Differences between Scales and Key's and how modes are involved...

PDA

View Full Version : Differences between Scales and Key's and how modes are involved...

DorkusMalorkus
06-26-2005, 10:05 PM
I am confused. I always thought key's and scales were almost the exact same thing, just a scale was a certain series of the notes in a key.

As in:

Notes in the key of C Maj
|-0-1-3-5-7-8-10-12-|
|-0-1-3-5-6-8-10-12-|
|-0-2-4-5-7-9-11-12-|
|-0-2-3-5-7-8-10-12-|
|-0-2-3-5-7-9-11-12-|
|-0-1-3-5-7-8-10-12-|

C Major Scale
|----------------------------------0-1-3--
|---------------------------0-1-3---------
|----------------------0-2----------------
|---------------0-2-3---------------------
|--------0-2-3----------------------------
|-0-1-3-----------------------------------

Now I know that the scale can be played many places, but how does that make it different from the key, because it just uses all of the notes of the key.

I get even more confused when you add in modes. Do the modes alter the scale or key (or both).

Yeah, I am think I understand lots of other things really well. But just not this, because it has confused me for a while.

...I feel so dumb asking haha

Thanks
:cheers:

Blurry 505
06-26-2005, 10:30 PM
scale and key are exactly the same
scales are just notes in order, from first to last note
keys are those notes in any order

dont think about modes until your fluent with scales

but to satisfy your curiosity, modes are BASICALLY altered scales

hope i helped a little

CptMorgan
06-26-2005, 10:42 PM
From my understanding...

Scales and keys are the same, if something is in the key of C major, then it would use the C major scale.

Modes have a different starting point on the scale. Take the C major scale

C D E F G A B C

If you were to change to a different mode it you would just start and finish on a different note

F G A B C D E F

It is the same scale just different starting notes.

rageandlove04
06-26-2005, 10:56 PM
Ok, here's how I look at it, so if I'm wrong, sorry, and please, nobody bite off my head. Keys keep everything relative to eachother. For example, a the major scale in the key of C is C D E F G A B C. I know this is obvious, but for modes, since a mode is just a scale built off a certain step of another scale, it helps keep everything relative. For example, the dorian mode in the key of C would be D E F G A B C D. It's just an alteration of the major scale. Remember also that the C dorian mode and the dorian mode in the key of C are NOT the same thing. The C dorian mode is actually in Bb. I hope that helped. :cheers:

CptMorgan
06-26-2005, 11:02 PM
How would they be in different keys if they used to same notes? I'm not trying to be a dick I'm just wondering.

rageandlove04
06-26-2005, 11:25 PM
Originally posted by CptMorgan
How would they be in different keys if they used to same notes? I'm not trying to be a dick I'm just wondering.

No worries man u don't sound like a dick.

Remember that since the dorian mode starts on the second step of the major scale, in the key of C it would work like this:

C D E F G A B C (C maj)
D E F G A B C D (D dorian) <-That is the D dorian mode, but it is in the key of C.

The C dorian mode on the other hand is in the key of Bb, and is built of the second step in the same manner:

Bb C D Eb F G A Bb (Bb maj)
C D Eb F G A Bb C (C dorian)

So, here's the difference:

C dorian mode:
C D Eb F G A Bb C

Dorian mode in the key of C:
D E F G A B C D

06-26-2005, 11:38 PM
Wow, that's kinda confusing. So you're saying that DEFGABCD is the D dorian mode, only in the key of C? Is that how it works? 'Cause if it's the D dorian mode, wouldn't it have to be in the key of D? I'm really confused about this stuff.

Blurry 505
06-26-2005, 11:57 PM
different style of half and whole steps
theres modes columns in the columns are if you are not understanding very well

modes are different half and whole steps

here we go:
w= whole step h=half step
C major scale:: C,D,E,F,G,A,B,C W,W,h,W,W,W,h
C-D is a whole
D-E is a whole
E-F is a half
F-G is a whole
G-A is a whole
A-B is a whole
B-C is a half

now modes are totally different
you can say the D dorian, or you can say the D dorian derived from C, its the same thing

D dorian: D,E,F,G,A,B,C,D W,h,W,W,W,,h,W
D-E is a whole
E-F is a half
F-G is a whole
G-A is a whole
A-B is a whole
B-C is a half
C-D is a whole

if that helps at all

modes are just scales rearranged
but as i said
concentrate on major scales first
then minors
when you are fluent with them (you can construct in your head easily without pen and paper) then start worryin about modes

:cheers:

DorkusMalorkus
06-27-2005, 01:01 AM
Originally posted by Blurry 505

modes are just scales rearranged
but as i said
concentrate on major scales first
then minors
when you are fluent with them (you can construct in your head easily without pen and paper) then start worryin about modes

:cheers:

Will do....

