Simple Scale Finder: Enter musical notes and find matching scales.

Sometimes a little bit of melody strikes me. If it sticks with me, I’ll expand the nugget into a full melody with accompaniment. At those early stages it helps to have an idea of what keys will work with the melody. While any music theory novice can figure out the lists of scales relatively easily, I thought it would be nice to have a tool to do that lookup for me.

I found a few online tools that accomplished the job, but I didn’t find their interfaces inviting. I was also looking for an excuse to learn a front end Javascript framework.

One of my coolest co-workers recommended React as a good framework for my relatively, er, simple use case. She was also kind enough to recommend the Build With React as an easy way to get started with the basic concepts.

She was right on both counts. React proved super easy to use. The “Build With React” tutorial was clear, concise and straight forward. Best of all, the tutorial was setup so that it could be completed entirely in the browser. That saved me from having to invest a lot of up front cost in setting up a build workflow just to see if React would be a good fit for my needs.

A few lunch breaks and a little weekend hacking later and I had Simple Scale Finder.

In the screenshot above you can see that I’ve entered the notes “C”, “E” and “G”. Below the note entry section are listed all of the major and natural minor scales that contain those notes.

It’s not much more than a proof of concept at this point, but I’ll be expanding it over time to support additional scale types, entry methods and scale displays.

Best of all, it’s already helped me with a song I’m writing.