Steve Taylor

Steve graduated from Boston's prestigious Berklee College of Music in 1995 with a degree in Songwriting.  In...

C Major Chord / Scale Relationship

This lesson shows the relationship between the C Major Chord and the C Major Scale

All chords and scales are based on patterns of notes - and as you become familiar with these patterns it will improve your ability to improvise and 'mix it up'. The lesson begins with a standard C chord, then shows the arpeggiated form. It continues with the C Major scale and ends with some ideas of how to apply this information.

This is the most common form of the C Major Chord

This display shows the same chord, but with the relative note names. All major chords are made of this three relative notes I, III and V

If you take these same notes and play them as an arpeggio

Here is the C Major Scale. First notice that it contains all the notes of the C Major Arpeggio, but a few others as well.

So if you want to play a Melody over a C Major Chord, you can always pick notes or patterns from the C Major Scale and it will sound consistent.