My own summary of the music theory that I have learned.


This page is a work in progress. Please check back soon for more updates

Notation Legend

#:sharp
b:flat
*:diminished
H:half step
W:Whole step

Scales

Scales are patterns of musical notes with prescribed intervals that repeat in octaves. Scale theory is a formal way of describing the intervals between musical notes. There are a couple different notations for scales. A very common notation is numerical notation; in numerical notation roman numerals represent each tone in the scale. By varying how the roman numerals are written or adding a few special symbols you can describe almost every possible scale.

Harmonic Minor
i ii* III iv v #VI VII i

The other notation I will use is based on the intervals between the notes that make up the scale. Every note is separated from each other note by one of a half (H), a whole (W), a whole and a half (WH), etc. One half step is the interval between adjacent white keys on a piano or between adjacent frets on a guitar.

Harmonic Minor
W H W W W H W

Western music is based off of a few base scales. The difference between scales is referred to as their tonality. The first tonality is called Major; all other tonalities are defined by how they differ from the Major scale.

  • Major:

    I ii iii IV V vi vii* I
     W  W   H  W W  W    H
    
  • Minor:

    i ii* III iv v VI VII i
     W   H   W  W H  W   W
    
  • Augmented

  • Diminished

" "