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Author Topic: Jazz Theory vs. Classical Music Theory - Which one wins?  (Read 2030 times)
pianoplayerstar
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« on: August 30, 2016, 06:52:08 PM »

Members:

Which do you feel is the BEST way to learn music, to read, play, and theorize?

I know jazz dudes will say jazz theory is the ONLY 'true' way to know and 'truly' understand music; it's like going from A-Z on the Concord;

...... whereas, Classical Music is just taking the Boeing 747 or a Charter Flight to your destination.

THEN, there's the classical musician:  "What a joke; an absolute joke; the Jazz-ist thinks they know music; they're just HACKS; they don't know true music until they study Classical music, digest it, and really know the true joys of Classical music; it's better to understand music SLOWLY AND METHODICALLY - NOTHING GOOD COMES FAST"

I remember, one colleague telling me he was trained in classical, and until when he studied jazz theory, he COULD NOT BELIEVE HOW EASY it was to see and read music; all this Classical mumbo-jumbo sounded like a waste of time; he mentioned that he was able to see PATTERNS, CHORDS, with such greater elucidation and it sound to me that he was almost saying that CLASSICAL TRAINING WAS A WASTE OF TIME..that he should've studied Jazz (well, i'm making this part up and filling in some blanks of his enlightenment).

I'm curious, what you all think.  I know Mark Levine would poo-poo those purist Classical musicians and simply sit there thinking "YOU CLASSICAL MUSICIANS JUST D-O-N-'T GET IT, DO YOU?!? JUST GIVE IT A TRY AND YOU WILL N-O-T WANT TO GO BACK" [rocking back & forth on his chair, relaxing and give wise sage old advice, WHILE THE Classical Musician is tightly sitting up, straightlaced, waiting for the next wrong note, or missed legato, or what not).

This is quite interesting.

Are you a JAZZ-IST?  or a. CLASSICIST?
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themeandvariation
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« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2016, 07:49:34 PM »

Star!:
if one is truly interested, they would/should know both.
ever learned any theory, yourself, Star?
Best,
T.
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itsnanoguys
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« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2016, 08:23:07 PM »

I haven't learned much jazz theory but I plan on it. Some of my professors have said that it would be wise to learn advanced classical theory before because Jazz was obviously built on it. I would have to agree, despite knowing that several Jazz musicians were essentially musically illiterate and just played notes that sounded good and really only learned how to listen to scales and chord progressions, it would be beneficial to everyone wanting to become a proficient musician to learn classical theory and jazz theory if they wish to play more jazzy stuff. It really depends on what you want to play. I can't stick to one genre so I'm learning both. Memorizing Jazz scales, their modes, chords and chord progressions that create the sound and mood you want is the first step for jazz but it really helps if you have a classical foundation, I'm sort of repeating myself but if you already know how to play scales it can only help you if you learn Jazz amirite?
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stevensk
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« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2016, 08:56:19 PM »


I dont like that childish classical against jazz theory ideas. There is no contradiction or divergence.
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Bob
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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2016, 11:09:18 PM »

Yeah, both.  They're different philosophies.  Learn both.  Neither is a short path.  It takes work to learn either.  Maybe the shortest way is to actually learn both since they complement each other.
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keypeg
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« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2016, 12:48:50 AM »

I don't like that childish classical against jazz theory ideas. There is no contradiction or divergence.
I totally agree.
My background is "classical" and at present I am taking two coursera courses on the non-classical side, and it is heavy going, in particular on the theory side, even though I have a fair bit of background in "classical" theory.  Moreover, the jazz theory I'm learning refers continually to concepts that I've learned in classical.
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quantum
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« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2016, 02:26:21 AM »

I think theory wins when you apply the appropriate theoretical concepts to the music you wish you play or study. 

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themeandvariation
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« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2016, 03:04:52 AM »

might as well throw Spectral Music Theory into the contest as well:
http://www.anthonycornicello.com/dissertation/Chapter1.pdf

bets are currently being taken ...

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ted
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« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2016, 03:05:22 AM »

Neither classical nor jazz theory has any use for me. I don't understand it and cannot see the point of it, despite trying many times. I can understand it at the purely intellectual, descriptive level, of course, for example Tovey analysing Beethoven or someone like Dave Frank talking about combinations of jazz notes. But these things seem to me to merely state obvious facts about existing music, and mostly very restricted to harmony and note combinations at that, and have little relevance to creating sounds I enjoy hearing. The only true modern "theory" in the constructive sense, if it can be called such, is probably something like David Cope's composing algorithms.

I think theory wins when you apply the appropriate theoretical concepts to the music you wish you play or study.

Yes, with the qualification that if one's desired sounds are purely personal, as mine are, then theories or guidelines must also be exclusively personal. To put it in a way relevant to this forum, I fail to see how any sort of theory could have helped in the slightest to produce The March to School or The Attack of the Flies !
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dcstudio
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« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2016, 04:53:12 AM »

There's such an idealized view of taking the traditional route that it boarders on delusional thinking.  The info is the same...there is only one "way" it's the explanation and the application  varies.  In school I took both at the same time which meant that everything I was learning in theory was reinforced in my jazz theory class. I wasn't the greatest pianist then so I focused a whole lot on heating the dept darlings with my grades. I studied jazz/traditional theory and music history obsessively and it not only boosted my gpa it gave me an understanding of music that continues to expand to this day. It  also allowed me to be proficient in both genres...though I do favor the jazz world a bit.

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themeandvariation
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« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2016, 06:35:41 AM »

the difference lies in their terms, focus, and emphasis.
the roman numbering system of showing chord relationships becomes too cumbersome with pieces that have rapidly moving key centers .. so using Letter names (with added numerical indication of course) is more efficient; and is more associated w/ jazz, yet with the end of the 19 century, much of that cumbersomeness labeling is also dropped when  applied to more 'modern' classical music…
also, there tends to be more of a focus on counterpoint and voice leading in classical, and in jazz, more a focus on improvisation… yet both of these disciplines cross to the other's side.. definitely  not mutually exclusive.  Mozart and Beethoven etc, were great improvisors, and i've heard some pretty dense counterpoint in jazz..
There can be more parallel chord mov't in jazz -- drop 2, drop 4… less contrary motion, perhaps.
(Debussy used open 4ths, raised5th b7, and whole tone scales for instance  in a way similar to jazz tendencies.. Bartok loved the half -diminished scale - which is used quite often in jazz).

Also the terms for structures - although overlap, can be different somewhat as well:
Classical:  sonata, fugue, concerto, theme and variations, rondo…
Jazz: 12 bar blues, 32 bar AABA, intro, transition, head, transition, solo, solo over backgrounds, shout chorus, head, outro..
Of course some of this is interchangeable… but were are talking of different styles of music.
Theory is just recognizing the interrelationship of patterns/structures that are expressed in compositions.  Theory can't write a piece.. It is a reflection after the fact.  But it could be helpful to be aware of these things if one is a composer, otherwise s/he may write the same concerto 400 times unawares, like Vivaldi did Smiley

Hey, dc.  Long time no see. Hope you are well. Smiley
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keypeg
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« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2016, 02:26:19 PM »

the difference lies in their terms, focus, and emphasis.
the roman numbering system of showing chord relationships becomes too cumbersome with pieces that have rapidly moving key centers .
I saw this playing out recently in one of the jazz courses I started.  The teacher was setting out the basic structure of 12 bar blues, and then went on to how this could be made fancier, but he used Roman numerals.  So he designated a chord in m. 4 as being "ii" when it was not ii of that key, but rather the ii of the chord coming up in m. 5 - in other words it was a progression along the circle of fifths.  I figured it out, but some people were confused.
Another that maybe I should ask about since we're here.  He designated a piece as being in "C minor" but it had two flats because it was actually in C Dorian and the classical folks trying to get their foot into the blues door, who knew their theory, were wondering if he had left out a flat or what was going on.  So to the jazz folks - would you have called this "C minor", or "C Dorian", or nothing at all?
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visitor
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« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2016, 03:23:20 PM »

I saw this playing out recently in one of the jazz courses I started.  The teacher was setting out the basic structure of 12 bar blues, and then went on to how this could be made fancier, but he used Roman numerals.  So he designated a chord in m. 4 as being "ii" when it was not ii of that key, but rather the ii of the chord coming up in m. 5 - in other words it was a progression along the circle of fifths.  I figured it out, but some people were confused.
Another that maybe I should ask about since we're here.  He designated a piece as being in "C minor" but it had two flats because it was actually in C Dorian and the classical folks trying to get their foot into the blues door, who knew their theory, were wondering if he had left out a flat or what was going on.  So to the jazz folks - would you have called this "C minor", or "C Dorian", or nothing at all?
if just discussing an improv skeleton and harmonic outline, seems fine as is but it's not quite right if realizing a score as in a transcription.  it would be more appropriate to write in the a flat into the key signature and use a natural accidental for the mode shift. it's just a lazy/short hand informal wayof doing it is how i see your scenario. but if the tonic is c minor then that's the basic tonal center of it and it behaves like c minor for the most save for the 'la' instead of 'le' in scalar runs, it would be easier to notate certain altered chords.


as for the disc, they are complimentary and the standard theory is usually foundational but not completely neccessary for a working knowledge. i don't even see why the have to be treated so differently, i mean last i checked, a C7 chord is Cnat Enat Gnat and Bflat regardless of classical or jazz is being played. they just 'behave' a bit different but C7 in one genre is not exactly a completely different chord just becuase it's jazzy....

the scales, similar, understanding major minor melodic minor, harmonic minor and the modes dorian, phyrgian, mixolydian, etc., all helps make sense of the jazz, it's an off shoot or progression of the language, sort of like a dialect. as in how a basic spoken language can have regional variances in a particular nation.

as for Op's closing question. i an neither, i am both, i am a musician.
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2016, 05:18:16 PM »

in classical piano, there is no "c7" or "Bb7" or "Bmin7"... at least textually.

I think this scares a lot of Classicists away from their comfort zone.  However, some basic understanding of Jazz theory will help nudge the purist/Classicist towards of different method of seeing music
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visitor
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« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2016, 05:56:43 PM »

in classical piano, there is no "c7" or "Bb7" or "Bmin7"... at least textually.

I think this scares a lot of Classicists away from their comfort zone.  However, some basic understanding of Jazz theory will help nudge the purist/Classicist towards of different method of seeing music
you are incorrect. yes there is. i can open my beethoven sonatas volume one and find said harmonies all over the place quite easily.same could be said for Bach works, etc. i saw them all over the place in basic theory one when i attended music school, it is how i learned hamony identification and transcription (via ear training courses) in my undergrad performance track core classes. Bach used them. the identification of those harmonies is standard and non genre specific. it is just the name of those chords, it does not designate function as that is context driven and basic theory would for std convention harmonic progression would address this.
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keypeg
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« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2016, 08:38:24 PM »

if just discussing an improv skeleton and harmonic outline, seems fine as is but it's not quite right if realizing a score as in a transcription.
It's hard to tell which details you are referring to.  In this explanation, meant for students, say the music was in C major, there might be Gm in m. 4 marked as "ii" which confused students.  In fact, Gm would be ii of F major, which is IV of C i.e. the 5th measure.  But if Roman numerals are used at all, then "ii/IV" would have made it more clear.  Or don't bother with Roman numerals at all, maybe.
Quote
 it would be more appropriate to write in the a flat into the key signature and use a natural accidental for the mode shift. 
When I took (classical) theory rudiments, we were taught two ways of creating a signature for modes.  One way is to consider C Dorian to be 2 of Bb major, and so you use the signature of Bb major (2 flats).  The other is to consider the C Dorian is minor, use the key key signature of C minor (three flats) and then use a natural for what would otherwise be Ab.  The complication was that students learning about this for the first time were told that it was "C minor" but were seeing two flats, and didn't realize about C Dorian.  What you write as "more appropriate" is the second method, and to me it makes more sense, including because of what you write afterward.
Quote
it's just a lazy/short hand informal wayof doing it is how i see your scenario. but if the tonic is c minor then that's the basic tonal center of it and it behaves like c minor for the most save for the 'la' instead of 'le' in scalar runs, it would be easier to notate certain altered chords.
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keypeg
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« Reply #16 on: September 01, 2016, 08:44:02 PM »

double post
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #17 on: September 01, 2016, 08:49:00 PM »

.. then how about this?

How long does it take to learn (even the basics) of:

Classical Music TheorY? _____ months /yrs _____

vs.

Jazz Theory? _____months / yrs _____
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themeandvariation
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« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2016, 06:10:04 AM »

it depends on how motivated you are.  - beyond just the superficial query.

Here is a link to all the answers of your current threads, and future ones you may be thinking of.
  couldn't be more apropos:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3WuQxnA7Hg#t=64
 
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keypeg
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« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2016, 06:21:02 AM »

.. then how about this?

How long does it take to learn (even the basics) of:

Classical Music TheorY? _____ months /yrs _____

vs.

Jazz Theory? _____months / yrs _____
I covered introductory to advanced theory rudiments in about 3 - 4 months, writing the intermediate and advanced exams within that time frame.  It was bolstered by the fact that the type of classical music I had played since little had the patterns that I was studying.  There is a jazz theory book written by the prof teaching the coursera course I'm taking which I'm thinking of studying.  I think it will take me longer, because this genre is not that familiar to me.

Are you turning this into a competition between two types of music?  That would be wrong.

Btw, even having passed the exams with flying colours, I still had a way to go to truly understood music, and also that real music was not restricted to what I learned in that course.  This came later (still ongoing) by studying the music itself, and at that point, the types of things belonging to jazz theory started to be applied.
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stevensk
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« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2016, 10:57:55 AM »

in classical piano, there is no "c7" or "Bb7" or "Bmin7"... at least textually.

-Totally wrong!
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keypeg
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« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2016, 03:40:26 PM »

Two people have responded to this statement by pianoplayerstar where he is saying
Quote
in classical piano, there is no "c7" or "Bb7" or "Bmin7"... at least textually.
with versions of this.
-Totally wrong!
I understand that with "at least textually" he means that you don't see a "B" followed by a "b" followed by a "7" written into the score, as they appear as text.  Everyone who says this is "wrong" must be thinking that he is saying that you won't find the chord Bb7, as notation, written in the score.
The point in the whole passage that he is trying to make is that classical musicians by and large are not used to seeing the symbols so that they might have an intimidating or mystifying effect, but that if they were to delve into it, they might become useful tools.
There was a time when seeing something like "Bb7b5/D" would have seemed scary algebra with way too many symbols and numbers.  The same thing written in notation, or played, would be straightforward.  So the point of unfamiliarity would seem to have some merit.
And generally speaking, in a classical score you do not see those symbols written in.
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stevensk
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« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2016, 04:25:12 PM »

Two people have responded to this statement by pianoplayerstar where he is sayingwith versions of this.I understand that with "at least textually" he means that you don't see a "B" followed by a "b" followed by a "7" written into the score, as they appear as text.  Everyone who says this is "wrong" must be thinking that he is saying that you won't find the chord Bb7, as notation, written in the score.
The point in the whole passage that he is trying to make is that classical musicians by and large are not used to seeing the symbols

Ok, so the discussion here is about playing by chord symboles or by sheet? Or what different musicians are used to see?
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2016, 05:05:13 PM »

guys/guy-ettes too:

what "keypeg" is saying is spot on and what the aim of this thread was to commented as purposed by "keypeg".

Thank you, Ms./Mr. "keypeg".

Okay, so i sense keypeg is a Classicist.  YOU SEE?

It took him 3-4 months to patent down Jazz Theory, and it probably took him at least 15-20 years to get Classical Music theory well down and ironed out in his head and heart? (excuse me, "keypeg", for thinking for you as i don't know who you are.. but I'm guessing.. .allow me to make a guess of your music background).

And Bb7 or the Cmin7 are generally never seen in any urtext or otherwsie generally piano classical scores.

EVER. NEVER.

It's more for bands, orchestras, and the like where multiple parties are playing together or so the pianist with some deeper training can work together.. otherwise it's practically useless.

Sorry, I'm using very strong words here such as 'NEVER' or 'USELESS' or 'EVER', the very words many of you do not like, because you may be within the GRAY area of life, not just BLACK & WHITE.

I'm trying to speak in BLACK & WHITE so that the rudimentary point of my thread is understood; yes, I understand that music is an art and a very very very and very GRAY area, where there are no cookie cutter type of answers to such beauty as music and classical music.

OF COURSE! you'll see the Cmin7 in some scores, but it generally doesn't come into play for "Classical Pieces".

Chopin, Bach, Beethoven had NEVER HEARD OF A "minor 7" or anything even close to it; the THEORY and the RATIONALE may have been present, but 'TEXTUALLY', it is AND would be "ALIEN-TALK" and MARTIAN-COMPOSITION to them.. aka. "gibberish".




