#1
I've written a nice riff using the C# Aeolian scale, however, the notes in this scale are:

- C# D# E F# G# A B C#

But, from reading about the circle of fifths, I know there are 7 sharps in the key of C# sharp, have I done something wrong?

Or does the circle of fifths only really apply to the MAJOR and MINOR SCALES ONLY?
#2
You don't include the root twice...in any scale, and there are 7 sharps in the key of C# MAJOR, not C# minor
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Last edited by steven seagull at Nov 27, 2009,
#3
The key of C# is the key of C# major. Your riff is in C# minor (which is enharmonic to [the same pitches as] C# Aeolian).

The relative major of C# minor is E major, and they both have the same number of sharps and flats.
#5
Quote by Nitro89
how do I know if my C# is in Major or Minor key?


Major: WWhWWWh
C# D# E#-F F# G# A# B#-C
Minor: WhWWhWW
C# D# E F# G# A B
#6
thank you, I understand now... so the aeolian scale is just the minor scale? What if I am using a different scale in the future with different intervals to the major and minor scales, how will I know if the key I am playing is in major or minor?
#7
You'll know that by looking at the third note.

Dorian Mode is essentially a minor sounding scale, because it has the minor third.

C# Dorian
C# D# E F# G# A# B

You will need to know either the formulas, or the order of the modes to figure out the key signature.
#8
Quote by Nitro89
so the aeolian scale is just the minor scale?


Yes, they are the same thing. Just different names

Quote by Nitro89
What if I am using a different scale in the future with different intervals to the major and minor scales, how will I know if the key I am playing is in major or minor?


I'm not sure what you're asking here. If the scale has different intervals then the major and minor it's neither. There's only one major and minor scale, just many ways to play them. The intervals are just in a different order with the other scales.
#9
Quote by mdwallin
You'll know that by looking at the third note.

Dorian Mode is essentially a minor sounding scale, because it has the minor third.

C# Dorian
C# D# E F# G# A# B

You will need to know either the formulas, or the order of the modes to figure out the key signature.


Thank you, I completely understand now, I'll look out of the major and minor thirds.

Also, I want to play my riff during the chorus in C#, but I want the chords during the chorus to be in EM, I notice that if I change the key, I will need to change the scale pattern (intervals) otherwise the key signatures will be different for EM.

When modulating, can I choose to modulate in ANY KEY or does it need to be its relative minor/major? Also, do I need to change the pattern I am using too (as in, I am using a minor pattern, can I use this for a major modulation)?
#10
Quote by Nitro89
Thank you, I completely understand now, I'll look out of the major and minor thirds.

Also, I want to play my riff during the chorus in C#, but I want the chords during the chorus to be in EM, I notice that if I change the key, I will need to change the scale pattern (intervals) otherwise the key signatures will be different for EM.

When modulating, can I choose to modulate in ANY KEY or does it need to be its relative minor/major? Also, do I need to change the pattern I am using too (as in, I am using a minor pattern, can I use this for a major modulation)?

First, if you mean the chorus is in C#minor key and you want the chords to be Emajor key, you will be using all the same notes because they are relative.

As for modulating, there are no rules. If it is poor modulation, your ears will tell you.
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Quote by hildesaw
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EDIT: D minor is the saddest of all keys.
#11
^You'll be using the same notes, but try basing the chords/riffs around E instead of C#
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#12
Quote by Sax2
^You'll be using the same notes, but try basing the chords/riffs around E instead of C#


Why? Is there are reason for this?
#13
Quote by Nitro89
Why? Is there are reason for this?


It all depends on where you want your tonal center and if you want it to sound happy or sad. There are other emotions you can use for color, but generally, major is happy, minor is sad. Dominant combines both and you get a bluesy feel.
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#14
Quote by Nitro89
Why? Is there are reason for this?


Or else you cant hear the keychange. If i have a song in C major and i modulate to A minor without the A as a tonal center im just playing in C major again, so technically there's no key change at all. The modulated part should resolve to A minor, in your case E major.
#15
Quote by deHufter
Or else you cant hear the keychange. If i have a song in C major and i modulate to A minor without the A as a tonal center im just playing in C major again, so technically there's no key change at all. The modulated part should resolve to A minor, in your case E major.


But if I modulate from C# to EM the chord progression will change resulting in a happier feel (thats what I want it to do)?


It all depends on where you want your tonal center and if you want it to sound happy or sad. There are other emotions you can use for color, but generally, major is happy, minor is sad. Dominant combines both and you get a bluesy feel.


What is meant by dominant (I have forgotten)?
#16
Quote by Nitro89
But if I modulate from C# to EM the chord progression will change resulting in a happier feel (thats what I want it to do)?

Not really no, there's no guarantee of that - it's still more dependent on how you use what's available to you.

You'd be far better off trying to work in a modulation from C# minor to C# major.
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#17
Quote by Nitro89
But if I modulate from C# to EM the chord progression will change resulting in a happier feel (thats what I want it to do)?



yea, you can do that, but you'll have to make a chord progression that really emphasizes that E is now the tonal center. you would also need to bridge them together in a way that makes the ear really focus on the E.


oh, and when referring to chords Em is E minor, E is assumed to be E major. the capital M might confuse someone. if feel like you need to specify then just type out the whole word.
#18
Quote by hockeyplayer168

As for modulating, there are no rules. If it is poor modulation, your ears will tell you.


While this is generally true, there are a handful of basic conventions that are commonly used strategies for modulating. Some people would call them rules, because if you follow them, you almost can't go wrong.

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#19
if you don't yet completely know major from minor, why are you confusing yourself even further with modes?
#20
Quote by ascend
if you don't yet completely know major from minor, why are you confusing yourself even further with modes?


I know about them, its just putting them into practice thats a bit difficult