To learn how to play other piano scales, such as major, minor,chromatic and pentatonic scales, visit our main piano scales page. My number one recommendation on this site for learning how to play the piano is Piano For All. Click here to learn about Piano For All. The Octatonic scale is ascending in a sequence of a whole step and a half step alternatively.
In a II-V-I progression when the V is having a b9 we actually borrow the fifth from the Octatonic scale so we could naturally use the scale over this chord.
Major Scales are one of the most basic scales that we can sing in order to practise our pitching and keep ourselves in tune. In fact, most vocal instructors would use this scale as a simple vocal warmup, by getting students to sing this simple scale at the start of each lesson, in order to test their pitching and also their rhythm sense. For those who wish to understand more about how we can keep ourselves in pitch, do refer to my webpage on Pitching Tips and find out about the various points we need to take note of when singing our pitching exercises, in order to train our voice effectively!
The Major Scale is made up of 8 notes, with 7 basic notes and the 8th note being a repeat of the 1st note, but in a higher octave.
1 (Doh) 2 (Re) 3 (Mi) 4 (Fa) 5 (Sol) 6 (La) 7 (Ti) 1 (High Doh)If you were to play this scale on the piano, you would need to know the absolute key you wish to begin the scale on.
Middle C, D, E, F, G, A, B, High CPlaying these notes on the piano would give you these scales that are great pitching exercises too!
For those of you who do not have any musical instrument at home, you can find out how to access the full list of major scale audio clips by clicking here. I have uploaded my full set of audio clips online for our members to access, and you can then practise these major scales in the convenience of your own home.
Find out how to access the full list of major scale audio clips and practise them in the convenience of your own home by clicking here. Note: The practice music for B Major as well as A Flat Major is available on the webpage about scale singing for vocal warmups.
A Major Scale is made up of various Tone and Semitone intervals between notes in the structure illustrated above, i.e.
This means that we can construct scales in any major key that we want, just by following this structure. All musical scales have a fixed structure, and if we just remember their structure formula, it is easy to construct the scales that you want to play for your pitching exercises!
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If you want to know what key any given song is in, all you have to do is find the number of sharps or flats in it, and that’ll define the key. You always know the order of the sharps because they always, always, always, forever, evermore, will come in that order. Flat keys are easy to find because the second to the last flat in the key signature is the key. Thanks for being with me, and if you enjoyed this tip, come on over to play the piano and sign up for our free newsletter. If a note that is dictated as sharps & flats by the key signatu re is to be played as natural, an accidental is placed before the note.
The main purpose of the key signature is to limit the number of flats & sharps noted in the music. An experienced musician playing in a non-formal setting (not using written music) simply needs to know the key to a particular song to be able to play the chords and scales (melodies) for that song. Watch this short video and in five minutes from now you should know all about sharps and flats in key signatures for the rest of your life.
Have you ever wondered what those strange symbols are at the very beginning of each line of music? Have you ever looked a piece of music and noticed that although there are sharp notes and flat notes in nearly every piece of music, you don’t see a lot of them written?
Before we learn how to use the key signature, memorize the order of sharps and the order of flats.
Even beginners who are just learning how to play the piano are strongly encouraged to play scales and the closely related arpeggios (broken chords) as part of their practice. Scales and arpeggios help you train your muscle memory as you learn how to work the piano keys correctly.

