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Examining World-Music Scales Used in Metal Soloing, Part 1

Examining World-Music Scales Used in Metal Soloing, Part 1

The four-note scale, shown in FIGURE 3, is another Japanese scale. It is closely associated with the Kokin-Joshi scale and is nearly identical to it. The only difference is that the b7 (G in the key of A) is omitted, resulting in the intervallic structure 1 b2 4 5. FIGURES 4 and 5 demonstrate typical ways in which I might travel up and down through the scale to create solo licks or melodic lines. As with the Kokin-Joshi scale, I sometimes like to bend up to certain notes in this scale from a half step below, so experiment with that approach. Our last scale for this month is the Arabian-major scale, depicted in the key of A in FIGURE 6. The scale’s intervallic structure is 1 b2 3 4 5 b6 7. The presence of the minor second with the major third, as well as the flatted sixth against the major seventh, yields a very unusual melodic flavor, one that has both dark, minor qualities and bright, major elements. Memorize this scale, then try creating some “Arabian-style” melodic lines with it, using the aforementioned phrasing and articulation devices, such as quick hammer-ons and pull- offs, as demonstrated in FIGURE 7.



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