Friday, July 16, 2010

How to memorize key signatures easily using mnemonics?

This guide is teaching you on how to memorize key signatures very easily using mnemonics. Mnemonics are memory aid and should help you to memorize items faster and even in a longer period of time.

There are two common key signatures used in music, these are:

a. Sharp major key signatures with their corresponding sharp minor key signatures
b. Flat major key signatures with its equivalent flat minor keys also.

All in all, there are 2 major key signatures (# and b) and 2 equivalent minors.

If you are a songwriter, musician and a singer, then memorizing these sorts of things can be definitely helpful in your music career.

So if you asked me, what are the things that need to be memorized? You need at least to memorize the following:

Check item 1. The complete names of the # (sharp) major key signatures.
Check item 2. The complete names of the b (flat) major key signatures.
Check item 3. The equivalent list of # (sharp) minor key signatures.
Check item 4. The equivalent list of b (flat) minor key signatures.
Check item 5. The notes affected of the # (sharp) key signatures (major and minor)
Check item 6. The notes affected of the b (flat) key signatures (major and minor also).
Check item 7. The triads of the both major # and minor key signatures
Check item 8. The triads of both major b and minor key signatures.

All in all there are 8 check items to be memorized! If you are music major, you should memorize all of these within the first year of college.

Let’s discuss these items one by one, so as not to drown you with too much information in a limited amount of time. I highly recommend self-evaluating yourself using the 8 above checklist above and compare your answers in this blog to see if you made some progress.

If you are ready lets get started:

Check Item 1 &2: The complete names of the # (sharp) major key signatures and b (flat) major key signatures.

This is already been discussed here:, kindly look at Step 2 on that post.

Check Item 3 & 4: The complete names of the # (sharp) minor key signatures and b (flat) minor key signatures.

This is also discussed in the music theory for singers. You can read that in Step 3 of that post.

The complete screenshot guide are shown below:

The rest of the check items will be discussed in the future tutorials.