If you know how to play scales fluently, you have an easy “cover up” if you make a mistake during public performance.
People want to learn how to play chords in order to be able to play any song they desire easily. Be sure to subscribe to the YouTube page to stay up to date with the many lessons I will be adding.
As the pattern of white keys and black keys changes in order to retain the W W H W W W H relationship, the fingering changes. Check out the following audio clip to hear a sample of how you should play the piano and sing along in order to be able to train your aural awareness and listening ability, as well as practise your pitching ability too! Where would D double flat be if … in other words, if there was a double flat in front of D, where would you play it?
In other words, if you’ve got three flats in the key, we have three flats in that key, how do you know what key it’s in? We have tips like this most every day and whole series of lessons on cords, so do yourself a favor and come on over and sign up.
This is written immediately after the clef (on the staff) and is represented by a number of sharps (#) and flats (b). For example, if an F (natural) is to be played in the key of G, an accidental has to be placed before it so it is not played as an F#. In other words, rather than placing a # by the note F every time it occurs in the music, it’s much easier to indicate to the musician that all Fs are to be played as F#s. Though a major and its relative minor are similar in almost every way (their scales are the same though started in different places), they are thought of separately. Those symbols are sharps or flats and the collection of those sharps and flats at the beginning of every line is called the key signature. Once you get beyond the sharps and flats on the extreme left hand side of the line, they aren’t written in the music so how do musicians know to play certain notes as sharp or flat?
Next time you play a piece of music, take a look at the key signature even if you only read chord symbols or tabs.
If you don’t hit the key “cleanly” with good technique, the notes you play will sound weak, tentative and uneven.
When you have to play a run of more than five notes on the piano, you have to tuck your thumb under the rest of your fingers (or slip your index and middle fingers over the thumb, depending on whether the scale is ascending or descending and whether you’re playing the piano with your right hand or your left hand).
Often, it’s important to know how to play a run of notes all at the same volume and with the same length. Obviously, you will have to have a touch-sensitive electric organ if you don’t have a “real” (i.e.
Scales imprint the pattern of black and white notes associated with a particular key into your mind so you know straight away what notes you are most likely to encounter when you start learning a piece of music played in that key. An old trick by professional piano players if they hit the wrong note while performing a song is to play up or down the scale to the right note as quickly as possible.
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Here is what one of my visitors says about the program--"The text, along with the video and audio are outstanding. In other words, Fat Cats Go Down Allies Eating Bologna is just opposite from B, E, A, D, Go Catch Fish. You can memorize that easily and henceforth and evermore you’ll know how many sharps and flats are in each key. If you look carefully at the beginning of each line of music, you will see a group of sharps or flats (they are never used at the same time).
Without key signatures, written music would be cluttered with sharps and flats making it very difficult to read. This means that all of the notes are natural (white keys on a piano or keyboard) in the piece of music you are about to play unless the composer adds a sharp or flat to a single note in the music. Knowing which notes are flat can help you decipher some of those complicated chord symbols. Scales!” booms Bianca Castafiore at her pianist in The Castafiore Emerald by Herge in the Tintin series of comics. When you start playing the piano, this motion feels awkward and ungainly, but when you repeat the motion a lot – which you will do when you play scales – you will find it becoming easier. For example, if you have mastered playing scales in the key of D minor, you can expect that a song in D minor will require to you play a B flat and a C sharp (with the occasional C natural).

You can then use this knowledge you’ve learned through all that practice to put a chord together, no matter what note is in the melody line. Playing staccato all the way through a song probably sounds weird but it’s less peculiar when you play a staccato scale or arpeggio. Or, if you want to be a true ninja, you can add your own content to this sidebar by using the appropriate hooks. The flat third, flat fifth and flat seventh notes of the scale are the blue notes of the scale. If you come to a piece of sheet music and you don’t see any sharps or flats at the beginning of the line of music, it’s in the key of C because it’s based on that scale of C, which goes like that. If you want to know what the last two sharps are, you can say Fat Cats Go Down Alleys Eating Bologna.
The flats will always, always, always occur in the opposite order, which is B, E, A, D, G, C, F. If you see three flats in the key, you see three flats in the key signature, B, E, A-flat, what key is it in? These are placed individually on either a line or a space of the music staff and are placed on the notes they affect. Another way to think of it is the relative minor is named by the sixth note in the major scale. You can squint your eyes and look at what lines or spaces those sharps are on or you can remember your order of sharps. And practice his scales Mr Wagner does, to the extreme annoyance of Captain Haddock, housebound with a broken leg. Once you’ve mastered evenness of volume and note length, you can work on the aspect covered in Point 4 below. Of course, you will have to make sure that you’re playing a chord in the right key, but that is something that playing scales and arpeggios helps with. You’re going to have white note sharps and flats as well as black key sharps and flats. Then the last two sharps are C-flat and F-sharp, or F-flat, which we’ll take up later when we take white key flats and sharps. In other words, if a sharp (#) is placed on the top line of the music staff, the note F is played as an F#. For example, the note A is the six note of a C major scale, so an A minor is the relative minor to C. This is the order, left to right, that the sharps or flats will placed in the key signature. Well, it’s real, real simple and at the end of this short video today, you’re going to be able to know how many sharps there are in each sharp key and how flats are in each flat key.
And all occurrences of the note F, whether on the top of the staff, the first space of the staff, or above or below the staff (marked by ledger lines), are played as an F#. The use of a particular key’s relative minor is very common in music and knowing them goes a long way in understanding a song’s chord progression. This means that every time you come across an F or C in the music, you play them as F# or C#. Professional pianists do indeed practice scales – although they don’t have to do them every waking hour like Mr Wagner did (those who have read this comic will know that he ended up cheating by hiding a tape recording of him playing scales on the piano in the depths of the grand piano so he could slip into town on his bike).
It’s really, really simple, but music theory sometimes makes things more complex than they should be. Normally, it’s E, but if you had a flat in front of F, you would play what looks like E, but it would have to be called F flat. In other words, you look at the key signature in the song, in the sheet music you’re playing at, find out how many sharps there are, and then go up half a step. It can be confusing if you’re just starting out in music and you see those symbols, you know what in the world it means to do.

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