#1
I am going to a community college right now to find out what I want to major in and I picked music thinking I would enjoy it. I'm taking a theory class, ear training class, and a performance class. I just hating to read and write on staff paper and **** like that. I don't see how it is important in today's modern state of music. I have no clue what I want to do with music as a career and am really kind of wanting to switch to something else.

My question is : Why should I learn this stuff?

I want to learn the theory behind music, but righting out all the notes and **** is just irritating.
#2
Why you should learn it? To be able to play music, to better understand music, to be able to communicate you musical ideas to other people etc.
Why isn't it important to learn to read standard notation in our 'modern' state of music?
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#3
Quote by yenkosc

I want to learn the theory behind music, but righting out all the notes and **** is just irritating.



that is what music study is. From this, it sounds like you had little preparation for this course. If you really like music, but hate theory, you may want to go into music production or something similar. If you just want to play guitar as a living, good luck. But if you have a great knowledge of music, how to read it, and play at least piano, you should be in a good position for other music related careers.
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#4
What I mean by our modern state is that popular bands don't write their songs down on staff paper. I personally think it's just outdated. The thing is that I play guitar and bass, not piano. I would understand learning all this stuff if I played piano, but I don;t see how it applies as well to guitar and bass. Could you explain that to me?
#5
Quote by yenkosc
What I mean by our modern state is that popular bands don't write their songs down on staff paper. I personally think it's just outdated. The thing is that I play guitar and bass, not piano. I would understand learning all this stuff if I played piano, but I don;t see how it applies as well to guitar and bass. Could you explain that to me?


So you've never bought sheet music to play a song 100% correct for a show?
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#6
Quote by yenkosc
What I mean by our modern state is that popular bands don't write their songs down on staff paper. I personally think it's just outdated. The thing is that I play guitar and bass, not piano. I would understand learning all this stuff if I played piano, but I don;t see how it applies as well to guitar and bass. Could you explain that to me?

It applies to guitar and bass just like it does any other instrument. How's it outdated? Many musicians write down music, albeit not the mainstream pop musicians you hear on the radio. Ultimately it's your own choice, if you want to learn standard notation then don't.
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#7
I've never gigged before due to the lack of bandmates around here.

What musicians write down their music in standard notation?I want to play in a fun kind of band like Blink and AAR, not perform in a symphony. I'm not trying to be a dick, I thank you for your input and am just trying to get someone to answer my questions.
#8
I have one question that should answer your dilema. If you were planning on taking all these music classes at a college level and expect to just play instruments how did you expect the instructors to get everyone to play the songs correctly and in time? Music theory and musical notation is how we can understand what we play and convey that to other musicians. If you don't think the work is necessary then have fun, play in bar bands and choose a different career path. The only way to 'make it' in music is with hard work and dedication including learning all that you can about music. I don't mean to sound harsh, but this is reality.
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#9
Quote by yenkosc
I've never gigged before due to the lack of bandmates around here.

What musicians write down their music in standard notation?I want to play in a fun kind of band like Blink and AAR, not perform in a symphony. I'm not trying to be a dick, I thank you for your input and am just trying to get someone to answer my questions.

Most jazz musicians read sheet music and write out their music. But if you feel you can do without then I say don't bother.
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#10
Quote by yenkosc
I am going to a community college right now to find out what I want to major in and I picked music thinking I would enjoy it. I'm taking a theory class, ear training class, and a performance class. I just hating to read and write on staff paper and **** like that. I don't see how it is important in today's modern state of music. I have no clue what I want to do with music as a career and am really kind of wanting to switch to something else.

My question is : Why should I learn this stuff?

I want to learn the theory behind music, but righting out all the notes and **** is just irritating.


Being able to read music can actually help your theory. Sounds like you thought you'd taken the easy way out and then found out you'd have to do work. Don't worry, I was like that but didn't find out until to late. At least you can re-evaluate what you want to do by either:

1)Finding something that is the easy way out.

2)Think about your future and make an educated decision about what it is you're willing to put some hard work in for. Maybe, just maybe, that'll turn out to be music.

To answer the general question though: No you don't have to learn that stuff, but you'll be a better musician for doing so. Your decision.
#11
beause not all music is written in tabs. and not all countries use tab. alot of music is written in sheet, and that way, you can learn songs from the 1700s. its worth learning to read, I agree that its annoying, but its worth learning
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#12
if you're wanting to switch to something else, you probably should. as countless music professors have told me over the years: the only reason you should study (and look for a career in) music is if you can't stand doing anything else.

you really have to love it to do it, because there aren't many jobs in music and the ones that you'll be lucky enough to find will pay very very little.
#13
Quote by climhazzard
if you're wanting to switch to something else, you probably should. as countless music professors have told me over the years: the only reason you should study (and look for a career in) music is if you can't stand doing anything else.

you really have to love it to do it, because there aren't many jobs in music and the ones that you'll be lucky enough to find will pay very very little.


