I agree you can make music with minimal knowledge. However, there are times when a little music theory can help you construct a track with ease. It can also help you develop new ideas from scratch. But where do you go for help and advice?
In this blog article, I will be sharing with you five websites that will help you through the basics of music theory and some advanced topics. Follow these and you will be on your way to understanding the basic fundamentals.
1. Dolmetsch Online
This is not just a music theory website as it offers other services that may be useful to some. The Dolmetsch family has an illustrious heritage making musical instruments, which I understand is predominate with recorders. For those interested, there is a good read of the family legacy on the site.
However, for this article, I will stick with what it offers for the budding learner. The site has a lovely contents page that provides an index of the theory lessons available. You will find everything from the basics of reading music notation all the way through to figured bass and counterpoint. You can check out Dolmetsch here https://www.dolmetsch.com/index.htm
2. teoria : Music Theory Web
Next up we have teoria. This site has a nice clean presentation and provides not just music theory instruction but interactive lessons. Usefully there is an ear training section, which provides interval training, note recognition and interestingly a rhythmic dictation.
I wish this website was around back in the day when I was doing my theory exams as it would have been good for my aural training. You can check out teoria here https://www.teoria.com/index.php
3. My Music Theory
You can check out My Music Theory here https://www.mymusictheory.com/learn-music-theory This is quite a packed sight with lots of graded music lessons for ABRSM and Trinity. These two are the main exam schools in the UK, which have international recognition.
The education side of this site has material up to and including diploma standard. So quite extensive and allows you the user to get quite technical if that is what you wish. I should add that there are paid options for this website to access materials but there is still a lot of free information available.
4. Open Music Theory
The introduction to this site says it all really ‘it is an open-source, interactive, text book for college level students‘. The whole website holds a nice professional clean look and has an easy to follow contents. You can check it out here http://openmusictheory.com
The subjects covered range from the basics through to counterpoint and musical form. Don’t worry if you do not understand these terms now as this website explains them in detail.
5. Song Exploder
Okay, so this is not really a music theory website as you can see here http://songexploder.net/. However, it is a wonderful resource and comes in the form of podcasts. The format of these short programs is to interview the composer on how they made their track.
This is not some “I did this, then that yada yada yada”, but instead provides a wonderful insight on how the track was conceived and laid down. There are also some production tips and tricks that these artists give away, which provides food for thought.
It is always good to hear direct from the artist’s mouth what drove them to make the track. Some of the backstories are really deep as well and bring the true meaning of the track to the fore.
So there we have it, whether you are new to the subject or a seasoned veteran these websites will give a foot hold in the world of music theory. I trust that you will find these as useful as I have and share them with fellow like minded musicians.
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