music classes


Our present notation system uses the first seven letters of the alphabet.

A - B - C - D - E - F - G

These refer to the white keys of the keyboard.
The distance between one letter and the same letter up or down the keyboard is called an octave. It encompasses eight letters (A - A, or C - C). The seven letters are repeated to represent successive octaves.

The black keys between A and B is called either A#(sharp) or Bb( B flat)

The same between C and D is called either C# or Db.

The black key between D and E is called D# or Eb.

The black key between F and G is called F# or Gb.

The black key between G and A is called G# or Ab.

The the cromatic notes of a scale are

A, A#, B,C, C#,D, D#E, F, F#, G, G# .

Intervals ( the distance between twonotes)

Music Theory Intervals in One Octave:

We have defined the 7 base note names, A - B - C - D - E - F - G.

By using the keyboard below starting on the C note we can examine the basic interval

from 2nd to 8th (octave) by using just the white keys.

(This is the key of C, the C scale, and has no sharp or flats, the black keys)

The first rule of working with intervals is that the note you start with is called 1 or unison. Pretend like you were placing the same note on two instruments the interval between them would be one or in unison playing the same note.

Going from C to the next white key will give you an interval. C to D is a 2nd. C to E is a 3rd and so forth until you get C to C which is the 8th, and Octave.

The following measure shows the intervals for the C octave.

C to D =Major 2nd if flattened becomes minor second

C to E = Major 3rd if flattened becomes minor third

C to F =Perfect 4th if flattened becomes diminished 4th.

C to G =Perfect 5th if flattened becomes diminished 5th.

C to A =Major 6th if flattened becomes minor 6th.

C to B = Major 7th if flattened becomes minor 7th.

C to C = Perfect 8th or Octave if flattened becomes diminished 8th.

Now to build a triad (three notes played together) a simple chord we need the root the first note, the third and the fifth.

To build a major triad we need First note(root) a major 3rd and a perfect 5th

To build a minor triad we need First note(root) a minorr 3rd and a perfect 5th

Building triads or chords on the diatonic scale of C major and using notes only from its scale)


Scale of C major


Adding the 3rd and the 5th note to each scale note


C E G = c major triad (chord)

1root maj 3 peft 5

D F A = d minor triad (chord)

1root min 3 peft 5

E G B = e minor triad (chord)

1root minj 3 peft 5

F A C = f major triad (chord)

1root maj 3 peft 5

G B D = g major triad (chord)

1root maj 3 peft 5

A C E = a minor triad (chord)

1root min 3 peft 5

B D F = b minor flat 5 triad (chord)

1root min 3 dim 5

Hence the diatonic harmony for a c major scale is:

C major, D minor, e minor, f major, g major, a minor , b min or flat 5.

Listening to Hendrix’s version of Dylan’s “All Along the Watch Tower”. The three chords used are A minor, G major and F major. All these chords appear in the C major scale and are part of the diatonic harmony of C major. Building chords using the diatonic harmony of the scale…That is, chords built on each degree of the C major scale using notes only from that scale. On the 6th degree, that is the note A, you will have built the A minor chord, on the fifth degree you will have the G major chord and on the 4th degree, the F major chord.

Improvising on the C major scale i.e. C Ionion Mode in “All Along the

Watchtower” works. Also try using the A minor pentatonic scale.

There must be some kind of way out of here

A min G maj F maj G maj

Said the joker to the thief

A min G maj F maj G maj

There’s too much confusion

A min G maj F maj G maj

I can get no relief

A min G maj F maj G maj

Play hard, play from your heart. See you next week.


12 bar blues in G

Simple scale to play over the changes G minor pentatonic and the g blues scale

Bar 1 Bar 2 Bar 3 Bar 4

/ / / / / / / / / / / / / / / /

G 7th G 7th G 7th G 7th

Bar 5 Bar 6 Bar 7 Bar 8

/ / / / / / / / / / / / / / / /

C 7th C 7th G 7th G 7th

Bar 9 Bar 10 Bar 11 Bar 12

/ / / / / / / / / / / / / / / /

D 7th C7th G 7th D 7th

Learning To Shuffle

Learning any blues song also provides you a chance to work on two important facets of playing – timing and what I call finesse. By finesse, I mean the ability to play just certain strings on your guitar and not bang away at all six strings at once The blues rhythm is usually referred to as a shuffle. To understand exactly how it’s done, you should familiarize yourself somewhat with timing. If you read music at all, I’m certain that you’re acquainted with the following notations:

Blues is more often than not played in 4 / 4 timing, which is when every measure (or bar) has four beats and each quarter note is one beat. The blues shuffle rhythm is based on triplets, but the middle note of each set is left out, leaving you with the following pattern: