Knowing to play an instrument or knowing music theory is required to really appreciate music? If i don't know anything of these things can i steal be a music lover and fully appreciate the beauty music is capable of bringing it?
No, you dont need to. Ppl who say you do are music majors that need to justify the fact that they paid 400k for an education when their average wage once outside of school is 20k per year. Enjoy ur poverty.
The only answer I can give you is: maybe.
I play the bass, the guitar and know how to produce electronic songs. I also know quite a bit of music theory, but those things don't really make me appreciate music more.
If anything, knowing how music is produced, played, orchestrated, arranged and all that jazz may let you understand what you are listening more. At least for me it does.
it might make you appreciate how HARD it is to construct something rational, linear, and at the same time meaningful.
it might make you appreciate every genre of music as well. understanding the different rhythms in latin music, which is a cha cha or a bossa nova, and why it makes you feel that way.
ive loved music since i was in grade school but i didnt start playing music until high school. i would say that i have appreciated it more since then? but i wasnt an adult yet either...
no u cant. music theory helps u understand the music. how could u fully appreciate something u dont even understand?
u dont need to go to school to learn music theory so ur post is worthless
I can appreciate the beauty of a flower without knowing anything about botanic because the flower have a beauty that is available to everyone.
Understanding botanic can help me appreciate the flower in another sense, but i truly believe that the core of its beauty isn't something that you can only grasp with knowledge, probably is something you can only grasp with your hearth / senses.
Either this is low level b8 or you are pretty ignorant and haven't yet understood the idea of beauty and aesthetic which goes far beyond the rational ways of "understanding" on a theoretical level.
>but i truly believe that the core of its beauty isn't something that you can only grasp with knowledge, probably is something you can only grasp with your hearth / senses
yea i agree but i dont agree that this is a valid excuse to avoid or ridicule learning music theory. its understandable that a casual music fan wouldnt try learning a bit, but if music is a big part of your life shouldnt you feel motivated to try expanding your understanding? im not the most well versed in music theory but ive had a pretty easy time getting resources for free online and its significantly improved my listening
trust me i really do
Retarded article from the epicentre of the death of music criticism. Most people who listen to music don't actually give a shit about the musical part of it, p4k caters to those sorts of people.
Here's the most recent p4k "review" I find. http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/21351-speedin-bullet-2-heaven/
You'll see it discusses the artist, the aesthetics of the music, and the lyrical content but not once does it mention the actual music (melody, harmony, structure, idiom).
You definitely don't need to understand music theoretically or be able to play it for yourself to enjoy it but I would argue you do to fully appreciate it.
>you just can't see outside of the paradigm that informs your interpretation of music, and you think that's the only way to understand it
Hot assumptions kid. I couldn't understand or play Jazz without a thorough theoretical understanding of music as a whole as my foundation. No one could really. That doesn't mean I'm bound by anything, the departure from conventional harmonic norms is the beginning of Jazz in my opinion. That doesn't at all imply ignorance of those norms though. Ultimately, like all theoretical apparatuses, Music Theory is just a useful tool to describe music as you pointed out, its not music itself, however I'm pretty sure that's a 100% irrelevant point.
could i? is that your benchmark, some random anon's ability
but seriously, it depends, if it's strictly modal then a chimp could do it
i mean - i'm also a theoryfag but you have to understand what theory actually is, it's just a system for classification and description of music
music is something which already exists, and people understand it perfectly well without theory all the time, they just haven't been taught that particular way of thinking about it
I did read it. Its clearly not written by a musician.
"What role, if any, does knowing the language of music play into writing about it?" is like "What role, if any, does knowing the language of English play into writing about it?"
Do you need to understand English grammar to be a literary critic? No, of course not anyone can spout opinions about anything. Do you need to understand English grammar to understand, describe, and appraise the form and style of a piece of literature and thus provide a salient critique? Clearly
yeah but you can learn the norms by just listening to music, people do this all the time
i;m not saying they'd automatically know what a diminished chord is, but that's just a word
You definitely can't learn the fundamentals of music theory by just listening to music.
