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> Theory Course Please.
Phil66
post Jan 5 2016, 01:58 PM
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Hello all,
I'm wondering if it would be possible for a nice steady (maybe just a thread per month) theory course. Starting at elementary level, one scale, a few related chords with explanations as to how they fit with each other and then for homework, write a little piece with the chords and a melody. Then, if possible, the instructor could explain to the student why their piece works or doesn't work out how it could be adjusted for better effect, maybe playing the chords in a different order to get a different mood.
I said one thread per month because many of us don't have time to add much more into our routines and theory can take time to understand.
Just an idea smile.gif
Cheers

This post has been edited by Phil66: Jan 5 2016, 11:04 PM


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jan 5 2016, 03:29 PM
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Great brainstorming Phil! I like the idea. Based on the improvisation course that we've been doing, what things do you think that this theory course should reinforce?



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Phil66
post Jan 5 2016, 03:44 PM
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Thanks Gab,
I can only speak for myself. I really struggle to grasp theory for some reason, I think part of it is the terminology. I read "The Idiots Guide To Music Theory", and not much of it sunk in though I understood it at the time. I think this was probably due to lack of application.

For me, and please, anyone else reading this put in your thoughts, I need a very steady pace. Maybe start with a major scale, pick three chords, (from the most popular kind of progression), explain how they work with the scale, then ask the student to put something together that is musical. We don't need to think about technique, just notes. I'm thinking along the lines of Bear's Beginners Corner lessons.

Then, the following month ask students to see what other chords they can find themselves from the scale, maybe scale patters using open strings would be a good starting point.

Then, possible, show the same scale, in a different key and getting the student to work out possible open chords from the scale and do another melody over the "discovered" chords.

For me, the best way to learn is to be shown a certain amount, then discover the next section yourself by working it out. Kind of, "Ok here's x, here's y, now find z".

I hope this makes sense. I don't think the course should be intense as it is more mental application than physical but obviously you have much much more experience than I do in teaching so you will know more about how students respond to certain stimuli.

Cheers for considering this Gab.

Appreciated.

Phil


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Kristofer Dahl
post Jan 5 2016, 04:10 PM
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Interesting!

Gab maybe it's time for a slow (but steady) forum based beginner course, open for everybody. A course that focuses on application of the most basic stuff.

Let's see if we can get some input from more people.


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klasaine
post Jan 5 2016, 04:35 PM
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I personally think it's always good to have an ongoing theory course at this forum.


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Tom51
post Jan 5 2016, 04:42 PM
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Yes, such permanent course would be great. The improvisation course goes already a lot in this direction! Maybe we rename this to "applied music theory" wink.gif and enhance it. But I learned here a lot about theory.


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Phil66
post Jan 5 2016, 05:31 PM
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I agree, it should focus on the very basic stuff at first and obviously progress. The learning curve doesn't need to be steep. The information needs to be given slowly and surely and 100% applied with the student hopefully understanding enough to go one step further on their own.

For me, I don't like doing things without knowing why. I can't just accept that Amin is "just a name for the chord". I know some people can just accept that and move along and learn A7, and Aaug and just remember the shape. For me, I think it's better to understand because when you understand something you tend not to forget and if you do forget; because you understand how it works, you can work it out for yourself.

I hope all of this is making sense. Slowly slowly though because as we have found in the ear training, when there is a big jump in difficulty, people abandon ship and it's hard to get them back on board, it kind of kills their desire to learn that discipline.

I think I explained to Gab in a about how I used to train athletes, I don't have it now but maybe he can share it here or I can re-type it if he hasn't got it saved.

I also think repetition is good so long as it doesn't get monotonous. Kind of like how we learned out multiplication tables in school.

It's great to see this generating some interest. I've always wanted to understand theory and I know it is a HUGE subject but little by little we climb the mountain wink.gif

Cheers


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Rhida
post Jan 5 2016, 09:03 PM
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That's just a very very good idea.
Theory through its applications : I like it!
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Phil66
post Jan 5 2016, 09:58 PM
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Thanks Rhida,

I always work by this proverb when I'm training people at work.

Tell me, I'll forget. Show me, I may remember. But involve me, and I'll understand.
-Chinese Proverb

I always stand behind them and guide them, letting them actually do the job, they become my hands and eyes. When they are stuck I don't tell them what to do, I say things like "Look at the screen, what is it asking" or "Can you see something wrong with the tool?", I guide them in the right direction. Obviously this isn't as hands on to be able to do that, that's where the "taking it to the next level yourself" comes in.

