Getting Music ‐ Essential Music Concepts And Language

Getting Music’s Contents

★ What The Reviews Say ★

“The systematic layout of material in Getting Music takes much of the confusion out of the study of music theory. It is a truly excellent resource for those interested in the fundamentals of theory and their application to popular music styles.”

Dr. David Martynuik, Associate Professor, Department of Music, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, PA —  Principal Conductor, IUP Symphony Orchestra — NAfME: The National Association for Music Education — LAO: League of American Orchestras

Edge Theory In Concert
Edge Theory in concert at the legendary Bohemian Caverns in Washington, DC
—Dennis Wells Benjamin and David White pictured.

Photo © 2013 Emily Best.

Table of Contents and sample illustrations:

The illustrations are shown smaller than their actual sizes in the book.

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Foreword  •  v

Introduction  •  vii

I. We’re Talking About Popular Music  •  1

II. The Basic Elements Of Music  •  3

A. Rhythm  •  3

B. Melody  •  4

C. Harmony  •  4

Getting Music book cover

III. Notes and Scales  •  5

A. The Basic Notes And Scales Used In Popular Music  •  5

B. The Chromatic Scale: Source Of Notes And All Scales  •  6

C. The Octave  •  8

D. The Range And Sounds Of Notes  •  8

IV. How A Music Style Gets Its Sound  •  11

V. Essential Music Notation For Popular Styles  •  13

A. The Staff And The Score  •  13

B. Clefs  •  17

C. Notes On A Staff  •  19

D. Accidentals: Natural, Flat And Sharp  •  20

E. Grand Staff  •  21

F. Clefs Showing Higher Or Lower Octaves  •  22

comparison of clefs

G. Showing Notes In Higher Or Lower Octaves  •  23

H. Transposing Instruments  •  24

1. Transposing Instruments By Octaves  •  24

2. Transposing Instruments Less Than An Octave  •  26

I. The Modifications To Notes  •  26

MusicSpeak: Bend

1. Duration Of Notes And Rests  •  26

2. Tempo  •  29

3. Time Signature  •  30

fermata

4. Tuplets  •  33

5. Ties  •  36

6. Slurs  •  37

7. Staccato  •  38

MusicSpeak: Riff

J. Stem And Beam Orientation  •  39

VI. The Details Of Scales  •  43

A. The Importance Of Scales  •  44

B. How Diatonic Scales Are Put Together  •  45

blues scale

C. Major Scales  •  50

D. Relative Minor (Or Minor Or Natural Minor) Scales  •  53

E. Other Minor Scales: Harmonic Minor And Melodic Minors  •  55

F. Parallel Major And Minor Scales  •  57

G. Summary Of 7-Note Scales: Major And Various Minor  •  58

H. Pentatonic Scales  •  59

I. Hexatonic Scales  •  61

J. Stylistic Use Of Scales  •  63

VII. Intervals  •  65

perfect intervals

A. Perfect Intervals  •  67

B. Major Intervals  •  67

C. Minor Intervals  •  68

D. Augmented Intervals  •  69

MusicSpeak: Chops

E. Diminished Intervals  •  70

F. Unusual Augmented And Diminished Intervals  •  70

G. Simple Intervals  •  72

H. Compound Intervals  •  73

consonance and dissonance of intervals

I. Correct Interval Naming Implies Understanding  •  75

J. Interval Inversion  •  76

K. Examples Of Creating And Identifying Intervals  •  77

L. Learning Intervals Comes With Practice  •  80

M. Consonance And Dissonance Of Intervals  •  80

VIII. Chords  •  85

A. Triads: The Simplest Chords  •  86

1. 3-Note Chords: Major, Minor, Augmented, Diminished And Suspended  •  88

2. Summary And Comparison Of Triads  •  91

summary of triads

3. Triad Inversions  •  92

B. Seventh Chords Or Quadrads  •  94

1. Seventh Chords Built On Major Triads  •  95

2. Seventh Chords Built On Minor Triads  •  97

3. Seventh Chords Built On Suspended Triads  •  98

4. Seventh Chords Built On Augmented, Diminished And Altered Major Triads  •  99

MusicSpeak: Voice Leading

5. Summary And Comparison Of Seven Chords And Six Chords (Quadrads)  •  103

6. Seventh Chord (Or Quadrad) Inversions  •  103

7. Quadrad Notation Tips  •  105

C. Summarizing The Triads And Quadrads As Stacked Thirds  •  105

7th chord built on sus triad

D. Chords Bigger Than Quadrads: Ninth, Eleventh And Thirteenth Chords  •  106

E. A Thought About Chord Names  •  107

F. Stylistic Use Of Chords  •  109

IX. Keys  •  111

A. Key Signatures  •  111

MusicSpeak: MusicSpeak: Tritone

B. Using Accidentals For Chromatic Notes With Key Signatures  •  114

X. Basics Of Harmony  •  117

A. Harmony Is Hard To Explain Briefly  •  117

B. Basic Diatonic Harmony  •  118

C. Patterns In Harmony  •  124

chord degrees and functions in major key harmony

XI. Structure Of Compositions In Popular Music Styles  •  125

XII. Modes  •  127

XIII. Other Important Notation  •  133

A. Alternatives To Standard Staff Notation  •  133

1. Slash Rhythm Notation  •  133

2. Chord Symbol Notation  •  133

3. Harmonic Or Chord Shorthand  •  133

4. Tablature  •  135

B. Repeats And Alternate Endings  •  136

C. Rehearsal Letters  •  143

Index  •  145

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