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The Scottish Whistle




Scale Patterns


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Whistle Tutorial - Lesson 4.4


Scales and Scale Patterns


I've already told you how important I think scales are to learning your way around your instrument. However, I'm also aware that it can seem a little boring when you're itching to learn new tunes. Scales don't have to be just running up and down the scale, however. Start off with the straight scale in D (Ex.2), then go up the scale playing each note four times (Ex.3):

Exercise 2
Exercise 3

Exercises like these are valuable, especially for the learner, because once a scale is learned, you can concentrate on your techniques. After a while, however, they do get rather uninteresting.

If we were to analyse the notes in Ex. 3, we'd see groups of four notes together, each note of the scale being sounded four times, then the next four and so on. We could actually still climb the scale but in a more musical way. What about if we kept the first and fourth note of each group of four?

In Ex.4a we're still going up the G scale, but instead of hitting each note four times, we're playing the first note of the scale, going up one note, then another, and then going back the to the first note. We have created a consistant scale pattern, and the pattern moves up the scale and makes doing scales a little more palatable.

If you're feeling brave, try the same pattern descending the scale (Ex.4b).

Exercise 4


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