Duncan Haynes

VOCAB 1: Working Forwards

• This is a collection of assorted resources - not a complete, step-by-step system!
• Free for personal use (if you share please attribute me).
• The key is to explore & internalise the ideas before applying them to your instrument.
• Any questions or comments welcome. Contact me by email or on Facebook.

So, what do I mean by working forwards? Simply that these materials are to be used to build tools from scratch, to construct ideas from the ground up, working forwards from simplicity towards complexity. This way we understand the internal details and function of every piece along the way in order to develop a solid and broad foundation. It is imperative to apply these examples in many distinct harmonic settings & styles, and across all keys.


GUIDE TONES   Guide Tones 1    Guide Tones 2

GUIDE LINES   Example transcribed from Gary Burton's improv course at Coursera:
    Guide Lines

MOTIVIC DEVELOPMENT   Also Gary Burton from here. My transcription and analysis:
    Motivic Development   Motivic Development analysis

LEARNING TUNES   Applying David Baker's advice to a Horace Silver classic:  Learning Tunes

PATTERNS   Some simple diatonic patterns applied to Pent-Up House:  Pent-Up patterns

MELODIC EMBELLISHMENT    My handout that follows along with this workshop by Mike
    Titlebaum: Melodic Embellishment

II V I [VI]   A few typical phrases:  II V I Motives   II V I VI Phrases

FIFTHS EXAMPLE   Applying fifths to a fragment of Time Remembered:  5ths 12 keys


STEVE COLEMAN    My transcription of this masterclass on metric modulation:
    Steve Coleman workshop

METRIC MODULATIONS   Applying metric modulations to the melody and harmony of
    Pent-Up House:    Pent-Up metric mod.   Pent-Up mod. harmony

ARRANGING: HITS   An example of applying rhythmic elements in developing an arrangement:
    I Should Care   I Should Care rhythm only

METRIC MODULATIONS CHART   A few typical modulations presented visually:
    MetMod chart


MODES    Melodic Minor    Harmonic Minor part1   Harmonic Minor part2

MINOR 251   Some different approaches to minor 251s:    Minor 251 part1   Minor 251 part2

SCALE PATTERNS   A few typical patterns to work through different scale types:  Scale patterns

PENTATONICS   A look at some options when using pentatonics on minor 7th chords:


HARMONIC CONTEXT   Different harmonic settings for a classic lick:  Blues Lick 667

REHARMONISING   Various ways of harmonising a melody:  I Should Care harmony

251 LICK   Developing your voice from raw material:  Solar 251 lick

TRIAD PAIRS   After reading Ran Blake - a chart with 2 triads pairs (major and minor):  
   Major & Minor Triad Pairs

Improve your practice

First principles

Working forwards

Working backwards

Architecture of tunes & solos

Voicings & comping

Also on the way is a book on my concept the


This approach visualises harmony as a journey through a landscape defined by the specific harmonic elements of the music.

Because we don't experience music vertically - in slices of time - but as horizontal through time, that is to say as a narrative in which temporal context gives meaning to what came before and what we expect to follow, it makes no sense to think of music as vertical when we perform it.

In this concept I will do away with vertical notions such as substitution considering instead the infinite possibilities of journeying through the same harmonic terrain.