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Arpeggios Billy Strayhorn Chords Duke Ellington Inversions Ishfahan Modes Scales

Chord Inversions, Arpeggios, Scales: Combined Practice

Here is a useful exercise that combines 7th chord inversions and arpeggios with scales, allowing you to kill three birds with one stone in your practice.

The diamond-shaped white noteheads are the “main” note, the one you should have in mind while playing the other components of the exercise.

The idea is to blend chord inversions, arpeggios, and chord scales, or modes, into one stream of thought.

Try developing this concept within a jazz standard. Here’s an excellent chord progression:

Isfahan by Billy Strayhorn & Duke Ellington in the Key of D♭ (Original Key)

Try it in the key of C for some perspective and more guitar-friendly roots:

Isfahan by Billy Strayhorn & Duke Ellington in the Key of C (Easier Key)


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