Beginner book on music theory- recommend one

Toolate

Platinum Member
So after reading all the talk in the theory thread in technique section, I decided to post this because I know that my lack of understanding of theory is limiting me and my understanding of what my jam mates are talking about now and then. So I am asking because I am sure there are others for whom this is the case or who dont even know what they dont know.

I am looking for a book to start from ground zero. I have 3 years of drum lessons and no skills whatsoever on any other instrument (sounds so sad when I put it that way). Would love to be able to play a few chords on a guitar some day too.
 

drummerman42

Senior Member
There is a book called Tonal Harmony that I used when I was in college taking music theory. It was very helpful and I still look back at it as reference when writing my own music. You might want to check Amazon for it. I bought mine at the college book store about 100 years ago.
 

drummerman42

Senior Member
I used this book to learn the basics before I started a college music program. Very easy to understand and put together very well.

http://www.amazon.com/Mel-Bay-Theory-Harmony-Everyone/dp/B001QVG28G/ref=sr_1_20?ie=UTF8&qid=1371996085&sr=8-20&keywords=Mel+bay+music+theory
I would go that route too. A lot of Mel Bay's learning material is really easy to understand. He puts things into a language that even some one with absolutely no knowledge of the subject will be a complete pro. I love my Mel Bay's snare drum book, I think that's what it is called. I still refer back to it too...
 

toddbishop

Platinum Member
There are some old Berklee harmony syllabi floating around the web-- that would be a good place to start. If you're looking for practical information, remember that music theory does not tell you how to make music. It's more about describing and standardizing the elements of music, and defining terms. I'd get yourself a beginning guitar or piano book (and a guitar or keyboard, accordingly), too-- I think you'll find that much more interesting and useful.
 

rdb

Senior Member
I took the online Berklee class, and while that might be expensive, I can certainly recommend the book. Just search for Berklee Music Theory on Amazon. You could crank through it without the class. Pretty simple, really.
 
B

britchops

Guest
Hi

I can offer you an instant download drum course ebook called Britchops that takes you through the very basics of drum music aswell as lessons on setting up your kit and creating basic drum parts.

Go to www.britchops.co.uk for more info.

Thanks for your time

TJ
 

Toolate

Platinum Member
Hi

I can offer you an instant download drum course ebook called Britchops that takes you through the very basics of drum music aswell as lessons on setting up your kit and creating basic drum parts.

Go to www.britchops.co.uk for more info.

Thanks for your time

TJ
I am good with the drum kit music/playing/setup- thanks.

To the rest of you, I am a total beginner in terms of any other kind of music- these are good suggestions but I would like the "for dummies" version if anyone has a suggestion (I will look into the suggestions here to see where they start first).
 

John Lamb

Senior Member
I second MusicTheory.net

It is a great resource, and the trainers are also super helpful

I'd also suggest Theta Music games for ear training. Music theory doesn't mean much unless you can hear it.
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
I am good with the drum kit music/playing/setup- thanks.

To the rest of you, I am a total beginner in terms of any other kind of music- these are good suggestions but I would like the "for dummies" version if anyone has a suggestion (I will look into the suggestions here to see where they start first).
BritChops sure seems to post a lot of adverts...
 

Toolate

Platinum Member
Start with the easy stuff and work your way up. It doesn't get ant more basic than this http://www.musictheory.net/lessons/10

Jeff
I did check this site out quickly last night and the bass and treble clefs is about where I needed to start so thanks very much. Will continue to read this site and see what I can learn/internalize.

Any of these suggested books start out like the lesson posted here by Jeff? I just don't want to buy a book that is way ahead of me and frankly don't even know what I don't know (know what I mean?).

Thanks!
 

Toolate

Platinum Member
There are some old Berklee harmony syllabi floating around the web-- that would be a good place to start. If you're looking for practical information, remember that music theory does not tell you how to make music. It's more about describing and standardizing the elements of music, and defining terms. I'd get yourself a beginning guitar or piano book (and a guitar or keyboard, accordingly), too-- I think you'll find that much more interesting and useful.
Just followed this link and I am currently printing the first jazz study (all 78 pages of it) after looking through the first couple pages. Amazing what is out there and thank you for this suggestion.
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
Back in the day I read Rudiments of Music by Robert W Ottman every lunchtime. I don't know if it's good or not as compared with other books but it covers a lot of ground and taught me a lot.
 

Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
All this talk about "theories" makes me sick. Totally un-proven and it shouldn't be taught in schools or music classes.

We should teach "Intelligent music design" instead. There's no way all this noise nonsense could have ever evolved into the structured orderly music we have today.
 

Toolate

Platinum Member
I think in my case Watso, I dont even know what I dont know.

What I mean is that I dont know what the word "theory" really means. I didnt know about the bass and treble clef, how the notes in music fit around it, or even what the average note sounds like (I suspect that the average person who know "theory" knows what a C sounds like) nor how to play any of it. I can read and understand any beat and play most though but I feel like I am limited.

I agree with you but I need to know more to know what I am talking about before I can really say for sure. I think this debate was just played out recently around here no?
 
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