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#1
Is it based mostly off minor keys, because if I try randomly improvising off the root chord in so many songs, the minor pentatonic fits? I don't know my theory so I know this will be a dumb question, but I'm just trying to get an understanding of a few things before I start learning.
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#2
Some of the more sensitive tones are removed from the diatonic scale so it becomes more versatile.
#3
Because of rock and roll. The minor pentatonic chord progressions are I bIII IV V bVII. They're all major. It comes from African slaves bringing their music and using their scales over Western hymns.
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#4
As pwrmax said, the pentatonic scale lacks the tension notes in the diatonic scale, making it work over a lot of songs without the sense of weirdness.
#5
If u play the minor pentatonic randomly over any chord in a progression build off off that minor scale/key, then the possibility of creating dissonance is very small.

It's a very simple concept, so don't be thrown off with the huge list that follows.

I will use the key of Am minor for simplicity.

The chords in the key of Am are:


Am, B, C, Dm, Em, F, G,

Let's delve into the notes of the chords:
Am = A, C, E
Bdim = B, D, F
C = C, E, G
Dm = D, F, A
Em = E, G, B
F = F, A, C
G = G, B, D

The notes of the A minor pentatonic scale are: A, C, D, E, G

Now I will put every note over each chord, and will list the resulting chords in consecutive order;


Am = A, C, E already occur in the chord.
D over it makes it a Aadd11
G over it makes it a Am7


I Will skip the B diminished chord, because it's already dissonant, and is not as interchangeable and easy to use in progressions as other chords.



C Major chord
= C, E and G already occur
A over it makes it a C6
D over it makes it a Cadd9

Dm
= D and A already occur.
C over it makes it a Dm7
E over it makes it a Dmadd9
G over it makes it a Dmadd11

etc.

You probably recognize some of the chords if not all of them, and if u don't know them, find the chord sheets, and u will probably recognise some chords when playing them.

I won't go over every chord, but almost every one of them is consonant (read loosely "nice") and also popular chords, when playing the scale over the diatonic triads.

This is the reason why it is so popular and easy accessible.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Dec 10, 2009,
#6
depends on what music your talking about

pentatonics is present in alot of tribal/folk stuff and africans brought it over here and created blues, which is a roots music for pretty much every style of western music
#7
Okay, so you're saying that the notes of the pentatonic in any given key can combine with the notes of the key to make it an alteration of the chords, but still the root note of the chords in the key? Thanks for the explanations.
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Last edited by zapparage at Dec 10, 2009,
#10
If by "western music" you mean Blues and Rock...

The Minor Pentatonic scale contains some special 'tension notes' used against primarily Major sounding chords.

Have you ever noticed when you play Blues the first chord is a Major chord or a Dom7 chord?

Like "G Blues" starts with G or G7, right? Not all of the notes of the G Blues scale are found in the G7 chord. The big one is the B note that's in the G7 chord is not found in the G Min Pent scale at all. And, the G Min Pent's Bb is not found in the G7 chord.

So what's up with that???

Well, when that Bb from the scale is played against the G7 chord, you'll find that most players tend to give the Bb a slight bend pulling it in the direction of the B note. The bend doesn't even have to come close to getting all the way to B but just the sense of Bb moving up is enough to fuel the releasing of the notes tension against the chord.

Notice this when you play that Bb note (or G Min Pent) against the G7 chord in a Blues Progression. Give that Bb a bit of a bend, give it little more of a bend, bend it all the way to the B note. You'll now hear that note wanting to resolve to the chord tone!

So in reality, when you think you are playing a G Min Pent over a G7 chord you in essences playing tension that release to the chord. The scale that fits G7 in this case is really the G Mixolydian scale. So you can think of it this way...

You are really playing G Mixolydian but using the tension created by G Min Pent to resolve to G Mixo. This is the key idea for copping a Modern Blues sound (BB King, Hendrix, SRV, etc, etc...).

If you want a complete run down on this idea I have a bunch of my own tutorials that explain it by application.
#11
Another area Min Pents are used in relationship to chord families is:

Maj7 chords - Play a Min Pent scale from the M3 and another from the M6.

