Questions tagged [scales]

For questions about playing, understanding, or studying scales.

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28
votes
8answers
7k views

Why are the 4th and 7th scale degrees removed from the major scale to make the Pentatonic scale?

The Pentatonic scale is often described as being the major scale with the 4th and 7th notes removed. E.g The C major scale is C D E F G A B C, so the C Major Pentatonic scale is C D E G A C. Why are ...
3
votes
3answers
265 views

What is a "indeterminate chord"?

The sheet below is depicting a "inderteminate chord": the piece is in F# minor and the chords have 2 notes each: F# and C#. THE CHORD DOESN'T INCLUDE THIRDS:
4
votes
2answers
2k views

The key signatures C-flat minor and G-flat minor: do they exist? [duplicate]

Do the key signatures C-flat minor/G-flat minor exist? If yes,what notes are used in them, and they are rarely or frequently used in classical music? Also: DO these keys exist 9((not theorethical) ...
0
votes
2answers
157 views

How differentiate a song between major and relative minor scale (E.g differentiate B major from G# minor)? [duplicate]

Since the major scales and their relative minor uses the same key signature, how differentiate a major song from minor? Below is a screenshot of a sample from musescore (the key signature is used for ...
4
votes
4answers
480 views

What would you call this scale?

Its basically a Dorian Scale with #4 F G A♭ B C D E♭ F Don't know what to call it
8
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3answers
1k views

What other scales can be played over ii chord in ii-V-I besides Dorian?

Soloing over ii-V-I is usually associated with modes. Dorian-Myxolydian-Ionian. I'm trying to expand my soloing by playing "outside", so I wanted to find out what other scales can be played over ...
3
votes
3answers
511 views

Confusion Regarding diminished scales and how to practise them

I have found that there are conflicting views on what is considered the diminished scale in jazz and when to play it. If I have a ii-V- I in C and would like to apply a diminished scale to create a ...
3
votes
6answers
178 views

Why does the modal system approach to jazz sometimes fail?

When I first dived into studying jazz guitar, I learnt that the modal system and harmonized scale were the ultimate key to jazz improvisation and mastery. This method worked for me in most cases but ...
1
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1answer
242 views

Function of Minor sixth chords

What are the precise harmonic functions of the Minor sixth chord? I remember that I read somewhere that they play often the role of the I degree in a chord progression (like the often used 6/9 chord) ...
19
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9answers
9k views

Exactly what does "diatonic" mean?

Is the meaning very context dependent, or can it be defined in general terms? Does the meaning change by author or period? Sometimes it's used to refer to anything that stays within a specific tonal ...
4
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5answers
313 views

Did classical composers typically modulate using the circle of fifths?

I read somewhere that classical composers modulate using a fifth. I think they did this because it's the smoothest key change as scales only differ between one note when they do that. So was that the ...
4
votes
1answer
540 views

What are the characteristics of Late Romantic Russian Music?

I've been recently listening to some late Romantic Russian music (Lyapunov, Kalinnikov, Tchaikovsky, etc.) and was wondering how best to mimic this style. So far, I've observed a handful of shared ...
3
votes
4answers
639 views

Assymetry in major scale construction

My guitar teacher recommend me to write out all the major scales. His intention was that I would see how double sharps appear in the scale. I have written them all and found this: I wrote them ...
2
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1answer
72 views

What are these numbers after "MM, Bowing and Rhythm"?

This Scales practice schedule from violin masterclass has numbers after MM, Bowing and Rhythm means. What do they mean?
2
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6answers
727 views

Why does soloing over the pentatonic minor of the fifth of a major scale sound so good?

If I play a pentatonic minor scale a fifth above the root, it sounds really good. Why? As an example, if the band is playing a vamp on A major, I can solo on an E minor pentatonic scale for days. Is ...
5
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4answers
800 views

Minor Key with note one half step below the Root?

I'm trying to learn music theory via bass tablature. I started by looking at Muse's Muscle Museum and translating the tablature into notes, and trying to define more music theory information about ...
5
votes
1answer
196 views

What is this exotic sounding scale?

D E♭ F♯ G♯ A B♭ C♯ It's basically a double harmonic major/Byzantine scale with a raised 4th. I don't know what to call it.
2
votes
2answers
463 views

if chords are not only linked to the major scale, then why scales at all?

I have been playing guitar for years now and I thought I -at least- knew music theory basics... I was told a long time ago that chords were built upon scales notes yet I stumbled upon this question ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

What would this scale be? Is it something Eastern?

Its kind of like a pentatonic scale, but some parts are chromatic. The note between the fourth and fifth is played. Moth minor and major seven are played. PLEASE HELP! thank you
3
votes
1answer
409 views

Can i solo with C blue minor scale in a C major Chord progression backing track?

i am confusing about the minor/major thing, can i solo with C minor scale in C major backing track or not??
3
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2answers
1k views

Harmonica on blues should be same Key as guitar?

I love blues and everytime I listen to harp (harmonica) on some Sonny Terry with Brownie McGhee for example, I really want to play Harp, the problem is how to know which Key, should I be based on the ...
0
votes
1answer
107 views

Harmonic/Melodic Modes

I've always thought of harmonic/melodic modes as being modes the fall parallel to harmonic/melodic minor. I don't have any references, but I swear I've seen this corroborated in a few places. ...
5
votes
1answer
288 views

How to use “synthetic modes”

Im having trouble understanding a concept in Persichetti’s book 20th century harmony (Page 43) where he introduces new scales he calls synthetic scales. Just before that he talks about the church ...
-1
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1answer
87 views

How long before dissonance appears in contrary motion scales?

Just to make things clear, let's set some limits: The scale is F major and the tonic is F One of the scales has to start and end on F The other note can start from any note in the F major scale up to ...
6
votes
4answers
480 views

What set of notes can be used as a scale?

There are many different scales. As far as I understand, a scale is defined by intervals between notes. For example, for major scale it should be: tone-tone-semitone-tone-tone-tone-semitone I know ...
2
votes
2answers
102 views

Marking scale degrees

I am marking down the scale degrees for this exercise. I think the tonic in this piece is D as it feels like a resolution. To find the first scale degree in the exercise I counted up from D until I ...
18
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11answers
3k views

What are modes in the real world?

For months, I have been trying to understand modes. Even though I have memorized all the names, what notes they start from and so on, I do not understand their meaning in the real world of music ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

For piano scales, should I let go of the previous key before I hit the next one?

I am playing on an electric piano keyboard and I have the MIDI output connected to my computer and visualizing the notes that I press. I want to write code to give me a score as I practice my scales. ...
3
votes
1answer
126 views

Given that an Octatonic Scale has 8 notes, what are the names of the scale intervals e.g. for a diminished scale?

Assuming the C° (half/whole) scale (C D♭ E♭ E G♭ G A B♭ C) comprises the intervals P1, m2, m3, d4, d5, d6, and m7, what is the correct name/interval descriptions for B♭ & C (the 8th & 9th ...
9
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2answers
295 views

Where is the circle of fifths mentioned for the first time?

How and when was the Circle of Fifths invented, and who is responsible for the discovery of this musical godsend?
6
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7answers
2k views

Song in C major has F# note

I've composed a melody in C Major but there's this one note, F#, which comes at two places. So, can I still say the song is in C major? Or, does it change the key of the whole song?
10
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4answers
3k views

Should I always use scale fingering when sight reading?

I'm practising sight-reading using https://sightreading.training/ which randomly generates notes for practice. If I'm practising in the key of C Major, should I stick to C Major scale fingering/hand ...
3
votes
2answers
84 views

natural 5th or #5th on a V7#9 chord?

The most commonly recommended scale for the V7#9 is the altered scale. However, this scale does not have the natural 5th which is present in the chord. What exactly does this mean? I find it quite ...
0
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3answers
799 views

Some major keys are brighter than others?

In this video, in 3:00 The author suggests some scales in the circle of fifth are brighter than others. Despite having the same intervals. In the demonstration there, ...
12
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6answers
1k views

Would you write key signatures for non-conventional scales?

