#1
Hello, I'm new here and just wanted to ask something about scales.

For example The key is in A minor

What scales can I use to solo over it?

My understanding is that you follow this format?

I don't know what this is called cause I'm a bit new to music theory.

A minor

B diminished

C major

D minor

E minor

F major

G major

I kinda know that these are chords that will sound good in A minor and of course I know the C major scale will sound good with A minor cause C major's relative minor is A minor.

I kinda also know you can use pentatonic scales and different degrees to it
(I think they are modes but modes are confusing and I really don't have a clear understanding of it yet, all I know is they are degrees of a certain scale)

TL;DR: How many scales can I use in a given key? can I use the major and minor scale of other keys provided that they are in the format I have given above?

Sorry if this question has been posted already. I used the search bar and the results didn't answer my question.

Thanks
#2
Ok, in the key of A minor, you can only play the A minor scale. The reason C major sounds good over it is because it has the same notes....you are just playing the A minor scale.

The pentatonic scale is just the A minor scale with two notes removed, you can play it over a song in A minor, and it will still be A minor.

Then there's something called "accidentals". These are when you use notes that are not in A minor. A good example is adding a flattened fifth to the A minor scale. This comes from the A blues scale. Alternatively you could add a major 7th, this would result in the A harmonic minor scale. The list goes on.

Hope that helps. As for modes, ignore them.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#3
Yeah just keep it in A minor. If you get bored with just natural minor and pentatonic minor you can dick around with variations like AlanHB said.
#4
@AlanHB

Thank you sir for answering my question.

So if I take an A minor chord progression and use a straight D minor scalar run over it...it won't sound good?

EDIT:

Quote by Sulfur183
Yeah just keep it in A minor. If you get bored with just natural minor and pentatonic minor you can dick around with variations like AlanHB said.


I see...thanks for the answer...
Last edited by gothblade at Mar 27, 2011,
#5
Quote by gothblade
So if I take an A minor chord progression and use a straight D minor scalar run over it...it won't sound good?


Actually it "can" sound good. You're only changing one note in the A minor scale - a flattened 2nd. All the other notes notes are still in the A minor scale. Interestingly the scale that you would result in would share the same notes as the A phrygian scale, a favourite of many latin players.

Just always remember it's the A minor with an accidental, nothing more. If someone tells you it's a mode, simply ignore them.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#6
Quote by AlanHB
Actually it "can" sound good. You're only changing one note in the A minor scale - a flattened 2nd. All the other notes notes are still in the A minor scale. Interestingly the scale that you would result in would share the same notes as the A phrygian scale, a favourite of many latin players.

Just always remember it's the A minor with an accidental, nothing more. If someone tells you it's a mode, simply ignore them.



Thank you sir A very clear answer. People just tell me that I can use modes over it but I keep getting confused because of their answers.

At least this made me look at it clearly.

Thanks
#7
Quote by gothblade
Thank you sir A very clear answer. People just tell me that I can use modes over it but I keep getting confused because of their answers.

At least this made me look at it clearly.

Thanks


No worries. As long as you stick to the basic rules you should be able to get a clearer idea about what's going on. For example after some thought you should be able to explain why you can play an A minor pentatonic over a song in the key of A major, like most blues numbers go.

As for modes, there's a hell of a lot of misinformation going around about them especially on the internet. Once you have a firm handle on how major/minor scales and keys work you will have the foundation to understand what modes are. However without the foundation, modes will either make no sense if you are told what they are (traditionally), or the information will simply be incorrect.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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