For a Gmaj7 chord, play B Min Pent and E Min Pent

m7 chords - Play a Min Pent scale from the Root, and another from the 5th.

For a Gm7 chord, play G Min Pent and D Min Pent

dom7 chords - Play a Min Pent scale from the 5ht, and another from the M6.

For a G7 chord, play D Min Pent and E Min Pent

Try not to stagnate on one of the options alone but instead play from one to the next and tag the notes in the chords as resolve points.
Last edited by MikeDodge at Dec 10, 2009,
#12
Quote by zapparage
Is it based mostly off minor keys, because if I try randomly improvising off the root chord in so many songs, the minor pentatonic fits? I don't know my theory so I know this will be a dumb question, but I'm just trying to get an understanding of a few things before I start learning.

because western music was made using mostly pentatonics lol. actually, its not just western music. pentatonics can be heard all around the world in almost every style of music. you are taking out the two most dissonant notes and therefor making it work over almost anything.
Last edited by Blind In 1 Ear at Dec 10, 2009,
#13
darrens post is spot on, although i would have oversimplified it by saying "the fewer notes you play in key the less likely you are to have dissonance" the inverse of that is what makes it kinda suck in that "the fewer notes you play in key, the less options you have for melody"
#14
Quote by z4twenny
darrens post is spot on, although i would have oversimplified it by saying "the fewer notes you play in key the less likely you are to have dissonance" the inverse of that is what makes it kinda suck in that "the fewer notes you play in key, the less options you have for melody"

well i doubt a lot of musicians would ONLY play pentatonic. even in blues they use notes outside the pentatonic or they mix the major and minor pentatonic notes together. i think most people, including me, use the pentatonic as the safe notes and then use the other notes when needed.
#15
Quote by zapparage
Is it based mostly off minor keys, because if I try randomly improvising off the root chord in so many songs, the minor pentatonic fits? I don't know my theory so I know this will be a dumb question, but I'm just trying to get an understanding of a few things before I start learning.


well honestly, to understand this question you would actually need to have a basic understanding of theory.....which you said didn't have. What would be the point of us trying to explain something in a context that you can't understand?

If you don't understand theory, the best answer I can give is..... because it does.

Quote by xxdarrenxx
If u play the minor pentatonic randomly over any chord in a progression build off off that minor scale/key, then the possibility of creating dissonance is very small.

It's a very simple concept, so don't be thrown off with the huge list that follows.

I will use the key of Am minor for simplicity.

The chords in the key of Am are:


Am, B, C, Dm, Em, F, G,

Let's delve into the notes of the chords:
Am = A, C, E
Bdim = B, D, F
C = C, E, G
Dm = D, F, A
Em = E, G, B
F = F, A, C
G = G, B, D

The notes of the A minor pentatonic scale are: A, C, D, E, G

Now I will put every note over each chord, and will list the resulting chords in consecutive order;


Am = A, C, E already occur in the chord.
D over it makes it a Aadd11
G over it makes it a Am7


I Will skip the B diminished chord, because it's already dissonant, and is not as interchangeable and easy to use in progressions as other chords.



C Major chord
= C, E and G already occur
A over it makes it a C6
D over it makes it a Cadd9

Dm
= D and A already occur.
C over it makes it a Dm7
E over it makes it a Dmadd9
G over it makes it a Dmadd11

etc.

You probably recognize some of the chords if not all of them, and if u don't know them, find the chord sheets, and u will probably recognise some chords when playing them.

I won't go over every chord, but almost every one of them is consonant (read loosely "nice") and also popular chords, when playing the scale over the diatonic triads.

This is the reason why it is so popular and easy accessible.



Put simply........ all or most of the tones can be justified as a chord tone.
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Last edited by GuitarMunky at Dec 10, 2009,
#16
There have been a lot of GOOD answers. But none of them are really right.

Theres a much simpler reason the pentatonic scale works works over western music. Or any music from any culture.

Our brains are programmed for the pentatonic scale. Those 5 notes are in our DNA and just as much a part of us as breathing or a heartbeat.

In every system of notes in the world, the pentatonic scale exists. Whether it be western music, or indian, or chinese. Equal temperament, or any other tuning system.

Our brain is just programmed to hear that combination of notes.

