Mode Construction // Aeolian Mode (6 of 7)

Run time: 3m 32s  |  Release Date: September 28th, 2020

Section 1 - "Introduction To Aeolian Mode"

In the first video of this series we learned how the Ionian mode is simply just another name for the notes of a Major scale. Well in that same respect, the notes of the Aeolian mode are exactly the same as the notes of a natural minor scale. In other words, Aeolian mode is simply another name for the minor scale.

Section 2 - "Derived From The Major Scale"

Just like the natural minor scale, the notes of the Aeolian mode may be constructed from the sixth scale degree of a Major scale.

Here are the notes of a C Major scale. Because the note A is the sixth scale degree, playing all of the notes in the key of C Major from the note A, to the next octave, a note also with the letter name A, would result in an A minor scale, otherwise known as A Aeolian.

Let's also consider the notes of a G Major scale. We can see here that the sixth scale degree of a G Major scale is the note E. Therefore, if we played all of the notes in the key of G Major starting on the sixth scale degree, E, consecutively to the next note E, one octave above we will be playing E Aeolian.

This concept of constructing an Aeolian mode from the sixth scale degree of a Major scale may be applied to any Major scale. For instance, B Aeolian uses the notes of the D Major scale, C-sharp Aeolian uses the notes of the E Major scale, D Aeolian uses the notes of the F Major scale, and so on.

Section 3 - "Unique Pattern of Steps"

Now, as you probably guessed, the pattern of steps which constructs an Aeolian scale is exactly the same as the pattern of steps which constructs a natural minor scale.

Whole step, half step, whole step, whole step, half step, whole step, whole step.

Let's use this pattern of steps to double check the notes of A Aeolian which we had constructed earlier in this video. Starting on the note A and going up one whole step takes us to the note B. A half step above the note B is the note C. A whole step separates the notes C and D. D to E is also a whole step. A half step separates the notes E and F. A whole step above the note F is the note G. And lastly, going up one whole step from the note G takes us to the note A.

By memorizing this pattern of steps you will be able to construct an Aeolian mode above any given note.

Section 4 - "Wrap Up"

In the next and final video in this series on mode identification and construction, we are going to discuss the mode which can be built on the seventh scale degree of a Major scale, the Locrian mode.

Watch Next:

13g - Modes (Locrian).png

The notes of the Locrian mode are very similar to the notes of a natural minor scale. Like the Phrygian mode, the second scale degree of the Locrian mode is flattened by one half step. However, what makes the Locrian mode unique is the fact that it also contains a flattened fifth scale degree. For this reason, the Locrian mode is the only scale discussed in this video series which will produce a diminished triad.

But before we go any further into that, let's first construct an A Locrian scale by comparing it with the notes of an A natural minor scale. Here are the notes of an A minor scale. By flattening the second scale degree, B, as well as the fifth scale degree, E, we will be have constructed the A Locrian mode.

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