The Altered Scale

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The Altered Scale – Theory Lesson

Lesson Overview

The mysterious altered scale! What is it, how do you play it, and what chord can it fit over? These are all questions that you’ll soon have the answers to. By breaking this scale down into two parts, I’ve come up with a way to simplify it so that it’s easy to think about and visualize at a fast tempo, all while improvising. If you’ve ever heard of diminished or whole-tone scales, then you’re already one step ahead of the class. These two scales when put together equal the altered scale, and can be played over chords like B7b9, or G7#5 or even things like A7b9b13. These are all examples of altered chords and will be explained in detail in the lesson. By understanding altered scales and they’re chords you’ll have the freedom to comfortably play more “outside” during dominant chords and more complex progressions.

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