Out of all the scales you can play the major scales are without a doubt the most important. It is the most common scale used in western music and is an important foundation you should learn.
A scale is a collection of notes, selected from the notes in an octave. The intervals between each note is what give each scale it's own character and sound.
Here are some of the basics:
- It is the first of the diatonic scales
- It can also be known as the Ionian Mode
- It contains 7 notes
In order to learn this scale and construct one for yourself you need to know the chromatic scale, as the chromatic scale defines all the notes in music, from which all other scales are built.
The chromatic scale contains the 12 notes of the musical alphabet. It is the intervals between these notes that gives different scales their unique sound.
All other scales are built upon the chromatic scale by subtracting certain intervals.
Constructing The Major scale From The Chromatic Scale
Above is the magic formula for the scale. As you can see it is pretty straight forward.
The 'W' stands for whole step and the 'H' stands for half step. This formula never changes so once you learn it you can apply it to each of the different keys, all you do is change your starting note or as it's also known; the root note.
For easy-to-follow, step by step instructions on how to use this formula on a piano check out this free lesson, learning piano chords.
There you have it, simple isn't it. Try writing a song or melody using the formula you just learned.