can someone help me? what is the difference between scales and keys and how do they work when it comes to making music or playin alng with it? any info would be great. thanks



The key is basically the root note which the song is based around. If I am correct, probably not. A scale, such as the major scale, can be played over any key.

ex.) Key of C would mean that the song could start, and end with the note C.

You can use the major scale over the key of C as a way of writing riffs or soloing.

Hope my explanation wasn't too shitty.
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I'll give this a stab. The key of a song prescribes the notes which are flats/shraps/naturals in the song. The importance of this is that we can identify a scale from this that is a associated with the key. For example, if the key has no sharps or flats, it can be a C major scale. However it could also be a A minor scale. Whether it is C major or A minor depends on what note the melody resolves to in the song.

Keys also have certain chords associated with them, which contain the notes of the scale associated with it. So if the key is C major, it will also include other chords like G major, F major and D minor. You yourself may have noticed that some songs always seem to have the same or similar chords together. This is because they are all constructed by the scale associated with the key.

This is useful because;

1. If you identify the key, you can identify the scale, and solo over or write melodies for any song.

2. It helps you identify which chords belong to a key, so that you can utilise them easily without taking the guesswork out of what chord you're going to play next.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
A key is the center of gravity. A scale is a sequence of notes.
Oh yeah.

Quote by hildesaw
A minor is the saddest of all keys.

EDIT: D minor is the saddest of all keys.
Quote by hockeyplayer168
A key is the center of gravity. A scale is a sequence of notes.

He knows what he's talking about. ^^^
you sound like you need to know everything about scales and keys and modes so i'll try to explain most of the basics right here. the VERY BASIC basics.

you only really need to know 1 scale for the majority of western music, the major scale. a whole step is 2 frets, a half step is 1, regardless of whether or not a sharp or flat is involved, its the number of frets that matters. the major scale is WWhWWWh. change the note you start at to change the key.

If you start at C (which means you're playing in the key of Cmajor) the notes are C,D,E,F,G,A,B, the only key of the major scale with o sharps/flats. If you start at G, the notes are G,A,B,C,D,E,F#, it has 1 sharp, F#.

There are 7 degrees in the major scale. You can build a chord on any degree, but EVERY note of the chord has to fit in the scale for the chord to be "in key" or "diatonic." yo can use "non-diatonic" chords (chords that aren't completely in key) but thats not something you learn when you start learning scales. the 7 chords can be written in roman numerals, the upper-case are major, lower-case minor, and the 1 with the "o" is diminished. the chords of the major scale (in any key) are I-ii-iii-IV-V-vi-viio. So the chords in the key of C are Cmajor, Dminor, Eminor, Fmajor, Gmajor, Aminor, and Bdiminished. You can mostly pick random chords in key and put them together and they probably shouldnt sound horrible, but to make better-ish progressions, try to put the V chord next to the I chord. V creates tension, I creates release.

Those are the basics, there's a lot more to learn but thats all for now.