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Postby screaminside » August 9th, 2009, 2:37 am

1- if we are using a key say a( a minor ) or whatever then we have to use only the notes in the scale and never use other notes out side the scale ? i found some song use notes from out side the scale
2 - is there harmony between two musical scales played at the same time ?
3 - is there any ways to change from a key to another while playing the same song

sorry if i m asking about something wrong but i am confused and thank u
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Postby Coolnama » August 9th, 2009, 9:40 am

Ok I will try to answer ^^ I'm new to this but I think I can answer if not prolly somebody like Noteboat Fretsource, Hbriem, Scrybe, etc etc, will correct me.

1. Well yes you can use notes outside the scale. Scales are divided in tetrachords ( 4 notes ) in the C major scale the 1st Tetrachord is C-D-E-F and the second is G-A-B-C, in a G major scale the first tetrachord is G-A-B-C and the second is (D-E-F#-G). :O C major's second Tetrachord is the same as G major's first Tetrachord, because G major is the 5th note in C majors scale ( its called the dominant ), so you could use the G major scale in a song in C major because of the relationship between these two, you can also use the F major scale because, its the 4th ( i think its called the subdominant) and they also share a Tetrachord.

2. I'm not sure if I understand the question but, with the above knowledge you can see there can be Harmony between 2 or more musical scales, but they aren't completely the same so the harmony isn't like between scales but more like with the notes you are playing, for example a C major scale and a G major scale played together at the same time won't sound cool because of the F#, but if you don't play the F#, is it really a G major scale or just another mode of the C major scale ? ( seriously lol somebody answer my question I don't wanna confuse people more than they are xD ).

3. Yes alot of composers do this, or so I've heard, but I think most of the times its not a huuuuge leap, maybe from C to G, or from A to E, yes G is Cs dominant and E is A's dominant. Or sometimes they do it in steps C to G to D, yep G is C's dominant and D is G's dominant.

I just re-read your 3rd question, if what you mean is play in a different scale when soloing over a song, well yes, you can change to the dominant scale of the key note ( in Cs case G), you can change to the relative minor in C's case A minor which is the 6th note of C major's scale, and I think you can use the sub-dominant ( F in C) because they also share a Tetrachord.

And regarding A minor, if a song is in A minor I think the relative major is C# major, but I'm not completely sure.

( I have a question I would like to add to his, If I am playing A minor, can I use the dominant ? if so, the 5th note of what scale ? A minor scale or A major ? But i heard somewhere that the A minor scale is just a mode of the A major scale, Ionian I think? so uh help xD )

So there you go, the second one I'm not so sure about, but I hope you understand my explanation ^^.

Please someone correct me if I'm wrong.
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Postby Fretsource » August 9th, 2009, 2:36 pm

screaminside wrote:1- if we are using a key say a( a minor ) or whatever then we have to use only the notes in the scale and never use other notes out side the scale ? i found some song use notes from out side the scale
2 - is there harmony between two musical scales played at the same time ?
3 - is there any ways to change from a key to another while playing the same song


1. Yes, you can use notes from outside the scale. In a general sense, you can use any note at all. There are no notes that can't be used. You just have to know how to use them. Knowing how to use them means understanding, either consciously or unconsciously, the relationship that any particular note has with the key of the song, the current chord, the previous notes and also the style of the song.
As a simple example. If the key is C major, a non scale note is F#. It can be used as a passing note very nicely between the scale notes F & G. It can also be used to emphasise the 5th (dominant) scale degree G, (because it happens to be the leading note of the key of G). Another non scale note is Eb, which is one of the things that gives blues its bluesy sound. So context is important, too. If you want a bluesy sound, then use it as much as you like - but not so much that it sounds like a cliche. The b7 note Bb can be used to give a bluesy sound too, and can also be used to emphasise the 4th note of the key, F.

Don't think in terms of CAN or CAN'T. Think in terms of CAUSE and EFFECT. Every musical decision that you make has consequences. A good musician makes good decisions with good consequences.

2. Two scales played at the same time time will always produce harmony, but not harmoniousness. In other words, unless you're very aware of the effect that that would produce, you're unlikely to get the harmony you want - unless of course you're experimenting with 'uncharted soundscapes' and want to combine C major with C # melodic minor, to make a style of music never before heard in your neighbourhood. :D
If two scales blend completely well, then they are probably just the same scale counted from different notes, e.g., C major and A natural minor.

