#1
I'm a bit stumped on where to go next in my music theory learning.

I know the basics and I've made songs with just that basic knowledge.

Can anyone suggest some sort of lesson plan or something?

Just something to aid me to go somewhere.

I feel that I'm just using the same old patterns and would like to take it into a new direction.
#2
What "basics" do you know?

Do you know every note on the fretboard?

Do you know how to construct chords?

Do you know how to harmonise the major and minor scales?

Can you identify the key of a song?

Etc.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#3
Quote by AlanHB
What "basics" do you know?

Do you know every note on the fretboard?

Do you know how to construct chords?

Do you know how to harmonise the major and minor scales?

Can you identify the key of a song?

Etc.


1. Yes. though on some parts of the fretboard I have to think for about half a second usually on the higher frets.

2. I know the basic chords until the 9th and have been using them profusely in composing.

3. Yup I know them. not just the patterns but the notes. I have memorized the circle of fifths as well.

4. Sort of. I try to hear where it resolves most of the time.
#5
Quote by HotspurJr
How's your ear? Can you quickly identify the pitches in a piece of music?


Most of the time. Depends on the music. Still having a hard time on short passages but

at least I know where to get them and it just comes down to technique.
#6
Quote by gothblade
1. Yes. though on some parts of the fretboard I have to think for about half a second usually on the higher frets.

2. I know the basic chords until the 9th and have been using them profusely in composing.

3. Yup I know them. not just the patterns but the notes. I have memorized the circle of fifths as well.

4. Sort of. I try to hear where it resolves most of the time.

He's also asking if you know the theory behind chord construction - what intervals make up what chords, etc. And you know the intervals that make up a scale, but do you know the major/minor tonalities of a chord built on every degree of the major scale?
#7
Quote by Glen'sHeroicAct
He's also asking if you know the theory behind chord construction - what intervals make up what chords, etc. And you know the intervals that make up a scale, but do you know the major/minor tonalities of a chord built on every degree of the major scale?


I know the intervals that make up the chords too. Major chord are formed using the root, the major 3rd and the perfect fifth, Minor chords are formed using the root the flatted 3rd of the key and the perfect fifth etc. I

I also know that the major and minor tonalities of each chord built by the major scale

for example the A major scale:

A maj
B min
C# min
D maj
E maj
F# maj
G# dim

I also know that the G# dim could be replaced by a G#7 chord (sorta, kinda fuzzy let me recheck that).
#8
So what do you think you're missing? If you know all of the above you should be able to decipher most songs, and apply it to your own songwriting.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#9
Don't know. Am I missing something? Or Im not applying my theory enough. It's kinda frustrating to not know what's missing.
#10
Adding sevenths:
Can you or someone else tell me what's going on with the m7b5 to 7 sub? Is this common and what is happening? Don't think I've seen it before, have seen the m7b5 been replaced by just m7 from time to time. And m7 to just 7 of course, but m7b5 to 7?
#11
Well let's see... you can harmonize the major scale with seventh chords, which will lead to some new ideas. You can also look into chord inversions and learn how to build inversions of all your basic chords on the E, A and D strings. There's also the world of chord substitutions: the ii, iii and vi chords can be made into dominant 7 chords instead of m7 chords; The iii chord can be substituted for the I chord; a dominant 7 chord can be substituted with a diminished or m7b5 chord build on its 3rd degree; So on and so on. These are all more commonly found in jazz, but if you look into the theory behind them, it'll definitely expand your horizons a bit and help you to understand why certain chord progressions work and others don't.

I also think it's a good (and fun) experience to look into the rules of counterpoint and writing 4-part harmonies, even if you don't plan on writing any concertos in your lifetime.
#12
Quote by gothblade
I'm a bit stumped on where to go next in my music theory learning.

I know the basics and I've made songs with just that basic knowledge.

Can anyone suggest some sort of lesson plan or something?

Just something to aid me to go somewhere.

I feel that I'm just using the same old patterns and would like to take it into a new direction.



I would suggest looking into modal interchange and move away from pure diatonic forms of music, and look more into tonal ideas.

Study cadences, modulations, substitutions, chord tone soloing, study of harmony, take things you like. Break them down to their structures, identify tendencies (why did it work to your ears? What was the underlying principle that you found that was followed, which made the idea sound good?"

If you like something - there is a reason for it. Go out and find it by analyzing their structure. Put it into a book, or a form where you can draw from, when you consider your next songs.

Study songs, not just the main chords, but what was layered...there are many times subtle things that you dont immediately hear that made something work texturally...was it an arp sus 4 to major 3rd idea? You know theory. Analyze the notes that you didnt immediately pick up on?

Why? Because then you learn how the pros do it, maybe a producer in the studio told so and so to add it because hes made 10 hit records and knows the psychology of thickening up a sound without distracting from the message. You know theory, you can do this also, if you know what your listening for.

You could stay busy for years just in that direction alone. Study melodic tendencies, go into Jazz and study what its like to have to think in several keys and how do you approach that, now that your one scale carpet bombing approach is exposed as entirely ridiculous in this genre, for a great majority of the songs.

Best,

Sean