• Give Me 20 Minutes And I’ll Show You 5 Advanced Approaches To The Reharmonization Of The Major Scale

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    If you’re interested in learning tons of advanced approaches to the reharmonization of the major scale, then this lesson is for you.

    In previous posts, we learned the basic approach to the harmonization of the major scale (for beginners) and how to reharmonize the tones of the major scale (for intermediate players).

    In this lesson, I’ll be showing you how to approach the reharmonization of the major scale using some highly sophisticated chords and chord progressions that will turn heads – I guarantee you that.

    Warning: Due to the fact that this lesson is written with pre-advanced and advanced players in mind, it is assumed that you already have a basic and/or intermediate knowledge of harmonization and reharmonization.

    So, let’s jump into our goal in this lesson.

    5 Advanced Approaches To The Reharmonization Of The Tones Of The Major Scale

    In this segment, we’ll be approaching the reharmonization of the natural major scale from an advanced musician’s standpoint.

    I hope you’re ready to learn how to reharmonize the major scale using the following…

    • Cyclical progressions
    • Constant structure
    • Chromatic bass movements

    If your answer is yes, then we’re good to go.

    Approach #1 – The Reharmonization Of The C Major Scale

    We’ll be reharmonizing the ascending form of the C major scale:

    …using cyclical root movements and extended chords.

    “Here’s The Root Movement…”

    From the seventh tone (B):

    …to the third tone (E):

    …to the sixth tone (A):

    …to the second tone (D):

    …to the fifth tone (G):

    …to the first tone (C):

    …to the fourth tone (F):

    …to the flat seventh (Bb):

    “Check Out The Chord Progression And Keep An Eye On The Melody Notes…”

    Reharmonization of the first tone (C):

    …using the Bdom7[b9] chord:

    Reharmonization of the second tone (D):

    …using the Edom7[b9] chord:

    Reharmonization of the third tone (E):

    …using the Amin9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fourth tone (F):

    …using the Ddom7[#9,#5] chord:

    Reharmonization of the fifth tone (G):

    …using the Gmin7 chord:

    Reharmonization of the sixth tone (A):

    …using the Cdom13[#11] chord:

    Reharmonization of the seventh tone (B):

    …using the Fdom13[#11] chord:

    Reharmonization of the eighth tone (C):

    …using the Bbmaj13 chord:

    I hope you enjoyed the energy build up in the cyclical progressions? Well, if you did, then you’ll also enjoy the next one.

    Approach #2 – The Reharmonization Of The E Major Scale

    We’ll be reharmonizing the E major scale:

    …using cyclical chord progressions and extended major, minor, and dominant chords in the key of E. Also watch out for chromatic root progressions.

    “Here’s The Root Movement…”

    From the flat second (F):

    …to the flat fifth (Bb):

    …to the seventh tone (D#):

    …to the third tone (G#):

    …to the sixth tone (C#):

    …to the second tone (F#):

    …to the fifth tone (B):

    …to the first tone (E):

    “You’re Free To Check Out The Chord Progression, But Don’t Forget Melody Notes…”

    Reharmonization of the first tone (E):

    …using the Fmaj13 chord:

    Reharmonization of the second tone (F#):

    …using the Bbdom7[#9,#5] chord:

    Reharmonization of the third tone (G#):

    …using the D#min11 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fourth tone (A):

    …using the G#dom13[#11] chord:

    Reharmonization of the fifth tone (B):

    …using the C#min11 chord:

    Reharmonization of the sixth tone (C#):

    …using the F#dom13[b9] chord:

    Reharmonization of the seventh tone (D#):

    …using the Bdom13[b9] chord:

    Reharmonization of the eighth tone (E):

    …using the E6add9 chord:

    The reharmonization of the major scale just got better with those advanced chords, however, that’s not all. Let’s take a look at the third approach.

    Approach #3 – The Reharmonization Of The Ab Major Scale

    Say hello to the key of Ab major. We’ll be harmonizing its major scale:

    …using the polychord voicings of major ninth chords played using a constant structure.