So True, So True....Other than that, a lot of people don't realize how much time and effort goes into bands that do 'make it'. Just because some of them didn't learn a lot of theory doesn't mean they didn't work the butts off. The time practicing to whone their skill, working with bandmates to develop a style, promoting and trying to build a fan base, purchasing and upkeep on sound equip., dealing with venue managers, develop original material, getting from gig to gig, working a 'regular' job so they have money to live.....i'm sure i'm missing a few things, but these are some of the factors just a no name band has to go through all the time.

As you said, music has to be something that you absolutely love and can't get enough of because for most of us it isn't the money its the satisfaction of creating and performing!
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#14
Quote by yenkosc

I want to play in a fun kind of band like Blink and AAR, not perform in a symphony.

So what do you need the degree for again?
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#15
Quote by yenkosc
I've never gigged before due to the lack of bandmates around here.

What musicians write down their music in standard notation?I want to play in a fun kind of band like Blink and AAR, not perform in a symphony. I'm not trying to be a dick, I thank you for your input and am just trying to get someone to answer my questions.


ALL MUSICIANS EXCEPT FOR GUITARIST WRITE DOWN THEIR MUSIC IN STANDARD NOTATION

even guitarist but......

guitarist are the only people who don't see a point in learning music thoery.it is actually quite odd. you all waste everyones time by asking why do i need to learn this. especially if you are already doing it!!

to every other instrument it is a way of communicating music to one and other. if you just want to live your life and communicating music through tabs then do that. nobody cares if you do that.

all i can say is if you don't enjoy it, drop out of school and make your band because you are wasting your life.

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#16
Thanks everyone. I'm not saying I'm going to drop out of college to be in a band. That's stupid. I was just wondering if theory classes was truly neccesary to me. Im only going to a community college so financial aid pays for all my classes anyway.
#17
If you start a band and you make it big. Congratulations! You've made a career in music with out studying! Goodluck!

But you want to be a music major. Going to SCHOOL for MUSIC. Not GUITAR. In a scholarly world, music is studied as an academic. You'll be in the same theory classes as trumpet players, singers, piano players, clarinet players, cello players, and everything in between. If the teacher wants to describe a chord structure, chances are they will not show it to you in guitar tablature. That's like saying you want to learn French, but you get pissed off when your teacher asks you to read French.

In reality your BASIC theory course will involve 4 part writing for soprano, alto, tenor, and bass voices. You will have to write 4 part harmony with individual lines between the voices using a series of rules that guitarists usually don't even know about. The vocalists look at this and are like "duh, thats easy." But when the teacher gets to chord notation in the modern century, when asked what a Cdim7 is, the guitarist is like "duh, simple" and the vocalists appear to be lost. The purpose of theory is to get an understanding of music as a whole as it is not applied to your instrument.

You cannot major in music without becoming very, very proficient in standard notation.
#18
Quote by yenkosc
I am going to a community college right now to find out what I want to major in and I picked music thinking I would enjoy it. I'm taking a theory class, ear training class, and a performance class. I just hating to read and write on staff paper and **** like that. I don't see how it is important in today's modern state of music. I have no clue what I want to do with music as a career and am really kind of wanting to switch to something else.

My question is : Why should I learn this stuff?

I want to learn the theory behind music, but righting out all the notes and **** is just irritating.


Based on your comments, I would suggest that maybe you shouldn't be trying to learn all that stuff. Learn something else .........something that you can use, as well as understand it's value.
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#19
Quote by yenkosc
I am going to a community college right now to find out what I want to major in and I picked music thinking I would enjoy it. I'm taking a theory class, ear training class, and a performance class. I just hating to read and write on staff paper and **** like that. I don't see how it is important in today's modern state of music. I have no clue what I want to do with music as a career and am really kind of wanting to switch to something else.

My question is : Why should I learn this stuff?

I want to learn the theory behind music, but righting out all the notes and **** is just irritating.

well isnt that the point? you wouldnt major in Chemistry and not know the periodic table. have a little sense, man. if you dont like it at this point, there is ZERO sense in continuing.
#20
Ask yourself this simple question. Do you want to be a literate or illiterate? In the world of music the difference between being able to read and not to is about the same as the difference in the individual who can read language and the individual who can't. Keep in mind that those who read have the tendency to be more intelligent over all.

