Music Theory

Discussion in 'Free School' started by neodude1212, Jan 18, 2011.

  1. neodude1212

    neodude1212 Senior Member

    I'm thinking of starting a series on music theory, and perhaps even composition.
    Let me know if you are interested and, depending on how many people respond, I'll give it a shot.
     
  2. ILoveMyGuitar

    ILoveMyGuitar Member

    Definitely interested in a music theory class.
     
  3. I would love to learn!
     
  4. natureslaze

    natureslaze Member

  5. knowthetruth

    knowthetruth Guest

  6. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    I would certainly be interested in that!
    ....just checked the date when you started this thread. it was a few months ago. oh well, i'm still interested.
     
  7. Still Trippin

    Still Trippin Member

    that'd be SO sick to get a music theory class going. it's been a very intimidating subject for me to get going on, so i'd be really stoked if there was one in the free school here.
     
  8. boguskyle

    boguskyle kyleboguesque

    please do, i'm in, i'd subscribe.

    i was in band in high school but my band teacher wasnt a teacher at all, he just scared everyone into performing their scales correctly and flawlessly. the only snippets of knowledge of theory was when he would hire someone to come teach each instrumental section.
     
  9. Delfynasa

    Delfynasa Member

    OH YESS YES YES YES!!!PLEASSSSSSSSSSSSSSE!!!
    I would love to learn some music theory!! ER, some more.
    My teacher tried very valiantly to teach me intervals but
    I usually had brain meltdowns...
    oh goody!!
    peace
    Delfynasa
     
  10. bluegryph

    bluegryph Guest

    What she said!
     
  11. neodude1212

    neodude1212 Senior Member

    Alright guys, I'll try to put together a lesson either tonight or tomorrow.

    Since I have no way of gauging everyone's ability, we'll be starting with the very basics.
     
  12. Delfynasa

    Delfynasa Member

    Oh goody, oh goody, oh goody!!!!:drummer: :guitarist:
    peace
    Delfynasa:party:
     
  13. CapandGown

    CapandGown Member

    A good tip for musical composition is to include a lot of long note chords consisting of one note and the note a half step up. This gives a great "dissonant" sound that many people love, whether it's tucked away in the background or what the melody consists of.
     
  14. neodude1212

    neodude1212 Senior Member

    Alright, this will have to do for the first lesson. I'm wasn't sure how long to make it.
    If you have any questions, please ask, as that will give me a chance to personalize it further. Also, if you have any recommendations about the format I've used or whatever, I'm all ears.


    Lesson 1 - Basic Notation

    Music notation or musical notation is any system that represents aurally perceived music, through the use of written symbols - wikipedia


    Think of music as a language. It communicates ideas and emotions. As a language, it can be spoken, and it can also be written. Musical notation is the written form of music. It allows the writer to save and communicate musical ideas and compositions without actually using music, and it allows the reader to understand the ideas and compositions the writer is presenting.

    We'll start with developing a basic understanding of modern Western musical notation. This will allow us to read and write music at the most fundamental level. We will expand upon this knowledge and broaden our ability to read in future lessons.

    Note: For these lessons, I will reference the piano whenever I need to use an instrument for an example, but everything here is applicable for any instrument.

    Now, if music is a language, what is it's alphabet?
    Besides an entire pantheon of symbols (which will be explored more thoroughly in later lessons), the core letters of the musical alphabet are

    A, B, C, D, E, F, G

    As far as music goes, these are the only letters we need to concern ourselves with.

    I don't want to get too in depth with this first lesson, but you should realize that each one of those letters represents a certain note.
    Notes are the building blocks of music. A note, or pitch, is a certain frequency of vibration. When an instrument, the human voice, or practically anything produces a sound, it does so through vibration. Depending on the frequency of that vibration, you will get a different note.


    The Staff and Clefs

    This is a staff -

    [​IMG]

    The staff is the foundation upon which notes are placed.
    The staff is comprised of 5 lines and 4 spaces. Each line or space represents a specific note. In the case of the piano, each line or space represents one of the white keys on the piano.
    Which note is represented by which line or space is determined by the clef

    For our purposes, we will be discussing the two most common clefs, and pretty much the only clefs you will ever see, the treble clef and bass clef.

    The treble clef looks like this.

    [​IMG]

    It is also known as the G clef, because the swirl in the lower half of the clef wraps around the G note.

    On piano, the treble clef is usually played with the right hand.

    The notes that are signified by a treble clef are as follows -

    Lines
    F
    D
    B
    G
    E

    Spaces
    E
    C
    A
    F


    The bass clef looks like this -

    [​IMG]

    It is also known as the F clef because the two dots are positioned on either side of the F note.

    The lines for the bass clef are as follows -

    Lines
    A
    F
    D
    B
    G

    Spaces
    G
    E
    C
    A


    It's good to use acronyms to memorize the notes.
    For treble clef lines, I use Every Good Boy Does Fine.
    For bass clef lines, Good Boys Do Fine Always


    The spaces of the treble clef are easy to remember, because from bottom to top the notes spell FACE.
    A good acronym for the bass clef spaces is All Cows Eat Grass

    This is where I'll stop for lesson 1.
    If you'd like, you could do some exercises to solidify this knowledge in your mind.
    I'd recommend sitting down with a piece of paper, and practice drawing the staff and the clefs. Afterward, use what you've drawn and attempt to fill in the notes for the lines and spaces of each clef.
     
    1 person likes this.
  15. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    nice break down. You simplify it and explain it well.
     
  16. neodude1212

    neodude1212 Senior Member

    Really?
    Thanks that's reassuring.
    I'm worried that I'm not doing a good job of explaining it.
     
  17. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    I already know how to read music so I'm not sure if it would translate well to someone that isn't familiar with it. However, I taught myself from a book on music theory, and I think you explain it much better than the book.
     
  18. Delfynasa

    Delfynasa Member

    I have a dumb question; everything you said makes perfect sense, but
    I once saw a music book in multiple languages and one listed an H note-
    what is up with that?
    Thanks for the mnemonics too!
    peace
    Delfynasa
     
  19. bluegryph

    bluegryph Guest

    Thanks for doing this.

    I already know the very basic stuff too, but yeah I think you explained it well.
     
  20. neodude1212

    neodude1212 Senior Member

    It just has to do with music being written in other languages.

    From wikipedia -

    In Germany, Russia, Poland, Finland and Scandinavia, the label B is used for what, above, is called B-flat, and the note a semitone below C is called H. This makes possible certain spellings which are otherwise impossible, such as the BACH motif.

    In English there is no note that is named "H".

    And seriously, there are no dumb questions.
     

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