Music Theory 201: Harmony and Function

Author: Paul Schmeling
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Continuing on from the concepts presented in Music Theory 101, this course will further develop your background in music theory and provide you with the foundational knowledge you'll need to be a more effective writer and player. You'll master the fundamental concepts of rhythm and harmony - and learn more complex chords, progressions, and rhythms that will open up your understanding of the elements that together contribute to put the groove in jazz, pop, blues, and rock. You'll study topics including rhythmic anticipations and related notation issues; articulation markings; diatonic triads and seventh chords in both major and harmonic minor; harmonic function; the II V I chord progression; some additional chord types; melodic and harmonic tension; and the blues form and style. You'll understand why chords move from one to another the way they do; and learn to better analyze and write harmonic progressions and different rhythmic styles. Through ear training exercises, musical examples, and personalized feedback from your instructor, you'll be able to analyze, read, write, and listen more effectively ­ as well as understand the fundamental knowledge essential to the beginning studies of harmony.

By the end of this course, you will:

  • Understand rhythmic anticipation and articulations
  • Understand diatonic triads and seventh chords in major and harmonic minor
  • Understand the II V I chord progression
  • Understand the melodic and harmonic use of tensions
  • Understand the blues form and style



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