And in front of many students groups :D
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2018
  21. farao

    farao Rock Star

    Nov 9, 2014
    Likes Received:
    It is obvious from listening to his music that he ”knew” some things about music theory. Somehow he learned how some of our western music works. Saying he did not know music theory in a case like this is just saying he did not study it. And that is a pity. If he had, he could write down what he played, share it with others so the could play it too and study his music more in depth. He could also talk with knowledgeble people about tips and tricks he could use to further develop his music. And because he did not study music theory, now he can’t. In what way is that positive?
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