A few basic questions
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Old 24-01-2015, 05:02 AM   #1
ultragoat
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A few basic questions

does a bassline have to be in the same scale as the melody?

when composing a track can you use more than one scale?

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Old 24-01-2015, 08:50 AM   #2
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Re: few basic questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultragoat View Post
when composing a track can you use more than one scale?
you can absolutely use more than one scale, the technical term for the act of switching keys is modulation.

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Old 24-01-2015, 09:39 AM   #3
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Re: few basic questions

I could have sworn this was a JayMSay thread
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Old 25-01-2015, 04:06 AM   #4
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Re: A few basic questions

The proof is in the pudding. Anything is possible. If it sounds good it sounds good. Having said that their is some things to think about.

Different scales may share similar notes. Or even have the exact same notes (relative).

Your melody might only hint at one scale or another I.e it sounds good but it is not clear what key you are in. Then perhaps you play the bass and now its clear you are in g major.

Or 2 separate melodies that do not specify a key when played independently but when together it is clear.

You could change scale at a point where 2 scales share a note.

The list goes on.

How you incorporate these things and what ever else you pick up on your journey will ultimately define your sound and be a never ending source of fascination.
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Old 25-01-2015, 05:38 AM   #5
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Re: A few basic questions

There's a lot of inaccurate advice in this thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultragoat View Post
does a bassline have to be in the same scale as the melody?
Yes, it is possible to play different parts in different scales, provided that they are in key. For example, you could play a lead in a harmonic minor and have a bass line that is a minor pentatonic.

Scales are not determined by keys. They are determined by the harmonic relationship between the notes. For example, the major scale is expressed as Tone Tone Semitone Tone. Regardless of which note you start on, if you want to make a major scale, this is how you do it.

So if your lead is in C Major (CDEFGAB) then a C pentatonic major (CDEGA) bass line will be in key. Any scale that uses the notes from C Major will be in key and if you really tried hard, you could probably throw in some accidentals, especially if you're using multiple octaves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultragoat View Post
when composing a track can you use more than one scale?
Yes. Just considering C Major, for simplicity, there are seven scales that can be made using all of its notes. The most obvious is the relative minor, in this case A, which is the Aeolian (VI) scale. The full list is Ionian (I), Dorian (II), Phrygian (III), Lydian (IV), Mixolydian (V), Aeolian (VI) and Locrian (VII).

So it's easy to see how you could have a lead that centres around one mode, say having an ionian scale, while the bass line centres around another, say the a lydian scale. And really, this is where most of the interest in music is found. If you had a bass-line and a lead that were in the same scale, it would probably be very boring, because they would mostly be playing the same thing.

Modulation is one way to bring about a key change. It's not the only way, but it's probably the easiest way as you simply employ a mode of the key you're playing in that is harmonic to the key you want to change to. This way, you can easily shift the tonic from one key to another gradually.

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