Major and minor scales are often used in Western music. But the Circle of Fifths can be used for any diatonic scale, not just the major scale. While the Circle of Fifths is commonly associated with the major scale due to its widespread use in Western music, the underlying principles can be applied to other diatonic scales as well, such as the natural minor scale or modes of the major scale.
This is what the Scale-Circle does. It applies the principles of the Circle of Fifths to other diatonic scales. The ‘Scale-circle’ is the innovative mode of the Circle of Fifths.
In fact, the Circle of Fifths can be a helpful tool for understanding the relationships between chords and keys in different scales. By following the circle, you can determine the key signatures, chord qualities, and progressions associated with any diatonic scale.
For example, if you were to explore the Circle of Fifths in the key of C minor (natural minor scale), you would find the relative major key (E♭ major) located a fourth (or fifth in the opposite direction) clockwise from C minor. You can then continue moving in fifths or fourths to explore the relationships between other keys and chords in the C minor scale.
So, while the Circle of Fifths is often discussed in the context of the major scale, its principles and applications extend beyond that and can be used with other diatonic scales as well.
- Shows the chords for all 7 degrees: either triads, 7th or 9th chords
- Can be used with each scale which does have all 7 degrees
- Applies the principles of the Circle of Fifths to more than 300 scales beneath the modes of the major scale like Dorian, Lydian or Mixolydian
Use it for your compositions
Using chord progressions based on different diatonic scales has the potential to develop new and exciting music. By exploring different tonalities and modes, you can introduce new harmonic colors, moods, and flavors to your compositions.
When you step outside the familiar territory of the major scale and its traditional chord progressions, you open up opportunities for musical exploration and innovation. Different diatonic scales offer unique intervals, chord qualities, and melodic possibilities that can give your music a fresh and distinct character.
Using alternative diatonic scales can help create a sense of variety, surprise, and originality in your compositions. It can also evoke different emotional responses from listeners, as each scale has its own inherent mood and tonal characteristics.
By venturing beyond the conventional, you can infuse your music with creativity and uniqueness. It allows you to break away from predictable patterns and tap into new musical ideas, ultimately enriching your compositions and offering listeners a refreshing experience.