How to Build a Chromatic Scale

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Introduction A chromatic scale is a scale made up of 12 different notes separated by half-steps (or semitones). The 13th note is a repetition of the 1st note, an octave apart. On the piano keyboard, if you start on any key …

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How to Build a Melodic Minor Scale

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INTRODUCTION The melodic minor scale is one of the three minor scales we have in music (the others being the natural minor and harmonic minor).  One way it is different from the two other minor scales is that it uses different …

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What is a trill and how to play it (piano)

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Introduction A trill is one of the most common musical ornaments and can sound beautiful when done well. If you are not confident about your understanding of what a trill is or how to play it correctly, look no further. …

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How to write a tie in music (music notation)

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Introduction This article assumes that you are already familiar with what a tie is and its function in music. The focus here will be to highlight the rules surrounding the correct way to write ties in music notation. This might …

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What is a pickup measure in music (and how it works)

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Introduction If you’ve ever read sheet music, you’ve undoubtedly come across a pickup measure (aka anacrusis/upbeat/incomplete measure). And while you may have a general idea of what these are all about, perhaps you still have some unanswered questions about them …

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How to Build a Harmonic Minor Scale

Introduction The harmonic minor scale is arguably the most popular of the three minor scales (the others being the natural minor and melodic minor). It is pleasing to the ear but at the same time has a certain melancholic quality, as …

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How to Build a Natural Minor Scale

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Introduction The natural minor scale is one of three minor scales (the others being the harmonic minor and melodic minor). Although not as common as the other two, it is extremely useful to know, at the very least because it …

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