C Honchoshi plagal form Scale on the Piano - Improvisation and Composition

Notes: C, Db, Eb, F, Gb, and Bb - Key: C - Origin: Japanese - Category: Heptatonic Scales

The C Honchoshi plagal form uses seven notes per octave. Because of this same reason it is a member of the so called Heptatonic -scales that have Seven-note (or Seven-tone). On the piano keyboard, it is made up of four black keys: Db, Eb, Gb, and Bb and two white keys: C, and F. This combination makes this scale - as well as the C Akebono I, C Akebono II, and C Banshikicho - as great choices for composing or improvising Japanese music.

If we take a look a the key signature of the C Honchoshi plagal form Scale we can find it has four flats and no sharps. Therefore, on sheet music you will find four accidentals on the score. The notes of this scale are: C, Db, Eb, F, Gb, and Bb.

How to play the C Honchoshi plagal form scale?

  1. 1
    To play the C Honchoshi plagal form on your piano, start on the Root note. Play C, the first note of the scale.
  2. 2
    Continue with rest of the notes that shape the scale, play Db, Eb, F, Gb, and Bb.
  3. 3
    Return to the home of the C Honchoshi plagal form scale. Play again C -the tonic of the scale- to mark its ending.

How to play the scale in descending fashion?

  1. 1
    Begin on the last note. Play the C, the last (and first) note of the scale.
  2. 2
    Go down. Play Bb, Gb, F, Eb, and Db.
  3. 3
    Reach the home again. Establish tonality by playing the tonic of the C Honchoshi plagal form scale: C.
  4. 4
    Tip. If you want to learn how to improvise or compose your own music using the C Honchoshi plagal form scale or any other scale, check out our piano improvisation and composition lessons and enjoy thousands of interactive multimedia piano animations.
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