How are you coming along with your major and minor power scales? Acquiring fluency in all keys? Able to move through the cycle without hesitation?

Then it’s time for the next type of power scale. The Phyrgian power scale has only one note different from the minor scale – the lowered second step. It is thus:

1 b2 b3 4 5

As before, learn this new PS in all keys. Start with the most comfortable register (we’ll expand in both directions later). Be able to play in through the cycle fluently.

Remember the cycle?

C F Bb Eb Ab Db F# B E A D G

Don’t feel you have to go through the whole cycle when you’re working on something new. Pick one a day. Then two. Three. Four. Different sets each day until all are familiar. Then is the time to start running the whole cycle.

One other thing: if you focus on one key for a while to acquire familiarity, it’s a good idea to add variants – it makes it more interesting, keeps you alert, and develops flexibility. This just means changing things now and then. Examples of things you could change:



Notes per pitch

Note value


Scale length (practice all available lengths: 1 2, 1 2 3, 1 2 3 4, 1 2 3 4 5)


Add rests

Start before or after the beat

Jumble (play the notes in any order)

Mix or alternate leaps and steps

Play as a duet with a partner

As soon as you can do vanilla, start adding sprinkles, whipped cream, nuts, chocolate sauce, etc. so to speak.