The Melodic Minor Scale

The Melodic Minor Scale

The melodic minor scale is the scale you get when you raise the 6th and 7th note in an Aeolian scale up a half step.

A Aeolian = A B C D E F G

A Melodic Minor = A B C D E F# G#

It’s easier to learn the melodic minor scale when you compare it to the major scale.
As turns out: there is only 1 note different between a melodic minor scale and a major scale.

You get a melodic minor scale when you lower the 3rd in a major scale.

Here’s the C melodic minor scale mapped out on each string.

The 7 in-position fingerings for the melodic minor scale, in the key of C

Notice the names of the fingerings. You want to memorize these.

These 7 fingering names, which are also the names of the 7 modes of melodic minor, are:

  1. C Melodic Minor scale
  2. D Dorian b2 scale
  3. Eb Lydian #5 scale
  4. F Lydian b7 scale
  5. G Mixolydian b13
  6. A Aeolian b5 scale
  7. B Altered scale

You can download those above graphics here as pdf’s

Page 3 Linear Melodic Minor

Page 4 In Position Melodic Minor

On a quick, interesting side-note: notice, on the single string hand out, that the melodic minor scale consists of a combination of 2 scales.

The first half: B C D Eb = a half whole diminished scale.
The 2nd half: Eb F G A B = a whole tone scale.

One of the most fun ways to learn and practice those scale fingerings, is by playing solos with them over a backing track.
Hit me up in the comments section below or shoot me an email if you woud like me to email you a backing track in C melodic minor.

This is a really important scale that you want to know if you want to become a better improviser in jazz.
In the near future, we’ll cover some of the uses of the melodic minor scale.

For now: have fun discovering the new sounds.


Hit me up anytime at [email protected] if you have any questions, or if you would like to book a lesson.

These free lessons are cool, but you will never experience the progress and results that my students experience in lessons, learning from blogs and videos.

That is why people take lessons: way better results and progress, much more complete information, exposed to way more creative ideas, than you can get from a blog.
There is only so much that self-study can accomplish.

Keep me informed on your progress. You can hit me up in the comments section below.
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You’re on your way to becoming a great guitar player.
Have fun! 🙂

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