SYOS

There are only 4 scales

BrianJoeSandy

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That should make life easy! OK assumptions:
7 notes and never semitone followed by semitone. Twice the number of tones plus the number of semitones (seats!Ironed - predictive text!) must add to 12. Modes are not new scales then

TTTTTT whole tone
TTSTTTS major
STSTTTT altered
STSTSTST diminished

If I count modes whole tone has 1, major has 7, altered has 7 and diminished has 2. If I play each scale through 2 octaves I get to play all the modes too. Did I miss anything?
 

jbtsax

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Interesting way to look at scales. :) You are right that the diminished scale can begin with either a whole step or a half step, but to cover all of the tones there are 3 diminished scales.

A-Bb-C-Db-Eb-E-F#-G-A
Bb-B-C#-D-E-F-G-Ab-Bb
B-C-D-Eb-F-F#-G#-A-B

You also have the 3 forms of the minor scale: natural, harmonic, and melodic not to mention the chromatic.
A look at Aebersold's "Scale Syllabus" will reveal even more "exotic" scales.
 

BrianJoeSandy

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A-Bb-C-Db-Eb-E-F#-G-A
Bb-B-C#-D-E-F-G-Ab-Bb
B-C-D-Eb-F-F#-G#-A-B

Those are all STSTSTST
ie a single scale in different keys

The Harmonic minor doesn't count because of the tone and a half T+ jump.
Blues scale is really wierd T+TSST+T
 
Last edited:

jbtsax

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It seems we aren't communicating very well. Let me put it into this context.
On your saxophone there is/are:
  • 1 chromatic scale
  • 2 whole tone scales
  • 3 diminished scales
  • 12 major scales
  • 36 minor scales
You can also have the "blues scale" in all 12 keys and a multitude of "ethnic scales" which do count as scales even though they have intervals other than half and whole steps.
 

Tenor Viol

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...The Harmonic minor doesn't count because of the tone and a half T+ jump.
Blues scale is really wierd T+TSST+T
Interesting view, but since it does in fact exist...
You are referring to the pattern of tones and semi-tones on which the various scales are based. I'm not sure I follow the mode point. Modes share the key signature of the relevant Ionian mode, but start on different notes so the pattern of tones and semi-tones vary for each mode, so you could have a pattern for Dorian (TSTTTSTT), Phrygian etc.
 

BrianJoeSandy

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269
It seems we aren't communicating very well. Let me put it into this context.
On your saxophone there is/are:
  • 1 chromatic scale
  • 2 whole tone scales
  • 3 diminished scales
  • 12 major scales
  • 36 minor scales
You can also have the "blues scale" in all 12 keys and a multitude of "ethnic scales" which do count as scales even though they have intervals other than half and whole steps.

Yes I didn't communicate very well. By ignoring modes we can put the symbols on a 12 point circle then there are only 4 choices. The minor scales would be Aeolian Harmonic and Melodic (same up as down) yes? Aeolian is a mode of Major and Melodic is a mode of Alt. I read somewhere that Harmonic is no good for Jazz as it has avoid notes on any chord.
Actually Harmonic is my favourite scale for noodling on.
 

Dibbs

Member
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668
That should make life easy! OK assumptions:
7 notes and never semitone followed by semitone. Twice the number of tones plus the number of semitones (seats!Ironed - predictive text!) must add to 12. Modes are not new scales then

TTTTTT whole tone
TTSTTTS major
STSTTTT altered
STSTSTST diminished

If I count modes whole tone has 1, major has 7, altered has 7 and diminished has 2. If I play each scale through 2 octaves I get to play all the modes too. Did I miss anything?

You start by saying 7 notes. Whole tone has 6 and diminished has 8 so you are left with 2.

But yes, if only major and minor seconds are allowed and never 2 semitones together then there are only 2 unique patterns of 7 notes. They corresponding to the major scale and it's modes and the melodic minor and it's modes.

If you add augmented seconds which are always followed by a diminished 2nd then you get 3 more. Harmonic minor, harmonic major and the double harmonic minor(Arabic, Hungarian minor).

Of course, then you have to multiply by 12 for all the different starting notes.
 

jbtsax

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Wouldn't that be a "minor 2nd". A "diminished 2nd" is a minor 2nd lowered a half-step which is the same as a perfect unison.
 

Jazzaferri

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IMO there is really only one scale, all the rest are just selective note choices LOL subsets if one is a math type

as has been said by many great improvisationalists "there aint no wrong notes"
 

sdt99

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183
as has been said by many great improvisationalists "there aint no wrong notes"

An incorrect note, when played with sufficient confidence does have the ability to become correct.

Unfortunately for most of us mortals when we hit that incorrect note the confidence takes a temporary beating (brain screams "Oh no, and it was all going so well - must escape back to comfortable safe lick while I recover my composure")
 

BrianJoeSandy

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269
You start by saying 7 notes. Whole tone has 6 and diminished has 8 so you are left with 2.

But yes, if only major and minor seconds are allowed and never 2 semitones together then there are only 2 unique patterns of 7 notes. They corresponding to the major scale and it's modes and the melodic minor and it's modes.

If you add augmented seconds which are always followed by a diminished 2nd then you get 3 more. Harmonic minor, harmonic major and the double harmonic minor(Arabic, Hungarian minor).

Of course, then you have to multiply by 12 for all the different starting notes.

Oops quite right
 
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