3 Only if the key of the song also changes - otherwise, why would you want to?

Coolnama - some good info there. A couple of corrections (as you asked)
The relative major of A minor is C major, not C# maj and A major and A minor aren't modes of each other.

Not sure what you're asking about the dominant. You mean use the scale of the dominant key? i.e in Am, you'd use the scale of E major or Eminor? - Same question as above - "Why would you want to?"
Yes - you'd get access to possibly interesting notes that are foreign to the A minor key, but if you already know what those interesting notes are, just use them anyway, in addition to your A minor scale, when the situation calls for it. If you don't know what they are, then you'd soon find them if you used that scale, but you'd have to learn how to use them safely first before letting them loose in a solo in A minor.
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Postby Coolnama » August 9th, 2009, 4:13 pm

Why is it C instead of C#, I thought it was the 3rd note of a scale that was relative major and 6th note relative minor ?

And what I mean is when I want to use the dominant key of a minor chord do I just take the 5th note of the major scale and do it minor or do I count to the 5th note of the minor scale, but I guess its the first answer.

But I'll just make a new thread with questions :D instead of hi-jacking this one.
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Postby Fretsource » August 9th, 2009, 5:01 pm

Coolnama wrote:Why is it C instead of C#, I thought it was the 3rd note of a scale that was relative major and 6th note relative minor ?


That's right. It's the 3rd note. The 3rd note of A minor is C, not C#

And what I mean is when I want to use the dominant key of a minor chord do I just take the 5th note of the major scale and do it minor or do I count to the 5th note of the minor scale, but I guess its the first answer.


It would come to the same thing. Both major and minor scales have the same 5th note. That's E in the case of A minor and A major, but as you're in A minor you'd think (count) in A minor, not A major.
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Postby Coolnama » August 9th, 2009, 5:14 pm

Oh thank you I was counting in the Major scale, sorry.
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Postby screaminside » August 11th, 2009, 7:51 am

thank u Coolnama and fretsource for your answer

i understand from the answer of question no 1 that i can use notes from out side the scale if it sound good

the 2nd one you mean that its wrong to use two scales at the same time
but some instruments play in only one or two keys>>>.... then they are not used unless these keys are used ?

the 3d i understand
and thank u again ur answers helps alot
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Postby Coolnama » August 11th, 2009, 11:08 am

Some instruments play in only one or two keys, what instrument? I understand that alot of wind instruments are a bit different, but with a little transcription on the guitar you will get in the same key as them.
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Postby hbriem » August 12th, 2009, 1:42 am

Coolnama wrote:Some instruments play in only one or two keys, what instrument? I understand that alot of wind instruments are a bit different, but with a little transcription on the guitar you will get in the same key as them.


Many wind instruments such as whistles, most bagpipes, pan pipes and most harmonicas can only play in a single key.

Yes, other instruments can play in "their" key but a Bb harmonica can't play in A.
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Postby Alan Green » August 12th, 2009, 2:07 am

hbriem wrote:Many wind instruments such as whistles, most bagpipes, pan pipes and most harmonicas can only play in a single key.

Yes, other instruments can play in "their" key but a Bb harmonica can't play in A.


I had a harmonica player turn up at a gig one night with 12 harmonicas, one for each root. Incredible musician.

You'd be surprised with some wind instruments - I can play a chromatic scale on my recorder from middle C to the A an octave and a 6th above it - an interval of a 13th - so keys are not limited so much as range.


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Postby wkriski » November 8th, 2009, 7:48 am

For the original question, try not to overcomplicate how you think of soloing. The easiest way I have found and teach is to say play in Am and just add outside notes to taste. You don't necessarily hang on the outside note for a long time but you use it like a spice.

So take your Am soloing and add a G# outside note. You can use it to approach the A (root) or as a passing note A to G, G to A. There are other ways to add it. Then do this with other notes. I learned this years ago from a famous guitarist and teacher and it's much simpler than getting confused with scales and modes.

You're not changing keys or scales with this approach. (but many songs do change keys and that's a separate topic).

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