Free Music Composition eBook

3:32:00 PM

Free Music Composition eBook

From now until September 11, 2016, you can get the first issue of the Composing Music Series for free. This series is designed to be a collection of over 50 music composition lessons that you can study in your spare time. Purchase only the lessons that apply to you and get on track to learning how to compose your own music compositions.

The offer is only good until September 11, 2016, so make sure you order it now to avoid missing out on the discount. You have very little time to get this eBook for free. Don't wait, I won't be able to make this book available for free again.

Experienced composers are able to look at a motive, melody, or theme and instantly know how a composition will unfold. Much like an expert gardener understands what type of plant a particular seed will produce, composers can envision an entire musical work simply by looking at a melody. 

Thematic Materials - Motives, Themes, Melodies, and Form

Determining musical form based on the motive and melody

This lesson introduces you to the basic elements of a motive and the different ways motives are employed by composers to create melodies. The course details how a composer can determine the overall length and structure of the piece through a careful analysis of small thematic elements. This is a crucial skill beginning composers may lack, but it can be developed with the right knowledge and practice. 

The Music Composition Series

Proceed deliberately through professional-level music composition lessons

The Music Composition Lesson Series is devised to equip composers with an exhaustive sequence examining the keystones of music composition. The series addresses the following seven cornerstones of music composition: 
  • Theme
  • Form
  • Harmony
  • Counterpoint
  • Instrumentation
  • Orchestration
  • Coherence and Comprehensibility
An expository introductory lesson is also available for you to evaluate the teaching methodology of the course and determine if the series will suit your needs. 

Instead of compiling all of the lessons into a single book, this course lets composers pick and choose the concepts they wish to study. The recommended course of action is to start with the first lesson and proceed in a progressive fashion through the course, thereby ensuring you're not missing any crucial concepts. 

If you like the course please share it with others and spread the word!

Why You Should Be Careful Taking Music Composition Lessons Online

1:10:00 AM
Learning to compose music is a process that takes time and commitment. A talented composer with little training can get most of the information they need from listening to and analyzing the score of a master composer. Learning from the masters would be an ideal way to study music composition, and their scores can provide fledgling composers with the information they need to create a successful work. If a composer could learn everything they needed to know about composition by simply looking at a score, there would be little need for a composer to learn music theory at all.

The reality is that there is just too much music out there for a composer to extract the information solely through the study of scores. Music theory allows a composer to stand on the shoulders of geniuses and acquire the skills that master composers developed over a lifetime in just a few short weeks. Humans are able to process and understand information because we can recognize patterns and assign labels. This makes it easy to recognize basic forms and elements in musical works. Through the study of theory, composers are able to see how different composers are able to use these basic elements of music in differing ways.

The images below are all pictures of houses. Most people wouldn't argue this point, and we can easily see that each image is a house. We don't even have to think about it. We have so much experience with houses that it's easy to identify the structure.


Let's say you found someone who had never seen a house before, let's call him Fred. Fred makes up his own word to describe what he's seeing. Maybe he'll call it a "man-made protector cave." Fred can now identify other man-made protector caves and he can go out in the world and label these structures. He feels pretty good about himself, analyzes the structure and begins to build his own without ever entering a house or learning about load-bearing beams and the need for a strong, structural foundation.

Since Fred doesn't really know the purpose of a house, he begins to teach others how to build their own. He's excited about what he's learned and he wants to share his knowledge with the rest of his people. The houses look beautiful on the outside, but he doesn't know what a house should look like on the inside so he fills it with concrete. Since house-building is a mysterious skill, his people don't realize that they are supposed to live inside the house. They treat the man-made protector caves as works of art that deserve to be observed and cherished.

Self-taught composers tend to have the same problem. They often don't know what they are looking at and in an effort to learn, they create their own words for devices they uncover in music. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but the problem is that with a little formal instruction they would be able to recognize these components much more quickly. Additionally, they would know the purpose of each element and why a composer used the technique. And most importantly, they would be able to use a common language to talk with other composers.

Let's take the case of chord inversions as an example:

A self-taught composer might notice that each of these chords has a different character. They may even notice that composers use these chords to create certain effects in the music. The composer might realize that the root position triad in the first measure sounds very compact and powerful. The next chord feels just a bit unstable and more open. The final chord sounds light and airy. All of this is fine, and they are good observations. They would also be mostly right in their analysis, but this answer is incomplete. Inversions solve problems, they aren't simply there to add color or spice things up a bit.

So what about all of the things they don't see?

