Saturday, August 1, 2009

Le@rn $t@ff not@tions Lesson 1 Part II


We know that CHROMATIC SCALE consists of every note:

C - C#/Db - D - D#/Eb - E - F - F#/Gb - G - G#/Ab - A - A#/Bb - B - C

We also learned this WHOLE-STEP/HALF-STEP pattern:

W - W - H - W - W - W - H

By applying this pattern to the chromatic scale, starting with C, we arrived at the notes of the C MAJOR SCALE:

C - D - E - F - G - A - B - C

So, what if we were to start on some other note than C?

So long as we follow the same pattern of whole-steps and half-steps, we will get a MAJOR SCALE from that ROOT NOTE.

For example, If we start on G, the notes we get are:

G - A - B - C - D - E - F# - G

Compare this to the notes of the C major scale. Not only does the G major scale have a different root note, It also has an F#.

Here are some points about MAJOR SCALES:

  • Whatever note you start on when applying the whole-step/half-step pattern is the ROOT NOTE for that scale. (Start on C, get a C scale, start on A, get an A scale etc...)

  • This whole-step/half-step pattern always yields a MAJOR SCALE. Any other type of scale will have a different pattern.

  • C is the only major scale that has no #'s or b's. Any other root note will yield different combinations of # and b notes.

  • When first learning a new scale, It's important to start AND stop on the root note and double check that you are following the correct pattern of whole-steps and half-steps. Otherwise, you'll find yourself slipping back into the C major scale and you won't be able to hear the sound of the new scale.

  • Once you're absolutely certain that you are playing the right notes, Start making up little melodies that RESOLVE to the new root note.

  • There's really no way that you're going to be able to remember every note in every scale while you're playing. You have to see the whole-step/half-step pattern for the scale and follow that.

Now, the C major scale has no sharps or flats, so the key signature for C major is blank:

The G major scale has one sharp (F#), so the key signature for G major looks like this:

No two major scales will have the exact same sharps or flats. So, once you get familiar with which scale has which sharps or which flats, one glance at the key signature of a piece of music will tell you what scale the piece is based upon. Add to that the knowledge that you are gaining about how the scales lay across the fingerboard, and you will have a very good point of reference for learning to play any piece of standard notation that you come across.

Your assignment for this lesson is to write out the notes of the major scale in all twelve keys (starting on each note of the chromatic scale).

Here's how to do it:

  • First, decide which note you want to start on. That will be your root note.

  • Then, starting on that note, follow the whole-step/half-step pattern and write down the notes you get.

  • Then choose a different root and repeat the process.

  • There are twelve possible notes to start on. You have to do all twelve.

  • Don't repeat a letter-name within a scale. In other words, if you already played A and the next note that you need is a half-step higher, think of the next note as Bb instead of A#.

  • Major scale have either sharps or flats in them. They never have both at the same time. (There are other scales that DO mix the two.) So, if you start off using sharps, stick with sharps. And, the same goes for flats.

Below, is a chart to illustrate how to organize your scales:

C Major Scale
(no sharps or flats)

C - D - E - F - G - A - B - C

Scales with sharps

Scales with flats

G major:
G - A - B - C - D - E - F
# - G

D major:

A major:

E major:

B major:

*F# major:

F major:
F - G - A - B
b - C - D - E - F

Bb major:

Eb major:

Ab major:

Db major:

*Gb major:

*F# and Gb are the same scale, and both share the same anomaly. I told you before, that there is no such note as E# or Cb, yet, in order to stick with the idea of not using the same letter-name twice in a scale, the F note in the F# scale is called E#, and the B note in the Gb scale is called Cb.

I've given you the first scale in each column. The rest are up to you.

What follows is the G major scale up and down the G-string:

Now, go ahead and figure out the G major scale up and down the rest of the strings. Pay close attention to where those F# notes are.

Here's a couple of MIDI files for you to practice with:

Pedal Tone

Chord Progression


Dulce Rosales August 1, 2009 at 4:30 PM  

I challenge YOU all people of the blogsphere to take part in this my own Logo Rallye and write something between 100-120 words (No more, no less!): it can be anything, from a short story, a poem, a dragonquiddle (?)...

These are the NINE compulsory words to be included and which, of course I've taken at random:

> ash, convince, mild, orchid, peace, persist, valley, instrument, roll <

GOOD LUCK- please SEND THEM TO Dulce Rosales

ROHIT GOEL August 24, 2009 at 6:23 PM  

Firstly it's awesome to have you here. good job Mayank.This was quiet informative. i guess these tutes can help many others like me to play guitar..

i think you should upload some snaps and videos also so that the readers can understand and visualise better.

SONG ( keep listening, keep reading... )

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