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HomeLJS PodcastLJS 240: Elevating a Minor Blues with Chord Tones and Scales

LJS 240: [Strategy #2] Elevating a Minor Blues with Chord Tones and Scales

Welcome to episode 240 where today we are diving into Strategy #2 of Minor Blues Month! In the last episode we composed a 12 bar minor blues using the minor pentatonic and blues scale almost exclusively. This time we build on that etude by incorporating chord tones and a few scales to level-up the jazz in our minor blues.

Listen to episode 240

This is our second episode for Minor Blues Month here where we are going over 3 strategies for improvising over a minor blues, as well as the last 4th episode being my practice plan for really mastering and diving deep into a minor blues.

In the last episode, we talked about strategy #1 which was using minor pentatonics and the blues scale to improvise. 

And on that episode, I basically composed on the spot an etude over a 12-bar minor blues using almost exclusively just those two tools. 

Now, in today’s episode, we are going to take that exact same etude and add strategy number 2 to it, and start doing a little bit of recomposition.

And strategy #2 is all about using chord tones and modes and scales to start adding some more color and dimension to this important song form. 

In this episode:

1. A review of last episodes etudes

2. Adding some chords to the minor blues form

3. Chord tones and scales to use over a minor blues

4. I re-compose the etude while implementing the new strategy

Important Links

1. Minor Blues Accelerator course

2. LJS Inner Circle Membership

Brent Vaartstra
Brent Vaartstra is a professional jazz guitarist and educator living in New York City. He is the head blogger and podcast host for which he owns and operates. He actively performs around the New York metropolitan area and is the author of the Hal Leonard publication "Visual Improvisation for Jazz Guitar." He's also the host of the music entrepreneurship podcast "Passive Income Musician."


  1. Is the LJS podcast still available on Stitcher? I usually listen to each episode on my phone, but Stitcher has not yet updated to add episode 240.

  2. Having lost my jazz mojo in recent times, these wonderful minor explorations, complete with all the much valued and much appreciated musical expertise from Brent, are a real tonic.
    For some reason the download option isnt working for me this time, not sure why; perhaps because its a much longer podcast than usual???


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