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Song References For Interval Training

Justinguitar.com Ear Training

Using Song References is the key to unlock ear training. It makes it very simple and helps people learn faster, which in turn develops confidence which is inspiring and becomes self perpetuating.. Awesome.

The melodic elements of these songs are what you should use to learn the intervals. Some are a bit obscure - sorry but I have tried to pick the most well know tracks I could find but some are pretty rare and don't have many songs with those intervals. The first song listed is the one that I use, but feel free to make up your own - you don't have to use these songs, but they make a good starting point if you can't think of a tune yourself.

It's VERY important that the songs you choose as references for each interval are songs you know very well. If there is a song you don't know so well, listen to it on repeat for a few hours and work it into your ears.

ASCENDING INTERVALS

Name Short Song Reference
Unison U

It's the same note!
One Note Samba (Jazz standard)

Minor 2nd b2

Jaws Theme (dah -dum)
Isn't She Lovely (Steve Wonder) 
Pink Panther Theme Tune

Major 2nd 2

Happy Birthday
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
Silent Night (Xmas song)  
The Major Scale (first 2 notes)

Minor 3rd b3

Greens leaves
Axel F (The annoying frog thing)
First two notes of Smoke On The Water riff (Deep Purple)
Georgia On My Mind (Ray Charles)

Major 3rd 3

Oh When The Saints Go Marching In
Blue Danube
While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night
Kumbaya

Perfect 4th 4

Here Comes The Bride (Wedding March)
Auld Lang Sine
Amazing Grace 
Love Me Tender (Elvis Presley)

Diminished 5th
Triton
Augmented 4th
 
b5

The Simps on's Theme Tune ("the simp-sons")
Maria (from the musical)
 

Perfect 5th 5

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
Star Wars Theme Song
One (Metallica) intro riff
Baa Baa Black Sheep

Minor 6th b6

Black Orpheus (Jazz Standard)
The Entertainer (3rd and 4th notes)
Without Me (Eminem) - chorus riff

Major 6th 6

My Way - And now... the end is near
Hush Little Baby (nursery rhyme, first two notes) 
Angels (Robbie Williams) I sit and wait 
For He's A Jolly Good Fellow

Minor 7th b7

Star Trek Theme Tune
Somewhere (from West Side Story)
 

Major 7th 7

Take On Me (A-Ha)
Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin) Vocal riff goes root, 8ve and then down to the Major 7th.
Some-where Over The Rainbow (first and 3rd melody notes)
Don't Know Why (Nora Jones)

Octave 8ve

Some-where Over The Rainbow
Blue Bossa (Jazz Standard)
Singing In The Rain (Musical)
 

DESCENDING INTERVALS

Name Short Song Reference
Unison U It's the same note!
One Note Samba (Jazz standard)
 
Minor 2nd b2 Fur Elise (Beethoven)
Major Scale (descending)
Joy to the World (Christmas)
Stella By Starlight (Jazz Standard)
 
Major 2nd 2 Yesterday (The Beatles)
Mary Had A Little Lamb
Freddie Freeloader (Miles Davis)
Suicide Is Painless (M.A.S.H. Theme)
 
Minor 3rd b3 Hey Jude
Misty (Jazz Standard)
Frosty The Snowman (Xmas)
This Old Man
 
Major 3rd 3 Summertime (Jazz Standard)
Giant steps (John Coltrane / Jazz Standard)
Shoo Fly, Don’t Bother Me (Childrens song)
 
Perfect 4th 4 Oh Come All Ye Faithful
Born Free (Movie Theme)
 
Diminished 5th
Tritone
Augmented 4th
 
b5 John The Fisherman (Primus) First two notes of the riff
YYZ - Rush (the intro riff)
Black Sabbath (Black Sabbath) 2nd to 3rd note.
Perfect 5th 5 Perfect Cadence (final classical ending)
Flintstone's Theme Song
Superman Theme 
It Don't Mean A Thing (Duke Ellington / Jazz Standard)
 
Minor 6th b6 Love Story (Movie Theme)
Hey Joe (Jimi Hendrix) bass riff at the end
 
Major 6th 6 Crazy (Country Standard)
Body and Soul (Jazz Standard)
Weaver Of Dreams (Jazz Standard)
 
Minor 7th b7 Watermelon Man (Jazz Standard)
Take The A-Train (melody jump in Bar 3)
 
Major 7th 7 I Love You (Cole Porter / Jazz Standard)
 
Octave 8ve Willow Weep For Me (Jazz Standard)
 

 

Lesson ID: ET-002