Scales: Solfege Ear Training, Major Tonality


Learning Goal: To recognize the unique sound/feeling of each of the twelve possible pitches with respect to the key center Do in a Major tonality…

… a skill that will pay enormous dividends in your ability to sight sing, sight read, learn new pieces, transpose, and play by ear.

This lesson requires you to download a 5 Mb *.zip file that contains dozens of MP3s.

Simply download, unzip, create a playlist, set to random play, and do ear training on the run!

Each mp3 follows the same sequence: A G7 to C (V7 to I) cadence is played, clearly establishing the key center Do.

  1. A random pitch is presented.
  2. Identify the pitch using its Solfege name.
  3. After a short pause, the correct answer is given.

Listen to an example…

As you do these, keep the following in mind:

  • Solfege is relative pitch awareness in a key center.
  • Unlike absolute pitch, relative pitch does not require any special talent. Relative pitch awareness is a learnable skill, available to anyone who studies and practices the right way.
  • Do not try to listen for intervals (half steps, whole steps, major thirds, minor thirds, and so on). The goal is to hear the unique sound/feeling of each note with respect to the key center and independently of which notes come before or after or whether they are high or low in register.
  • Successful ear training is not the fruit of trying to hear something. It is about being receptive to the sound/feeling you are experiencing and then associating that sound/feeling with something you already know — in this case the Solfege names.
  • While all these studies are presented in the key of C, the sound/feelings learned in C, or any other key (based on relative pitch using Solfege) will generalize to all keys. That said, you still need to do the left-brain work of mapping the Solfege names in each key to the notes in written music or to the physical keys on the keyboard.

learn more… Scales