7 Inversions Just to Get Another Sound

scale-c-gospel-smlThe scale modes seem to be one of the hardest things to comprehend by the music students. 

They really are just inversions of the major scale which start on the next note in the scale and play all the same notes.

What happens is that the intervals change form major to minor all over the place. This seems to the most confusing part of learning the modes.

Modes date back to the ancient Greeks where four of the modes were formulated. This is where the names came from that identify them. 

Later the medieval church expanded the modes and were called church modes. Modes were used before scales and the major and minor scales were actually based on two of the scale modes, Ionian and Aeolian.

We will take a loot at those as we work through the modes.

Describing Scale Modes in their simplest pattern and the absolute quickest way to see the modes is through the visual look at this keyboard.


Consider the first scale C major. C to C. That is the first mode. All the white notes are played between the two Cs. Each would be given a number 1 through 8 for the notes.

The Intervals and Notes for 1st mode
1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 7 – 1
C – D – E – F – G – A – B – C

Each successive mode is played on the next note in the scale. The next mode would be played 2 to 2. As you can see we use the same notes but simply start on the 2nd note. This is known as the Dorian Scale.

The mode Intervals and Notes
2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 7 – 1 – 2
D – E – F – G – A – B – C – D

 and the actual interval for the steps

1 – 2 – m3- 4 – 5 – 6 – m7- 8

Each mode is constructed in this pattern of starting on the next note of the major scale.

This is the way it is done so on and so forth.


Keys and Scales Workshop

Our Scale workshop is the place to learn about all the scales and modes.

If you need to expand your horizons this concentrated workshop on key signatures and scales is your fast way to gaining the knowledge and understanding scale structures.

Learn more about the workshop here:

Key Signature and Scales Workshop


Learning Resources