  • Inversions are used as a way of creating a more effective chord progression that doesn't prematurely return to the tonic. A chord built on the first scale degree of a key creates a strong foundation that unmistakably identifies the key. If at some point in a progression you need to return to the first scale degree root position chord, you can use an inversion to avoid a premature end.
  • Inversions are essential for creating a smooth harmonic background. Using inversions can help avoid the jumps and leaps that would come from using root position chords. Most importantly, using the right inversions can ensure the melody doesn't get lost in an overly animated chord progression.
  • Inversions are essential when you want to modulate to a new key. 
There are many other things that a self-taught composer might not see when attempting to learn on their own. While cracking open a theory book is a good place to start, it takes a really curious mind to be able to look to the next stage of learning. An experienced composer can take you beyond theory and help you to develop your voice.

By all means, take music composition lessons online. However, if the composer you're studying from is only teaching you what you can learn more effectively from a theory text, then you're simply wasting your time and your money.

Using Music Theory to Compose Music

12:28:00 AM
“Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.” ~ Gustav Mahler

The Elements of Music Composition

It's worth noting that of all the subjects a composer must learn, we only call the study of connecting chords, voice leading, and analyzing works a theory. Orchestration, counterpoint, form, and instrumentation have many elements with concrete and tangible aspects, but we do not designate these subjects as theories. Why should composers give music theory such a high degree of importance? It's a serious question worthy of any note wielder's thought and time. It's also one of the issues addressed in this text.

The Importance of Music Theory

There is no doubt that composers need to understand music theory, and a sound background offers a greater understanding of existing music that theorists have already analyzed.

Music theory is a subject a composer must learn, but no theory harvested from another artist's work has ever created an original composition. By its very nature, music theory is the ability to apply time-tested progressions, voice leading principles, and known structures to a musical work. Music theory only teaches you to compose with the tools that another composer spent a lifetime developing.

For the student of music composition, music theory is an invaluable tool. It helps the composer avoid common mistakes, and it can serve as the basis for developing a sound composing technique. Theory is also helpful for composers who need to compose music quickly for film, television, games, and other projects. A strong knowledge of music theory can help composers write quickly and with the confidence that the final work will affect a pleasurable response from the audience.

Discover the Art of Music Composition

Composers who want a deeper understanding of the practical application and explanation of music theory, counterpoint, orchestration, and form will enjoy The Elements of Music Composition. For any composer or musician who wants to understand the art of music composition and not simply learn the fundamentals of chord construction, form, orchestration, and other composition-related skills, this work fills a much-needed niche.

The text gives explanations of the essential elements in a music composition, but only to provide an explanation of how these elements function in music. Since you can learn music theory, orchestration, and form from any number of theory or composition books on the market, these topics are only discussed as they relate to the subject at hand -- the creation of compelling musical works.

The Concepts This Book Will Not Teach You

Before getting into a discussion of what this text does accomplish, it's important for you to understand what this book will not teach you:

There are no arbitrary exercises designed to help you improve your technique and make you a better composer. You also won't study music theory, how to construct chords from established chord progression, or learn what different instrument combinations work best together. This book also won't discuss the various musical modes, the means of composing electronic music, and it definitely won't tell you how to produce a work "instantly."

For all of those important topics, there are hundreds of textbooks and free resources available to help you meet those aims. This book aims higher to provide composers with a study in the aesthetics of music composition, with the ultimate goal of learning to compose music that gives homage to the past while forging a path forward into the future.

What You Will Learn

This book gives you insight into how to compose a musical work that develops in an organic, coherent, and comprehensible way. You'll learn guiding principles that make music written in any style more effective. While geared toward the serious composer, any songwriter or composer can benefit from the concepts in this text.

The Development of Musical Instruction

Throughout the history of music, composers have learned to compose music in various ways. One of the oldest methods of training was counterpoint. Composers learned principles of voice leading that when employed correctly created multiple balanced melodic lines resulting in harmony when performed. Counterpoint focused on both the horizontal and vertical aspects of music.

Next came the invention of music theory, which aimed to place a greater emphasis on the analysis of the vertical aspects of music. Through music theory, a greater understanding of chord progressions and chord creation came to fruition. What started as a supplement for composers became an art form that helped writers create colorful chords.

Today, based on the work of several brilliant composers and their life work, Kevin Ure has consolidated what has been a 20-year search for the principles of music composition. The Elements of Music Composition is an introduction to an aesthetic of music composition that will help composers learn the principles necessary to create original works that follow an organic process of music composition.

This text is the result of that search, and Kevin Ure has been using these concepts and refining the method for years while teaching his private students in his composition studio.
Powered by Blogger.