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Old 01-17-2013, 10:37 AM   #21
Hail
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just read through some bits:

yngwie malmsteen...doesn't know theory?

you do know that theory comes with an understanding of music? which comes with, yknow, just playing music? no scales, no modes.

i mean malmsteen's an idiot and a terrible songwriter, but he has perfect pitch IIRC and can perform on several instruments proficiently (albeit tastelessly)

like i'm starting to lean towards instrumental genocide because of threads like these, seriously. like, office-place-shootout type stuff.
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Old 01-17-2013, 10:46 AM   #22
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Its very simple really:

Theres a difference between A# and Bb?

Not really, if you play them on the piano o someone who is not watching he will tell you that they sound the same, this happens because it is the same scale on both situations, itīs just an orthographic issue.

Now when we talk about the circle of 4 and fifths we are talking about a way to organize the scales depending on the number of accidentals each one has, if you use fourths you will find flat, and if you use fifths you will find sharps:

Fourths:
C 0 flats
F 1 flats
Bb 2 flats
Eb 3 flats
Ab 4 flats
Db 5 flats
Gb 6 flats
Cb 7 flats

Fifths:
C 0 sharps
G 1 sharps
D 2 sharps
A 3 sharps
E 4 sharps
B 5 sharps
F# 6 sharps
C# 7 sharps
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Old 01-17-2013, 10:52 AM   #23
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I'm going to try to lurk the guitar techniques forum more and try to catch these before too much damage is done. And the second response almost made me rage.

don't worry, I always move them as soon as I can
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:37 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by dietermoreno
What is difference between sharp and flat scale?

I was watching a guitar lesson DVD that teaches how to play modes and I got even more confused than I already was.

The guy in the DVD called a sharp scale "the circle of fifths" and called a flat scale "the circle of fourths".

Huh? "Circle of Fifths" and "Circle of Fourths" sound like bad death metal band names.

Isn't a sharp scale the same thing as a flat scale one step higher? Like for example wouldn't an A sharp scale be the same thing as a B flat scale?

What is the need for the fifths and fourths stuff when it follows the same pattern of whole steps and half steps as a major scale
(DOwhole-REwhole-MEhalf-FAwhole-SOwhole-LAhalf-TI-whole-DOhalf)
just shifted up or down one half step?


Let me see if I can break it down some. The circle of fifths is not a scale. It's a way of organizing the 12 notes of the chromatic scale, the 12 major keys, or the 12 minor keys. The circle of fourths is just the circle of fifths being followed counterclockwise. You'll have to read more to understand these concepts, but my main point here is that the circle of fifths and the circle of fourths are not scales.

An A# scale and a Bb scale of the same type (major scale, etc.) will sound identical to the listener, but look different on a sheet of music. This is an example of enharmonic notes. Enharmonic notes sound the same, but are spelled differently. The musical alphabet has these redundancies built in because they help us understand things like the major scale easier. After all, which is easier to read: C-D-E-F-G-A-B, or B#-C##-D##-E#-F##-G##-A##? They're the same pitches.

I think your confusion is in knowing where these sharps or flats occur. A sharp tells you to raise the note by a 1/2 step. So, A# is one half step above A. A flat tells you to lower the note by 1/2 step. So, Ab is one half step lower than A. Most natural (not sharp or flat) notes are 2 half steps away from the next note. For example, A is two half steps below B. To name the note in between A and B, you can call it A#, or Bb. This is a pretty straightforward system, but it's not that simple. B natural is only ONE half step away from C natural. Likewise, E natural is only one half step away from F natural. So, the note one half step above E can bel called F. But, as I said earlier, putting a sharp by a note name tells you to raise it a half step. So, the note one half step above E can also be called E#. E# and F are the same pitch. To be clear: Because there is only one half step between E and F, and only one half step between B and C, the use of half steps in a scale does not necessarily require sharps and flats.

