The Secret Sauce of Music Theory
The words themselves, Music Theory, often send both non-musicians and music students into speculation about a secret sauce of music knowledge, that if you know it, you’ll be a music master.
Well, sorry to burst the bubble of so many but it’s simply not that. Music Theory is the language we use to write and speak about musical concepts, ideas, and practices as they relate to other musicians, music styles, and even music in history.
Is there science behind it? Sometimes but Science merely explains some of music structures, it doesn’t create the music.
My Explanation of Music Theory
Music theory is the way we identify with the sounds we hear as listeners of music. After you here things, and play passages in music for a while, you start to see a pattern. Patterns in music that happen over and over are given names, which turn into definitions. These definitions define the language of music and can also identify when music was most likely composed. When you notice that the patterns of sound relate to one another, these relationships start developing harmonic languages.
Since we also want musicians to play music in specific ways, the very way we notate music also has to have rules and a language and that language is also Music Theory.
Why Is Music Theory Is So Valuable To Private Music Students
If you’re a student or a parent of a student, and Music Theory presents itself as a mystery, you’ll want to understand the value given the explanation (mentioned above) of Music Theory.
As private music teachers we start with both the notation and the sounds of music as the basis of Music Theory with students. It takes time but gradually we get them to see a pattern and an understanding of what that pattern is. When we are successful in this, instead of a student learning many music notes and rhythms, they are able to see these “many notes and rhythms” as one thing instead of it’s many parts.
Obviously the understanding of a lot of stuff as a single concept helps one learn and express that concept. It makes it easier to not just play a bunch of notes and hope that music sounds like it should. Furthermore, it helps with the understanding pieces of music the music student hasn’t even played since much of music is the same on a harmonic level, no matter how different it sounds.
Want To Know More about Music Theory?
You can take Music Theory lesson. Once you do, you’ll see how much theory you were actually learning in your regular music lesson. Theory should be a part of every good music lesson. At Lessons In Your Home, it is, and along with Performance and Technique is taught in every in-home lesson we give.
If you’re currently taking lessons with us, we offer an “add on” where you can add 15 minutes of straight music theory onto your existing lessons. Just call us up and we’ll help get it scheduled.