Sax on the Web Forum Archive / Alto Saxophone / scales

User ID: 0680084
May 14th 8:28 PM
What notes are in a b flat scale
User ID: 0512724
May 15th 12:18 AM
Bb, C, D, Eb, F, G, A
User ID: 9816503
May 15th 4:44 AM
This may be a fairly basic question, but why do I seem to be unable to produce the note F Flat (or E sharp), and I cannot find anybook which explains this or how to finger it? What happens when you really would like that intermediate note?
User ID: 9070813
May 15th 5:18 AM
Because there isn't any note between E and F, as far as half step is involved..

E = F flat
F = E sharp

they're called enharmonic notes..

The same behaviour is also true with B and C..
User ID: 8827223
May 15th 7:34 AM
It's always a great idea to practice scales on a piano now and then. It helps you visualize everything. I have a nice Yamaha keyboard, but I picked up one of those cheap battery powered casio keyboards at a garage sale for $15. Great for practicing scales and chords.
User ID: 0756324
May 15th 8:28 PM
Sharp - means raise a half step
If you find the note "E" on the piano you will see that there is no black note between E and F; thus going up a half step will land you on F or (E#)
Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 16th 7:49 PM

Yup, there is no note between E and F nor between B and C. As has been said here, look at a piano keyboard to visualize it. The natural scale has a 1/2 step between notes 2 and four and between 7 and 8...
Robert Gifford
User ID: 9649143
May 18th 8:23 AM
Are you talking about a Bb scale.... or a Bb concert scale? A Bb concert scale (meaning Bb on Piano) would be a G on Sax... G A B C D E F# G
mostly alto guy
User ID: 8875883
May 19th 4:58 AM
If you're a singer in a choral ensemble, there is a huge difference between an E# and an Fb. There's also a difference in the pitch that is a P4 down from, say C2, and a P5 up from C2. Either way it's a G, but a good a capella singer sounds a differently tuned G. Likewise, our unaccompanied singer does not sound the same pitch for, say, G# and Ab. It all depends on from which direction you're coming and what other pitches are sounding at the same time (in a choral setting).

Your ear knows this, but we're all so used to the even-tempered nature of modern tuning (pianos and other non-player tunable instruments) that we sometimes forget these facts.

Listen to a good a capella choral ensemble and hear the difference compared to most instrumental music--every chord and interval is dead on in tune with itself. This is because the singers are using their ears to match the "unsounded" harmonic series or every sounded pitch, and buiding the chords that way instead of by some measured intervals. It's stikingly beautiful when done right.
Ian O'B. May 21st 2:54 PM
Well... no offense but since this is a saxophone board, and this guy is most likely new to it by his post, I think he was asking if there was a fingering for the note between F and E, or another way to produce it. But that is a good piece of information, mostly alto guy :)

To answer the second question of this thread, F and E are a semitone apart, just like G and G#, F and F#, B and Bb,etc. Fb or E# would be a quartertone from both F and E, and not a normal note written in music. You can do various changes in fingering to produce an intermediate or semi-intermediate note. It would be more difficult for F or E and I am personally not familiar with how to do that. However, the notes between G and C# in the middle and upper registers can be altered a number of ways, mostly by using side keys, various combinations of the F E and D right hand keys, and the pinky keys, in addition to the original note. This is more useful for bringing comparatively untuned notes into pitch on extremely old vintage horns or the like.
MAG May 22nd 5:01 AM
May I add to Ian's note that in my expereince no two saxes respond exactly the same to these alternat, in-between fingerings. With each horn you have to experiment and see what works best--even a different mouthpiece on the same horn produces markedly different results.
User ID: 0512724
May 22nd 11:37 PM

Bb concert is played G on alto and C on tenor. Just for covering the whole thing.
User ID: 1850204
May 26th 8:02 AM
This thread is beyond my comprehension.

..don't mean to discourage questions; but,
in those immortal words of Bugs Bunny:
"What a moroon.";)
[anally retentitively yours, JRC]