Major Scale



The Major Scale, also known as the Ionian scale or Bilaval scale, is one of the most commonly utilized scales. It is a Diatonic Scale, meaning that it has seven pitches and a repeated octave. The pitches of a diatonic scale are equally distributed in intervals of perfect fifths.


The series of seven notes that describe the tonality of the Major Scale are called; (1) Tonic, (2) Supertonic, (3) Mediant, (4) Subdominant, (5) Dominant, (6) Submediant/Superdominant (7) Leading Tone/Subtonic. The tonic is thought of as the 'center' in this formulation.


Following the first note (Tonic/Root) of the Major Scale, the subsequent notes are; Whole Step (2), Whole Step (3), Half Step (4), Whole Step (5), Whole Step (6), Whole Step (7), & Half Step (8) from the preceding tones. The eighth note of this scale is an octave above the tonic, or double the frequency of the first note of the scale.