Reviewing 4 Scales

Reviewing 4 Scales l LadyDpiano

Reviewing Scales

You have probably played, sung, and heard music based on many different scales.

Play the scales below. Listen to their sounds.

I have highlighted the keys visually in green.

Reviewing the Meaning of Half Steps and Whole steps

Play these example on the piano and hear their sounds:

Half Step Examples:

C-C#, E-F, A-Ab, B-C.

Whole Step Examples:

C-D, E-F#, A-G, Bb-C

Major Scales l LadyDpiano

Major Scale
LadyDpiano l Major Scale

Whole step = D-E
Whole step = E-F#
Half step = F#-G
Whole step = G-A
Whole step = A-B
Whole step = B-C#
Half step = C#-D

A fun song in a major key is 'Marching To Pretoria.' Here it is on YouTube.

Minor Scale
LadyDpiano l Minor Scale

W = D-E
1/2 = E-F
W = F-G
W = G-A
1/2 = A-Bb
W = Bb-C
W = C-D

Here's an article on How to play minor piano scales. An example of the minor sound can be heard by Pete Seeger and Ruth Rubin.

Dorian Mode

LadyDpiano l Dorian Mode
W = D-E
1/2 = E-F
W = F-G
W = G-A
W = A-B
1/2 = B-C
W = C-D

A favorite song that captures the Dorian sound is Simon & Garfunkle's Scarborough Fair.

Mixolydian Mode

LadyDpiano l Mixolydian Mode

W = D-E
W = E-F#
1/2 = F#-G
W = G-A
W = A-B
1/2 = B-C
W = C-D

More on out-with-blues-scale-in-with-mixolydian.

A great Irish jig with the Mixolydian sound is The Old Gray Goose.

Scale Assignment l LadyDpiano


  • Build each of the four scales, starting on a pitch other than D, by following the intervallic pattern. 
  • Improvise melodies on each of the four kinds of scales. Compose melodic settings for original poems, using scales.
  • Work with other kinds of pitch organizations.
  • Show increasing ability to identify major, minor, and modal scales (both aurally and visually) and should be able to use them creatively with increasing skill.

I have shared four tips on playing scales in an earlier post that may be helpful to you. This resource can help you understand music theory, 300pg Course Book.

Wishing you all the best!

-- LadyD

 "The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you." B.B.King

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