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About s1rw4sh1ngt0n1rv1ng

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    Starving Musician
  • Birthday 05/10/1992

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  1. Yes, that is what I am trying to say. Tonal theory is a collection of guidelines to write music in a certain way. That is, if you want a specific sound "A," you employ methods "A." And once again, Tonal Theory is one approach to human expression through the medium of sound. It can be used as often or as little as you want; that is at the discretion of the composer. As far as "post-tonal," I apologize for my poor nomenclature. I meant the movement of art music from the 20th Century, known as "Atonal," although I have discovered it has a variety of names. And Milton Babbitt didn't do it. I meant Allen Forte. That was my bad.
  2. I had a friend tell me once that music is inherently a good thing. Music is something that everyone should enjoy. I agreed with that second statement, but not the first. He quickly did a double take. Why isn't music a good thing? I answered with a second question: Why isn't language a good thing? Is it a good thing? Simply put, music can be good. It has potential to be. Then again, it can be bad. It has been said throughout history that "The pen is mightier than the sword." And indeed it is. Buddha even said "Words have the power to both destroy and heal." I'm sorry, but making the simple statement "Music is a good thing" is somewhat naive. That's like saying "sharp knives are a good thing." Music is a tool, a weapon, and an art, and like all three, it can be as destructive or as constructive as you want it to be. Well, that's the way I feel. How do all of you feel? How can music be good? How can it be bad? How can we, as composers, use this information to our advantage? And please don't say "There is no good or bad" or anything of the like. Such a debate should be done somewhere else.
  3. To be honest, I'm not a fan of pop. It's not bad, but it all sounds the same to me. Simple, straight-forward rhythms, lyrics about sex, etc, etc. It's not bad, but it isn't what some would call, "difficult music." That being said, read this article about Lady Gaga.
  4. I had one fine composer tell me this once: Using theory is like putting the cart in front of the horse. That is, theory is a collection of patterns caused by music throughout history. These hard and fast "rules" that we have in theory create music of a particular style. I mean, classical and baroque music follows the rules we teach (no parallel fifths, V goes to I, etc). Romanticism has its own set of rules (by mixture, parallel major/minor keys are the same, avoid V to I and replace it with ii(half diminished 6/5) to I, etc). Even post-tonal music has its own rules, hammered out in the later 20th Century by the composer Milton Babbitt. That being said, theory can be a useful resource when trying to create a particular type of music. I have a tendency to still resolve dissonances "properly" when approaching anything post-tonal. I still feel using theory to write music can be rewarding, but only at the composer's discretion. And when you do so, ask yourself, why am I doing this here? What will it sound like if I do this here? etc. In short, theory is a useful tool to create certain styles of music. It is something to know, but not be bound by.
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