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Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele

Melody, chords, licks and riffs all can be related back to scales.

PUBLISHED: Oct 5, 2012 UPDATED: Apr 6, 2020 • VIEWS: 24 • LESSON CODE: UL04j

Instruments: ukulele Subjects: advancedintermediatejazzscales

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Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele

A scale is simply a collection of pitches or notes, not really “this is a Jazz scale", “this is a Blues” or “this is a Rock scale”. It’s how a scale is used that really matters.

Most music starts with a scale. The melody, chords, licks and riffs all can be related back to a particular scale or scales.

After you mastering the six essentials scales below and start to explore more advanced styles of music, especially jazz. There are a few more scales that are needed to cover the broader harmonic palette that a typical jazz tune draws from.

Checkout the Related Video below for Examples in C Tuning, Open Position .

Due to the rich harmonic content of songs and somposition in the jazz repertoire the essential scale are, with their alternate names :

Scale Modes

  • Ionian (Major)
  • Dorian (Minor)
  • Phrygian
  • Lydian
  • Mixolydian (Dominant)
  • Aeolian (Natural Minor)
  • Locrian

Traditional Scales

  • Harmonic Minor
  • Jazz Minor - Descending Melodic Minor, Tonic Minor
  • Whole Tone
  • Diminished

Alterted Scales

  • Mixolydian +4 (Lydian Dominant)
  • Mixolydian -2 -6
  • Whole Tone
  • Diminished

Contemporary Scales

  • Blues (Minor Pentatonic)
  • Pentatonic (Major Pentatonic)

And a few other altered and add notes scale are common. However after master the above scales is should be no problem deriving addtional scales from these essential scales.

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Videos

Videos for Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele.

The Seven Scale Modes, Open Position Examples

The seven scale modes on ukulele in open postions with TAB and scale diagrams.

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Related Lessons

Related Lessons for Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele at this time.

Diminished Scale for `Ukulele - C Tuning • Updated: Jan 4, 2016

The Diminished Scale scale is a symmetrical scale with a repeating pattern of whole steps and half steps. You only need three Diminished scales to cover all 15 keys.

  • C D Eb F Gb A Bbb Cb C'

  • Db Eb Fb G Abb Bbb Cbb Db'

  • D E F G Ab Bb Cb Db D'

Based on the major scale the Diminished Scale contains the following scale degrees: 1 2 b3 4 b5 6 bb7 b8 8

The theoretically correct spelling of the Diminished scale with the double flats (bb) are shown. However enharmonic note names can be used too make it a little easier to remember. Or simply use the repeating whole step and half step pattern.

Whole Tone Scale for `Ukulele - C Tuning • Updated: Jan 2, 2005

The Whole Tone scale is a symmetrical scale with an equal distance been each note or scale degree.

The Harmonized Major and Minor Scale Charts • Updated: Sep 5, 2011

The Major Scale or Ionian scale is a diatonic scale, made up of seven distinct notes, plus an eighth which duplicates the first one octave higher. In solfege these notes correspond to the syllables “Do, Re, Mi, Fa, Sol, La, Ti/Si, (Do)”, the “Do” in the parenthesis at the end being the octave of the root.

A Practical Approach to Exploring Scales • Updated: Dec 21, 2019

On ukulele there aren't many positions where you can play a one octave scale from the root to octave. An instrument like the guitar with the additional lower strings five and six allows one to play a one octave scale in multiple positions in the basic 4-fret, 4-finger position. On ukulele there might be one or two depending on the scale and the key - and whether your using a low string four tuning.

This lesson offers a practical approach to practicing your scales on ukulele.

Six Essential Scales for `Ukulele • Updated: Apr 3, 2020

The six essential scales are: Blues, Major Pentatonic, Mixolydian, Dorian, Aeolian, and Ionian. From the six essential scales, you can get through a wide variety of traditional and contemporary music.

A scale is simply a collection of pitches or notes, not really a "this is a Jazz scale", "this is a Blues" or "this is a Rock scale". It's how a scale is used that really matters not its name.

Most music starts with a scale. The melody, chords, licks and riffs all can be related back to a particular scale or scales.

The Seven Scale Modes, Open Position Examples • Updated: Apr 1, 2020

The seven scale modes on ukulele in open postion with TAB and scale diagrams.

Related Books

Related Books for Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele at this time.

QuickStart Scale Fingerings for Ukulele, Volume I, C Tuning
Updated: Jun 24, 2006

A highly organized, efficient system of scale fingerings for C tuning.

QuickStart Scale Fingerings for Ukulele, Volume I, D Tuning
Updated: Jun 1, 2006

Six essential scales for ukulele using D tuning.

QuickStartScale Fingerings for Tenor and Baritone Ukulele, Volume I, G Tuning
Updated: Jan 4, 2020

Six essential scales for G tuned ukuleles.

Six Secrets of Ukulele Fingering
Updated: Dec 31, 2019

Learn the six fingering principles to navigating the ukulele fingerboard.

Related Lesson Series

Related Lessons Series for Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele at this time.

Six Essential Ukulele Scales
Updated: Jan 1, 2003

The Six Essential Ukulele Scales series is based on the fingering principles from my series of books in the QuickStart Scale and Arpeggio Fingerings series.

The Seven Modes
Updated: Jan 1, 2003

Pythagoras (569BC- 475BC) - discovered the numerical ratios which determine the intervals of the musical scale. Theses are the seven tones of the C Ionian or C Major scale.

Related Lesson Files, Resources and Assets

Related Assets for Essential Jazz Scales for `Ukulele at this time.

Six Secrets of Ukulele Fingering - Scale Worksheet
Updated: Dec 31, 2016

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