Category Archives: music education

MusicEd – Intro to Chords

Here is a beginner’s intro to chords.

It goes through the basics:
1. Identify notes and notes with accidentals on the piano 2. Interval recognition (major and minor 2nds) 3. Major Scale Pattern 4. Major Scales/Degrees of Scales 5. Chord formulas

What to do:
1. Learn to identify the notes on the piano
2. Learn to identify major and minor 2nds on the piano
3. Apply the major scale pattern of major and minor 2nds starting on different notes.
4. Number each scale. example: in C major C=1, D=2, E=3, F=4, G=5, A=6 and B=7
5. Each chord is a combination of scale degrees. example: Augmented = 1 3 #5
6. Not mentioned on this sheet is exercises that make you name the notes of different chords. So here is a follow up:
7. Bb augmented, C half-diminshed, B minor7, A dominant7, Db full-diminshed

MusicEd – Transcriptions

Here are some transcriptions I did a couple years back.

I feel transcribing can be good for simply identifying on paper and conceptually what you are hearing. Sometimes we hear something and think we know what it is. That ability for me (although I still suck at it) took time and transcribing solos helped me hone this skill. The process of transcribing can be fortuitous simply by honing your perception skills as a listener.

The tenor solos are in alto cleff because I wanted to write in concert pitch and didn’t want so many ledger lines. It is annoying to read, but getting better at alto cleff can help when dissecting string quartets.

However, transcribing doesn’t mean you will sound like what you are transcribing. That feature is a technical battle and many hours of practiced are needed to acquire the muscle memory necessary for execution of said material. As a soloist, I must admit, I do not sound like any of the soloists below, and that is because I don’t practice the material. I do like the solos and I transcribed because I wanted to know why I liked them and why they sound the way they do.