Music Theory for Dummies

About a week ago it came to my attention that since I am a musician, I should, you know. Know music theory. Shocking, I know! But I always steered clear of music theory because I always pictured it as math and math hurts my brain like, a lot. I never passed the point in music theory that wasn’t just counting beats, and after talking to a friend I figured, I better fix that if I want to get serious!

So what did I do?

Go to one of my most trusted reference guide companions!

I know people make fun of the “For Dummies” books, but I’ve never read a bad book. I love how they break down things that seem like they’d be very difficult and present it to you in a very straight forward, common sense manner. Music Theory for Dummies was no exception!

I had previously tried to teach myself theory through watching youtube videos. It…didn’t help really, and scared me away from trying any theory for a while. What Music Theory for Dummies did, that helped me a lot, was splash some real life examples with the technical, more theoretical side of theory. I read the entire thing in a week, and what are the results?

I am hearing music in a different way! I’m putting things I read in the book into practice: being derpy and counting beats to songs I listen to, looking for different chord progressions, and just really enjoying music a bit more than I used to. I’ve been working on a cappella pieces, and simply just knowing time signatures has helped me leaps and bounds in the arrangements. And, when I finally get an instrument, it will be easier for me to grasp it I think! That was the original reason why I picked up this book: because I want to teach myself keyboard (and the ocarina once I get my hands on both of those) and I feel like just reading this book, keeping up with the theories, and keeping at my music will keep me primed and ready to tackle these instruments more confidently when I am ready.
Needless to say, I loved this book! It was a great launch pad for my music theory 101 intro course. Do you have any good music theory, or music themed books you could recommend? I’d love to read some more on the subject!


Author: Crystal

A California based musician who is as passionate about music as she is video games,, Crystal (or ValkyrieCeles around the interwebs) loves to gush about her various nerdtastic loves, rant about anything currently catching her fancy, and generally just express herself in any creative outlet she can get her hands on. An avid reader, writer, and dreamer, Crystal has been leaving pieces of herself around the internet since 2006.

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