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Jazz Bass Lessons: Augmented Scales

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[MUSIC].
I'd like to talk about two sounds
that are really important in music.
And they're very rich and
they provide us with a lot of colors
that are very, they're very unique and
they're very identifiable.
I'm sure that you've heard them many times
whether you've identified them or not.
We're talking about augmented and
diminished sounds.
Now let's start with augmented.
You know, everybody has probably at one
time or another heard on TV or something,
the very obvious and most identifiable
sound that's linked to augmented
is the whole tone scale and that's
all whole step, so if you start on C.
[MUSIC].
That's one, it's all whole steps.
And that that's a useful
scale sometimes and
I feel like you should know it and
be able to access it.
But there's another scale in jazz that
we use which we call the augmented
scale some people call it the hexatonic
scale and it's a very interesting scale,
and it really helps deal with
a chord that I'm introducing that's
in the piano tutorial, the theory section,
and is a C Major 7 plus 5.
It's a very interesting sound.
And this augmented scale has a lot of
colors in that you're gonna enjoy.
So, basically it's the root,
it's the minor 3rd and the major 3rd.
And it's the 5th and the sharp 5, and
the major 7, and you're back home.
But listen to how this sounds.
It's kind of exotic.
[MUSIC].
It almost sounds a little bit as exotic
like a harmonic minor sound, but
it's augmented.
[MUSIC].
So the thing that's really unique
about it is it's splitting the octave
into three pieces.
You have C, E, and A flat, and both, it's
a symmetrical scale, so if you start on C,
[MUSIC]
for the triad that it builds.
[MUSIC].
There's the augmented sound, right?
It's the root, the third, the sharp five,
and then we're back at the root.
[MUSIC].
The neat thing about it though is that
you have, whether you start on C or
you start on E, it's the same notes.
C, E, A flat, E, A flat, C, C, A flat.
In the triad it's symmetrical.
Wherever you start it's
always the same notes.
Here's the interesting thing.
When you add in these scale degrees,
[MUSIC]
you find out an interesting thing.
If you start from C and
you play the E flat, and
then you play the G which is also in
the scale, you have a C minor triad.
Tucked inside this augmented chord
in the augmented scale let's say.
So inside that sound you have
you have a C minor triad and
then you have a C major triad as well.
[MUSIC]
>> And
the cool thing about it is that when you
start on the third you have the same.
You have an E minor triad and
then you have an E major triad.
You have E and G and B, and you have E and
A sharp, I mean, G sharp or A flat.
[SOUND].
And B, so you have [SOUND] and
then from A flat, it's the same thing.
You can have a C, an A flat major.
[MUSIC].
You have the E flat in there.
It's in the scale.
[MUSIC].
So there you have A flat, C, E flat.
And you have A flat, B,
E flat, which is A flat minor.
So the reason why I'm showing this is,
if you combine all these things
it makes a very rich sound.
And it's all augmented but
it's breaking down
the augmented into major and
minor triads as well so
[MUSIC].
This is much more rich than just
playing a whole tone scale.
When I first learned augmented,
I just played the whole tone scale
all the time and you know apart from
Thelonious Monk, who uses the whole
tone scale amazingly well, I always felt
that when people would go to the whole
tone scale it would get kind of boring.
They would play this similar
kind of whole tone licks.
But this augmented scale,
[MUSIC].
You could play, let's just take
the triads and fool around with them,
we'll take the C major,
and the C minor first.
[MUSIC].
Kind of make some music with them.
Then you can do the E minor and E major.
[MUSIC].
I'm toggling back between E
[MUSIC]
E major and E minor
[MUSIC].
This is all in that C augmented sound.
Then there's A flat 2,
[MUSIC].
A flat major at
[MUSIC].
A flat minor as well
[MUSIC].
So if you put them all together,
you have something
like this
[MUSIC].
And if you play
the scale
[MUSIC].
So that's augmented.
[MUSIC]