EDIT: I think blind in 1 ear started touching base with this idea. Theres a good video by the BBC on youtube called "How music works" that explains this more in depth
Last edited by tubatom868686 at Dec 10, 2009,
#17
Quote by tubatom868686
There have been a lot of GOOD answers. But none of them are really right.

Theres a much simpler reason the pentatonic scale works works over western music. Or any music from any culture.

Our brains are programmed for the pentatonic scale. Those 5 notes are in our DNA and just as much a part of us as breathing or a heartbeat.

In every system of notes in the world, the pentatonic scale exists. Whether it be western music, or indian, or chinese. Equal temperament, or any other tuning system.

Our brain is just programmed to hear that combination of notes.

EDIT: I think blind in 1 ear started touching base with this idea. Theres a good video by the BBC on youtube called "How music works" that explains this more in depth



Its not in our DNA...

They are just consonant intervals, and consonance is typically perceived as more phonaesthetically pleasing than dissonance.

Thinking about intuitive intervals, does anyone know where I could find the data about what intervals babies are most likely to sing? I've seen it before (not online), and running a quick google search turns up nothing. I think it'd be interesting to see if the pentatonic scales are really intuitive like the concept of language.
#18
Quote by tubatom868686
There have been a lot of GOOD answers. But none of them are really right.

Theres a much simpler reason the pentatonic scale works works over western music. Or any music from any culture.

Our brains are programmed for the pentatonic scale. Those 5 notes are in our DNA and just as much a part of us as breathing or a heartbeat.

In every system of notes in the world, the pentatonic scale exists. Whether it be western music, or indian, or chinese. Equal temperament, or any other tuning system.

Our brain is just programmed to hear that combination of notes.

EDIT: I think blind in 1 ear started touching base with this idea. Theres a good video by the BBC on youtube called "How music works" that explains this more in depth

well i wouldnt go as far to say its genetic, but we are certainly used to hearing it. dissonance is really just the way the two notes wave lengths go together i believe. if they clash its sounds like it needs to resolve. if you take away the two notes that seem to need resolving the most, then you get a scale that works over almost anything and sounds pleasing to the ear. plus, ive heard arguments that wider intervals make things sound more melodic. pentatonics have slightly wider intervals so that might be another thing. plus again, so much music has been made with it that it seems "right" to hear and make music using pentatonics because we hae heard it since birth.

plus also, we have heard the major scale so much that we need some change. a straight diatonic scale sounds very predictable. pentatonics take that away a bit. usually people dont just play pentaontics straight throughout. they will mix in the other notes when needed which adds to taking away the predictable sound and making it more "musical" or "human". now why does a pentatonic scale soud less like a scale than a diatonic one? im not sure really. again, it might have something to do with the wider intervals, but im not sure id say its genetic.
#20
Quote by GuitarMunky


Put simply........ all or most of the tones can be justified as a chord tone.


True, but some people understand things better through example, so which is why I Typed all of that.

Quote by steven seagull
repost, but relevant to these interests

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ne6tB2KiZuk



This only states that our brains can correlate visual perceptions with auditory perceptions.

If you would do this with the jaws tune, I bet people would be able to do it also, hence a m2 interval works with the test. (This is unscientific of me, but give me the benefit of the doubt, based on the visual-audio correlation which has already been proven by science)

This means that pentatonic experiment would not pas falsifiability in regards to it being implemented in our brains, since it does not contain this interval. Not even if starting from any other note in the pentatonic scale.

The only way to prove the pentatonic theory, is to produce a test based on people that never heard music in their life before, not even a melody hummed or any sound perceived at all.

Don't get me wrong; I think the video is an excellent display of entertainment, but it's not a good science hypothese for anything other then what I typed in the first sentence of this post.

Quote by tubatom868686
There have been a lot of GOOD answers. But none of them are really right.

Theres a much simpler reason the pentatonic scale works works over western music. Or any music from any culture.

Our brains are programmed for the pentatonic scale. Those 5 notes are in our DNA and just as much a part of us as breathing or a heartbeat.

In every system of notes in the world, the pentatonic scale exists. Whether it be western music, or indian, or chinese. Equal temperament, or any other tuning system.

