admin: First posted on 2010 03 23
Scales is a piece of software for your mobile designed to show you various scales on various instruments and the chords that belong to those scales. I built Scales, because every time I get together to play with different people they pick different songs (I am pretty easy going) and then start wondering about what scales those songs are in, how to play various chords, and so on.
Scales is free. It is such a small application.
- You pick your root note and scale (let's say melodic ascending minor scale in A).
- You pick your instrument (right now there are guitars with various tunings, mandolin, bass, and piano). If you picked a fretted instrument, then you can also choose what fret the scale should be displayed around.
- You click on Next and you can see the scale with its various notes on the instrument.
- You click Next again and you can see the various chords that fit on that specific scale and what notes those chords are composed of.
Scales is a mobile application. It would run on any mobile phone that allows Java MIDP 1.1, which is most mobile phones out there now. We have tested it on Nokia 6700 Classic, Nokia N95, Blackberry 8900 Curve, and Sony XPERIA X1 Windows mobile. We are hoping that users will let me know whether this application performs well on other mobiles as well. Hence, we have opened a forum category specifically for Scales.
Scales in only on version 1.0.0 and there are many options for improvement and expansion. Here are some.
- Going backwards: Pick a chord, see what scales it belongs to, and see where those scales are in various instruments.
- Seeing tonics and dominants: The tonic and the dominant on scales are always important, so might as well display those.
- Better fonts: Most smaller phones do not allow scalable fonts and so some of the application writing would look huge. Most larger phones on the other hand, have nice resolution and hence the fonts look really small. This can all be improved.
- More instruments and more scales: The possibilities are limitless. There are, for example, over 30 different alternative tunings for mandolins. Perhaps someone out there is using those.
Download Scales and put it on your mobile phone. Let us know what else you want to see there. Once again, Scales is free and it has already proven very useful for my jam sessions. Hopefully it will prove useful for yours as well.