Mode Construction | Ionian Mode (1 of 7)

Modes can be defined as a group of different scales with their own unique pattern of whole steps and half steps and overall tonal characteristics.

The seven modes which will be discussed in this video series are the Ionian mode, the Dorian mode, the Phrygian mode, the Lydian mode, the Mixolydian mode, the Aeolian mode, and the Locrian mode.

As you might be able to tell, these names were derived from the scales used in the Ancient Greek musical traditions.  Although some of the names have stuck, the construction and overall characteristic of many of the modern modes are in fact different from those of the ancient Greeks. Rather,  the arrangement of the modes which we use today were first developed in the Medieval Period.

Though all seven modes have since survived, the two scales which are now referred to as the Major and minor scales are the only two which have maintained ubiquity.

Ionian Mode

The first mode that we are going to discuss in this video series is the Ionian mode. Ionian is simply another name for the common Major scale.

For instance, the notes of the C Ionian mode are the same as those of the C Major scale.


Likewise, the notes of the G Ionian mode are the same as the G Major scale.