Scale Definition

Core Location: Scales
c major scale in music notation

A scale is a tone group; a series of single tones, played in alpha-numerical order, either absolute, or using sequences (a-b-c, b-c-d, c-d-e, etc.).

Scales are tone groups, a set of tones, used to create sonic order. Scales can also be called modes.

A scale is also a set of chords. To start, we build chords from scales by selecting a tone and then selecting every other tone (EON - every other note, but technically a note is a written symbol and a tone is a sound. So, EON sounds better and is easier to remember). EON until we have 3 tones is called a triad. When we take it until we have 4 tones, these are called 7 type chords (R-3-5-7).

If a scale has 7 tones, then it has 7 triads (chords). A chord symbol is a scale symbol; it stands for both. Example: we see Em, which at its base level is e-g-b tones. We could also add some type of 2, 4, 6, and 7 (9-11-13 and 7) to it. This goes for interpreting the symbol as a chord and as a scale. How we interpret it is based on context (most commonly the key center, yet everything is transportable). We can also build chords in other intervals than 3rds.

Scales are associated with training. Once we are in jam mode, we ideally use different language sets and cognitive/emotional frameworks to experience music, rather than 'scales' or 'patterns'. We sing through our instruments.

We can think of a set of tones as a scale/chord. This is that they are the same thing. A chord is a scale and a scale is a chord.