Major Pentatonic Scale: Theory & Ear Training

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-featured

As the name suggests, the Major Pentatonic Scale has five notes and a major quality…

… and is yet another existence proof that scales are not made up of “half-steps” and “whole-steps”.

Theory

Here, for example, are the notes in the C Major Pentatonic identified by letter name, scale degree (numbers), and Solfege syllable…

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-notation-letter-names-scale-degrees-solfege
piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-keyboard-layout-letter-names-solfege
  1. The scale structure of the Major Pentatonic Scale is always 1-2-3-5-6-1, no matter what key you are in.
  2. The Solfege syllables of the Major Pentatonic Scale are always Do-Re-Mi-So-La-Do, no matter what key you are in.
  3. The only thing that changes when you change keys are the letter names.

Comparative Scale Study

Notice that the Major Pentatonic Scale is a subset of the Major Scale...

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-comparison-to-c-major

The absence of the two most harmonically active notes (Fa and Ti) give the Major Pentatonic Scale a relaxed and dreamy quality.

C Major Pentatonic Scale: Linear, Ascending…

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-ear-training-linear-ascending

C Major Pentatonic Scale: Linear, Descending…

iano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-ear-training-linear-descending

C Major Pentatonic Scale: Do-X-Do, Ascending…

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-ear-training-do-x-do-ascending

C Major Pentatonic Scale: Do-X-Do, Descending…

piano-ology-scales-c-major-pentatonic-ear-training-do-x-do-descending

learn more… Minor Pentatonic Scale: Theory & Ear Training