Questions tagged [scales]

For questions about playing, understanding, or studying scales.

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5
votes
4answers
895 views

What's the term for the intervals between notes within a scale that produces a chord

I probably described that poorly in the title, and I'm not even sure there is a word for what I'm thinking. Lets say you're playing on just the white keys on a keyboard. C E G is C major, and D F A ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

Scales, modes, techniques for writing "Super Mario" style music

I'm looking for a push in the right direction as to how to go about writing Super Mario type video game themes. What scales/modes work best, time signatures, etc... Examples of where I'm trying to go:...
7
votes
1answer
815 views

What is a standard order for learning/practicing scales when learning how to play the electric bass (esp. for jazz/blues music)?

I'd like to bring my theoretical knowledge and practical skill for playing jazz/blues scales on the electric bass up to snuff. What is the standard order for learning/practicing jazz/blues scales on ...
40
votes
12answers
20k views

Is it possible to write a song without a key?

"This song is in F Major", "That song is in A Minor", "This song is in D Minor, but modulates to F Major in the middle", etc. Can we say "This song has no key"? Are there songs that have/follow no ...
18
votes
8answers
72k views

What scales are suitable for funk? Is there a funk scale?

I hope this question isn't too "noob"-ish for you guys (but hey I've gotta start somewhere). What scales are suitable for funk? Is there a funk scale, akin to the blues scale? I'm pretty sure the ...
3
votes
1answer
563 views

Is it normal, when playing scales on the piano, to occasionally rub neighboring fingers against each other?

When I play the F sharp harmonic minor scale, my right index finger on E sharp (F) rubs on my third finger on F sharp, since this scale is rather awkward. Is this to be avoided, or is it impossible/...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Guitar scales further up the fret board

I'm hoping someone can help me. Ι've been playing guitar for a while and mostly kept myself confined to chords/rηythm, but now I want to explore some lead styles to add to my skills. So I began with ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Is it acceptable to move hand position while practicing scales on guitar?

I was reading through the answers posted here, and I liked the idea of playing with the "finger per fret" method, but it's not always applicable. For instance I was practicing the Fmaj scale last ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Fingering for black key pentatonic scales

I have noticed that everything I play on the black keys sounds "oriental". I want to know the standard fingering for this pentatonic scale?
1
vote
1answer
277 views

How do I find the accompaigning low-pitch note when playing fingerstyle?

If you're trying to learn a song by ear for example, how do you find the backing note to go along whith what you are playing? For example, when playing canon in D, you first start with the D string ...
39
votes
4answers
9k views

What's so special about minor and major scales?

background: I'm an amateur and self-learner pianist. What I know, I know from books or google, so I'll start with summarising what I already know - please don't hesitate to correct me if I have ...
46
votes
11answers
22k views

Key signature for writing in modes other than major and minor

I have trouble deciding what accidentals to put in the key signature for pieces in Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian or Mixolydian modes. There seem to be trade-offs associated with each choice. For example, ...
22
votes
2answers
787 views

Is this piece of renaissance music really in the locrian mode?

A fifteenth-century dance manual contains this piece of music: which appears to be (uncharacteristically) in the locrian mode. Is it really, or am I mis-reading? Does anybody know of other music ...
19
votes
7answers
3k views

Where should I go to learn about non-Western scales (particularly Turkish & Greek)

Apart from Turkey and Greece, I mean. I'm looking for fairly abstract musicological and comparative descriptions, not "how to play"-style information. Particularly interested in departures from the ...
26
votes
5answers
33k views

What is the importance of practicing scales on piano, and the proper fingering of them?

First of all I want to point out that I practice scales a lot and even enjoy it. I just don't know why they are so important, as this site says for example: "Proper fingering of the scales on the ...
19
votes
3answers
3k views

What scale is this? ( A B C# D E F G A)

This is a very minor question, but I'm trying to learn a piece (a Bach Concerto in D minor) that has the following sequence of notes played in order: A B C# D E F G A My piano teacher said it was a ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Where can I find jazz piano scales to practice?

