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Mixolydian Jam Tracks With Guide Patterns

By Key:   A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G

As the fifth mode of the major scale, Mixolydian pops up in music time and time again. Not only does it have unique melodic qualities that have graced many solos, it's also the backbone of many popular major key chord progressions. The jam tracks below focus on the movements that come from harmonising Mixolydian, making the major scale's fifth degree the tonic or "home".

Training your ears to these movements in several keys will mean you'll know when to use Mixolydian as an accompanying scale. Developing your melodic ideas around these movements by using the tracks below will give you the confidence you need to "go full Mixolydian" when it's called upon.

Some Jamming Tips

I've included both single chord tracks (i.e. no chord changes) and chord progression tracks. Start with the single track and really get a feel for how Mixolydian colours major chords. You'll want to focus specifically on its ♭7 (minor 7th interval), as this is what distinguishes it from the major scale (Ionian). In fact, a good exercise is to interchange between Ionian (and any other major scale/mode) and Mixolydian to hear the difference in parallel.

At the heart of Mixolydian is a dominant 7th arpeggio (1  3  5  ♭7), so try incorporating this arpeggio into your scale phrases, e.g. as a lead-in or lead-out sequence.

Once you're ready to jam to chord changes, start by strumming/picking the chords and get to know where these chord positions are on the neck. These will become the "dots" you connect with your Mixolydian phrases. Many musicians like to think of chord tones as the primary target notes for their melodic phrases. In other words, each phrase has a destination around the chord you're playing over. Think of it this way, and you'll find it much easier to put your scale movements into context.

Start with just a few notes and then build up your phrases from there, gradually layering on different embellishments (e.g. vibrato, bends, slides etc.). Try skipping strings and approaching your target notes in different ways (e.g. ascending, descending). Repeat and refine ideas. It's all nutritious food for the musical brain.

Finally, be OK with making some mistakes in the name of experimentation and... happy jamming!

Mixolydian Backing Tracks By Key

A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G

A Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  D Major   |   Notes:  A  B  C♯  D  E  F♯  G   |   Chords:  A  Bm  C♯dim  D  Em  F♯m  G

A Major Track

Progression Tracks


Note that the "box" tab displays patterns formed around two familiar barre chord positions rooted on the 5th and 6th strings. These are a good starting point for finding your bearings.

Also, don't forget you can combine Mixolydian with regular major pentatonic and blues phrases/licks. But I've included a couple of pentatonic patterns more specific to Mixolydian's flavour to try out.

B Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  E Major   |   Notes:  B  C♯  D♯  E  F♯  G♯  A   |   Chords:  B  C♯m  D♯dim  E  F♯m  G♯m  A

B Major Track

Progression Tracks


C Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  F Major   |   Notes:  C  D  E  F  G  A  B♭   |   Chords:  C  Dm  Edim  F  Gm  Am  B♭

C Major Track

Progression Tracks


D Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  G Major   |   Notes:  D  E  F♯  G  A  B  C   |   Chords:  D  Em  F♯dim  G  Am  Bm  C

D Major Track

Progression Tracks


E Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  A Major   |   Notes:  E  F♯  G♯  A  B  C♯  D   |   Chords:  E  F♯m  G♯dim  A  Bm  C♯m  D

E Major Track

Progression Tracks


F Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  B♭ Major   |   Notes:  F  G  A  B♭  C  D  E♭   |   Chords:  F  Gm  Adim  B♭  Cm  Dm  E♭

F Major Track

Progression Tracks


G Mixolydian

Parent Scale:  C Major   |   Notes:  G  A  B  C  D  E  F   |   Chords:  G  Am  Bdim  C  Dm  Em  F

G Major Track

Progression Tracks


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