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# One Octave Scales

I like to begin students by teaching them *one-octave scales*.

### What is a One-Octave Scale?

A one-octave scale just means a scale spanning the range of one octave. (See octaves.)

For example, a one-octave C major scale is:

C, D, E, F, G, A, B, and C — from one C to the next C an octave above.

### Why Start with Only One-Octave?

Firstly, I like to do this because one-octave scales are easy to play and memorize and are very usable right away. But, I also like to do this because it gives you a good sense of the scale’s structure — the notes in the scale and the intervals used to build it.

One-octave scales also fit in with how I teach scales covering the entire fretboard. The better you know the one-octave scale patterns, the easier learning the scale all over the neck will be.

### Scales Can Be Played Beyond One Octave?

Absolutely. Scales can be played across as many octaves as the range of your instrument allows. Playing two-octave and three-octave scales on bass is common to practice, too.

A two-octave C major scale would be:

C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C, D, E, F, G, A, B, and C — from one C to a C *two octaves* above.

Knowing the one-octave scale well will make learning larger scale patterns easier.

Remember that scales are just a set of notes. If the note "B" is in a particular scale's set of notes, then any note "B" on your bass is in that scale.

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