As music has the power to shift the landscape of one’s emotions, I have categorised the different musical scales into ‘atmospheres’; the ambience and feeling that the instrument could have on the player and listener. Enjoy!
I call this the storyteller’s handpan. Based on a classical raga from Indian music, this scale will uplift you into adventure. Offering this scale in C#.
C# Raga Desh – C#/ Ab B C# D F F# Ab B
Named after the people of Africa, this is the pentatonic version of the Dorian mode. As a low scale this is mysterious; another storyteller. As a high scale it is sweet and hopeful.
C # Low Pygmy: C#/ F# G# A C# E F# G# A C#
(E/A) Pygmy: E/ A B C E G A B C
(F/G) Low Pygmy: F/ G G# C D# F G G# C
Well known in Western music, this pure major mode is inspired by the the Greek mode. The half step between the 6th and 7th mode creates an interesting tension in this ethereal scale. Imagine floating downsteam on a summer’s day; it is so sweet and great for beginners.
Aegean – C/ E G B C E F# G B C E
Voyager – D/ F A C D E F A C
Equinox – F/ Ab C Db Eb F G Ab C
This popular scale is used in Flamenco music, modern classical. This diatonic scale is incredibly intuitive to play, hence it being one of the most popular sound models for handpans. It is idyllic in nature, and creates an open landscape of atmosphere for the player. Great for beginners as well.
(C#/G#) Phrygian (a.k.a. C# Annaziska/ Kurd): C#/ G# A B C# D# E F# G#
Kurd/ Integral – D/ A Bb C D E F A C D
The Joyful One
Another versatile scale, it is very popular in Afro cuban music and western pop. The 7th augmented shift gives a feeling of melancholia to this major scale, making it all the more beautiful to play. Currently one of my personal favourites. Its uplifting nature makes it a great instrument for families and to play with children.
E/A Mixolydian : E/ A B C# D E F# G A
One of the happiest scales, it is a real joy to play. – C#/ G# C C# D# F F# G# C#
Named after a genus of flowering plants in South Africa, South America, and Mexico, this sweet major scale will captivate and uplift your heart! This is a great instrument to play in classical ensembles.
F Oxalis – F/ A Bb C D F A Bb C
F# Oxalis – F#/ Bb B C# Eb F# Bb B C#
G Oxalis– G/ B C D E G B C
I am also offering this an extended scale with more notes.
G Oxalis extended – E/ G/ B C D E G B C D E G
The Reflective One
Also known as the Chandra scale, this is the classical minor scale that has been the foundation for a myriad of pop, rock, jazz and classical music. It draws the player and listener inwards with its poignant voice.
A/D Aeolian: A / D E F G A Bb C D
C# Aeolian : C# F# G# A B C# D E F#
The Spicy One
One of my most popular scales thus far, this Arabic mode is spicy and seductive. Its dissonance commands a magnetic pull for the player and listener. I would also like to offer this as an extended scale for players who want more range on this enticing scale.
C/G Hijaz – C/ G Ab B C D Eb F G
D Hijaz – D/ A C D Eb F# G A C D
F#/ B C# D F F# G# A B C# D F F#