Our brain is just programmed to hear that combination of notes.

EDIT: I think blind in 1 ear started touching base with this idea. Theres a good video by the BBC on youtube called "How music works" that explains this more in depth


I can't find the video on youtube, but I would like to see an accurate scientific test for this, and not weak inductive reasoning.

Quote by isaac_bandits
Its not in our DNA...

They are just consonant intervals, and consonance is typically perceived as more phonaesthetically pleasing than dissonance.

Thinking about intuitive intervals, does anyone know where I could find the data about what intervals babies are most likely to sing? I've seen it before (not online), and running a quick google search turns up nothing. I think it'd be interesting to see if the pentatonic scales are really intuitive like the concept of language.


I like this, and think it makes perfect sense.

I think the real argument is Aurally interesting (feeling) vs mental interest (creativity), and off course the combination of both makes for good music


Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
plus, ive heard arguments that wider intervals make things sound more melodic. pentatonics have slightly wider intervals so that might be another thing.


I think this can be easily explained through concept of contrast.

Bigger difference, is more variables, is more interest.

Atleast, that's my perspective on things.

Quote by Blind In 1 Ear

now why does a pentatonic scale soud less like a scale than a diatonic one? im not sure really. again, it might have something to do with the wider intervals, but im not sure id say its genetic.


Again contrast

And I agree that the pentatonic scale is not proven to be genetic.

Consonance however is.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Dec 11, 2009,
#21
^if you had too many wide intervals though, it would sound very odd and probably would be hard to listen to. i guess the pentatonic has just enough wideness to keep our intrest but not too much that it becomes distracting. and again, obviously you are taking out the notes that need to resolve the most and may only work over certain chords to create a scale that works over almost anything.

i dont think consonance has anything to do with genetics however. its just how different sound waves flow together. if you devide the waves into odd sections, they are going to clash. i think we are just more used to hearing consonance because people tend to use it more in music. but you can get used to clashing sounds as well.
#22
Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
^if you had too many wide intervals though, it would sound very odd and probably would be hard to listen to. i guess the pentatonic has just enough wideness to keep our intrest but not too much that it becomes distracting. and again, obviously you are taking out the notes that need to resolve the most and may only work over certain chords to create a scale that works over almost anything.

i dont think consonance has anything to do with genetics however. its just how different sound waves flow together. if you devide the waves into odd sections, they are going to clash. i think we are just more used to hearing consonance because people tend to use it more in music. but you can get used to clashing sounds as well.


Agreed to the first thing.

Off course there are variables like "fashion of era", music that you compare it with (this also means subconsciously) etc. etc.

On the 2nd thing you already gave ur own answer to the query. (check bolded).

Getting used to is learning and/or accepting.

I think there shouldn't be so much emphasize on genetics as there should be that genetics has it that we feel a kind of pain derived impulse when hearing dissonance.

This can be broken, just like you can learn to like certain foods or drinks, or get used to extremely cold/hot weather etc.

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#23
The pentatonic scale occurs in every sort of music and scale system in the world. Its no coincidence. There is something in our genetic build that likes those 5 notes. Sorry guys, but that truly is whats at the bottom of it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnbOWi6f_IM

Skip to about 3:05

Btw, whoever said they tried searching and couldnt find it, you should have just youtubed the title...how music works. It was the first video
#24
Quote by tubatom868686
The pentatonic scale occurs in every sort of music and scale system in the world. Its no coincidence. There is something in our genetic build that likes those 5 notes. Sorry guys, but that truly is whats at the bottom of it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnbOWi6f_IM

Skip to about 3:05

Btw, whoever said they tried searching and couldnt find it, you should have just youtubed the title...how music works. It was the first video


It's not literally in our genetics.

People are just drawn to consonant sounds (as we are drawn to warm temperature, or specific foods) and those are what typically are used first in music, as they right away sound good, while dissonant sounds need to be resolved.

