Piano day (2h)

  • Improvisation
    • Studies in D Dorian
      • ii — v — i in shells in LH
      • Improvisation with “blanket scale” (D Dorian)
      • Try all chord scales for each degree (Aeolian, Dorian, Phrygian and Hm4 for minor), i. e. E Aeol, E Dor, E Phryg and E Hm4 for E-,  A Aeol, A Dor, A Phryg and A Hm4 for A-, etc.
      • Try keeping same modal color over the whole progression (only Aeol / only Phryg / only Dor)
      • Try mixing with blanket scale (sounded weird but definitely playable)
      • Mix Hm4 with minor blues (only a few notes’ difference)
  • Jazz voicings
    • m7 → 7
    • 7 → maj7
    • 7 → m7
    • Fourthy modal voicings (D Dorian, G Dorian)


Mixing chord scales with key scale is definitely a wonderful framework for improvisation. I learned it from Rich Brown, as he was combining Aeolian and Phrygian over a minor chord to produce cool chromaticisms. It’s not always guaranteed to get great results, but it definitely helps a lot in terms of expanding your vocabulary. For example, I would’ve never thought of combing minor and harmonic minor mode 4 over a minor chord unless I forced myself to try it (which I did), and it actually sounded AWESOME! So yeah, Hm4 over Dorian ii chord — try it, folks.

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