#1
I'm in a three (possibly four soon) rock band, and my band mates know nothing about theory. It's so horrible in fact, that one time I said: "Hey Mikey (my drummer), play a simple four/four." and then he stared at me blankly not knowing what the hell I was talking about. Along with that, my bassist barely knows any scales and absolutely no chords, and is scetchy on notes. The possible fourth member is a guy who would play rhythm guitar and actually knows his scales and bar chords and such, so he would definitely bring some help in, but I still want the rest of the rhythm section to actually know what the hell they're doing. Don't get me wrong, my bassist is decent, and the drummer is frickin' awesome, but they should still know theory.

My question is: How should I start teaching these guys theory? I never had a teacher, I just kind of figured it all out on my own, so I'm not really sure where to start. Any advice would be appreciated.
#2
I'm in a similar situation man, the best advice i could give you is to give examples of everything to them. Like when Mikey has no idea what you're talking about, show him the beat and he'll understand then keep referring to the beat by it's name. Same with scales like say you get the bassist to learn scales or notes or whatever for a song, then just continually refer to them as their names and he'll catch on eventually. I know this isn't much help but that's what I do
Quote by whoomit
smoke weed chill an watvch rugrats errday
#3
I've never understood why people say 'play a simple four/four'. Like, I understand what's implied, but all that tells you is the time signature, in which you could play pretty much anything. That seems stupid to me. Maybe I'm missing something.

I tend to be a fairly impatient teacher, and in your circumstance, unless I was absolutely desperate to play with these particular and it was essential that they know theory, I probably wouldn't bother.

I guess it comes down to whether or not they want to learn. If they agree that it would be a great help to your songwriting and being able to communicate in the same language as a band, you're good. If not, I forsee a long, uphill battle ahead of you that ends with your frustration and their disdain.

If they want to learn, there are a million resources online, many even on this site, and really any of them would be sufficient. I used this one: http://www.free-online-piano-lessons.com/index.html

I don't really understand drum theory, if that's a thing, but with the bassist, teach him the fretboard, teach him scales, teach him intervals, teach him how to construct chords from those scales and intervals, and that should get you most of the way there. There's obviosuly a lot more out there, but that's where I started, and t's worked out pretty well.

What exactly do you mean you 'just kind of figured it all out on your own'? If you mean you used books/internet, then use those resources for your band. If you mean you extrapolated and inferred based on your own deductions, you might want to double-check your work, just in case.

And slap anyone who mentions modes. Hard.
#4
Quote by rudric
I'm in a similar situation man, the best advice i could give you is to give examples of everything to them. Like when Mikey has no idea what you're talking about, show him the beat and he'll understand then keep referring to the beat by it's name. Same with scales like say you get the bassist to learn scales or notes or whatever for a song, then just continually refer to them as their names and he'll catch on eventually. I know this isn't much help but that's what I do


This. Nothing makes theory stick like being able to relate it to real life. Like how some people, even the classically trained, learned and teach relative pitch by finding examples of the intervals that you're familiar with, and listening to them over and over until you can hear it in any situation.
#5
I've also been in a situation like this, a couple of times. In one instance, I tried to explain time signatures to the drummer, and he was actually too stubborn to learn it. He just kept saying "I'm already a good drummer, I don't need it." Assuming that that's not the case here, I think that what rudric said would work.
#6
For the bassist I would say begin with major scales, because they're the foundation of music or whatever, then some simple arpeggios and the construction of simple triads, then the same thing with minor chords..... Knowing the notes on the fretboard helps a lot, obviously I don't know a huge lot about drum theory, but explaining the idea of time signitures, accents and syncopation can't lead him astray. And, if they can both use the theory in real life it will make it stick, like wolffgang said.
#7
get a drumming for dummies book and a bass for dummies book and have them learn that way
#8
Quote by tonybony1491
get a drumming for dummies book and a bass for dummies book and have them learn that way



...Extracted from the Best Selling Book, "Getting Punched in the Face by your Bandmates for Dummies".


If your drummer doesn't understand what a time signature is, GET A NEW DRUMMER, although that can be hard to do, aparently people have these things called "Social Relationships" and "Friends", This baffles me, but however, you could show your drummer some work in weird timesignatures, Progressive stuff, maybye some mid-carreer Meshuggah so he understands the concept of what a time signature is and how it goes into music.

As for the bassist, show him some technical death metal bass patterns and he'll act like his drunk too many cans of red bull and be on the road to become a fantastic bassist, lol not that simple but it should be pretty basic for him to follow the guitars, if you need to make him harmonize octaves and stuff or do something different from the guitars, try and colaborate with him and see what his doing wrong.
METAL!