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Scales: Major scale vs Minor scale

One of the first things you learn about music is that there are two different main scales in Western music: the major scale and the minor scale

Today, let’s deal with a specially relevant topic in music: the major scales vs the minor scales!

One of the first things you learn about music is that there are two different main scales in Western music: the major scale and the minor scale.

What is the difference between them?

Major scale

Is the most common and it is made up of seven notes. The first, third, and fifth degrees form a major triad. As kids, we are told that the major scale is the happy scale. Want to know a basic major scale? C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C and it sounds like this:

Minor scale

It is also very common and is also made up of seven notes. But, the third note is a minor third (three semitones) above the first, and the fifth note is a perfect fifth (seven semitones) above the first. In the opposite as a major scale, we know this one as the “sad” scale. Want to know a basic minor scale? A-B-C-D-E-F-G-A and it sounds like this 

Every major scale has its minor relative. So, as we have seen above, the C major and A minor are relative.

Let’s do a small exercise. Let’s pick out, for example, another very common major scale which would be G. Which would be G’s relative minor scale? If you were thinking E minor, the answer is correct!

There is something very funny to hear in order to be able to differentiate major scales from minor scales. Let’s pick a famous tune like the Pink Panther’s theme.

Even if it does not sound “sad”, but it uses a minor scale. Do you want to see how it would sound using a major scale? There you go.

Seems like it does not sound quite the same, huh?

In conclusion, we have to forget about the happy vs. sad comparison. Minor scales and major scales give each of them different colors to the music.

Therefore, if you have any instrument at home, you can play easy songs in the two different scales and you will see how different the song sounds due to the changes in major and minor scales.

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