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  • Writer's pictureJay EuDaly

June 2021: Going Modal - Locrian!

Lesson 5 of the Going Modal series is on the Locrian Mode. The Locrian Mode is a minor-type mode (meaning it has a minor 3rd) but cannot be used over a minor chord because the distinctive note of the Locrian is a flat 5. The natural 5 in the chord will clash with the flat 5 in the scale. So the minor chord must have a flatted 5th in it – either a Diminished Triad or a Minor 7(b5) chord, otherwise known as a Half-Diminished. This is why I say that this mode is highly specialized.

Because of the specialization involved, this lesson also includes how to play a couple of different voicings for a Half-Diminished chord. Those of you who have gone through at least Unit 4: 7th Chords will already be familiar with it.

The Locrian Mode is used as its own tonality/key in metal. See the intro/hook to Judas Priests' "Painkiller." A rare example in Pop music is Bjorks' "Army of Me." A song that's entirely in Locrian is an old Folk song about gravedigging, "Dust to Dust." Links are provided in the lesson.

Anyway, check out this FREE lesson on the Locrian Mode:

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Announcing Guitar Collective

I want to draw your attention to the blog below, Jam Tales: Khurram Waqar.

Khurram is a friend of mine; he happens to be a well-known guitarist in Pakistan. He has started an initiative among South Asian guitarists (Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Dubai etc) called, "Guitar Collective." He solicited me to be involved in this group. Read the blog for more detail.

They have a FaceBook page on which I am posting free lessons. All the lessons are hashtagged #jayeudalyguitarcollective so you can find them all together. If you're interested in the free lessons (I'm starting from the beginning - the 5-Lesson Foundational Series) or you just want to see the nature of the guitar in that part of the world, check it out. You might find it interesting:


Blogs Published Since Last Newsletter

House Gigs: Familiarity-Creep: A huge percentage of the time, getting a house gig is the beginning of the end for the band. It's a very seductive thing; steady work, regular paycheck, there's usually a "scene" happening and you are right at the center of it. But inevitably, "familiarity-creep" happens and it usually doesn't end well. If you're lucky, it was a good run and was worth the flame-out at the end.

The Ionian/Lydian Distinction: The concept of this "Modal Distinctives" series is that you can get to the distinctive sound of a mode without learning the whole mode, or getting all confused by modal theory, but by adding, or altering, a single note of the most commonly-known scale among guitarists; the Minor Pentatonic.

Jam Tales: Khurram Waqar: How a Pakistani Rock guitarist and a Kansas City Jazz musician hooked up and what came of it.



In my part of the world (Kansas City) the lockdown mandates have eased. I averaged 3 gigs a week in April and 4 gigs a week in May; that's pretty much what I was doing in March of 2020 when ALL my gigs went away within two days time.

One of the things learned in lockdown was leveraging live streaming. I've continued to live stream portions of gigs on my personal FaceBook page.

If you're in the Kansas City area and are ready to get out and about, check my Gig Schedule.


P.S. Ok ok ok! I know! I've been so busy it's easier than usual to procrastinate. Unit 6: 7th Voicing launch coming soon!

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