Whole-Tone Chords

Chords created from a Whole-Tone Scale bear an unmistakable sound.

Because of the symmetrical nature of the Whole-Tone Scale (created entirely from whole steps), Dominant 7 #5 chords are often associated with this scale.

Adopting this sound to your vocabulary may be tricky at first. Apply this ear training exercise into your daily practice routine and you will start to hear unique melodies to express yourself with.

Hear Whole-Tone Chords

  1. Play a C Whole-Tone Scale: C, D, E, F#, G#, Bb
  2. Play every other note as a chord: C, E, G# (an augmented triad is created).
  3. Include the 7th (Bb) and play these notes as a chord: C, E, G#, Bb (a C Dominant 7 #5 chord is created).
  4. Sing these notes: C, E, G#, Bb.
  5. Play the C Dominant 7 #5 chord.
  6. Sing the C Whole-Tone Scale.
  7. Sing a random 3-note phrases using only the notes in the C Whole-Tone Scale.
  8. Play the C Dominant 7 #5 chord.
  9. Sing a random 4-note phrases using only the notes in the C Whole-Tone Scale.
  10. Play the C Dominant 7 #5 chord.
  11. Sing a random 5-note phrases using only the notes in the C Whole-Tone Scale.

Take only a few minutes a day to involve yourself into the sound of a Whole-Tone Scale. You will find that it only takes a few days to get this sound into your ear!