Tag - scale

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Chord Progression within a Key
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Connection between Major and Minor Key Signatures
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Major third and minor third concepts
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Minor Scales
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Major Scales

Chord Progression within a Key

The chord progression within a key is a succession of chords that concur with each scale degree. In a word, each scale interval or degree has its corresponding chord. We are going to study the chord progressions in a major key and in a minor key. Let’s start from a major scale, for example the C scale: C D E F G A B We assign a chord to each interval, just as follows: I -> major chord -> C II -> minor chord -> Dm III -> minor chord -> Em IV -> major chord -> F V -> major chord -> G VI -> minor chord -> Am VII -> half-diminished chord-> Bm7b5 (forget about it) All right, well, if we are in the key of C, any of these chords could work just fine (some better than others), but we would always be playing within the harmony.[…]

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Connection between Major and Minor Key Signatures

When we mentioned major and minor scales, we saw that an X major scale shares the same notes with a Y minor scale. This is because they are relative key signatures, and they share the number of alterations among their scale (number of sharps or flats), and therefore they have the same notes. Each major scale has its related minor (and the other way around, of course). The interval that stretches from a relative minor key signature to its corresponding relative major key, is always of a descending minor third, which is, as we’ve seen, a tone and a half. We are going to take the C major and A minor scales as an example, which share the same number of alterations (literally, none), as we know, and which are therefore related. If we descend one tone and a half starting from C, we exactly get an A: C  B […]

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Major third and minor third concepts

Now that we know what major scales and minor scales are, we are going to define what a major third is, and what a minor third is. A major third is a note that is located two full tones away from the tonic (or 4 semitones), as it occurs on major scales. In other words, it is the third degree of the major scale. In C major scale, the third (an E) is just 2 tones away from the C. A minor third is a note that is located one tone and a half away from the tonic (or 3 semitones), as in a minor scale. So, it is the third degree of the minor scale. If we take the A minor scale as an example, the third (a C note) is exactly 1 tone and a half away from the A note. The interval of third is very important[…]

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Minor Scales

A minor scale (its full denomination should be natural minor scale) is a scale is which we have semitones between intervals 2 and 3, and between intervals 5 and 6. The other intervals are a full tone. Following the rule that we apply to the major scales, with whole and half, the minor scale should be w-h-w-w-h-w-w. Let’s take an example. We are going to write the A natural minor scale. We put the 7 notes beginning with A, and we correct interval distances when needed, using sharp notes. A B C D E F G That was pretty easy, right? As a matter of fact, we didn’t have to alter any note. Does it remind you of something? That’s right, the C major scale doesn’t have any alteration either. This is because these two scales, C major and A minor, are actually the same thing seen through a different[…]

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Major Scales

Before we move on, let me introduce the notion of scale. A scale is a set of different notes that have a certain relation together. Depending on that relation, we will define the name of the scale. The first note is called tonic or root. The rest of the notes, called intervals or degrees are assigned by order: second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh (we could have the eight, which is the same note as the tonic, just an octave higher). Normally, intervals are written in Roman numbers, for example if we see V it refers to the fifth degree, which for instance among the C scale, is G. A major scale is a succession of 7 notes, one tone away from one another, except between the third and fourth degree, and between the seventh and eighth (exactly the same note as the tonic) which are separated by a semitone.[…]

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