Questions tagged [scales]

For questions about playing, understanding, or studying scales.

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2answers
16 views

What are scale degrees?

I heard my band teacher talking about "scale degrees" and do not understand what he means.
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3answers
158 views

What determines which mode you're in? [duplicate]

I've learned all about modes, but there's something that confuses me. The G major scale contains the exact same notes as the A Dorian scale. So what determines which of those two scales you are ...
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2answers
289 views

What is the difference between an augmented and diminished scale?

I understand little music theory, so I do not understand the difference between an augmented and diminished scale.
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1answer
65 views

Where do Zeitler's scale names come from?

On Ian Ring's music theory website, a massive number of scales (1490) have "Zeitler" names. Some names are common (like Mixolydian) but others (like Dydyllic) I cannot find any reference to. ...
4
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2answers
57 views

Major Harmonic chords - Fourth degree, substitute for min/maj chord

Please see below for F#/Gb Major Harmonic four note chords which I made. You will notice the fourth degree shows as a min/major 7th chord (which doesn't sound too bad). But, what is considered a good ...
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1answer
89 views

How do you memorize the modes of the melodic minor scale on guitar?

I'm looking for ideas to memorize the 7 positions of the melodic minor on the guitar fretboard. Any suggestions? Is there a way to map each pattern to a chord shape? Or a way to quickly visualize the ...
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9answers
4k views

Can I skip learning minor scales if I learned major ones?

I learned the basics of the piano mostly from YouTube, intervals, various chords formulas including sevenths, diminished but I try to very closely follow the best practices. I learn inversions and ...
4
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3answers
118 views

Should I learn a new minor scale pattern, or "reframe" a major scale pattern?

I'm confident with the major scale pattern in the image. Now I'm looking to learn a minor scale pattern to use for soloing or playing in minor keys. It seems in my mind that I could simply "...
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3answers
462 views

Three different diminished scales?

I'm reading about some jazz stuff, and get told there are ony two whole tone scales, and three diminished scales. The whole tones are pretty obvious - once you get past the second semitone, you're ...
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1answer
102 views

Box shape for diminished scale on bass guitar

Does anyone have a box shape for a diminished scale so I can find it quicker on the fretboard?
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0answers
61 views

In the Lydian Chromatic Concept, how are the horizontal scales formed?

In George Russell's The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization, he introduces the notion of "horizontal scales": They are horizontal because they include the fourth degree in their ...
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4answers
879 views

Outside of Equal Temperament, what decides the spelling of notes in a major scale?

I've been reading up on the history of temperament, and how enharmonic notes are more of a limitation of the modern piano (only one black key), and also mathematically they are the same if you use ...
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4answers
196 views

Ab dorian b2 = Bbb as second note, right?

As the title suggests. When playing the Dorian flat 2 mode in Ab, the second note would be called a Bbb right?
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4answers
167 views

Why is there no "half/minor-third augmented" scale?

I don't have a lot of formal music training so this may well be a dumb question, but I've been looking at this off and on for a while and I can't figure out why this particular scale doesn't seem to ...
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2answers
93 views

Strange out-of-key chords in Blow by Beyonce?

Can someone explain to me what is going on tonally in Beyonce's song Blow? The bass notes deceptively seem to suggest the chords in the verse are G major and F major. But these chords do not sound ...
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3answers
119 views

Why does a B major scale work against an A major chord?

I can hear that soloing over an A major chord using a B major scale "works" but I am curious as to the musical theory why it works? I know the C# and E contained in the B major acale are the ...
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3answers
2k views

Confused as to why one scale fits four different chords

I'm learning the bass guitar. I'm looking at a song called "Bling Thing" in the Rockschool Grade 4 book. On YouTube in the bass guitar backing track this part begins at 0:48. ...
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2answers
149 views

How to calculate the extra semitone in one circle of fifths

This is an extension to my previous question when I tried to do the math to prove the following statement: going up 12 perfect fifths takes one up 7 octaves plus one-fourth of a semitone extra Going ...
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3answers
765 views

Why are the frequency ratios of notes in the Pythagorean scales 9/8 and 256/243?

In Pythagorean tuning, for every 7th semitones the frequency would increase by a factor of 3/2 (to get that harmonious perfect fifth). If the frequency of C4 is set to 256Hz, the frequency of G4 can ...
5
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2answers
97 views

What are some techniques for changing scale convincingly? [duplicate]

I am having trouble changing scales smoothly when composing, it always seems that the two parts are not connected and the change is sudden. I want to know some techniques so I can do that convincingly ...
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2answers
125 views

Sweet child - scale and chord discrepancy

This is not about "identifiying a chord". The chord is already identified. This is about how a chord can be replaced with another, changing the flavor of a song. I have played the rythm ...
3
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2answers
104 views

How does one analyze a song that moves primarily between two non-diatonic chords?

The score for 'The Simple Life' by Jerry Martin indicates three flats, which would typically mean either Eb major or C minor. However, almost the entire song just moves back and forth between Bb major ...
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0answers
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How was mixolidian mode introduced in Northeastern Brazilian Music?

Northeastern region of Brazil has a great variety of traditional and folkloric music genres. The most well-known genre is forró, followed also by baião and xaxado. These music genres are usually ...
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5answers
1k views

How do you exactly notate in 31-TET?

So I always wanted to compose a song in 31-TET inspired by a song I heard on musescore some months ago, the thing is that I didnt know how to notate in 31-TET, so obviously i want to learn.
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3answers
129 views

Is it possible to distinguish if a melody is in C Dorian or in D Phrygian?

(This is my first post in this community, I tried to search an answer about that basic question but it's not easy, so sorry if it is a duplicate) Since the C Dorian scale contains the following notes: ...
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1answer
167 views

Categorizing modes of scales other than major scale

Modes of major scale are often ordered such that each consecutive scale can be obtained by altering one step of the previous one: lydian 1 2 3 #4 5 6 7 ionian 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ...
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1answer
125 views

What scale repeats by every fourth?

I've stumbled across this in my own compositions and I'm sure I've heard songs on the radio do this. The simplest way to describe this is to take a regular piano and paint the keys so that there's ...
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4answers
899 views

Precise rule(s) for calling a note sharp or flat in a given scale

Is there a precise rule (or set of rules) by which I can determine if a note should called sharp or flat? Consider the two scales below. In the first C#/Db is C#, and in the second it's Db. By which ...
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1answer
56 views

What scales can be augmented?

I am working on an app that generates scales & chords and recently began work specifically on augmented chords. It appears to me as though augmented chords are derived from the Lydian augmented ...
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2answers
111 views

What scale does contain these notes?? E, F#,G,A,B,C,D [closed]

As I was going to compose a song I wanted to know what scale contains these notes? E,F#,G,A,B,C,D.
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3answers
105 views

How to use sus2/sus4/add9 in minor key to stay within the key

I understand how to use sus2/sus4 and add9 inn major to keep all notes within the chosen major scale, but how can I use the same chords in a minor key and still stay in key?
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1answer
51 views

Best type/way of scale to start practicing and how to move on? [duplicate]

Learning for past 8 months.. chords are coming up well.. trying now to learn scales (after knowing those are the foundation)... Started with E chromatic scale (2 octaves across first 4 frets) with ...
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10answers
3k views

Why are "scales" mentioned less to singers and more to guitar players?

Scales are still confusing to me. When I sing I don't know anything about scales. Nobody suggests me to sing in mixolydian, phrygian or anything like that. But, when I play guitar, it is very ...
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3answers
479 views

Comparing the same song sung in different key

I am not sure if my question makes sense to the most learned musicians, I still would like to get one simple thing clarified, and I must admit that I did search about this everywhere but there was no ...
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3answers
108 views

Usage of Melodic Minor instead of Harmonic Minor on Secondary Dominant

Recently I watched this video which discusses secondary dominants and specifically for the case of A II - V - I in the key of C. They play a secondary dominant for the II chord, so they are playing an ...
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2answers
71 views

What characteristics of a piece contribute to defining its tonal centre?

