Formulas for 3 Forms of minor, plus Dorian
This is included here as the front part of the story, if you are interested. Often, experimenting with the sounds is what makes all this make sense. Read this now, or circle back.
The “3 forms of the minor” are Natural, Harmonic, & Melodic. In our chart, we’ve included A Major as the series for comparing against [paralleling to its numbering]. We’ve also included Dorian because it can act as a tonal center for songs we hear and write [see note below the chart].
Each of these formulas can create melody [scales/modes] & harmony. In this session series, for harmony, we will cover just the triads.
Each of these minor types has a b3, and the 2, 4, & 5 are the same. From there, it’s what we do with the 6th & 7th tones which determine the scale type.
Note for Dorian: we do hear this in music, or when we are writing: the minor key, but as Dorian. We can say that a song is in the Dorian mode, but we could also view this as the melodic minor, with some modifications. For songs in minor keys, we can mix tonal content from any of these forms of the minor. We typically make sure the V chord is Major, and decide which version of the 6 tone/chord sounds best within the context of what we are writing.