Listening to Davis doesn't teach me what modes are. It might teach me a way to apply them if I already have a theoretical understanding of what he's doing harmonically.
You don't need to know jack shit theory wise for most pop idioms though.
>it's clearly not written by a musician
Fourth paragraph: Let me introduce myself: My name is Mike. When I was nine years old I came home from public school and with no prompting told my mom I wanted to play the violin. I spent every Saturday from 1998 to 2000 riding the Metro-North from Connecticut to New York to take classes in theory, counterpoint, sight-singing, composition, and all the other tenets that qualify me to call myself “classically trained.” Basically, I know what Gioia means when he says “pentatonic.”
yeah i'm just trying to explain my point using some humour, relax
thing is what you're saying is 'you can;t learn theory by just listening to music' and i don't disagree at all with that, i even said so much myself
but you can still learn a lot about music without knowing any music theory
>but you can still learn a lot about music without knowing any music theory
Definitely, most pop genres don't require much theoretical background knowledge and some (punk for example) outright reject complexity in favor of directness.
You'll never be able to approach jazz or classical though
If I may try to reconcile both of these anons' posts:
Knowing theory/being able to play an instrument isn't necessary to enjoy music, but it definitely adds another perspective to one's appreciation. Aesthetic appeal, although the fundamental allure of any work of art, can only bring one so far. For instance, I found myself attracted to jazz several years before I ever took any theory classes or played in any combo bands at school. To me the aesthetic appeal in conjunction with the creative freedom and spontaneity at its essence was fresh and interesting in itself. But despite this increasing attraction, I knew deep down that, despite my fascination, this was a music beyond my current comprehension and was thus shrouded in a cloak of mystery. I think to everyone, the mystery is part of the allure. Even major figures of intellectual music felt this way. Debussy never liked to reveal the inspirations/intentions behind a piece of music for fear of killing the mystery for his audience. Beethoven supposedly tried to destroy his early sketches and manuscripts before his death so as to conceal his creative process and thus amplify the legacy of his genius. Mozart successfully did this. For most people - myself included - knowledge and understanding, although liberating in it's own way, has the tendency to kill the mystery. This is where knowledge of an instrument/theory polarizes aficionados of music. At some point people who truly appreciate music must ask themselves whether it is better to be blissfully ignorant or aware but somewhat disillusioned. Most people opt for the former, but those who never take the time to study music will never truly grasp intellectual pinnacles of music like classical and jazz. Conversely, those who do study might find themselves disinterested and alienated by more accessible, commercial music that they once were able to enjoy, and ultimately be seen by the vast majority as a weird outsider of sorts.
Were all music people so were biased but lets look at it in perspective. If you were discussing a movie with an actor, director, script writer about a movie that they weren't involved in their opinion of it is no more profound or valid than your own. You either connect with it emotionally or you won't. Some will argue that the actor, director, or script writer might have a deep connection with the film because of their deeper appreciation of the artistry but the reality is there's no way you could ever really tell. Also I don't ever remember doubting my love of music when I knew squat about it. Much less could pinpoint why I might prefer it more now that I have a good knowledge of it
i think if you use theory to decide what music is worthy of consideration to begin with then you're kind of stuck inside that paradigm, regardless of the genre
it's cool to be that way but you have to realise what you're doing there is a bit limiting
ok let me rephrase it
>You'll never be able to approach jazz or classical though
and i;m guessing if i show you some classical music made by non-trained people, you'll evaluate it using music theory
(yeah i know that's an assumption, but amirite?)
To conclude, I think this can be generalized to the classic philosophical dilemma: Whether one is of the nature to seek truth at any cost or is content with illusion for the sake of happiness.
None of that makes sense.
Western Classical music by definition comes from a specific tradition there is no "classical music made by non-trained people" though there is probably music that's structurally very similar made by people who haven't been classically trained.