    “Sounds Harder Than It Really Is”

    The root movement of this harmonization is in the key of Gb. So, while the bass is ascending in the key of Gb:

    …the melody is ascending in the key of Ab:

    I repeat, the root movement is in the key of Gb.

    From the first tone (Gb):

    …to the second tone (Ab):

    …to the third tone (Bb):

    …to the fourth tone (Cb):

    …to the fifth tone (Db):

    …to the sixth tone (Eb):

    …to the seventh tone (F):

    …to the flat seventh (Gb):

    “Keep An Eye On The Bass Notes In The Key Of Gb And The Melody Notes In The Key Of Ab…”

    Reharmonization of the first tone (Ab):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Gbmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the second tone (Bb):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Abmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the third tone (C):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Bbmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fourth tone (Db):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Cbmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fifth tone (Eb):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Dbmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the sixth tone (F):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Ebmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the seventh tone (G):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Fmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the eighth tone (Ab):

    …using the polychord voicing of the Gbmaj9 chord:

    The use of the polychord voicing of major ninth chords as a constant structure throughout the reharmonization makes approach #3 amazing.

    I’m sure you’re ready for approach #4, let’s do it!

    Approach #4 – The Reharmonization Of The D Major Scale

    Alright! We’re in the key of D major right now and we’ll be reharmonizing the ascending form of the D major scale:

    …using chromatic root movements and extended chords.

    “Here’s The Root Movement…”

    From the first tone (D):

    …to the seventh tone (C#):

    …to the flat seventh (C):

    …to the sixth tone (B):

    …to the flat sixth (Bb):

    …to the fifth tone (A):

    …to the sharp fourth (G#):

    …to the fourth tone (G):

    “Check Out The Chord Progression And Keep An Eye On The Melody Notes…”

    Reharmonization of the first tone (D):

    …using the D major triad chord:

    Reharmonization of the second tone (E):

    …using the A major (add9) chord:

    Reharmonization of the third tone (F#):

    …using the Ddom7 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fourth tone (G):

    …using the G major triad chord:

    Reharmonization of the fifth tone (A):

    …using the Abmaj9 chord:

    Reharmonization of the sixth tone (B):

    …using the Adom13 chord:

    Reharmonization of the seventh tone (C#):

    …using the G#min11 chord:

    Reharmonization of the eighth tone (D):

    …using the Gmaj9 chord:

    Approach #5 – The Reharmonization Of The F# Major Scale

    Let’s round up by reharmonizing the ascending form of the F# major scale:

    “Here’s The Root Movement…”

    From the fifth tone (C#):

    …to the fourth tone (B):

    …to the third tone (A#):

    …to the flat sixth (D):

    …to the fifth tone (C#):

    …to the sharp fourth (B#):

    …to the fourth tone (B):

    …to the flat seventh (E):

    “Check Out The Chord Progression And Keep An Eye On The Melody Notes…”

    Reharmonization of the first tone (F#):

    …using the C#9sus4 chord:

    Reharmonization of the second tone (G#):

    …using the C#dom7 chord:

    Reharmonization of the third tone (A#):

    …using the F# major triad :

    Reharmonization of the fourth tone (B):

    …using the Edom7 chord:

    Reharmonization of the fifth tone (C#):

    …using the A major triad:

    Reharmonization of the sixth tone (D#):

    …using the G# major triad:

    Reharmonization of the seventh tone (E#):

    …using the Bdom13[#11] chord:

    Reharmonization of the eighth tone (F):

    …using the E9sus4 chord:

    Final Words

    I have no doubt that this comprehensive study on the reharmonization of the major scale has added tons of chords to your chordal vocabulary.

    Practicing these reharmonizations in all twelve keys may be difficult, nevertheless, it’s rewarding.

    I’ll see you in another lesson where we’ll go deeper into the reharmonization techniques for hymns, and worship songs.

    Thank you for your time.

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    Hello, I'm Chuku Onyemachi (aka - "Dr. Pokey") - a musicologist, pianist, author, clinician and Nigerian. Inspired by my role model Jermaine Griggs, I started teaching musicians in my neighborhood in April 2005. Today, I'm privileged to work as a music consultant and content creator with HearandPlay Music Group sharing my wealth of knowledge with thousands of musicians across the world.

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