Originally Posted by Arsis
I still don't get the difference between a mode and a scale.
The terms are pretty interchangable, they arent exactly two seperate things.
A scale is a just a series of notes arranged by pitch going from the root to the octave. So a "mode" is also technically a "scale".
A Mode is just different shapes within a scale, example:
1 octave of G Major = G-A-B-C-D-E-F#-G
1 octave of A Dorian = A-B-C-D-E-F#-G-A
1 octave of B Phrygian = B-C-D-E-F#-G-A-B
The G major will usually be referred to as a scale, but it can also be called the Ionian mode.
When playing in the key of G major, all of the other "modes" in the same key use the same notes, they just start from a different root. Out of context, they all sound the same, but when you play them over a guitar rhythm using the same corresponding notes as the mode you are playing in, they each take on their own unique sound. Carlos Santana's signature sound comes in large part from playing in Dorian, Joe Satriani with Lydian.