>evaluate it using music theory
Music theory is a descriptive language and theoretical framework not some of sort of criterion by which art is judged by its technical complexity. Technical/neo-classical metal is some of the most technically complex music created, I also hate the sound of it.
I went on to cover that if you decide to read more than a sentence at a time. Though many popular genres of music don't require such knowledge, full appreciation of all music can only come from study and understanding because that knowledge was/is consciously applied and thus inherent in some music.
you're saying 'but you can't approach music which is all about theory without knowing some theory', basically
i mean obviously
i'm not even disagreeing with that, i'm saying it's true, but theory is just one way of looking at music
>be me 15
>really into indeh rock music, metal, punk, prog, electronic, memerap etc
>want to learn about music, study music theory at college
>slowly learn that all I've been listening to is simplistic, ham-handed crap that isn't worth 2 cents
>devote myself to listening to the only good genre of music, western art music (not that minimalist supermarket shit though)
>devour the works of the greats, stunned by the beauty and integrity of Bach's fugal writing, Beethoven's emotional sincerity and ability to convey, the simplistic, but subtle and perfect devotional constructions of Pérotin, the brevity and uncompromisingness of Webern's phrasing.
Basically if you don't understand music theory you can't enjoy music. If you've not studied theory and think you enjoy music I'm sorry to say you don't, you're actually enjoying the feelings you associate with that music, not the music itself.
If you did understand music even slightly you would stop listening to the shit you listen to and only listen to western art music, and be a true patrician like me.
>but theory is just one way of looking at music
Of course, every theoretical framework is just a fallible human-made apparatus and should be understood with a grain of salt.
Howeverm that doesn't make it any less indispensable than the theory of gravity or evolution as a tool for describing physical phenomena.
There are plenty of alternative systems of understanding music than conventional western harmony.
Indian Classical for example is very different than western music theory, yet the possible range and combination of tones is the same.
yeah, nah, not all modes of interpretation and understanding have names
listen to this for example
no theory there whatsoever, but it's harmonically sophisticated as fuck, more than 99.9% of classical music
Spoken like a trve ignoramus
You don't need to and that's not what that anon was saying. But if you want to fully comprehend jazz you need that immersion and study. It follows the universal adage along the lines of 'you don't truly understand something until you can teach it yourself' or to be more specific to music 'replicate it and discuss it intelligently'. But that goes beyond description, because the understanding has to be there in the first place just to be able to describe it.
>harmonically sophisticated as fuck, more than 99.9% of classical music
Not really most Eastern Pacific traditional music is based out the minor pentatonic or dorian minor harmonized in thirds.
Yeah I dig Polynesian traditional music, I've had a lifelong interest in ethnomusicology.
Most traditional music styles, be it blues, Irish folk, or Vanuatuan traditional, tend to be based out of the pentatonics or the mixo/dorian modes.
well not really if you get into the tuning, but yeah you can almost describe them using 12-tet by pretending it's pentatonic or whatever is closest in terms of western tuning
but really that's just a lame attempt at shoehorning it into a classical paradigm
>lame attempt at shoehorning it into a classical paradigm
Definitely, I find the Indian concept of sruti much more useful in describing traditional music than the western concept of note values.
i wish we were taught indian logic as well
they seem to have a lot of shit worked out that we didn't bother with at all, strange how small and dogmatic our world can be
Anyone can appreciate music. That said, if you know how to play an instrument that you hear then you can appreciate the complexity of what your favorite artist is doing. When it comes to theory that will teach you HOW music essentially is created. Melody, harmony, point and counter point, leitmotif, pitch, chords, keys, etc. Typically with music theory most artists these days don't really do it all that well IMO so it's a preferential thing, unless you really listen to some stellar technical artists.
TL;DR Playing is about appreciating a specific instrument, theory is about appreciating composition. Neither is required, but both can add to the experience, even if it does make you jaded about the shit you hear on the radio.
Pic related. Love these fucking things.