I played the piano for years classically when I was younger, but eventually left it alone in my late teens and twenties. I probably wouldn't have if I'd been allowed to do more Jazz as I always wanted ...
10
votes
3answers
41k views

Violin fingering schemes for different scales

I had a 10 year gap in my violin play and I'm still having trouble remembering the correct fingering (specifically for 4 and more sharps/flats). Where can I find some fingering charts/schemes ...
19
votes
5answers
12k views

Differences between the concept of Scales , Raagas, and Thaats?

Western music has Scales (major, minor, etc.) while Eastern Music primarily has a large number of Raagas derived from some basic Thaats. Both these groups represent sets of notes on which actual song ...
127
votes
11answers
67k views

Why are there twelve notes in an octave?

I know that one scale consists of 12 half-tones. But my question is still: Why? Why not 13 or 11?
12
votes
7answers
4k views

What is the proper way to play A-Flat scales on piano?

Consider four cases: A-flat major A-flat (natural) minor A-flat melodic minor A-flat harmonic minor I start them with the third finger on the A-flat key (both hands), but I have no idea how a ...
162
votes
12answers
39k views

Why do minor keys sound “sad”? [closed]

Oftentimes major keys are called "happy" and minor keys are "sad". Why is this? Is it universal across cultures that use these scales? Do similar connotations exist in other scale systems? (If this ...
66
votes
22answers
6k views

Ways to get out of a scalar rut?

I'm a well versed and experienced guitarist. I have a decent sense for rhythm and melody, but I have a VERY hard time with soloing. I know you've heard it all before I'm one of those guys that got ...
18
votes
8answers
3k views

How to figure out what key a piece is in?

I am trying to write a guitar accompaniment to the piece "Fair and Tender Ladies", but I have no clue what I need to do to figure out what key that piece is in. Also, the instrument playing the piece ...
7
votes
5answers
587 views

Resources for learning the Blues [closed]

Can anyone recommend any good resources (books or online) for learning the Blues on the guitar? Scales and theory is what I am looking for.
6
votes
3answers
520 views

Permuations or scales for building up speed

I'm currently trying to build up some speed and accuracy in my technique, and I was told a while back that a great way to do this was to play fingering permutations to a metrenome. Has anyone had any ...
17
votes
4answers
5k views

What is an atonal mode?

I got an album by Ornette Coleman and Pat Methany, "X", and on the linear notes it talks about atonal experiments within the song structures. Are there scales and chord progressions that go along with ...
8
votes
4answers
10k views

What is a chromatic scale?

I notice that the blues scale uses notes that don't fit into the regular pentatonic scale, is there an entire scale that incorporates this method?
42
votes
10answers
21k views

What are modes and how are they useful?

I'm a self-taught guitarist with zero to little experience in music theory. After marrying a violinist I found that there's a lot to music theory that I know tribally but don't understand the ...
10
votes
8answers
24k views

What is a good solo to learn in the Dorian mode?

I understand that Dorian is a commonly used mode in rock. I am starting to play / improvise in the mode and would like to learn some guitar solos that are good examples of this scale so that I see how ...
9
votes
5answers
15k views

What is a good guitar solo to learn in the minor scale?

I am starting to play and improvise in the minor scale, and I would like to learn some guitar solos that are good examples of this scale so that I see how other people use it. What are some famous ...
9
votes
10answers
14k views

What is a good solo to learn in the major scale?

I am starting to play / improvise in the major scale and would like to learn some guitar solos that are good examples of this scale so that I see how other people use it. What are some famous solos in ...
7
votes
5answers
25k views

What is the I-vi-ii-V Chord Progressions?

Are there any scales that work well over this progression? My Mistake!! I was thinking of the song Breezin' by George Benson!!
25
votes
6answers
74k views

What is the first scale one should learn on guitar

The title really sums it all up but I'll try expand it slightly. Lets say I'm learning guitar and would like to improve my guitar work. Which of the scales should I learn first and why?
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Singing notes while playing scales

I've heard, that singing or humming notes while playing scales or arpeggios is good for you. Is that so? In what way? If I am not a singer, why should I be singing the notes?

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