Best Way to learn scales

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by anthony, Jul 14, 2010.

  1. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    For years I knew most of my major scales, (had never really thought about the minors too hard) but not all of them - I avoided the trickier keys like F#, C# and B. I finally made a pact with myself that I wanted to know them, inside and out, so they became part of my practice routine. Once my majors were solid, I set about getting my natural minor scales under my fingers, using what I know about relative major and minor scales.

    All in all it didn't take very long before I was playing through all of them, mistake free, as part of my regular practice, and I really kick myself that I didn't knuckle down and do it years ago. Old dogs CAN learn new tricks, and usually it's a simple matter of self-discipline.

    So, to the OP, do what Rowuk says, be like Nike and just DO IT. It might be frustrating at first, but you'll be playing them up and down and inside and out before you know it, and it will make you a better player because of it.
  2. gbdeamer

    gbdeamer Forte User

    Oct 16, 2008
    Even though you find it funny, the point he's making is if you don't trust your teacher, you should probably find a different one.
  3. CHAMP

    CHAMP Piano User

    Nov 16, 2005
    word up gbd...

    also, being a beginner, your teacher just MAY know whats best for you, even if you don't yet. when i was learning, my teacher had me do stuff that i thought was stupid, but you know what, it helped me...
  4. The Kraken

    The Kraken Piano User

    Mar 28, 2007
    Gold Coast - 805
    On the subject of scales for most music say for improvasation it was suggested that I learn :

    C, D, Eb, E, F, G, Ab, A, Bb Major
    All of the above in Natural and Harmonic Minor
    C, D, F, and G Blues Scales
    C, D, Eb, F, G, Ab, A, Bb Lydian
    Both Whole Tone scales across the whole range of the horn.

    to have decent repertoire of scales.

    The goal of course is to get comfortable with all scales.

    For me ear training works the best, usually if I can hear it, I can play it !!:play::play:
  5. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

    Mar 3, 2009
    Thanks Guys I appreciate your input ,information and help I will start workimg on scales and use the w,w,half formula I guess like you say he (my teacher) told me to do that formula to learn the scales for a reason .I am going to make scales part of my practice ,:play: Anthony
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    We are NEVER done learning. It would even still help you today!
  7. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    Use the W W H... formula to write out each scale. By doing this you will learn how key signatures are arrived at. Then practice per Rowuk's advice. The more you understand about the structure of music the better musician you can be. My students learn about the formula for each mode scale/key signature and whether it's modality is major or minor. Example: Dorian is a minor scale while lydian is a major scale.
  8. CHAMP

    CHAMP Piano User

    Nov 16, 2005
    nah, i'm done
  9. ltg_trumpet

    ltg_trumpet Mezzo Piano User

    Jan 21, 2009
    Im about to begin a study... Im gonna make recordings of the scale pdf that was posted earlier. the scales are on my ipod in pdf, that way i can take my ipod and do scale studies on the fingers. i general do chromatic scales while im doing different things. so i thought... if i could just start getting my different modes down, i would be able to play them as well as i play my chroms
  10. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    Don't forget to listen!! A major scale sounds a certain way - do, re, mi, fa, .... and most of us learn that pretty early. So pick any starting pitch, close your eyes, and listen as you play up, and I think you will be able to hear what comes next.
    Some of my best practice happens in the dark - seriously.

    Another hint: put on a recording of a famous trumpet piece (the old Michael Haydn is good) . Turn of the lights and listen. Do this with a few friends if you can. Let the piece play through a movement. Go back and play it again, and stop it, talk about what you are hearing in terms of instruments, scales, major/minor, rhythm, and try to get an understanding of how it works. This can be a lot of fun and very educational. If you can do it with a horn or a keyboard handy that can help with the analysis.

    Much of what needs to be learned to play music can be learned by listening, and that itself is a skill to master.

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