~Lesson 91: Yusef Lateef Scale

Yusef Lateef was one of the great innovative melodic improvisers and composers and in the 80’s, I purchased Yusef Lateef’s book, Repository of Scales and Melodic Patterns.   This book holds a wealth of creative material which is valuable to both an improviser and a composer.  Yusef
In this lesson I’ve created a simple melody derived from one of the scales found inYusef’s book.  This Synthetic Scale utilizes the following notes: 1, b9, 9, #9, #11, 5, b13, nat 13, 1.  The 9 note scale is symmetrical; the bottom tetra-chord is identical to the upper tetra-chord (a tri-tone away).  The scale, in this specific melodic form, can work well over several different chords i.e. the C version of the scale melody (which used the notes C, Db, D, Eb, F#, G, Ab, A) will work  over C7, Eb7, F#7, A7 or over C diminished 7, Eb diminished 7, F# diminished 7 and A diminished 7.  The the moody itself is written allows for the natural 5th (which results on the diminished chords) to be heard as a passing tone.  Both nat 9 and b9 and Both nat 13 and b13 are present as well, which creates some interesting tensions and/or passing tones.

The melody is played around the circle of 4ths starting with concert C7 (which you can practice and hear as Eb7, F#7, A7 or Cdim7, Ebdim7, F#dim7 and Adim7).

“…why, when there are thousands of scales, does everyone sound the same?”  ~ Yusef Lateef.

 

 

~ Enjoy

 

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Lesson 91: Synthetic Scale Melody PDF

Use the mp3 below to practice to or to sing along with for ear training.  Visualize the fingerings on your instrument while you sing:

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Yusef Lateef – Snafu from Eastern Sounds:

 

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