#1
I'm really not that advanced in Music theory studies, but I still know a some. I really don't see how anybody can actually be against Music Theory. I've seen people here use Jimi Hendrix as an example of someone who knows no theory, but Hendrix improvised many of his solos, and he did this using his knowledge of theory. If he knew no theory, his Woodstock improvisation would be complete garbage, but it still has a good structure of theory. I'm sure he knew he had mastered the knowledge of the pentatonic scale in E Minor, and at [01:12] you can see he had a bit of knowledge dealing with the Jewish scale. Needless to say, he did know his theory.

When learning an instrument, learning theory is inevitable. Whether or not terminology can be associated with the ideas in a musicians head is another thing, but that does not mean Music Theory is absent from his/her knowledge. When I used to play Electric Guitar, I didn't even know what people meant when they said the words"Music Theory", but I still learned things like negating chords (E Minor to G Major, F# Minor to A Major, C Major to A Minor, etc.) and of course the pentatonic scale.

I have seen people against music theory (Not just in the more recent thread titles "Music Theory v.s. No Music Theory"), and I suppose many of them are against studying it in school. I still don't see anything wrong with causing a relation between school and musical knowledge, but I haven't seen that point very often here, so I won't continue with that.

Essentially, the point I am getting at is that Music Theory is inevitable to learn for musicians becoming relatively talented at their instrument, however I still have occasionally seen people that are against theory. I personally believe that if one is against Music Theory, one must be against becoming a virtuoso, or even just relatively skilled at their instrument to escape contradiction.

Well, I occasionally have seen people that are against Music Theory here, and if you haven't, well then I have been blabbering on about nothing, but my final words will be that Music Theory can only help a musician.

Any thoughts? Agree or Disagree?
#3
i don't think anyone is against music theory. it's more just that people who don't know it and are too lazy to learn it are trying to rationalize it
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#4
Hendrix knew a load of theory, he toured with jazz bands previous to The Experience.

He just couldn't read sheet music, and that's what many people misquote as him not knowing theory.
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#5
Quote by RageAgainst...
i don't think anyone is against music theory. it's more just that people who don't know it and are too lazy to learn it are trying to rationalize it
Well, I have seen one person state he was "anti-theory", but thinking about it, you are probably correct in a generalized sense.
#6
I know enough for me, but I'm not a big fan of theory.

Most people view it as a cold, heartless thing. A lot of them view it as a way to cheat and create melody with a time tested equation.
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#7
The only people who say that music theory hinders their creativity or whatever the latest fad is are just lazy people who can't be bothered to learn music theory and expect to be as good as the famous "ear players".
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#8
Quote by RageAgainst...
i don't think anyone is against music theory. it's more just that people who don't know it and are too lazy to learn it are trying to rationalize it

I feel theory takes away what makes guitar special for me. I played without it for a year, and then I started taking guitar classes at school and everything started to fall apart for me.

It's not that it's boring (not that it isn't), it's that it completely rapes and mutilates everything that's fun about playing the instrument. After two months of guitar lessons I had lost pretty much all interest in music altogether. I play on feel alone; if it makes me head my band violently I am satisfied. Guitar for me was to explore the guitar and find my own way of playing, finding which notes I found go well together and making my own scales.
To have someone tell me "these tones go well together" or "now I play this chord so you should use that scale" ruined all the excitement and enjoyment of playing the guitar.

I take some of the highest courses in physics and mathematics available in this country, and the last thing I need is more theory in my life. The playfulness and individualism in my playing was what attracted me to the guitar in the first place, and without it it all comes crashing together.
#9
It's tough ****, that's why.
It's hard to learn on your own because that takes a lot of initiative.

So then the other alternative is lessons.
Private lessons cost money, and not everyone has an income or parents that will supply an income.
My school actually has a Music Theory class. I was enrolled in it up until yesterday. I had to drop it because it moved way too fast for me. As have most of the guitarists with no prior music knowledge. It's a HUGE leap going from Tabs to Standard Notation.
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#10
Theory is a tool to get out what you hear in your mind pretty much or to figure out why something sounds the way it does I guess people learn it because they DO want to know why and how to create it themselves rather than guessing the notes.