And that wasn't at all what I was looking for. I was looking for an article which analysis the intervals found in infant's songs (as they aren't influenced by already having learned specific musical systems), to see what intervals come. I think when I saw it before it was basically simple pythagorean ratios (perfect fifth, perfect fourth, major third only tuned in just intonation rather than equal temperament). I wasn't interested in what organized music from different cultures had in common.
#25
Quote by tubatom868686
The pentatonic scale occurs in every sort of music and scale system in the world. Its no coincidence. There is something in our genetic build that likes those 5 notes. Sorry guys, but that truly is whats at the bottom of it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnbOWi6f_IM

Skip to about 3:05

Btw, whoever said they tried searching and couldnt find it, you should have just youtubed the title...how music works. It was the first video


Selection bias.

I can take 5 songs from anywhere in the world that don't use the pentatonic scale. This is so superficial.

It could also be, because everywhere in the world u hear the pentatonic scale in music from a young age, that you automatically begin to hear this as the norm.

If a baby hears English around him, he will start to learn english. If he hears dutch around him, he will start to learn dutch.

So prove to me that this exact same thing does not occur with music, considering u hear it everywhere.

I mean everyone can hum the major scale or even "Recognise" it, even if they don't play a musical instrument.

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#26
Quote by xxdarrenxx
Selection bias.

I can take 5 songs from anywhere in the world that don't use the pentatonic scale. This is so superficial.

It could also be, because everywhere in the world u hear the pentatonic scale in music from a young age, that you automatically begin to hear this as the norm.

If a baby hears English around him, he will start to learn english. If he hears dutch around him, he will start to learn dutch.

So prove to me that this exact same thing does not occur with music, considering u hear it everywhere.

I mean everyone can hum the major scale or even "Recognise" it, even if they don't play a musical instrument.



Your argument is silly. Im not saying that our ears arent trained to the music around us. They are. The same way language works. But man has been making vowel and consonant sounds like "ahhh" and "kahhh" for as long as we know. Im saying the pentatonic scale are the music equivalents of those sounds

The pentatonic scale has existed in different societies before the societies even knew each other existed.

Also, you could not just as easily find songs without the pentatonic scale. Think about just western music. If you couldnt use any pentatonic intervals youd be totally limited to half step intervals. Ive never seen a song with only half step intervals
Last edited by tubatom868686 at Dec 13, 2009,
#27
Quote by tubatom868686
Your argument is silly. Im not saying that our ears arent trained to the music around us. They are. The same way language works. But man has been making vowel and consonant sounds like "ahhh" and "kahhh" for as long as we know. Im saying the pentatonic scale are the music equivalents of those sounds

The pentatonic scale has existed in different societies before the societies even knew each other existed.

Also, you could not just as easily find songs without the pentatonic scale. Think about just western music. If you couldnt use any pentatonic intervals youd be totally limited to half step intervals. Ive never seen a song with only half step intervals


You don't understand the pentatonic scale.

The pentatonic scale does not equal 1 whole step.

It's not that if u have 1 whole step that it automatically means it's the pentatonic scale.

Furthermore; There is loads of music using quarter tones that are totally different from anything which existed for ages as well.

Also, I want to see the proof that different societies use the same scale before they even knew they existed.

And even this is hard, cause latest Dna research showed, that a lot of people already existed together, before the shift of lands occurred and split all the parts of the world separately as they exist now (Australia, America, Europe etc. were once together as a whole)

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Dec 13, 2009,
#28
Quote by xxdarrenxx
You don't understand the pentatonic scale.

The pentatonic scale does not equal 1 whole step.

It's not that if u have 1 whole step that it automatically means it's the pentatonic scale.

Also, I want to see the proof that different societies use the same scale before they even knew they existed.

And even this is hard, cause latest Dna research showed, that a lot of people already existed together, before the shift of lands occurred and split all the parts of the world separately as they exist now (Australia, America, Europe etc. were once together as a whole)


...I know that the pentatonic scale is not a whole step...

But a whole step IS a pentatonic interval and thats the point Im trying to make. That the pentatonic scale is at the heart of all the tonal music on earth, and that theres something behind it.

And those songs the people in the video were singing are my proof. Some of those melodies are hundreds and hundreds of years old.

EDIT:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ne6tB2KiZuk

See this video where a bunch of scientists with no music training can all sing the pentatonic scale after only being givin 2 notes for reference.

