G Lydian Mode : Authentic Flamenco Scale

Today I’m going to shaw with you an authentic flamenco scale. Its also used a lot in jazz as well. Its the Lydian mode. A lot of guitarists have confusion about what modes are, it took me a long time to get my head around how to use them. The best thing you can do is play them and experiment. Modes a transient scale in that pieces are not necessarily in a mode rather that chords can reflect what modes are. So let’s have a look at the G Lydian mode.

Here we have 2 scales, the G lydian and the G major scale (also called Ionian mode). If we compare the 2 scales the G lydian has a C# or sharp fourth degree. Another way to look at tit is that we are playing the notes of a D mayor scale but starting on G we therefore play G# and C#. This is an easy way to calculate the notes in a mode but practically it can cause confusion I find. The are fewer steps in approaching modes by comapoaring the mode to a major or minor scale.

As a quick reference here are the formulas for the main modes, I will go over this on more detail in future posts:

Ionian = Major scale

Dorian = Minor Scale with #6

Phrygian = Minor scale with flat 2nd degree (or flat 9)

Lydian= Major scale plus #4

Mixolydian = Major scale with flat 7

Aeolian = Natural Minor scale

Locrian = Minor scale with flat 2 and flat 5

 

So when thinking about the lydian mode you should really think major scale with a sharp fourth.

When playing the G lydian mode you should try and have G as a bass note (see video) and resolve it to F#7 (flat 9)  chord.

 

Effective use of this mode requires tasteful use of tension and release or dissonance and resolution.

I hope you find this useful, and feel free to ask a question about modes in the comments.

Thanks for reading!

sergio