For example, the gypsy scale, I-♭II-III-IV-V-♭VI-VII. Would you write a key signature for a scale like that, that didn't start on B♭ like scales are supposed to? Or would you just add the flat every ...
0
votes
2answers
159 views

How to Play any Major Scale on Guitar

I am new to guitar and started learning Major Scales, so to go by the definition, A major scale is a diatonic scale. The sequence of intervals between the notes of a major scale is: whole, whole, ...
2
votes
2answers
221 views

Diatonic and heptatonic scales, and degrees

I have been working on listing all the possible diatonic scales in order of degrees, the number of accidentals in the scale. The first is the ionian ( major ), since there are zero accidentals. The ...
12
votes
6answers
12k views

Super Ultra Hyper Mega Meta Scales

If you are as obsessed with Jacob Collier as I am, you probably know what I'm talking about. If not, it is essentially a scale that continually modulates, taking you through multiple keys. Jacob ...
5
votes
4answers
315 views

What is the name of that magical sound: a II chord in a major scale?

Forgive me if my terminology is not the best. I've long loved cadences where, in a major scale, a II is played instead of ii. For instance, G, A, Bm, C, D, Em, F#dim rather than G, Am, Bm, C, D, ...
1
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1answer
75 views

Is traditional spanish music scale also Harmonic Minor Mixolydian scale? [closed]

Is it actually Harmonic Minor Mixolydian scale or is it called just "Spanish scale"?
9
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4answers
3k views

Why do modes sound so different, although they are basically the same as a mode of another scale?

I know my question sounds a little bit confusing, hence I don't have any idea how I could google that. Soo for example: a G Major Mixolydian scale has the exact same notes as the C Major Ionian scale....
6
votes
2answers
684 views

D Scale Question

Ive been playing the piano for a bit and I am now looking to learn new scales. I've run into a question and I'm quite stumped. For example, I've seen the D major scale as D – E – F# – G – A – B – C# – ...
1
vote
2answers
330 views

Why use guitar scale patterns when we can just use CAGED?

I've seen various techniques on scale patterns. Such as memorizing 5-7 different scale patterns, 3NPS, etc. But why do all that when we can just use CAGED? If you see the picture I have in this link,...
0
votes
1answer
625 views

Why is the pentatonic scale important? [closed]

Most songs in major use the major scale, but I keep seeing guitarists play the pentatonic scale in many vids. It's just a subset of the major scale. So why is it so important and what is it used for?
0
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1answer
250 views

What scales/modes are used in Just the way you are by Billy Joel? [closed]

I'm a hobbyist and I only know intermediate music theory. I am currently finding my way around with jazz. Could someone please tell me what scales or modes are/can be used in the Just the way you are?...
1
vote
8answers
4k views

How can I memorize all the notes in each usable key?

Basically, I want to have all the notes in every usable key memorized so that I can instantly just call them to my memory and play them. By usable I mean any key that has 7 or less flats/7 or less ...
2
votes
0answers
33 views

Correct "spelling" for non-heptatonic scales [duplicate]

For heptatonic scales, they are mainly meant to be written with all seven letters and the accidentals to them. For example, the C altered scale would have an Fb instead of E because the note is a ...
1
vote
1answer
290 views

which scale is used in Nirvana's "Love Buzz"? [closed]

which scale is used in Nirvana's "Love Buzz"? is this an eastern scale? how is it possible to mix an eastern scale and a western rhythm? which scale should be used in its baseline?
4
votes
1answer
151 views

What scale(s) would I use to improvise over this riff?

I am a keyboard player and as an exercise, I like to figure out riffs or background chords to songs I like and improvise over them. I chose to tackle this riff, starting at 6:14 with a guitar soloing ...
1
vote
1answer
503 views

The difference btw Major and Chromatic Scale

I learn music theory self study from Alfred book and I have a problem here As you see in question No 7 and 8 I don’t know what do they mean by Major or chromatic scale Thanks for you help 🖤🎶

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