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Thread: All the heptatonic scales and their modes

  1. #1
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    Arrow All the heptatonic scales and their modes

    Hello all,

    http://www.guitaristtv.com/Downloads...for%20GTV.xlsx

    I have compiled a spreadsheet of all 66 of the 7-note scale families, indexed by their 'primary' scale followed by each scale's 6 additional modes. The scales are displayed as ladders ('scala').

    Each scale has a midi file below it so you can double-click on it to hear what it sounds like.

    Some scales have multiple names (eg lydian flat 7, mixolydian aug4, acoustic, overtone, etc); I have only chosen one name for each. For unpopular scales which appear to have no name, I gave them a name.

    The colour scheme is designed for the diatonic family (red = triumphant tonic, green = greensleeves dorian, etc; this scheme is replicated for the other families.

    Each scale has a unique code underneath it, which represents the number of semitones in each interval (eg ionian is 2212221). Interestingly if you sum all the codes for one family, you get the number 13333332.

    Palindromic scales such as Dorian (2122212) have their codes in red font. (Interestingly, where there's a palindromic scale in a family, the other 6 modes in the family make self-reflective pairs, eg the Ionian intervals turned upside down make Phrygian).

    Just thought it would be a useful reference guide for anyone needing to work with modes. Enjoy!

    http://www.guitaristtv.com/Downloads...for%20GTV.xlsx
    Last edited by Viz; 03-12-2015 at 07:52 AM.

  2. #2
    Registered User ragasaraswati's Avatar
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    Very interesting. The case with Dorian in conjustion with being palindromic it's also that it is the most balanced diatonic scale, in terms of consonance and dissonance. With the three major modes above it and the three remaining (two minor plus the diminished locrian) beneath it. It also doesn't have an inverse, as with ionian and phrygian.

    Growing up in Greece I had a distaste for traditional greek music and later on I discovered it's mostly in phrygian. Fittingly most of the music I grew up was the standard major and it has the opposite (intervallically inverse) sound to phrygian. Similarly, classical middle eastern music is antithetical to classical western, from the opposite leading tone (b9 instead of maj7) and again due to b9 no authentic cadence but plagal, same as the flamenco cadence.
    Last edited by ragasaraswati; 03-13-2015 at 01:29 PM.

  3. #3
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    Ah, nice one, so you can actually hear some sort of relationship between a scale and its inverse? Not sure I can.

  4. #4
    Registered User ragasaraswati's Avatar
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    Sure you can, they have opposite sound. Play C lydian and then C locrian for the extremest effect.

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