Simple music theory for uke players

Ukulele Scales – Note Pattern Charts (PDF)

Ukulele scales are a byproduct of a musical “key.” A key is a family of notes that sound nice together and many scales can be derived from these notes.

Since the fretboard of an ukulele is a crazy matrix, it’s very useful to have scale charts available for reference as you study.

Free PDF Scales Collection

The best resource I can offer you here is this huge collection of over 150 pages of ukulele scale reference diagrams and charts in PDF. This free bundle of files includes 14 scale types and a guide on implementing them.

page from ukulele scales collection showing c major scale

Each page looks like this and contains two different chart variations: notes and scale degrees.

This image is web optimized to save space, but the images in the PDFs are full 300dpi so you can blow them up to monster sizes without losing quality.

This collection contains a whole book’s worth of charts and instruction and is a detailed and expansive guide to the notes on the fretboard. And it’s available to you for free.

Once you save and extract the .zip file (just double click on most computers), you’ll have 15 PDF files of uke scales:

  • Read Me – How to Learn Scales
  • Major (Ionian Mode)
  • Minor (Aeolian Mode)
  • Major Pentatonic
  • Minor Pentatonic
  • Blues
  • Dorian Mode
  • Phrygian Mode
  • Lydian Mode
  • Mixolydian Mode
  • Locrian Mode
  • Harmonic Minor
  • Melodic Minor
  • Diminished (Whole-Half)
  • Whole Tone

Get the PDFs now

Tabs of Ukulele Scales:

Basic Major Scales

Root position open scales with fingering diagrams.

Chromatic Scale

All 12 Western notes in scale form shown with alternate fingerings. Can used be used as a “sheet music to tab converter.”

C Major Scale Variations

How to play the basic C scale normally, in 3rds, harmonized, and more. Great for deepening your knowledge of the scale.

The first two measures of each staff shows the scale in it’s lowest position starting from the root and the last two measures are an octave higher. If you play an ukulele with a high-g then the low ukulele scales might sound off, but the note locations are the same – just in different octaves. The “spelling” is to the right of the link and based off of the root major scale.

UkeBuddy is a great tool for finding other scales. It’s a bit hard to look at for my eyes, but the information is all there, provided you have an internet connection.

How to Learn and Memorize Scales

Tips, exercises, and examples for how to internalize scale patterns on the uke.

I feel that one of the best way to learn scales is by sequencing them. This is a concept I explore in depth in my course on picking and left hand fretting technique:

Level: beginner II to advanced | 50 videos

In these video lessons, you’ll learn hand positioning, fretting styles, navigational approaches, and songs.

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How to Play Basic Major & Minor Ukulele Scales

C Major


G Major

G A B C D E F# G

F Major

F G A Bb C D E F

A Minor


E Minor

E F# G A B C D E

D Minor

D E F G A Bb C D

A Major

A B C# D E F# G# A

All About Modes:

Modes Explained
Confused about what the modes are? Me too. This page demystifies the theory behind them.