EDIT: another discouragement of learning music theory is once you think you have something and you are thinking "okay i understand this" and then BAM your teacher throws something else in that changes everything you thought you knew lol my teacher did that all the time and kind of tested me like as soon as I got into the room he would say " give me all the chords in the key of G" or something like that and that's the kind of thing that would make me study it and his lectures and stories about his experiences make me want to continue the study but there is soooo much to know it just boggles my mind.
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Last edited by Shredder6 at Oct 3, 2007,
#11
Quote by Renka
Guitar for me was to explore the guitar and find my own way of playing, finding which notes I found go well together and making my own scales.
With thousands of years of musicians playing on stringed instruments, I doubt you invented a "new scale", therefore you finding out which notes go together well is just another way of learning Theory.
#12
yeah its pretty stupid to be against theory, its like being against tuning heads or something. but still, i really wouldn't care if someone was against theory (or tuning heads)

to be a good guitarist you at least need to know some theory.
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#14
I'm not against music theory of itself, I'm more opposed to ME learning it, because I'm lazy f*cker.
#15
Quote by RageAgainst...
i don't think anyone is against music theory. it's more just that people who don't know it and are too lazy to learn it are trying to rationalize it

Gotta agree with you there mate.

I used to play the Saxaphone and had proper lessons and everything, the theory I learnt has really helped me in the sense of notation, say if I buy a music book on a whim and have never heard of the song before, I can get a very good idea of how the rhythm goes. I can't really imagine ONLY knowing TAB.

But saying that, I've never bothered going deep into all the modes and the like, I'm only a casual player and I don't think I'll learn much more about it. It's a shame to hear there are people actively AGAINST it though.
#16
Quote by severed-metal
I just have no clue where to start with Music Theory. I'm not against it though.

Start with some basic scales, like the major scale, minor scale, and pentatonic scales. Then go deeper into those scales, learning the...oh Christ...I forget what they're called, but they are all named after Greek stuff...

The bass forum has a thread for scales. Look there.
#17
I'm in an advanced guitar class in school, and they shove that theory up our ass 24/7. We read more theory than we do play guitar nowdays >.< I'm only against it because the stupid ****ing ping-pong-noise-metronome is on, the entire. ****ing. class. An hour and 30 minutes; usually around 70-180 bpm. I'd really would like to kill myself sometimes.
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#18
Quote by RageAgainst...
i don't think anyone is against music theory. it's more just that people who don't know it and are too lazy to learn it are trying to rationalize it

agreed. even if you feel you dont need it, its stupid to be against it.

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#19
Studying music theory can get fairly intellectually exhausting, but the fun part is actually applying it to your own compositional work. There's an intense satisfaction in knowing exactly what you're doing. Instead of passively scrounging around for melodies and chord progressions that sound good, a songwriter can skip the scavenger hunt and instead write precisely what he or she wishes to write. It's true that you don't need to actively pursue music theory if your only intentions are to rehash music you've already heard, but by being aware of how to express yourself by initiative rather than imitation, then creativity truly takes shape.
#20
Quote by Dirge Humani
...oh Christ...I forget what they're called, but they are all named after Greek stuff...


Modes. Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, etc...

Yeah, I've always been a theory freak. Its easy to learn if you take it in bites, and it fun to apply new things to your playing. Theres absolutely nothing wrong with learning it, and it expands your creative ideas. It does not cut down on the emotion and creativity.
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#21
Quote by yawn
Studying music theory can get fairly intellectually exhausting, but the fun part is actually applying it to your own compositional work. There's an intense satisfaction in knowing exactly what you're doing. Instead of passively scrounging around for melodies and chord progressions that sound good, a songwriter can skip the scavenger hunt and instead write precisely what he or she wishes to write. It's true that you don't need to actively pursue music theory if your only intentions are to rehash music you've already heard, but by being aware of how to express yourself by initiative rather than imitation, then creativity truly takes shape.

This is like poetry. I think it's actually inspired me to get back into learning theory. Cheers mate
#23
they're lazy, and they convince others, perhaps even themselves, that learning music theory restricts them in certain ways. but that's just a bunch of bull****. they're just lazy no-good teenagers who need to get jobs.
#24
I don't see how anyone can bash on it. I think the difference between a guitarist and a musician is that while both can play the guitar only the musician knows the language. Just because you know theory does not mean you have to follow strict theory all of the time. I figure why limit yourself?
#25
Quote by 7DaySkeptic
This is like poetry. I think it's actually inspired me to get back into learning theory. Cheers mate
Heh, glad to be of service.
#26
I'm against grammar honestly it takes away that special part of writing for me. When someone tells me "oh, use a semi colon here" or "don't end with a preposition" I just get so mad. I'd rather spend time making up my own rules of writing and expect people to care.
#27
I don't need to learn how to swim. Really I think it is better to just jump in and find out which ways of staying afloat works better for me
#28
I would love to learn music theory, but i just don't have the time, patience or enthausiasm that i did maybe 6 -12 months ago when i could play guitar/bass for hours on end. I have barely anytime for half an hour a day because i'm usually too busy or tired.
#29
Also, if you have ever written anything that sounded nice, you indirectly used theory.