The pentonic scale is in us just as much as any other part of any other language
Last edited by tubatom868686 at Dec 13, 2009,
#29
Quote by tubatom868686
...I know that the pentatonic scale is not a whole step...

But a whole step IS a pentatonic interval and thats the point Im trying to make. That the pentatonic scale is at the heart of all the tonal music on earth, and that theres something behind it.

And those songs the people in the video were singing are my proof. Some of those melodies are hundreds and hundreds of years old.


Yes, and like Isaas explained those intervals are consonant.

My point was also with him that consonance is in our genetics, and not the 5 notes itself.

Quote by tubatom868686

EDIT:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ne6tB2KiZuk

See this video where a bunch of scientists with no music training can all sing the pentatonic scale after only being givin 2 notes for reference.

The pentonic scale is in us just as much as any other part of any other language


I already gave an example of how people with no music training can sing/recognise the major scale. No need to double something I already agreed too.

That video shows scientists who arguably have heard the pentatonic scale in songs and music their entire life.

A proof would be of a group of infants, that never heard music in their life, to let them play an interface with the chromatic scale, and see which notes they will use to write a song.

Not a piano, cause the black and white keys could make for visual bias of the experiment.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Dec 13, 2009,
#30
Quote by xxdarrenxx
Yes, and like Isaas explained those intervals are consonant.

My point was also with him that consonance is in our genetics, and not the 5 notes itself.


I already gave an example of how people with no music training can sing/recognise the major scale. No need to double something I already agreed too.

That video shows scientists who arguably have heard the pentatonic scale in songs and music their entire life.

A proof would be of a group of infants, that never heard music in their life, to let them play an interface with the chromatic scale, and see which notes they will use to write a song.

Not a piano, cause the black and white keys could make for visual bias of the experiment.


Im not doubling anything. You said you could get anyone to sing a western diatonic scale. Id be willing to challenge that or at least see some evidence for your point. However, that guy PROVED that he could get a room FULL of people to sing a pentatonic scale after only giving them the first two notes.

You wouldnt expect an infant to speak sentences or phrases and you subsequently couldnt expect them to write a melody either.

On a side note, ever notice how the melodies of more or less all the songs toddlers sing are exclusively pentatonic?

Listen dude, you can argue all you want. But something about the pentatonic scale is inside us.

EDIT: Sorry, cant argue anymore today. Gotta do a rehearsal.

Ahhhh, getting paid $900 to do a rehearsal and 2 performances that I only play 3 out of 17 songs on. The life of an orchestral tuba player
Last edited by tubatom868686 at Dec 13, 2009,
#31
Quote by tubatom868686
Your argument is silly. Im not saying that our ears arent trained to the music around us. They are. The same way language works. But man has been making vowel and consonant sounds like "ahhh" and "kahhh" for as long as we know. Im saying the pentatonic scale are the music equivalents of those sounds

The pentatonic scale has existed in different societies before the societies even knew each other existed.

Also, you could not just as easily find songs without the pentatonic scale. Think about just western music. If you couldnt use any pentatonic intervals youd be totally limited to half step intervals. Ive never seen a song with only half step intervals


The sounds that we make in language are called phonemes. If you examine a babies babbling before they learn a language, you will find that babies use all the phonemes that are present in any language. Then, as that child learns a language, they only need to use the phonemes present in that language (and no major language contains all of the phonemes), and they lose all the other phonemes. Then when that person decides to learn another language, they need to relearn those phonemes that aren't common between the two languages that they have forgotten. And that is (partially) responsible for people having a difficult time pronouncing many words in their second language. A common example of this is how most ESL people have a hard time pronouncing the "th" sound.

If you want to extend that to music, you'll have to say that pitches are the musical equivalent of phonemes. This of course doesn't work, as pitch is not discrete, and there are an infinite number of pitches. Many cultures use 12 tones, but there is music based on other numbers. There's nothing pre-existing in people that makes us drawn to pentatonics. You'll actually find that a perfect fourth (which isn't in the major pentatonic) gets used in pretty much all of the music around the world, because it is the simple fequency ratio of 4:3 (well, almost 4:3, but it would be if not for equal temparment).
#32
Quote by tubatom868686
Im not doubling anything. You said you could get anyone to sing a western diatonic scale. Id be willing to challenge that or at least see some evidence for your point. However, that guy PROVED that he could get a room FULL of people to sing a pentatonic scale after only giving them the first two notes.


