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  • rbedwell3

Introducing the Hindu scale

NB: Gandhi has been used to refer to the term ‘Hindu’ as he represents the pinnacle of thought in Hinduism, in my opinion. Therefore, no offence is intended and cannot be perceived, as I am holding him up as a shining example, so don’t even try.

This title is actually incorrect, but I wanted to use the term scale as it is being used in other posts and videos, albeit erroneously. The Hindu ‘scale’ (1 2 3 4 5 b6 b7)is actually mode V of the Melodic scale. It goes by other names such as Mixolydian b6 or Aeolian natural 3, but for our purposes, Hindu will suffice.

It is an oustandingly beautiful mode, very pretty and subtle but easily accessible and not too avant garde. The beauty lies in the fact that is is a dominant mode with a b6th instead of a natural 6th. Lets look at the triads and tetrads in E Hindu (E F# G# A B C D):

Triads: E F#mb5 G#mb5 Am Bm C+ D

Tetrads: E7 F#m7b5 G#m7b5/G#7b5 AmMaj7 Bm7 CMaj7+ D7

Try creating a nice sound for exposing the modal quality of the Hindu mode by staying with E in the bass and play a couple of chords from A Melodic over the E bass note, such as F#m7b5 – E7 or E7 – D7 or another combination of chords that you like the sound of that highlight the fact that it is a dominant mode but also has the C note prominent in one of the chords.

Below is a backing track that is for the Hindu mode to be played over so have fun. There are other modes that have eastern names assigned to them in the western musical tradition including oriental (mode II of the Hungarian minor scale) and the Persian scale itself (a favourite of J. S. Bach) and I shall turn my attention to combining these more interesting scales in the next post.

My book on modes is found at

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