When you spell out a major or minor scale, you're dealing with 7 notes. If you've ever wondered why the musical alphabet stops after 7 letters, this is why. The alphabet was designed to cater to major and minor scales. When you name a major or minor scale, you can only use each letter in the alphabet once. You have to use the sharp and flat signs to get the notes to the right pitches from there. For example, if you want to spell an F major scale, you know it has to start on F, and (because of the rule I just told you) you know it has to have some kind of f, g, a, b, c, d, and e note (flat, natural, or sharp). The F major scale happens to be F, G, A, Bflat, C, D, and E. As you can see, you have one of each of the letter names, but no duplicates, and they are in alphabetical order starting on F.

You mentioned the major scale interval pattern of w-w-h-w-w-w-h, but were confused as to how C major (which contains no sharps or flats) could follow this pattern. The reason is the same as in bold above. If you spell out the scale, keeping in mind that b to c is only a half step, and e to f is only a half step, you'll see that it works:

C (whole step) D (whole step) E (half step) F (whole step) G (whole step) A (whole step) B (half step) C.

The w-w-h-w-w-w-h applies to every single major scale, period. It could be a Z double flat major scale, and it would still follow this pattern!

So...

Music theory is a lot like math. It starts with basic arithmetic (adding, subtraction), and subsequent concepts all build upon those basics. It's very hard to learn an interesting bit of music theory (such as modes) by itself, like you would a guitar lick. For you, I recommend getting a theory teacher to help you get really solid on the basics. The college level courses are good for this, but in leau of that, you may be able to find a private teacher (or skype teacher). If you can't do that, get a music theory textbook. It'll break everything down, start with the basics, and only move on to more complex topics after that. I use the Kostka and Payne "Tonal Harmony" book, and there are other good ones out there. Rock on
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:24 PM   #25
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Seems to me the instructor in the DVD probably didn't explain it clearly - it's really not that hard. There have been some great responses on this thread, so you're pointed in the right direction. Let me explain it in a way I think will make sense to you.

I think the reason he brought up the circle of fifths and circle of fourths was to help you remember what the number of sharps or flats are in each scale. A fifth is simply five notes up from the root in a major scale, a fourth four notes down.

For example, the C major scale has no sharps or flats. If you go up a fifth from C major, you have the note G. The G major scale has one sharp (F#). If you go down a fourth from C you have the note F. The F major scale has one flat (Bb).

It continues like this - G major 1 sharp (F#), D major 2 sharps (F# and C#), A major 3 sharps (C#, F# and G#), and so on. This is the circle of fifths.

In the other direction, F major 1 flat (Bb), Bb major 2 flats (Bb and Eb), Eb major 3 flats (Eb, Ab and Bb) and so on. These are fourths.

You can't have 2 notes in a major scale with the same name. For example, you wouldn't spell a D major scale as D, E, Gb, G, A, B, Db, D. You would say D, E, F#, G, A, B, C#, D.

This is important in written music. You'll see the key signature and that will will show you which notes are sharp or flat. If you see 4 sharps, you immediately know you are in A major. Make sense?

It's also how people refer to notes when talking about music, so it helps to know even if you're not planning on reading music. This is just the convention. If you talk to someone and refer to an A# major scale, they will look at you funny :)

Last edited by Drew-A : 01-17-2013 at 01:49 PM.
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Old 01-17-2013, 08:59 PM   #26
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don't worry, I always move them as soon as I can

It's great that you do redirect them, don't get me wrong, but mods can only work so fast. Not saying anything about you, though. I just want to see if I can snipe some of them before the go down the rabbit hole.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:47 PM   #27
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Old 01-17-2013, 10:21 PM   #28
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Old 01-17-2013, 10:27 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by 白い雲
Music theory is a lot like math. It starts with basic arithmetic (adding, subtraction), and subsequent concepts all build upon those basics. It's very hard to learn an interesting bit of music theory (such as modes) by itself, like you would a guitar lick. For you, I recommend getting a theory teacher to help you get really solid on the basics. The college level courses are good for this, but in leau of that, you may be able to find a private teacher (or skype teacher). If you can't do that, get a music theory textbook. It'll break everything down, start with the basics, and only move on to more complex topics after that. I use the Kostka and Payne "Tonal Harmony" book, and there are other good ones out there. Rock on

Truer words have never been spoken. I saw a quote somewhere that said "You do not truly understand music theory until you have been completely baffled by it." The Tonal Harmony book is a college level textbook, but explains everything in nearly a paragraph or 2. Although the book is simple enough to understand, it helps even further to take a class and have a teacher to whom you can pester with questions if you do not understand what you are reading. Probably what has helped me the most was taking a class that I could take with others, and the homework assignments almost always turn into group assignments with friends. A class will help you more than anything, although musictheory.net and its respective app Tenuto are the greatest free resources know to those on two legs (I think you have to pay for the app but the site is free).
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:55 PM   #30
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erroneous
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:23 AM   #31
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erroneous

.......right.

