Fundamentals of
SCALES AND KEY SIGNATURES

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8. Deriving Major Key Names from Key Signatures.

a. Sharp keys. The name of the sharp major key is the same as the letter name of the scale degree above the last sharp in the key signature (Figure 2-16).


Figure 2-16: Determining Sharp Key Names.

b. Flat keys. The name of the flat major key is the same as the letter name of the scale degree five steps above the last flat in the key signature (Figure 2-17).


Figure 2-17: Determining Flat Key Names.

c. When there are two or more flats in the key signature, the key name is the name of the next to the last flat (Figure 2-18).


Figure 2-18: Determining Flat Key Names.

d. If the key signature has no flats or sharps, the key signature name is C Major.


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Last Updated: March 31, 2012