Dorian to Dorian #4

by David Wallimann

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  • Today's lesson will focus on using the #4 Dorian mode in a modulation context. The backing track is based on an E min 7th chord going into an E add 9 #11 chord.

    We'll chose a Dorian mode to play over the 1st chord. Other modes would work there too, but we'll go with the Dorian. Now let's take a look at the 2nd chord and see what mode will work best there.

    The second chord has an augmented 4th. The only church mode that has an augmented 4th is the Lydian mode. That's what we will pick. As you can see, the second chord doesn't have a third. That means that we have the freedom to pick whichever third we want here. As you know, the Lydian mode has a major third, but let's change that 3rd to a minor third in order to keep as many common notes between the two different keys.

    We can apply the same principle to all the notes that are not specified in the chord.
    That leaves us with a Dorian scale with an altered 4th, hence the name: Dorian #4.

    As always, memorize everything, work slowly and have fun!

    E Doriansharp4.jpg

    E Dorian.jpg
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