Seriously, if you're not going to offer any advice or relevent information pertaining of the original post, then don't post.
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Junior's usually at least a little terse, but he knows his stuff. I've always read his posts in a grouchy grandfather voice, a grouchy grandfather with a huge stiffy for alternate picking.
Besides that, he's right this time. As usual.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:25 AM   #32
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.......right.

Seriously, if you're not going to offer any advice or relevent information pertaining of the original post, then don't post.

*relevant
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:44 AM   #33
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*relevant

F***ing spelling Nazi.

I'm done feeding the troll. I won't be replying to you again. At least not in this thread.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:57 AM   #34
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technically it would also be pertaining to, not pertaining of.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:03 AM   #35
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Thanks guys for all the responses!

So the circle of fifths and circle of fourths are not actual physical musical concrete objects, but are neumatic devices for memorizing how many sharps or flats a major scale has.

So the difference between a sharp and a flat scale to the ears is none, but it is notated differently because of "enharmonic notes".

So the reason that the C major scale still works with the "w-w-h-w-w-w-h-w" steps pattern is that not all letters in the musical alphabet are separted by the same interval of step.

E to F# is a major second made up of 2 half steps, meaning that only one half step separates E and F. C to D is also a major second, meaning that one whole step separates C and D.


E to G# is a major third made up of 3 half steps, meaning that 3 /5 half step separates E and E#, because:


Letter: E E# F F# G G#
Sharps from E: 0 1 2 3 4 5
Half steps from E: 0 3

(Half Steps from note/ Sharps from note) = half steps/sharp

(3 Half Steps from E/ 5 Sharps from E) = (3/5) half steps / sharp
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:28 AM   #36
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E E#

That's an augmented unison.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:19 AM   #37
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"So the circle of fifths and circle of fourths are not actual physical musical concrete objects, but are neumatic devices for memorizing how many sharps or flats a major scale has."

That's one use of the circle of fifths, and it has other uses.

"So the difference between a sharp and a flat scale to the ears is none, but it is notated differently because of "enharmonic notes"."

Correct.

"So the reason that the C major scale still works with the "w-w-h-w-w-w-h-w" steps pattern is that not all letters in the musical alphabet are separted by the same interval of step."

Other than a typo (I think you meant w-w-h-w-w-w-h), that's correct.

"E to F# is a major second made up of 2 half steps, meaning that only one half step separates E and F. C to D is also a major second, meaning that one whole step separates C and D."

Correct.

"E to G# is a major third made up of 3 half steps, meaning that 3 /5 half step separates E and E#, because:


Letter: E E# F F# G G#
Sharps from E: 0 1 2 3 4 5
Half steps from E: 0 3"

4 half steps separate E and G#, not E and E#. That was probably another typo, right?

Last edited by 白い雲 : 01-18-2013 at 12:16 PM.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:24 AM   #38
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E to G# is a major third made up of 3 half steps

4 half steps.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:57 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by dietermoreno
Thanks guys for all the responses!

So the circle of fifths and circle of fourths are not actual physical musical concrete objects, but are neumatic devices for memorizing how many sharps or flats a major scale has.

So the difference between a sharp and a flat scale to the ears is none, but it is notated differently because of "enharmonic notes"....


A couple of mistakes in there, but I think you're getting it!

You obviously want to understand these concepts, and it sounds like you're working at it - it will all make sense very soon!
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:13 AM   #40
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" Like for example wouldn't an A sharp scale be the same thing as a B flat scale?"

Yes. A sharp and B flat are enharmonic equivalents (different ways of writing the same note).

However, A sharp major would have four sharps and three double sharps, so it's not a practical key for written music.
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