The Chromatic Scale

The only scale contains ALL 12 notes in one octave.

PUBLISHED: Feb 1, 2013 • UPDATED: Nov 26, 2018 • LESSON CODE: ML09 • VISITS: 57

music ANY Subjects: beginnerscalestheory

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The Chromatic Scale

The only scale in music with ALL twelve notes of one octave. Not much use for improvisation or solos – but a great scale for learning the notes of the next, figuring out scales, chords and more...

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A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G G#

The Chromatic Scale


Music uses the first seven letters of the alphabet to name the notes and chords used in music. The letters are: A B C D E F G. 
The Chromatic scale is all 12 pitches or notes of music within one octave. An octave is the distance from one letter to next same letter in a scale or chord. A to A’ within the below scale is one octave.


One of the easiest instruments to visualize these seven letters and the notes they correspond to is the piano. The natural notes A B C D E F G A` are the white keys of the piano.

Piano-One-Octave

The Chromatic Scale with Natural Note Names, Sharp, and Flat note name The next key, white or black to the right is higher and sharp. The previous key, white or black to the left is lower and flat.

Piano-One-Octave-Chromatic

The notes/keys with multiple notes names are called Enharmonic Equivalents . Every letter, A B C D E F G can actually have five designations.

Double Flat, Lowers a note two semitones or one whole step.

Flat, Lowers a note one semitone or one step.

Natural, Cancels a previous double flat, flat, sharp or double sharp. Return a note to it's nature note or letter (A B C E F or G).

Sharp, Raises a note one semitones or one step.

Double Sharp Raises a note two semitones or one whole step.

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