Scales

Learning Outcomes

  • To profoundly understand the role that scales play in the function of music, both melodically and harmonically.
  • To think about pitches in functional, not absolute terms.
  • To develop Relative Pitch (RP), the ability to comprehend and perceive pitch relationships in functional terms with respect to key center.

Links to Lessons

Introduction

  1. Why Study Scales?
  2. What is a Scale?
  3. Scale Structure: The Number System
  4. Scale Structure: The Solfege System
  5. Number System or Solfege?
  6. Solfege and the Notion of Keys
  7. Melodic Analysis: The Beauty of Solfege
  8. Analysis of Familiar Melodies Using Solfege

Ways to Know a Scale

Scale Types: Theory & Ear Training

An exploration of some common and exotic scale types, all in the key of C…

  1. C Major
  2. C Natural Minor || C Melodic Minor || C Harmonic Minor
  3. C Mixolydian || C Dorian
  4. C Major Pentatonic || C Minor Pentatonic
  5. C Minor Blues || C Major Blues
  6. C Middle Eastern || C Japanese

Commonly-Used Scales in 12 Keys

Downloadable PDFs showing notation, keyboard layout, key signature, letter names, scale degrees, and solfege…

Special Topics

Study Aids

Check out the Study Aids page on the main menu for tons of multi-media resources that will help you study-practice your scales and solfege!