The B major Scale: The Complete Guide

By Jade Bultitude
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The B Major scale contains 7 notes: B, C#, D#, E, F#, G#, A#

B major Scale, Treble Clef, note names
B Major Scale

You might see the scale written as starting and ending on a B and this can give the scale a ‘complete’ sound. The scale can also be repeating at higher or lower octaves and technically goes on forever. 

B Major is a diatonic scale, which means that it is in a key, in this case the key of B!

How Is The B Major Scale Created?

All Major scales follow a specific pattern of tones and semitones (steps and half steps). The tone pattern is:

Tone, Tone, Semi-tone, Tone, Tone, Tone, Semi-tone

If we take the start at a C and follow the pattern we will get the C Major Scale. To create the B Major scale, follow the tone/semitone pattern starting on the note B. 

 Whichever note you start on, you will always achieve the major scale starting on this note. 

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B Major Scale On The Piano

As you can see, if we were to play this scale on the piano diagram we make use of five black keys.  

To play this scale on the piano (with the right hand) use the fingering written below. 

B Major Scale On The Guitar

To play B Major on the guitar use the tab below. 

Degrees Of The Scale: B Flat Major  

Each note in the B Major scale has a position that we call the degree of the scale. The first note of the scale is called the ‘tonic’ note. 

All the degree of the scale have specific names as shown below.

  • 1st – Tonic
  • 2nd – Supertonic
  • 3rd – Mediant
  • 4th – Subdominant
  • 5th – Dominant
  • 6th – Submediant
  • 7th Leading Note

Key Signature For B Major

Rather than writing the sharp signs on the individual notes, we can now make use of the key signature. Because every single F, C, G, D and A in the B major scale major are sharp, we can simply write this at the start of the piece!

B Major Key Signature

And here it is with the full scale. 

Learn more about key signatures with our complete guide.

B Major Scale In Different Clefs

Treble Clef 

Below is the B Major Scale written out in the treble clef, both ascending and descending. 

B Major Scale – Treble Clef

Bass Clef

Below is the B Major Scale written out in the bass clef, both ascending and descending. 

B Major Scale – Bass Clef 

Alto Clef

Below is the B Major Scale written out in the alto clef, both ascending and descending. 

B Major Scale – Alto Clef

Tenor Clef

Below is the B Major Scale written out in the tenor clef, both ascending and descending. 

B Major Scale – Tenor Clef

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ToneGym allows you to improve your ear with a range of games, interactive and competitions.

Or check out our complete review of ToneGym.

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What Is The Relative Minor Of The B Major Scale?

As you can see from the circle of fifths below, G sharp minor is the relative minor scale or B Major. This means that G sharp minor has the same 5 sharps as B major, but it start and ends on a G sharp. 

Circle of Fifths showing B Major and G Sharp Minor

Learn more about Minor Scales with our complete guide. 

What Are The Chords In The B Major Scale?

There are chords start on each note of the D Flat Scale. See our dedicated post on the D flat Major Chords.

Songs in B Major

Bruno Mars – The Lazy Song

Lady Gaga – Poker Face

Michael Jackson – Thriller

 What Do We Mean When We Say A Piece Is ‘In The Key Of B Major’?

 If we say that a piece of music is in the key of B major, this means a few things:

  • The key signature will have five sharps, these being the following notes F sharp, C sharp, G sharp, D sharp and A sharp.
  • The tonic (or root note) of the piece will be B natural. This note will sound the most stable in the whole piece.
  • The piece will mostly use notes from this scale, these could be in any octave.
  • The chords used will be those chords that are in B major. 

What’s Next

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AUTHOR
Jade is an experienced musician and teacher as well as being the founder of Music Theory Foundations. She has been helping people learn music theory for more than 10 years from pre school children all the way to degree level studies.