He did not prove it's genetic.

He proved what I Already agreed to, and that is that western people hear pentatonic based songs on the radio in malls, supermarket, stores, radio's, clubs etc. everywhere, and thus this is what they will hear most.

This does not mean they have it in them, cause you can't prove me, that they knew how to sing that from the day they were born, or without hearing pop music.

Quote by tubatom868686

You wouldnt expect an infant to speak sentences or phrases and you subsequently couldnt expect them to write a melody either.

On a side note, ever notice how the melodies of more or less all the songs toddlers sing are exclusively pentatonic?

Listen dude, you can argue all you want. But something about the pentatonic scale is inside us.

EDIT: Sorry, cant argue anymore today. Gotta do a rehearsal.

Ahhhh, getting paid $900 to do a rehearsal and 2 performances that I only play 3 out of 17 songs on. The life of an orchestral tuba player


Uhmz, according to your theory, if the pentatonic scale is in our genetics, then an infant can in fact be put in front of a sampler pad, and would make all his melodies based on the pentatonic scale.

Whether they sound good or in time doesn't matter, they would all, and only include pentatonic notes.

I think u should look up what genetics actually is.

On a side note, ever notice how the melodies of more or less all the songs toddlers sing are exclusively pentatonic?


Toddlers have arguably heard music around them.

I Dunno what age u mean directly with toddlers, but if they go to a creche or school, then they sing songs there, and most children songs are based around the pentatonic scale.

This would indicate perfectly that it could be a thing that is taught.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Dec 13, 2009,
#33
Quote by isaac_bandits
You'll actually find that a perfect fourth (which isn't in the major pentatonic)

All your stuff made sense except this. I can count four instances of a perfect fourth in a pentatonic scale; in C major pentatonic, D to G, E to A, G to C, and A to D are all perfect fourths. That is all, continue arguing, this is a pretty interesting debate.
#34
Quote by st.stephen
All your stuff made sense except this. I can count four instances of a perfect fourth in a pentatonic scale; in C major pentatonic, D to G, E to A, G to C, and A to D are all perfect fourths. That is all, continue arguing, this is a pretty interesting debate.


The scale degree 4 isn't in there. There are fourths between some of the intervals, but there isn't the fourth above the root (which is extremely common, even in the chord progressions that pentatonic melodies are played over). Sorry if my post was less than clear.
#35
Idk, I guess we could keep arguing and getting no where, but I think we can all agree that somewhere along the line, the pentatonic scale becomes part of us; and not only does it work over western music, but most all music in the world
#36
Quote by tubatom868686
Idk, I guess we could keep arguing and getting no where, but I think we can all agree that somewhere along the line, the pentatonic scale becomes part of us; and not only does it work over western music, but most all music in the world


It works over diatonic progressions in 12TET.
#37
Quote by isaac_bandits
It works over diatonic progressions in 12TET.


Its not limited to that though, thats sort of what this argument has been about. How the pentatonic scale occurs in every music system in the world. More than just 12tet; and even in western music, more than just diatonic progressions
Last edited by tubatom868686 at Dec 13, 2009,
#38
Quote by tubatom868686
Its not limited to that though, thats sort of what this argument has been about. How the pentatonic scale occurs in every music system in the world. More than just 12tet; and even in western music, more than just diatonic progressions


I highly doubt the pentatonic scale occurs in every culture. 12-tone music, sure, pentatonic works almost flawlessly. What about others, like where quarter-tones are put into effect? Show us an example of where quarter-tones and pentatonics are used together.
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#39
Quote by Black Star
I highly doubt the pentatonic scale occurs in every culture. 12-tone music, sure, pentatonic works almost flawlessly. What about others, like where quarter-tones are put into effect? Show us an example of where quarter-tones and pentatonics are used together.

Pentatonics are used in just about every culture. I just saw it on the "How Music Works" documentary that StevenSeagull keeps posting.
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#40
Bottom line is people think it sounds good.... so they use it.

We can theorize all we want, but ultimately it comes back to this.
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