Music Theory

For musicians and wannabe musicians. Talk about your own band and experiences with playing music and feel free to share your music with us!

Moderators: sadie, Y2K-kyle, evee103, boxcar, j-bug, incessantmace, Curmudgeon, KristinNirvana

Mr.BananaYeah
Grunge prophet
Posts: 2075
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2010 2:22 am

Music Theory

Post by Mr.BananaYeah »

While it may consist of nonsensical illogical shit, theory can in fact be fairly beneficial so yeah I suppose theory inquiries/general theory thread?
[quote="Thurston_Whore"]Hey,Welcome to the forum just thought i'd give you my site adress and mabye suprise the wife for her birthday this year?
http://www.sextoys.co.uk/cat_Dildos.asp?dept=0?dealer=2035[/quote]
KingOfTheHorseflies
Grunge guru
Posts: 230
Joined: Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:13 am
Location: Upstate NY
Contact:

Re: Music Theory

Post by KingOfTheHorseflies »

Of course it can be beneficial. :wink: And I know quite a bit of it considering I haven't had any formal education of it.
"King of the horseflies, dark prince of death..." Where Boys Fear to Tread
MCIS 8-bit
PunkingtonGrunge
Grunge God
Posts: 2833
Joined: Fri May 10, 2013 12:04 pm
Location: Anywhere but here.

Re: Music Theory

Post by PunkingtonGrunge »

Personally I think it's bullshit like music theory that makes me hate playing music. I think music is about the feeling of it that should be left to you, each person with their own individual take on a song or piece of music. It shouldn't be explained to you precisely on a piece of paper. On the other hand, if you're into ''exactly how it sounded the first time it was played by the composer'' then it's perfect. Obviously people have differing opinions, but I just can't stand the whole pretentious act of ''I'm grade 8 piano, guitar and clarinet, I'm a real musician :geek: ''... All things considered, as irritating music theory can be, it's incredibly useful and it's something that won't ever not be useful if you can wrap your head around it :lol:
Now I think it's alright, to feel inhuman...
Comin' at ya quiet and underwhelming from the unremarkable soundscapes of Farmer Jan!!!11!1!1one!!1
https://soundcloud.com/blueblueblur
SKUNCHBAG
Grunge God
Posts: 5388
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:13 pm
Location: in the court of the Crimson King

Re: Music Theory

Post by SKUNCHBAG »

Feeling can be expressed through music, that doesn't mean that feeling makes up music. Music is made up by math; Measuring sounds, that's what theory is all about. And that's what studying music should be all about if you plan on hitting the "right" notes at the "right" time.

Of course, there's no "right" and "wrong" in art, and that puts theory in conflict with practice (As always). However, when you want sound A to be related to sound B, you need to use logic. There has to be a bridge; A relation through time, considering both rhythmics and harmonics. Being off-tempo and/or off-key is like a storyteller losing the flow of the story: Not cool. Of course, you don't need to know any theory to do music, because it can be learned by ear. But then you'd only be repeating what you once heard somewhere, and that's not cool either. I think that just like it is important in a social situation to (try to) understand what is being said, it is important in music to (try to) understand what is being played. Theory just makes that process a bit easier, but does not grant anything other than a slight point of referece -- Just like language.
sky above, voice within
PunkingtonGrunge
Grunge God
Posts: 2833
Joined: Fri May 10, 2013 12:04 pm
Location: Anywhere but here.

Re: Music Theory

Post by PunkingtonGrunge »

SKUNCHBAG wrote:Being off-tempo and/or off-key is like a storyteller losing the flow of the story: Not cool. Of course, you don't need to know any theory to do music, because it can be learned by ear. But then you'd only be repeating what you once heard somewhere, and that's not cool either. I think that just like it is important in a social situation to (try to) understand what is being said, it is important in music to (try to) understand what is being played. Theory just makes that process a bit easier, but does not grant anything other than a slight point of referece -- Just like language.
Isn't being uncool part of certain music/art styles?
Now I think it's alright, to feel inhuman...
Comin' at ya quiet and underwhelming from the unremarkable soundscapes of Farmer Jan!!!11!1!1one!!1
https://soundcloud.com/blueblueblur
SKUNCHBAG
Grunge God
Posts: 5388
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:13 pm
Location: in the court of the Crimson King

Re: Music Theory

Post by SKUNCHBAG »

"Better be dead than cool" was said by someone who at the time was the coolest person in the planet, so go figure. Easy for rockstars to talk shit about formulas for success and self-superation.
sky above, voice within
Zodiac_n_Black
Grunge prophet
Posts: 2018
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 1:15 am

Re: Music Theory

Post by Zodiac_n_Black »

I agree with Dante, theory and practice (and by practice I mean doing music, not practicing scales) should go hand in hand. Music theory in some sense is all retrospective, it's about trying to understand what it is that we just heard that we liked. If the sound didn't bring about any kind of enjoyment/evoke any emotion/have artistic merit then there would have been no interest from that listener to try and understand what they had just heard in the first place. So theory and expression aren't separate from one another.

In the same way having a perfect grasp of spelling and grammar and a broad vocabulary doesn't mean you will be able to write a story that will be engaging and go on to be a bestseller, achieving grade 8 on the piano doesn't mean you will be able to write hit songs. However being illiterate would be a massive obstacle for a gifted story teller if they wished to communicate their ideas and stories.

I also think structure in learning can help you progress faster, if you have clear learning goals it focuses your efforts and helps you evaluate your progress. It is also fantastic for discovery, the amount of riffs I have come up with when learning a new scale or arpeggio is huge, and they weren't necessarily IN that scale they just moved my mind in a new direction and got me thinking in a new way.
Debut album out now, listen to the whole thing on Soundcloud here ...

Image

Add us on Facebook and watch our video for Bad Pills here.
KingOfTheHorseflies
Grunge guru
Posts: 230
Joined: Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:13 am
Location: Upstate NY
Contact:

Re: Music Theory

Post by KingOfTheHorseflies »

For the past few weeks I've had to listen to my brother screw around on this "Ableton studio" or whatever. Honestly I'd rather listen to 3 charting electronic songs than 3 measures of his bullshit. But rather than the 3 charting songs, I'd rather listen to someone mess around on an acoustic guitar.
If you know how to play the guitar, then you don't really have to know all that theory crap to get a nice sound. But if you think electronic music is bad, try listening to a kid with no clue about music putting together different samples and fabricating beats on computer software. It's mind-numbing.
So, what am I trying to say here? :| I'm not so sure. But as much as you say theory and practice conflict each other, I think they go hand in hand. Sure you can come up with a great riff without formal education. But to know how you got that sound, where you can go with it, what to add to it, and what's going to compliment it the best? I think music theory would be a great friend to have in that circumstance. Yet at the same time, it might narrow your view. It could turn what used to be very unique and out-of-the-box improv into routine and already explored playing styles.

I guess the moral of this story is use theory to help you, but don't let it hold you back. And don't let your technical ability hold you back either. So there are two sides of the battle, and most people can fight one side, but maybe not the other.
"King of the horseflies, dark prince of death..." Where Boys Fear to Tread
MCIS 8-bit
SKUNCHBAG
Grunge God
Posts: 5388
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:13 pm
Location: in the court of the Crimson King

Re: Music Theory

Post by SKUNCHBAG »

KingOfTheHorseflies wrote:charting electronic songs
feck off.

sky above, voice within
boxcar
Site Admin
Posts: 4358
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2005 12:00 pm
Location: Iowa City
Contact:

Re: Music Theory

Post by boxcar »

Sometimes its best to know the rules simply because they can be fun to break. ;)
__________________________
You should check out Milk Duct Tape, the new grunge rock band on the scene:
"LIKE" on Facebook. Listen to new music here: MDT on Bandcamp
Mr.BananaYeah
Grunge prophet
Posts: 2075
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2010 2:22 am

Re: Music Theory

Post by Mr.BananaYeah »

I really don't buy into the theory not being about real music, it makes composition much easier, even just basic things like knowing keys and which chords go together, e.g. the chords used in 'like a rolling stone' are more or less entirely theory based
[quote="Thurston_Whore"]Hey,Welcome to the forum just thought i'd give you my site adress and mabye suprise the wife for her birthday this year?
http://www.sextoys.co.uk/cat_Dildos.asp?dept=0?dealer=2035[/quote]
KingOfTheHorseflies
Grunge guru
Posts: 230
Joined: Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:13 am
Location: Upstate NY
Contact:

Re: Music Theory

Post by KingOfTheHorseflies »

I guess I meant to say "modern charting electronic songs" because that isn't nearly as bad as shitstep or whatever they're calling it. Well I don't know how much dubstep actually charts, but you get the point. Now let's not get off-topic. :fake:
"King of the horseflies, dark prince of death..." Where Boys Fear to Tread
MCIS 8-bit
Mr.BananaYeah
Grunge prophet
Posts: 2075
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2010 2:22 am

Re: Music Theory

Post by Mr.BananaYeah »

Quite like a bit of dubstep actually :lol:
[quote="Thurston_Whore"]Hey,Welcome to the forum just thought i'd give you my site adress and mabye suprise the wife for her birthday this year?
http://www.sextoys.co.uk/cat_Dildos.asp?dept=0?dealer=2035[/quote]
PunkingtonGrunge
Grunge God
Posts: 2833
Joined: Fri May 10, 2013 12:04 pm
Location: Anywhere but here.

Re: Music Theory

Post by PunkingtonGrunge »

KingOfTheHorseflies wrote:Now let's not get off-topic. :fake:
It's not that easy on this forum :lol:
Now I think it's alright, to feel inhuman...
Comin' at ya quiet and underwhelming from the unremarkable soundscapes of Farmer Jan!!!11!1!1one!!1
https://soundcloud.com/blueblueblur
admin
Site Admin
Posts: 565
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2004 12:19 pm

Re: Music Theory

Post by admin »

I studied music theory in high school and college. It's pretty necessary if you want to write music according to a certain system - like if you want to arrange a Nirvana song for a jazz big band, you would need theoretical knowledge. But you don't need theory for everything!
Post Reply