The Source Book

"Jazz improvisation is spontaneous composition. In THE SOURCE, Steve Barta has carefully outlined the basic tools one needs to master in order to begin to create the personal melodies that separate the best jazz musicians from the rest. Learning the scales, chords and inversions is a first step. After that, the jazz musician must learn how to use those elements and others effectively in order to say musically what is important from his or her perspective.

THE SOURCE is an excellent starting point." Dr. Billy Taylor


The Source: The Dictionary of Contemporary and Traditional Scales
(Hal Leonard Publishing. Available in Japanese & English)

The Source, suitable for beginners and schooled players alike, is a 80 page multi-instrumental scale/chord dictionary. The Source has become the standard scale reference and practice book in the music industry. Used by musicians and educational systems worldwide, The Source educates the user about the harmonic possibilities between scales and chords, and aids in the development of improvisational skills and finger dexterity.

Section One of The Source consists of 22 different scales, each transposed into all 12 keys, written in treble and bass clefs with 2 octaves ascending and descending. Right and Left-hand fingerings are assigned to every note for keyboard players.

The first page of each scale has a Chord Choice: a complete list of chords one might use with the scale, and a list of alternate names to which a particular scale may be known. For example, the Aeolian scale is also referred to as the Pure Minor, Natural Minor, Ethiopian, and the Mohammedan.

Section Two covers the various inversions for the 5 seventh chord qualities: major seventh, dominant seventh, minor seventh, half-diminished seventh and diminished seventh. All chords are shown in both treble and bass clefs and fingered for left and right hands for keyboard.

The Source, published in 1986, with worldwide distribution by Hal Leonard Publishing is now in its 13th printing, and has become the standard scale reference and practice book in the music industry. Available in music stores everywhere.

Japanese editon published by Zenon Publishing.

Read the Introduction by Steve Barta

"If I were starting to learn my scales, modes, and chords all over again, I think THE SOURCE would be the most expedient resource because it is clear, concise, and applicable."
Dave Brubeck

"This book is essential for anyone working in any area of music."
David Amram

"What a great book! Everything is so simple and easy to understand...A must to students, educators, and me!"
Marian McPartland

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