Music Basics

Music Basics

Published: Apr 20, 2018 Updated: Apr 20, 2018

12 Lessons in the “Music Basics” Series
Glossary of Music Terms

A glossary of common music terms. Common and not so common music terms. Knowing the language and terms used with music aides in your own understanding when exploring your music potential.

Whole Steps and Half Steps Explained

The distance between any two notes can be defined by steps - half steps and whole steps. From this series of steps you can get the names of the notes of ANY of the fifteen major scales.

The Chromatic Scale

The only scale in music with ALL twelve notes of one octave. Not much use for improvisation or solos – but a great scale for learning the notes of the next, figuring out scales, chords and more...

Enharmonic Equivalents

An Enharmonic Equivalent is where a musical pitch can have different names depending on the context in which it is functioning. An example is G# produces the same pitch as Ab.

The Major Scale

Not called the learning scale for a reason. The major scale is a great scale for learning how music and chords work. It’s a core scale from which a majority of your core, essential scales can be derived. There are 15 major scales.

Key Signatures and the Cycle of Fifths and Fourths

There is a load of information in traditional Key Signatures. Unlocking the principles in this circle leads to a better understanding of music and how things work.

Ear Training

Ear Training is the development of the active and passive capability to relate to music aurally. This includes the ability to recognize melodic and harmonic intervals, chords, chords progressions, rhythm, melody, and harmony.

Chord Spelling - Triads

This lesson presents the traditional approach for learning the chord tones of chords with a little twist to make it a bit easier.

Chord Spelling - An Alternate Approach

An alternate approach to determining the chord tones of any chord. Bottom-line is, it's the notes that make the chord, not the shape. A C chord is C, E, G - NOT this or that shape.

Metronome - Playing in Time

There is no way around it. A musician must be able to play in time. Playing in time is an important musical skill for ALL musicians. A metronome is an external time device for developing an accurate internal time.

Demystifying Cut Time by Chuck Anderson

_This is a guest lesson/article by internationally renowned jazz guitarist and educator _Chuck Anderson__

Practice, Play and Rules (Theory) - The Three Words

Chuck Anderson wrote a great blog entry about the three words Play, Practice and Theory that send the wrong message to players and the general public.

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Just browsing over both books, they look fantastic! I'm a guitarist and uke player for over 25 years and was thinking about writing a ukulele book but you've already written what I think are the best, most comprehensive and thorough books I've ever seen for the instrument. I just might end up buying every book you've written and I'll be giving my highest recommendation for your books to my friends and students. Thank you so much for taking the time to write such great books!Peter Rhee

Aloha, Curt, All I can say is WOW! What you have accomplished is simply incredible! All the bestGlen Hirabayashi, The Aloha Boys

Folks, if you haven't stopped by Curt's site, do so right now! ..And get his books, they are fantastic. This guy knows his stuff and is able to pass it along too.Alan Johnson Proprietor, The 4th Peg

I can highly recommend Curt's Uke books — I have four of them and they are excellent.fatveg — Portland

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