I was asked a question by a new pupil today about how to create a major scale. I thought it'd be useful to share the answer with everyone in the SAXOPHONE Studies community...

Every major scale is created by following the same pattern of intervals.

It doesn't matter which note you start on as your root note, you have to follow this specific pattern of intervals for it to be a major scale.

This is the interval pattern to create an ascending major scale:

root note
tone
tone
semi-tone
tone
tone
tone
semi-tone


Every major scale follows the musical alphabet, which runs from A to G.
e.g. A B C D E F G

So,
  1. start on any root note you like, for example, an E;
  2. then follow the musical alphabet until you get back to the root note again - E F G A B C D E;
  3. you then simply need to add a # or b to any notes to make sure that they follow the correct pattern of intervals - E F# G# A B C# D# E.

Here’s some other examples:

  • C Major = C D E F G A B C
  • G Major = G A B C D E F# G
  • F Major = F G A Bb C D E F
  • Db Major = Db Eb F Gb Ab Bb C Db

I have highlighted the notes that are altered to make them fit into the pattern of a major scale.


I hope that this helps and makes sense. Music theory can be endlessly confusing though, so please feel free to ask any questions :)