Encyclopedia > Diatonic scale

  Article Content

Diatonic scale

In Music theory, the diatonic scale is the fundamental building block of the Western musical tradition. The diatonic scale is composed of two tetrachords separated by intervals of a whole step. The pattern of intervals is as follows Whole-Whole-Half (Whole)Whole-Whole-Whole-Half. The major scale begins on the first note and proceeds by steps to the first octave of the root note. In solfege, the syllables for each scale degree are "Do-Re-Mi-Fa-Sol-La-Ti-Do".

The natural minor scale can be thought of in two ways, the first is as the relative minor of the major scale, beginning on the sixth degree of the the scale and proceeding step by step through the same tetrachords to the first octave of the sixth degree. In solfege "La-Ti-Do-Re-Mi-Fa-So."

Alternately, the natural minor can be seen as a composite of two different tetrachords of the patter Whole-Half-Whole (Whole) Half-Whole-Whole. In solfege "Do-Re-Me-Fa-Sol-Le-Te-Do."

All of Western Harmony from the late Renaissance up to the early Twentieth Century is based upon these two objects and the unique relationships created by this system of organizing 7 notes.

The white keys on a piano correspond to the diatonic scale of C major (C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C), with the notes 1 whole tone apart, except for E-F and B-C, which is an interval of 1 semitone (half a tone).

See also:

All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

  Search Encyclopedia

Search over one million articles, find something about almost anything!
  Featured Article
Great River, New York

... with no husband present, and 17.9% are non-families. 13.4% of all households are made up of individuals and 5.5% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or ...

This page was created in 38.2 ms