But can you just tell me, how does it affect the sound and what is the point. I mean, rearranging the order of the notes...It is basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there...

JaYB06
06-27-2005, 01:57 AM
C Major and D Dorian are 2 different scales even though they have the same notes. Each mode has a particular sound because the root is different. When you can hear D as the root of the scale, it sounds different then when it was C. A good way to try this is to record yourself playing a C major chord over and over again. After you make this recording, play it while you run through the C major scale. Now record a D minor playing over again, and play D Dorian. If you listen and really try to emphasize the roots in the scales, you will notice how the scales sound changes over the chord.

http://www.cyberfret.com/theory

Check that out and read those articles.

When you play modes, you have to really hear the root note as the root note. When you play C major you notice the C is resolving. When playing D Dorian, its sometimes hard to hear the change in sound, but really listen and try to make the D sound like the resolving note. Don't think as D Dorian as C major, D Dorian will have its own specific sound compared to C maj, you just have to listen.

redwing_suck
06-27-2005, 02:17 AM
Originally posted by DorkusMalorkus
Will do....

But can you just tell me, how does it affect the sound and what is the point. I mean, rearranging the order of the notes...It is basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there... Aha, maybe I'll make a really long, explanatory post here. Haven't done one in a while...

You see, the way I understand modes (which is a common way, as I have learned) is through this little thing called the Order of Strengths. It goes as such:

1 3 5 7 9 11 13. Or, 1 3 5 7 2 4 6.

That is the order of the notes in any given scale from most to least identifying of that scale. The 1, or tonic, best describes the scale because, well, it is the tonic... the 3rd determines major/minor, the 5th diminished (or augmented... or just not), etc. As you go from left to right, the strength of the note gets weaker and weaker and weaker. The 6th tone, whether natural or flat in relation to the tonic's major scale, has the least power in helping you, as the listener, determine the mood of the song.

That's what modes do... they give us a mood and a context.

Now, what am I getting at here? Well, take C ionian. C D E F G A B. Order of Strengths? C E G B D F A. Now, take D dorian. D E F G A B C. Same notes, right? So what's the difference? The Order of Strengths: D F A C E G B. Completely different, eh?

That is the essence of modes... each note, even though they are the same as the original ionian parent, has a completely new value under each mode. The C used to be the tonic, but under D Dorian it is merely (and I use that term lightly of course) the 7th, with 3 other tones in front with more power in telling you the mood.

And this concept is difficult to grasp because, well, most guitarists are shitty practicers. Nuff said. They don't know how to practice scales. When you memorize positions for each mode and run up and down them mindlessly, you can't feel the resolution as strongly as if you were playing over a chord that is directly reflecting that mode. After a while, you're pretty much working on simple technique...

I ask some people around who say they are into theory... well, for one, most of them don't listen for it in the music they like... and second, they tell me literally 99% of the time, "Well, I practice my scales and just work on the positions." No wonder their soloing and improv blows a monkey dick.

The modes are only "basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there" because that's how you practice them. They're only "basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there" when you just run up and down positions. They're only "basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there" think of them as positions. STOP THERE. Really, practice them. No, but seriously, PRACTICE THEM. Ok, maybe I'm not being clear enough:

PRACTICE THEM!

What I mean is listen to music that is very mode-based (well, okay that's all music but you know what I mean)... like Jazz. Feel a ii-7 V7 that never resolves to the Imaj7... see how things sound different over an improv session based on a Imaj7 ii-7 iiim7b9 IVmaj7#11. That's how you practice, by listening. And playing, of course. You never get to learn how modes really work until you hear them and recognize them and play them yourself.

Until then, they're just "basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there." ;)

So, now let's say you take a real talented guy like SRV. "Well, Matt, how does SRV sound good when he is just mindlessly running up and down? Why is that not bad?"

Well, you gotta understand... There are people like SRV and BB King and Miles Davis and Thelonius Monk and Gillespie and all those greats, that are simply born with the music in their mind. It's sort of the Kantian (remember Kant? Philosopher, the Enlightenment?) theory as it goes towards music... These guys have these things in their heads, and they don't know it, really. They just have to find it... it's there, it just needs a little nudge.