BTW if you just want to play music in a pop-punk band, seriously reconsider your major. You're right in assuming that what you learn in there will be, in large part, unnecessary.
#21
All great posts so far....

One question, though: You chose to study music at an advanced academic level. Why? What did you hope to get out of it?

If it is simply to become a better player, then hooking up with a private instructor might have been a better bet.

If it was to lead to some yet undescribed career path, you have to determine if that is a necessary step. If so, suck it up. I can't believe you're surprised at having to become musically literate.

BTW - is this a student loan, or a student grant? Student loans have to be paid back. Do you really want to have to pay for a program you didn't want in the first place and that didn't help you to achieve any of your ambitions or goals?

CT
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#22
Writing notes out on a staff DOES suck! There may be annoying work involved with what you're studying, but if you like the concepts, you'll get over it. There is no perfect major. No matter what you study, you will dislike parts of it. Every chemistry professor likes chemistry, but none of them liked memorizing O-Chem material. (This is what the chemist would know and have to memorize; one does not memorize the periodic chart.) If you can get past the irritating aspects of a subject, though, you might like the concepts behind all of it.

If you like music theory, get over the busy work and study the subject. If you dislike music theory, don't waste your time with it; study something useful like business, economics, statistics, or MATH.

Chris can explain this better, but the gist of what he's been saying for a long time is that a music degree isn't going to help you in the music business nearly as much as it seems like it should.
#23
For a lot of other performance careers like studio work (tv/movie soundtracks), playing for a live production (like a show in vegas, or broadway in new york), playing for a recorded production (talk show bands etc), being able to read standard notation is absolutely necessary. And as for all the theory stuff, you can improve so much faster as a player, in all styles, than if you just try and 'feel' everything out.

I opted to be a guitar major at my university and it's done nothing but make me better and want to play more. I don't see how you can't enjoy developing tools and concepts that make you better at what you love to do. I agree with a lot of these other guys, I'd head for the business side of things. Or just have a band on the side and choose a completely different career path.
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#24
notation will let you show your keyboard player what to play, or even write for a whole orchestra(if you know enough music theory) i'm not a huge fan of notation, but i'm learning it to take uni course so i can teach music.
it has alot more useful things than i thought when i first started reading it.
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#25
These people are being really nice answering your questions. If you can' t figure out why a music major needs to be able to read and write standard music notation then you need to do something else.
#27
+1

Tab is SO limiting for a lot of reasons. I blame tab for guitar being the only instrument out there (except maybe drums too) whose players are almost universally illiterate. Every other instrument can typically read.

Part of the beauty of tab, aside from being simple to interpret (I refuse to use the word 'read'), is that it is easy to format for internet communication. I would like to see some easy way of writing/printing/displaying musical notation reliably as part of any operating system's feature set.

CT


CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#28
Part of the beauty of tab, aside from being simple to interpret (I refuse to use the word 'read'), is that it is easy to format for internet communication. I would like to see some easy way of writing/printing/displaying musical notation reliably as part of any operating system's feature set.
Also, I'd say magazines and sites (such as this one) need to be encouraged to use standard.
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#29
Back when I used to get guitar mags, they always had TAB and standard notation. The internet doesn't have an easy way to post and display notation. Well, you can post notation in jpg format or whatever, but imagine having to create graphics of each letter to type. haha

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#30
Quote by axemanchris
Back when I used to get guitar mags, they always had TAB and standard notation. The internet doesn't have an easy way to post and display notation. Well, you can post notation in jpg format or whatever, but imagine having to create graphics of each letter to type. haha

CT

Yeah, mags have the standard notation, but I myself never bother to read the notes, and as a result I struggle to read notes. Rhythms are fine, but not the notes.
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#31
Quote by yenkosc
What I mean by our modern state is that popular bands don't write their songs down on staff paper. I personally think it's just outdated. The thing is that I play guitar and bass, not piano. I would understand learning all this stuff if I played piano, but I don;t see how it applies as well to guitar and bass. Could you explain that to me?

It does apply to guitar and bass. It's also generally why good pianists usually have a better idea of muisc theory then most good guitarists. Also, you're taking a music theory class, not a ****ing guitar class you 'tard, of course they're going to use scores because everyone else is use to using them.
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#32
Dude, what exactly are you intending to do with your music degree? Just because you like playing guitar, doesn't mean that you'll necessarily get anything out of a community college class. If you're looking for a job in guitar performance, you have a very low chance of getting it if you want to play in a pop punk band and don't want to learn to read music. If you're looking to improve your skills, then get private lessons and do something else at the community college.
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