Best music theory book?

Discussion in 'Music Theory, Lessons & Techniques' started by Capntoolbox, Jan 28, 2015.

  1. Capntoolbox

    Capntoolbox Active Member

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    So I've decided to pick up the guitar again. Ive retired my old set up and decided to start new and fresh and ordered a new guitar and amp. I never bothered to learn music theory back in the day. I was just a noodler. But I want to get serious with this so any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. zman5999

    zman5999 Member

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    Hearing and Writing Music by Rob Gorow. It trains your ear while teaching you theory. Extremely important because you need both to be a good musician. Hope that helps!
     
  3. Capntoolbox

    Capntoolbox Active Member

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    Thank you! I will look into this one.
     
  4. Solodini

    Solodini MORE RESTS!

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    My book focuses on learning theory and applying it quickly to your playing and creativity. If that interests you, have a look at the link in my sig.
     
  5. JeffKill

    JeffKill Active Member

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  6. Aion

    Aion SS.org Regular

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    What do you want to get out of learning theory, because no one book covers everything and whatever you get should be applicable to your musical goals.
     
  7. Capntoolbox

    Capntoolbox Active Member

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    I want to know all the chords and scales and all that jazz. I want to learn how to write music and I want to know how everything applys. I don't want to be that guy who onky learns parts of songs Because it sounds good. I want to be able to sweep pick for once.
     
  8. Capntoolbox

    Capntoolbox Active Member

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  9. octatoan

    octatoan Acoustic tech-death!

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    Not to be rude or whatever, but sweeping isn't at all part of theory. Sweeping is a guitar(or bass!) thing. Theory is more or less the same for everyone - stuff like writing melodies, rhythm, keys, counterpoint etc.

    Technique is about learning to play something; theory is about what to play. :)
     
  10. JeffKill

    JeffKill Active Member

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    Yeah, his metal rhythm and lead books are pretty dated. But the info you can get from fretboard mastery is still good.
     
  11. dh848

    dh848 SS.org Regular

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    Dont forget about free resources online like justinguitar. There is a pretty substantial amount of theory on that page alone. YouTube is also your friend. As for books I'll also vote for fretboard mastery and music theory for guitarists.
     
  12. Mr. Big Noodles

    Mr. Big Noodles Theory God

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    If you feel like you want to get more in-depth, try Kosta & Payne's Tonal Harmony. However, I feel that for the most part, the first book I recommended is more immediately applicable for most people.

    In order to make everything come together, you need to learn form. Here are some links I came upon with a quick Google search:

    https://www.teoria.com/en/tutorials/forms/
    http://learn.midsouthcc.edu/learningObjects/music/MusicalForm/Musical_Form.html
    Music Theory: Musical Form

    And of course, there's musictheory.net

    Some examples of forms:

    The Doors - Alabama Song


    This one is in binary form. (AB)

    0:00 - A
    0:56 - B
    1:40 - A
    2:31 - B' (Without singing.)
    2:52 - B (With singing.)

    Sequential repeats of sections do not change the form. AAB and ABB are the same as AB, in terms of the type of form.

    Claude Debussy - Pour le piano, mvt. 2, "Sarabande"


    Ternary form. (ABA)

    0:00 - A
    1:47 - B
    2:52 - A'

    The Flintstones theme song


    Another ternary form (ABA). Often, the first A is repeated in ternary form, which gives us this AABA thing.

    0:00 - A
    0:10 - A
    0:22 - B
    0:28 - A

    (This theme is also a rhythm changes tune.)

    The Police - Every Breath You Take


    This is a seven-part rondo. (ABACABA)

    0:00 - A
    0:50 - B
    1:06 - A
    1:23 - C
    1:43 - A
    2:15 - B
    2:32 - A
    3:00 - A

    The thing that makes a rondo a rondo is a repeated section of music (usually the A) with a bunch of other sections thrown in between. You can do ABACADAE, or ABACABAD, or even ABCBDBEB (the last one uses B as the repeated section).

    Get comfortable with antecedent and consequent phrasing. Trust me, it puts harmony into perspective.

    And as has already been mentioned, this is a technique thing.
     
  13. Aion

    Aion SS.org Regular

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    That's the book I learned theory from in college. I recommend it, a solid text, but it's also a pretty dry text book so something else might work better for you. And because someone brought up free online resources...

    [​IMG]

    I have a youtube channel that I update twice a week with miniature theory lessons. Link is in my sig. I would still suggest getting a book so that you have another perspective and it's just generally useful to have a theory book on hand to refer to. I'll add that since I learned on Tonal Harmony and I have it on hand, a lot of what I say about harmony is based, at least partially, out of what I learned from that book, so the two could work well together.
     

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