The New Method for Tenor Banjo

Tenor Banjo(plectrum), online tutorial by William C. Stahl

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There are two kinds of scales, one called Diatonic, and the other Chromatic. The Chro­matic, is a scale in which all the tones, intermediate and diatonic, occur in successive order. The intermediate notes in the Chromatic scale were formerly written in colors, hence its name Chromatic. The ascending passage, as will be observed, is written with sharps and double sharps; while in the descending passage flats and naturals are used.
Chromatic Scale
Diatonic Scales are used in the major and minor keys. In the major key take any note for a keynote. The second note of the scale will be found two semitones (generally called a full tone) higher than the first. The third note in the scale will be found two semitones high­er than the second note. The fourth note is one semitone above the third. The fifth note is two semitones above the fourth. The sixth note is two semitones higher than the fifth note. The seventh note is two semitones higher than the sixth; The eighth note (the octave of the first or keynote) will be found one semitone higher than the seventh note.
Examples of the Diatonic Scales
Minor scales are modifications or derivations from tonalities based upon the Model Dia­tonic Scale. There are two forms of the minor scale, the Melodic and Harmonic. In the Melodic Minor Scale, the sixth and seventh degrees are raised a semitone by an accidental in ascend­ing, while in descending, the sixth and seventh degrees are made natural. The harmonic Min­or scale has its seventh degree raised by an accidental, and the seventh degree raised , is played both in ascending and descending.