Natural Minor Scales

Author : RyanFeest
Publish Date : 2021-03-16


Natural Minor Scales

The Natural Minor Scale when compared to the major scale has some of the notes flattened and this is what gives music written in a minor key the distinctive sadder sound.

The pattern for this minor scale is 2 1 22 1 2 2 where the numbers relate to the number of semitones to the next note. So a 2 means the next note is 2 semitones higher whereas a 1 means the next note is 1 semitone higher. So if you were to start on A the second note would be a tone higher which is B. Then the third note would be a semitone higher than B which is C. So your first three notes are A B C. Then note four is a tone higher which is D and note five another tone higher which is E. So the first 5 notes of the scale are A B C D E. Then you need a semitone higher for note 6 which is F, a tone to note 7 which is G and a further tone to take you back to A an octave higher. That means your whole A Natural Minor Scale is A B C D E F G A.

I am sure you will have noticed that there are no accidentals in this A minor scale. Because of this it is said to be related to C Major which also has no sharp or flat notes in the scale and key signature.

Each natural minor scale has a related major scale with an identical match of sharps and flats. For example B natural minor is related to D major as both have 2 sharps in the key signature. E natural minor is related to F major as both have 1 flat in the key signature.

If you are in a major key and wish to know it's related minor key you simply need note 6 of the major scale. So if you are in C major the scale is

C D E F G A B C and note 6 of that is A. So C major is related to A natural minor which we know is true.

If you are in the minor key and wish to know it's related major key you need the 3rd note of the scale. For example, B natural minor is B C sharp D E F sharp G A B. The third note is D so B natural minor is related to D major.

In the same way that the major triad for a major chord is the first, third and fifth note of the major scale a minor triad for a minor chord is the first third and fifth note of the natural minor scale. So C minor scale is C D E flat F G A flat B flat C and C minor chord is C E Flat and G.

This means that if you are reading chords for Jazz improvisation you don't really need to learn all the minor chords. You simply need the major chords and if a minor chord is written instead just flatten the middle note of the triad.

 

The Natural Minor Scale when compared to the major scale has some of the notes flattened and this is what gives music written in a minor key the distinctive sadder sound.

The pattern for this minor scale is 2 1 22 1 2 2 where the numbers relate to the number of semitones to the next note. So a 2 means the next note is 2 semitones higher whereas a 1 means the next note is 1 semitone higher. So if you were to start on A the second note would be a tone higher which is B. Then the third note would be a semitone higher than B which is C. So your first three notes are A B C. Then note four is a tone higher which is D and note five another tone higher which is E. So the first 5 notes of the scale are A B C D E. Then you need a semitone higher for note 6 which is F, a tone to note 7 which is G and a further tone to take you back to A an octave higher. That means your whole A Natural Minor Scale is A B C D E F G A.

I am sure you will have noticed that there are no accidentals in this A minor scale. Because of this it is said to be related to C Major which also has no sharp or flat notes in the scale and key signature.

Each natural minor scale has a related major scale with an identical match of sharps and flats. For example B natural minor is related to D major as both have 2 sharps in the key signature. E natural minor is related to F major as both have 1 flat in the key signature.

If you are in a major key and wish to know it's related minor key you simply need note 6 of the major scale. So if you are in C major the scale is

C D E F G A B C and note 6 of that is A. So C major is related to A natural minor which we know is true.

If you are in the minor key and wish to know it's related major key you need the 3rd note of the scale. For example, B natural minor is B C sharp D E F sharp G A B. The third note is D so B natural minor is related to D major.

In the same way that the major triad for a major chord is the first, third and fifth note of the major scale a minor triad for a minor chord is the first third and fifth note of the natural minor scale. So C minor scale is C D E flat F G A flat B flat C and C minor chord is C E Flat and G.

This means that if you are reading chords for Jazz improvisation you don't really need to learn all the minor chords. You simply need the major chords and if a minor chord is written instead just flatten the middle note of the triad.

 

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