I have been wondering since a long time that what exactly in a piece defines the scale and the tonal center. Even if we are given a chord progression that is followed through the entirety of the song, ...
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5answers
304 views

Does the 6 in minor come from dorian mode or from the melodic minor?

Lots of songs use both natural 6 degree and b6 in the same piece. Originally the raised 6th in minor was to close the gap between the 6 & 7 scale degrees in harmonic minor at a cadence but since ...
2
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2answers
144 views

Definition of a step in the (melodic) minor scale? (According to the definition in Kostka - Tonal Harmony and examples therein)

The short version of my question is: Assuming the definition of the minor scale in Kostka's Tonal Harmony textbook (Eighth edition, chapter 4), which is that: there is, in a sense, one minor scale ...
2
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3answers
136 views

Relative and absolute tones: does this really make the difference?

Often, in improvisation, you think of the notes of the scale not as the actual notes you are playing but as the notes of the C scale. The concept I'm talking about is that of the movable C, or ...
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2answers
114 views

Are there two leading tones?

I always took the leading tone to be the 7th degree (the "subtonic") scale degree. According to author David Neumeyer (The Music of Paul Hindemith), there is another? See the following ...
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3answers
427 views

What BPM should I aim for while learning all the minor scales?

I'm learning to play the minor versions of each scale. What BPM should I aim for, before I move onto the next scale?
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6answers
105 views

In major keys, since the 7th scale degree resolves up to the 8th, does descending through the scale degrees 8-7-6 violate the leading tone rule?

I need to understand how the leading tone (7th scale degree) functions in major keys. I see that the 7th scale degree (leading tone) resolves up to the 8th (the tonic) because the leading tone is a ...
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3answers
1k views

How does Eb connect musically to C major chord progression like in this song?

Im learning basic music theory and chord progression then I stumbled upon this song (You are my song by Martin Nievera) : From my understanding, the first 2 lines are simply C major chord ...
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6answers
119 views

Why is the Dominant 7th based on the Diatonic Scale?

I understand that the Dominant 7th chord as a structure is called like that because its chord structure is playable from the Dominant in a Diatonic scale. However, I noticed that the same structure is ...
2
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1answer
52 views

Is the difference between key and scales just unordered vs. ordered pitches? [duplicate]

Hi guys I was trying to understand the relationship between keys and scales, from what I understood starting from the basic pitch: A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G G# if we start from one and take WWHWWWH we ...
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1answer
36 views

Help with identifying scales from track [closed]

I've been studying basic drumming, and found this track on YouTube, Prog Metal - Drumless Track For Drummers - "Reckoning". The tempo is 175 BPM, so to be able to listen to the notes, I slow ...
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1answer
92 views

Why Sonata No. 16 K. 545 by Mozart is told to be done in C Major [closed]

I have seen an analysis of Sonata No. 16 K. 545 by Mozart here: https://www.libertyparkmusic.com/discover-key-music-part-1/image-2-highlights-and-circles-sonata-no-16-in-c-major-k-545/ May I know why ...
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2answers
152 views

Is there a name for the octatonic scale made from the first sixteen harmonics? And is it good for anything?

When the first sixteen harmonics are octave-displaced and compressed into the span of one octave, the result is an octatonic scale whose pitches have the following frequency ratios: 1 9:8 5:4 (a.k.a. ...
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6answers
1k views

Finding key of a song with accidentals

I have a very basic understanding of keys / scales and am a keyboard hobbyist. Every now and then I try to find the notes of a song by ear. The problem I sometimes face is with identifying key/scale ...
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5answers
202 views

What is the relationship between the 5th and minor 7th in dominant chords?

I've been trying to understand the theory behind dominant sevenths and have been reading a lot of articles. There's just one thing I couldn't understand-- the basic relationship of the minor 7th to ...

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