Choosing a RAV Vast Scale: Part 2

In this part, we'll continue exploring the RAV Vast scale range and try and advise you on getting a scale that you'll love.
If you haven't already, read part I first! The final chapter of our grand tour of RAV Vast scales concludes here…
First, a couple notes (skip this if you read Part 1):

RAV scales are available in Vast and Vast2 models. A Vast is slightly more percussive, closer to the tone of a handpan; a Vast 2 is generally slightly louder with longer sustain. Neither is better or more "advanced", just a little different;

The lowest note of each scale is called a Ding. A little bigger, a little richer than all of the other notes, it's located in the center of your drum and designated in parentheses in the specifications below. For example, in the B Pygmy scale, B2 is the Ding: (B2) E3 F#3 G3 B3 D4 E4 F#4 A4;

If you are not a musician, don't worry about the specifications. Just follow your intuition! Scales that pair well with guitar are designated by a letter (G);

For the musically savvy, note the enharmonic chord spellings. For example, F# major and Gb major are the same chord, which name you use depends on whether you are playing in a sharp or flat key;

Some scales that are described here are officially discontinued. However, we still make them in small batches, and if you really want one, you can write us in the chat.

So, without further ado, let's continue exploring the RAV Vast scale range!
The Diaspora: Celtic Scales
Dirty, unshaven, the crew, these young and old, tired and hungry, turn to watch. The captain winks at you as the men stop murmuring. A spell has been cast. The sailors gather around as the first mate pulls out the worn and faded map. A new course has been set. Two days later, at daybreak, comes the joyous shout: "Land, ahoy!"

Spirits are high, and before long the men are singing traditional Celtic folk melodies. As you eat and getting rest, you make out a familiar shape. Could it be? Yes, it's Pasha Aeon, a huge RAV Vast enthusiast! And he's got his favorite Celtic RAVs here, of course…

RAV Vast2 B Celtic Minor (G)
(B2) F#3 A3 B3 C#4 D4 E4 F#4 A4

Chords: B minor, F# minor, A major, D major

RAV Vast2 B Celtic Minor Double Ding (G)
(B2) (A2) F#3 A3 B3 C#4 D4 E4 F#4 A4

Chords: B minor, F# minor, A major, D major

RAV Vast2 D Celtic Minor (G)
(D3) A3 C4 D4 E4 F4 G4 A4 C5

Chords: D minor, A minor, C major, F major

Tip: don't be followed by the "minor" name – these scales are balanced, bright, and versatile! They are among the most popular and easy to play scales. The Double Ding scale is the B Celtic Minor, with an added low A Ding, that adds depth and sustain. With its pure sound and high C, the D Celtic Minor is the Tinkerbell of the RAV family.

The Dream: Golden Scales
After Africa, Arabia, and America… It's time to discover the new world! Following in the footsteps of the Native Americans, whose Asian ancestors traveled to North America, you take a boat across the Pacific Ocean.

The sea is stormy, and you almost lose your way. Food is running low, and so is morale. One especially dark night, you fall asleep on an empty stomach in the only dry spot on board, the cargo hold. In a dream, you are walking down a long tunnel alone. You hear voices – crying, laughter, the sound of music and machines and the low wind bursting through the grass. Suddenly you are shrouded in golden light. You see your childhood again: bike scraping the pavement, bare feet in the rain, the night you hid from the thunder under a cardboard box. You hear the familiar, haunting sound of a RAV, illuminated in unfamiliar and unforgettable scales…

RAV Vast C Golden Gate (G) (discontinued, order through the website chat)

(C3) E3 G3 B3 C4 D4 F#4 G4 B4

Chords: C major, E minor, G major, B minor.

Tip: A friendly and sunny scale built on a C major seventh chord, lending it a transcendent quality.

RAV Vast2 B Golden Arcadia (discontinued, order through the website chat)

(B2) D#3 F#3 A#3 B3 C#4 F4 F#4 G#4
Chords: B major, D#/Eb minor, F#/Gb major, A#/Bb major, C#/Db major, A#/Bb minor, G#/Ab minor

Tip: a humorous and idiosyncratic scale, replete with chords not found in any other RAVs. Playing with other instruments may be challenging, but you'll be rewarded with a wealth of musical colors and harmonic possibilities. Guitar players, get out your capos!
Western Scales
At long last… You've arrived to New York!

On a whim, you do a Google search: "RAV Vast near me." Low and behold, there's actually a store in Brooklyn selling RAVs! You must be in heaven! When you finally find the place, a young man with long hair opens the glass door and welcomes you in. You list all the scales you have played, he seems impressed, but at a loss for what to show you.

"Oh – I know! You haven't played any Major scales yet, have you?"

RAV Vast D Major (G)

(D3) G3 A3 B3 C#4 D4 E4 F#4 A4

Chords: D major, G major, A major, B minor, E minor, F# minor

Tip: this friendly, approachable scale is a great choice for beginners, but also boasts a large variety of chords to satisfy the needs of more advanced musicians.

Universal Scales
After a pleasant time at the store, you leave Brooklyn with D major tucked under your arm. Another one in your collection! You spend the rest of the day enjoying your new RAVs at Brighton Beach. Sadly, though, all good things come to an end and it's time to get on the plane and head back home.

Just as the flight attendant is preparing to demonstrate the safety equipment, a tall man dressed in a black sweater and jeans rushes on board with a crumpled ticket. There's only one seat left, next to you, and it's his. He takes off a large round case off his back and stuffs it in the overhead bin, then smiles, making polite eye contact as he sits down. You smile back – that couldn't be a RAV in his case, could it? It almost seems like exactly the right size…

You decide to introduce yourself. He gives you his name: "Andrey."

"Andrey…" You say. His voice seems familiar, as if you've heard it before… "I'm sure I have the wrong person, but would you happen to be Andrey Remyannikov?" You ask.

His face lights up with a grin.

What a treat – you're sitting next to the inventor of the RAV Vast himself! You recount your incredible journey across the world, one RAV at a time. He doesn't say much, but you can see pride, joy, and fraternity in his face. Finally, when you run out of breath and stories, he clears his throat.

"You have quite a tale. You are missing one thing, only…the RAV Universal Scale."

RAV Vast2 B RUS (G)

(B2) D3 F#3 A3 C#4 D4 E4 F#4 A4

Chords: B minor, D major, F# minor, A major

Tip: this universal scale has a balanced character and is suitable for a wide range of music and purposes.
As your plane lands, and you arrive home, you realize that although your Scale Safari has ended, your journey is just beginning.

The article is written by David Duan, all rights reserved, copyright 2018.
David Duan
Composer, cellist, and sound healer
A Dean's Recognition Award recipient and multiple concerto competition winner, he has performed around the world with a variety of ensembles and orchestras. A graduate of New York University and the Peabody Preparatory of the Johns Hopkins University, he lives in Maryland.

Please contact david.duan@nyu.edu for information, gigs, commissions, collaboration, and more.

Instagram: davidduan
Suggested articles: