In this 3rd lesson on making lines with the Melodic Minor scale, I want to focus on making lines that mix chords and single notes, which is a very nice variation to introduce in solos.

Warming up

The 3 examples in this lesson are all played around this position of the Dm Melodic scale in the 10th position. I am not only using notes from here, but I stay in this aread and use whatever fingering is the most effecient.

Before we start looking at the lines let’s first look at a few chord voicings that we can use in this position. Because we have to play the voicings in the middle of 8th note lines, it is important that they are fairly “light” That’s why I kept them as 3 or 4 note voicings.

Notice that you can actually use C#7alt voicings as Dm Melodic voicings, since Dm Melodic is the same as C# altered, and often these voicings are great to have both the natural 6 and the major 7th in the chord. Another nice one is the DmMaj shell voicing with the C# in the melody.

The Melodic Minor Lines

In the first line I start with a trill which is at the same time an encircling of the root. This is a very common device that even can be applied to m7 chords where the major 7th will then work as a chromatic leading note rather than a diatonic note as it is in melodic minor.

From there the line ascends up the scale to the 5th. The 2nd half of the line is an almost latin like rhythmical pattern using two voicings from example 2. The voicings are split in two so that they have a melody part and a harmony part. This is a good example of a C#7 voicing being used as a DmMaj(13) voicing.

The 2nd line starts with an F Augmented triad which in this case is the upper structure of a DmMaj7. When using chords in your lines it can often be very effecient to use both the chord voicing and the same voicing as an arpeggio, which is how the line continues. From there it moves to an Em triad and ends with first a DmMaj shell voicing and then a Dm6/9 voicing.

In the last example I wanted to emphasize the polyphonic aspect of using chords which adds another layer to the line. The voicings used are all split in the same way as in the example 3, so that there is a melody part and a harmony part. The melody is in fact just a step wise descend down the scale in half notes while the chords are moving on the off beats independenof the melody. Of course if you played them together you’d find 7 different voicings from the D minor melodic scale.

I hope you can use the ideas and examples I presented here to make your own lines and throw in the occasional chord.

If you want to download the examples for later study you can do so here:

Melodic Minor Lines – part 3

Guitar Lesson Video Transcription

Hi guys, in this lesson I’m going to give you some more lines using melodic minor, and this time we’re going to focus on mixing chords into the lines.

This is my 3rd lesson for Fundamental Changes where I’m working on melodic minor lines. In this lesson we’re going to use the key of D minor, so that will be this scale:

[guitar playing]

As I mentioned in the beginning, I’m going to make some lines that are mixing up single note lines with chords. We need some chord voicings in this area of the neck, and I’m using this 10th position, D melodic minor. Those chords will be something like this:

[guitar playing]

Of course, I didn’t harmonize the whole scale, and you could do this in more detail. Since I’m only making 3 lines and just showing you the process of how I might think about adding chords to a solo line, I’m not going to go into that in detail. There are going to be other lessons on that later. I also actually have some lessons on this on my channel already.

Let’s just do the 1st line.

[guitar playing]

So, what’s going on. We start with this part, which is just a run in the scale. I start with this trill, which is a chromatic encircling of the root, up a scale, and then I’m switching between 2 chords: This chord, which you could look at as a C sharp 7 voicing, but it works just as well as a spicy D minor major 13, and then this D minor 6th voicing, and then I’m doing this fair amount.

What I’m using is – I’m going between the 2 voicings, and I split them up so I have a melody part and a chord part, which is something that is very useful, because then you have – since you’re taking the energy to play a whole chord, you can split it up and get more out of using the chord, and save time for your left hand.

The 2nd line sounds like this:

[guitar playing]

This time I’m starting with another chord, actually one that I didn’t cover in the beginning. It’s actually an inversion of the F augmented triad. It’s the opposite structure of a D minor major.

I’m actually just running up that chord, so same idea. Since I’m anyway, playing the chord, I’m using that in the line, and then I’m using another triad, which is an E minor triad. I’m playing 2 D minor chords, the 1st one is this minor major – D minor major shell voicing, and then D minor 9 voicing like this.

The 3rd line sounds like this:

[guitar playing]

Here I’m really using the fact that I can use the chords to make more than 1 voice. Again I split the chord into 2 parts, melody, chord, and what I’m doing is the melody is just going (guitar playing), and then I’m changing the chords underneath it.

I’m playing 1st D minor, and then this E minor. I guess the way I’m thinking about it, I’m not really thinking too much about the chords, I’m just thinking about 2 movements. So you have the melody descending like this, and then you have these 1st descending under it, and then I’m resolving to this chord.

That’s how you go by these chords.

[guitar playing]

That was 3 lines using melodic minor, and using chords within single note lines. I hope that you can use it and find a way to use this to make your own lines using melodic minor and also how to make chords with your single note lines.

If you want a PDF of the examples in this video, then you can go to the Fundamental Changes website, there’s a link in the description, and you can download a PDF there.

Of course you can also subscribe to the newsletter if you want to have an email every time they publish a new lesson, which is quite often. If you like this lesson, you can also subscribe to my YouTube channel to keep up to date with the lessons that I make.

Thank you for watching.