Learning Music – Materials of Music


in Methods, Music Theory

Music theory is an organized way of combining notes or groups of notes and progressing through rhythm and pitch change to get the desired effect.

Some folks have the natural ability to hear and make these types of organizations; others study music theory and get to know music structure before being able to do the same.

Fundamentals of Music Theory

When studying fundamentals of music, the theory is actually fairly simple but takes some time to pull together in a coherent set of rules to establish the basic abilities to read notes, rhythm, scales, and chords.

These elements together form harmonic systems and that’s where it all gets really exciting.

So what happens when you get these basic rules down?

Introducing Materials of Music

Materials of Music

Materials of Music

Enter Robert Reno’s music skills book the “Materials of Music” to put these concepts to work with a tested and proven material used in the classroom over several years.

You may not know Bob, but he is a contributor here at Music Learning Workshop  (So You Want to Write Music) and we are proud to support his work.

I’m promoting this as an excellent addition to your music study and continuation of where the MLW fundamentals course ends.

Materials of Music is a great music skills book that is designed as university level text book, but organized and explained for any musician with a desire to learn more about how music works.

It  takes the reader from the basics to highly sophisticated lessons including melodic principles, four-part harmonization, and modulation.

Materials of Music – Subjects and Sections

Robert has organized this book into four parts with a total of 37 chapters with exercises, related worksheets and audio.  The parts cover:

1.       Fundamentals of Music

2.       Diatonic harmony

3.       Chromatic Harmony

4.        Appendices

In part 1, Bob starts out by stating: “All music contains, at least to a certain degree, pitch, time, texture, dynamics, timbre, form and style.” And then goes on to explain these raw elements of music to get started and provide a basis for chapters in the rest of the book.

Each topic is explained clearly and concisely, and is accompanied by numerous examples from the standard repertory.

Part 2 is the essence of diatonic harmony covering the subject in a logical building pattern. If you’ve really got the fundamentals down you’re really going to like the chapters on cadences, melodic principles, four part writing, progressions, and melody harmonization. At the end of this section he’s covering seventh chords. Another expansion of understanding these vital structures.

Part 3 delves into the chromatic harmony with chapters on secondary dominants and leading tones, modulation, harmonization, musical form, and more chords structures.

The appendices include a keyboard diagram, blank manuscript paper, accompaniment patterns, transposing instruments, and a comparative style table.

Learn More and Get Materials of Music

For more details or to get it, you can go to: Materials of Music page where I’ve elaborated on more of the books content.

So You Want to Write MusicSo You Want to Write Music

Innesa May 18, 2011 at 8:02 am

Thank you for the information.

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