Hope it all makes sense.

wink.gif


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Lester
post Jan 5 2016, 10:25 PM
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Hmmm...yeah I'm all for it as well!
The only concern that I have is that I might not be able to keep up or feel like I haven't mastered a concept enough yet to move on to something new.
But let's see how it goes! smile.gif
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Phil66
post Jan 5 2016, 11:02 PM
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Hello Lester,
Great to see you're interested.
I'm the same as you, that's why I suggested smaller steps with longer intervals. I would think it would be OK to work at our own pace so long as we try to catch up. We have to keep in mind also that some might join at a later date so they have to be accommodated too.
I'm sure we'll come up with something, that's easier this thread is for, to let tutors and students discuss the various method and approaches and hopefully come up with something that suits us all as best as possible.

Another thing, maybe there can be different levels. That way they could stay here as a sticky for ever. Let's say from level 1 to level 10.

Any suggestions are great. There are no bad ideas, everything can spark a thought in someone's head that can bring further ideas.

Thanks for your input Lester.


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jan 6 2016, 02:28 PM
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Killer ideas friends! I'm already working on this! smile.gif


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jan 6 2016, 04:13 PM
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Here we go!

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=56472


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Phil66
post Jan 6 2016, 05:01 PM
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That's great thanks Gab.

Maybe we can still post suggestions here rather than clog up the workshop thread and your PM box. If we post ideas to your PM others won't get to see them so there won't be any mass brainstorming wink.gif

Cheers


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Kristofer Dahl
post Jan 6 2016, 05:14 PM
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I agree with Phil, I think this discussion is the key. We have had many workshops in the past but I think we can make them even more interesting if we can get more student input.

We can use Gab's thread as a first draft for feedback, and wait a little bit before we launch the real thing.


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Phil66
post Jan 6 2016, 08:27 PM
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Maybe we could ask students to give here, a concise list of what they want to know and the workshop can develop from that.
I still think it would be good to have it in 10 levels. Obviously at the moment it needs to be level 1but once you and Gab decide it's moved on to level 2 then maybe lock it into a sticky so new members can find it quickly. Hopefully after quite some time we will have ten stickies for anyone to dive into.
As an absolute ultimate it would be great to have video lessons explaining and showing examples in all levels for all assignments.
If it's OK with you I'll compile my list very soon.
Thanks for taking this on board Kris and Gab. It's really great to have people like you who are willing to listen to students.

Update.

My List. Not necessarily in any order and subject to additions as we go on wink.gif
How scales and chords relate to each other.
Differences between major and minor chords/scales.
Why do major keys have minor chords in them and visa versa?
Which scales to use with which chords, which scales can be played over an entire progression and WHY?
How chords are constructed.
How to work out which chords are in a key, for those times when someone says, "Ok let's play a i iv v in the key of D minor" blink.gif
What it means when a chord is augmented or diminished and when you would use it with example of how this changes the feel of the music.

This is stuff I've read about in the past but it never stuck in my head due to lack of application, this for me would be the most useful for me.

Cheers

This post has been edited by Phil66: Jan 6 2016, 09:56 PM


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klasaine
post Jan 29 2016, 03:31 PM
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QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jan 6 2016, 12:27 PM) *
My List. Not necessarily in any order and subject to additions as we go on wink.gif
How scales and chords relate to each other.
Differences between major and minor chords/scales.
Why do major keys have minor chords in them and visa versa?
Which scales to use with which chords, which scales can be played over an entire progression and WHY?
How chords are constructed.
How to work out which chords are in a key, for those times when someone says, "Ok let's play a i iv v in the key of D minor" blink.gif
What it means when a chord is augmented or diminished and when you would use it with example of how this changes the feel of the music.

This is stuff I've read about in the past but it never stuck in my head due to lack of application, this for me would be the most useful for me.

Cheers


All these questions are based on knowing, inside and out, how the major scale is constructed (even minor comes from major) and what the intervals are within a major scale.

In the theory section of the forum look for threads started by 'The Professor".
I'd direct you to these extant theory (fundamentals really) threads ...

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=47641
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=48699
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=50342
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=48211
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=48859
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=48915
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=50456
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=49868

There is of course tons more you get into but IMO, you have to start here.
A lot of the links above will have redundancy because it is all truly related.
Pick what makes sense to you and start working with that.

Enjoy! - KL







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Phil66
post Jan 29 2016, 05:09 PM
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Thanks for that Ken, I appreciate you taking the time to find those links. Gab's started an applied theory courses with a nice stay pace to give time to absorb the theory with the practise.

Thanks again Ken smile.gif


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