B FLAT AEOLIAN MODE

‘B Flat Aeolian’ is the 6th mode of the D flat major scale. The notes in Bb Aeolian are:

Bb – C – Db – Eb – F – Gb – Ab

If you have read the post on understanding the aeolian mode, you will know that the aeolian mode contains a ‘flat 3’, a ‘flat 6’ and a ‘flat 7’ (parallel approach). You will also know that it is the 6th mode of the major scale (derivative approach). The aeolian mode is a very commonly used mode and is also known as the ‘natural minor scale’. Let’s briefly look at how to construct Bb aeolian using both the parallel approach and the derivative approach.

Parallel Approach:

Bb major scale has the following notes:

Bb – C – D – Eb – F – G – A

If we ‘lower’ the 3rd note (D), 6th note (G) and 7th note (A), we get the following:

Bb – C – Db – Eb – F – Gb – Ab

Derivative Approach:

Bb is the 6th note of the Db major scale:

Db – Eb – F – Gb – Ab – Bb – C

If we play the Db major scale and start on the 6th note we get the following:

Bb – C – Db – Eb – F – Gb – Ab

Let’s look at the Bb aeolian mode in the different positions on the guitar fretboard:

Positions Along the Fretboard:

There is no ‘open position’ for Bb aeolian, as none of the notes in the scale can be played on open strings.

Let’s look at Bb aeolian in the 1st position (lowest fret is 1)

B Flat Aeolian Mode 1st Position Frets

B Flat Aeolian Mode 1st Position Notes

Now let’s look at Bb aeolian in the 2nd position (lowest fret is 2)

B Flat Aeolian Mode 2nd Position Frets

B Flat Aeolian Mode 2nd Position Notes

Now let’s look at Bb aeolian in the 5th position (lowest fret is 5)

B Flat Aeolian Mode 5th Position Frets

B Flat Aeolian Mode 5th Position Notes

Now let’s look at Bb aeolian in the 8th position (lowest fret is 8)

B Flat Aeolian Mode 8th Position Frets

B Flat Aeolian Mode 8th Position Notes

Finally, let’s look at Bb aeolian in the 9th position (lowest fret is 9)

B Flat Aeolian Mode 9th Position Frets

B Flat Aeolian Mode 9th Position Notes

That covers the 5 basic positions and the open position of Bb aeolian along the guitar fretboard.

For an in depth explanation of the aeolian mode, check out aeolian mode explained.

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