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Online music courses

  • 19 August 2019
  • 5 replies

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I am taking an online music course which I am enjoying very much, "Approaching music theory, melodic forms and simple harmony." I'd be interested in hearing from others about what online music courses they have taken and what they thought of them.

I am an amateur musician, play the flute and the piccolo. Back when I was in high school (now many years ago!!), I studied music at the 92nd Street YMHA where Dr. Abraham Binder was the director of the music program. We all had to study music theory as well as take music lessons. Needless to say, this knowledge is NOT fresh in my memory.

5 replies

Such a pleasure to meet you, @Madcapmaggie !
I grew up in NYC, attended the High School of Music and Art in Manhattan and am very familiar with the wonderful 92nd St Y where we attended many concerts. It is so important to know some basic music theory. I always disliked it, found it very challenging and questioned why I needed it....until I grew up and realized how essential it was! I play clarinet in a klezmer group where, similar to jazz, at times only the chords are given. Because of studying theory, I can improvise around the chords. Sometimes when I play guitar I will see a really strange chord indicated but thanks to my background I know exactly how to add the needed notes to create it.

i think it is wonderful that you are looking to study this again. @Halla is the person who could probably help you best since she has studied it extensively.

Do you still play flute/piccolo? If so, are you in any local bands or ensembles, or do you play with friends?
I am trying to get my flute “chops” back...and oh the pain my poor lip corners are experiencing as I try to rebuild those muscles! 😀
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I still play the piccolo but I haven't played my flute in a while. I'm not in any groups right now but I do play occasionally in church.
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Hi @Madcapmaggie I've take a lot of the music courses on Coursera. In fact I think I've take most of them, except for the production courses. I've completed two of the specializations offered by Berklee, Developing Your Musicianship and Music Business. Enjoyed both of there. Also from Berklee, I've taken both the guitar courses and the jazz improv. Fundamentals of Music Theory, offered by the University of Edinburgh is also a good one. The two part History of Rock from the University of Rochester is great, especially the first part. I took the blues course from Rochester too. Curtis Institute offers the Beethoven courses, I've only take parts one and two. Enjoy your course.
Hi @Madcapmaggie It is a pleasure to meet you.
Let me introduce myself. I am a guitar player, started with classical then moved to jazz a year or so later. I started at the University to get my degree in Geography, specifically GIS (Geographical Information Systems) and was taking music guitar classes for fun. Fun soon became an obsessions and I finally switched to a Music major, because the music classes were the only thing I was paying attention to. I never graduated, I have a bit better than half of a geography degree and about half a music degree before i has to drop out due to circumstances beyond my control.
I find music theory is like riding a bicycle, you never truly forget it, although a refresher to keep it up periodically is a good thing. I took about a year and a half of theory when I was in college, I agree that it is a difficult subject but I found it amazing, as well. It was as if someone had given me the keys to the universe. Thanks to music school I know more theory than any guitarist has a right to. 😀
I have taken the Developing Your Musicianship course from Berklee, long ago, before it became a specialization. I intend to take the rest of the specialization when I get the time, it is an excellent ear training course. I recently took the second of their guitar courses as well, just to see what was covered and it is good, too, if you would like to learn to play guitar.
And I want to take the History of classes when I get the chance. I have heard many good things about them, as well. My problem is: so many MOOCs, so little time.
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Halla, thanks for your reply. I did once try to learn guitar -- it was clear I was meant to play wind instruments 🙂.