Beginner Scales For Singers

Why Singing Scales Will Help Your Voice and the Basic Scales Every Singer Should Know

Have you ever wondered what scales you should learn as a singer? Figuring out the right scales to learn can be super confusing. There are many different types of scales, so choosing the appropriate ones for your own vocal range and genre can be difficult! Here are four of the most commonly used beginner scales for singers that you should learn on your way to mastering your voice.

What are scales?

A scale is a series of notes played in sequential order, ascending or descending. Scales are typically associated with particular modes, but a mode is a scale’s parent key, not the scale itself.


Why learning scales will help improve your singing

Learning scales can be a challenging task. But, it will help you improve your singing. Learning scales is important for honing your ear and improving your melody. Scales are used to train the ear in hearing the different intervals between notes, which enables you to sing more accurately. They also provide a sense of timing when developing melodies.

These scales are widely used by singers because they are simple to learn and they work well with any genre or vocal range. It’s important to know that scales are not just for guitarists or pianists; there are many ways that all musicians can work these into their music practice routine.


Which scales should beginner singers learn first?

There are many different types of scales. There’s the major scale, which is used in most popular music. There’s also the natural minor scale, which is used in jazz and blues music. And there’s the pentatonic scale, which commonly appears in folk and world music.

The type of scales you should learn first will depend on your vocal range and style of music. For example, if you’re a singer who only sings rock songs with a low vocal range, you would benefit from learning to sing the major scale the natural minor scale because these are most commonly found in that genre of music. Beginners can also try out any type of scales they want to see what works best for them – but the most common scales are major, pentatonic, and natural minor.

The Major Scale

The major scale is one of the most important scales for beginner singers to learn. This is because it’s the simplest scale and the easiest to play. The major scale has 7 different notes from the tonic up to the 7th of the scale. The major scale has no accidentals (within any given key) and sounds ‘happy and light’. See my tutorial here on how to sing a major scale.


The Natural Minor Scale

The natural minor scale is one of the most popular scales that beginners learn. This is because it contains a lot of the same notes as the major scale, but has a ‘sad sound’. The natural minor has a flattened 3, 6 and 7 and is an easy scale for the ear to pick up on and sing. Sing along with me in this video as we go through the natural minor scale together.


The Major Pentatonic Scale

The major pentatonic scale is a five-note scale that is one of the most commonly used scales for improvisation because it can be applied to nearly any song. This scale has been used widely in blues, jazz, classical, contemporary and pretty much every type of music. Here’s a really cool example of Bobby McFerrin demonstrating the power of the pentatonic scale at the World Science Festival.


The Minor Blues Scale

The minor blues scale is a six note scale which is used widely, and not just in blues and jazz music. You’ll hear it in gospel, rock and pop songs too. Just add in that cool blue note and it gives the song that uber bluesy, soulful sound.

It is great for sad, emotional ballads and there are countless examples of when you ‘sing the blues’; songs comprised of simple chord progressions using pretty much this scale alone for the entire song. Not sure what scales to learn? Experiment with different types of scales to see which ones are right for your voice! 

Click here for my video tutorial on how to sing a minor blues scale.



Master the 10 most common scales in music!

10 sing-along tracks made specifically for singers to help you learn your scales, in a fast and fun way! 

Learn these 10 scales:

1 Major Scale
2 Major Arpeggio
3 Minor Scale
4 Minor Arpeggio
5 Dominant Scale
6 Dominant Arpeggio
7 Blues Scale
8 Major Pentatonic Scale
9 Minor Pentatonic Scale
10 Dorian Scale

Each track has an example then a piano plays the scale/ arpeggio with you to help you pitch each note correctly.

Also comes with a handy PDF guide.

Vital Scales For Singers

Did you like this blog post?

Please let me know if you found it helpful in the comments below or if you have requests for any future tutorials.

Have a fantastic week!

Nicola xx

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