The blues scale is one of the most inspirational, moving, and intriguing music in the world. One of the highlights that set it apart from other forms of music is that its timeless. History has it that Blues music was first developed in the 1870s in America deep south region. The perfect blend of African-American tunes such as folk music, work songs, and traditions fueled its popularity.
Like any other musical tune, to play blues scale on your midi keyword, you have to practice and follow certain steps. Here is a brief overview of these steps to hone your skills and kickstart your musical career.
First, it is important to note that blues scale is actually a variant or a form of minor pentatonic scale. The pentatonic scale is a trimmed or improved version of the natural minor scale. The pattern of intervals played in the notes T-S-T-T-S-T-T makes it unique and easy to recognize.
What does T and S mean? Well, this is one of the most common questions that we get from our readers. Simply put, T means whole tone while S is an abbreviation of semitone. Keep this in mind as we progress to increase your chances of successful playing blues scale like a professional.
The next thing that you need to master is the F blues scale. Most musical geniuses can attest to the fact that this blue scale is more invigorating than the one we discussed in step one. You start by creating a minor intervallic pattern to the primary F key. This should be done naturally to create an F Minor Natural Scale. By first hitting F on your keyword, you create F, G, Bb, C, Db, Ab, Eb, and finally F.
Clearly, working with all those notes is difficult, so we need to weed out some of them to create a perfect F minor pentatonic – also commonly referred to as a five-note scale. The simplest way of doing this is getting rid of the 6th and 2nd degree of the natural minor scale.
Concisely, our goal at this stage is to remove the Db and G so that we remaining with five notes namely F, Ab, Bb, C, and Eb.
In this step, you need to change one thing in the F blues scale to create a fourth-degree sound that is crispier and sharper. The way to do it properly is by adding the note to the scale and raising the pitch by a single semitone. You also need to infuse a B to get Ab, Bb, F, Eb.
Now, to play this sharper F blue scale, you need to start with your thumb hitting the F key. The 3rd finger should play Bb and the 2nd finger should play Bb. As you do that, swiftly move your thumb to access the B and then play C using your 2nd finger again. By doing that, you will create this unique formula for this scale which is 1-2-4-4#5-7. Note that each number represents a degree that is part of the natural minor scale you just created.
The beauty of the blues scale is that you can use it in solo performance especially in instances where the power chords are in your left hand. Remember that the power chords don’t have a third, only minor and major scale. Practice by using the left-hand thumb to press C and the 5th finger to press F.
To master how to play blues scales on your midi keyword, you need to practice by trying out this riff exercise. With the F minor key pressed, try playing all five notes of the F blue scale. Make it even more unique and challenging by playing B using the 4th finger instead of the thumb. Once you do than, proceed to use the 5th finger to play C and then swiftly play using all five fingers from B, Bb, Ab, and F. Repeat this process several times to master the pattern.
With the Step 7 already bagged, scale up by creating a real blues lick. Do this by not using 3rd finger on Bb and 2rd finger on Ab, then back up using all fingers and with the thumb pressing down on F. Then, quickly using the fourth finger to play B and finger 5 to play C. Now, move from the thumb and jump straight to 4 and B repeatedly.
Try to increase the speed at which you play the tones to strengthen your 5th and 4th fingers.
Clearly, it is not difficult to play blues scales, you just need to know which notes to hit and the fingers to you. More importantly, you need a quality midi keyboard to master this technique. Here is an article we came across that analyses the best MIDI keyboards for Logic to help you shop for the right one. Be sure to also check out the reviews posted online by other music enthusiasts like you to get one that is worth the price.