But for 99.99999999% of the rest of us, it needs to be practiced. We have to find it, only it's hard because it isn't imprinted by GOD himself on our brains. The true musician doesn't think "OK, D Dorian now... where am I at? Okay, C note, where do I go from there?" They think "..." They practiced them to the point of instrinsic learning... where they don't have to think about it anymore, where the modes aren't something on paper with numbers and notes, but pure sounds. Real musicians see them without the numbers and the letters, in their naked form... their natural form. Eb phrygian is not "Eb phrygian" but "[insert sound]."

Don't get me wrong here, those guys had to practice an absolute assload to get that good, but once they get there, they are amazing.

red:cheers:

Punkarse
06-27-2005, 03:52 AM
^^Exactly. I also noticed some people up at the top talking about how 'keys and scales are the same thing, basically'. Well, they're not, they're completely different concepts.

Back in the depths of time, when men were actually dinosaurs, all music was based around the church modes - you picked a mode and followed it's pattern. The pattern of the music was dictated by the scales, if a note wasn't in the scale, you didn't use it.

Then, a revolution began. Composers had invented the concept of keys - that a piece has a tonic chord, either major or minor. The strict adherence to scales and modes was thrown out of the window, and composers were able to write stunningly passionate works which utilized the strong sense of a home key to facilitate cadences towards and away from the tonic, bringing consonance and dissonance to music.

So, in a fun and simple way for y'all at home to easily understand:

Scales are chains of notes, a strict order of degrees.

Keys are the centre of resolution for whatever scale you're using, which is why D Dorian is a minor mode. Although it's derived from the C major scale, we say it's in the key of D minor. The C major scale is in the key of (you guessed it!) C major. But so is C mixolydian, C lydian etc..

DorkusMalorkus
06-27-2005, 10:55 AM
Thanks Red, and Punkarse...

That helps a lot...

But for now, I am just gonna keep practising at a lower level, because I am not advanced enough for modes :p:. But when I am, I'll come back and read through this again....

:cheers:

Blurry 505
06-27-2005, 12:06 PM
Well, they're not, they're completely different concepts.

Techinically yes they are different concepts, BUT technically also they are the same

Yes, scales are to follow a strict order or chain of half and whole steps. But keys on the other hand take that order or chain and completely mess it up, but they are still using the correct mode function (half and whole steps). So this is pretty debateable :D
Keys are just another way of looking at a scale

:cheers:

But can you just tell me, how does it affect the sound and what is the point. I mean, rearranging the order of the notes...It is basically starting on a different note of the scale and continuing there...

practice different major scales and minors. Trust me, youll hear how it all changes :)
its a different pattern of half and whole steps between the notes
but as i said, you will hear the difference after some practise with different scales

hendrixnpage
06-29-2005, 12:00 PM
you can play the C scale in any mode u want if u follow the pattern. it will just sound different.
is this right?

Punkarse
06-29-2005, 01:35 PM
Originally posted by hendrixnpage
you can play the C scale in any mode u want if u follow the pattern. it will just sound different.
is this right? Read this thread through thoroughly. - http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&postid=3500874#post3500874

In it your question is answered at least five times...

SilentDeftone
07-01-2005, 09:58 AM
Originally posted by Punkarse
Keys are the centre of resolution for whatever scale you're using, which is why D Dorian is a minor mode. Although it's derived from the C major scale, we say it's in the key of D minor. The C major scale is in the key of (you guessed it!) C major. But so is C mixolydian, C lydian etc.. Are you sure about that? I once posted something with that idea and Cas disagreed with it, that Dm only implies D Aeolian, not any other minor scale.

-SD :dance:

Punkarse
07-03-2005, 05:04 AM
^^Yes, pretty sure (although if Cas or Cor want to intervene...).

The only thing D minor (on it's own) implies is that the root is D, and that it's minor.

You can have a harmonic minor melody, or a melodic minor melody, or an Aeolian melody, or Dorian or Phrygian or whatever, they'd each work.

Of course, you hardly ever see a single Dm on it's own, and every chord added alters the Dm's relationship with the wprld around it. Chords're like marbles, you throw them all on a rubber sheet together and they start affecting each other. No one chord is seperate from another, and there're different levels of interconnectedness.

Corwinoid
07-03-2005, 05:30 AM
Anymore when I refer to minor out of context, I may refer to it with or without either a raised 6th or a raised 7th... in other words, 'minor' means exactly: One of the primary minor scales.

Technically it can refer to any scale with a b3; but generally it doesn't unless you're in some specific context. If I said play A minor, I wouldn't expect someone to start jamming in Neapolitan minor, unless it was already very well understood what I was saying.