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louispodesta
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« Reply #24 on: September 02, 2016, 05:25:00 PM »

There's such an idealized view of taking the traditional route that it boarders on delusional thinking.  The info is the same...there is only one "way" it's the explanation and the application  varies.  In school I took both at the same time which meant that everything I was learning in theory was reinforced in my jazz theory class. I wasn't the greatest pianist then so I focused a whole lot on heating the dept darlings with my grades. I studied jazz/traditional theory and music history obsessively and it not only boosted my gpa it gave me an understanding of music that continues to expand to this day. It  also allowed me to be proficient in both genres...though I do favor the jazz world a bit.


For starters:  it has taken me (the philosopher /pianist) the better part of four days to post this reply).  Therefore, I proffer the following discourse regarding the so-called "Conservatory Method" of Music Theory Matriculation.  This is what has, and continues to  be taught, in the 644 NASM (National Association of Schools of Music) accrediting body entities.

1)  The "Walter Piston" theory technique.

2)  As was with "dcstudio" and I (same music school NTSU), matriculated the Robert Ottman theory technique.

3)  Also, I was a student/present at North Texas when "the" Dick Hyman gave his lecture on the subject.  And, what has followed is a course of study referencing his widely acclaimed "jazz theory" technique.

4)  I am a student of Roberta Radley of the Berklee School of Music, who I have a Certificate from in "Harmonic Ear Training."  She is, in my opinion, the best "Scat Singer" alive, and that in no way casts aspersion against those great Scat singers of the past.  Most certainly, there were many before her who were better.

As of now, she can sing 32nd note duets with the flutist in her jazz group, and in her head she knows exactly what she is doing, in real time.  These "Mothers" were personally invited to perform at Dave Brubeck's Golden Wedding Anniversary party.

http://www.singers.com/vocal-coach/Roberta-Radley/

5)  The most important thing relates to the following thesis, which is:  theory without a translational course of study to a real world experience is useless.  And, that does not necessarily mean classical versus jazz.

Therefore, "dcstudio," in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, all those who studied an instrument, also had separate theory and composition teachers, the key word being composition.  When you have to write your own stuff, then all the theory comes into place.  With the exception of some dinky composition exercises at the end of two years of classroom theory instruction, separate mandatory composition instruction is unheard of in American music schools.

Roberta Radley states unequivocally that she was terrible at classroom theory.  It wasn't until she became a member of her ensemble and had to start arranging charts, that it all fell into place.  Now, she is considered one of the top theory teachers in the world!

So, until the NASM starts requiring their member schools to require composition instruction as part of their theory curriculum, it is all a meaningless waste of time.

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visitor
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« Reply #25 on: September 02, 2016, 05:35:54 PM »

...

And Bb7 or the Cmin7 are generally never seen in any urtext or otherwsie generally piano classical scores.

EVER. NEVER.

It's more for bands, orchestras, and the like where multiple parties are playing together or so the pianist with some deeper training can work together.. otherwise it's practically useless.

...
OF COURSE! you'll see the Cmin7 in some scores, but it generally doesn't come into play for "Classical Pieces".

....



wrong  again.....took me oohh about 2 minutes to think of a musical example and google find audio w score... just sayin...
at end of the fugue from this prelude and fugue, 2nd to last and final measure,  appears on screen at minute 3:40ish towards the end....


he's actually one of my favorite classical pianists, and composer/performer
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keypeg
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« Reply #26 on: September 02, 2016, 05:53:24 PM »

Chopin, Bach, Beethoven had NEVER HEARD OF A "minor 7" or anything even close to it...
Vocabulary-wise, they had not heard anyone referring to chords in this manner, or written out that way.  Meanwhile your reference to "minor 7" is itself ambiguous.  It could refer to an interval, a "7 chord" which has a m7 as the 4th note, or a minor triad having (which) 7 on top.  Bach used figured bass and was conversant in it, modern musicians including jazz not so much. Figured bass might be closer in some ways to what jazz musicians do since it gives an outline within which the musician who has mastered the music fills in the blanks.
We're talking about how things are written out, and what names they are given.  All three would have used these chords and played with harmonies.  Music consists of three main elements: the horizontal ("melody", "bass line"), the vertical (intervals that are heard together, chords), and time.  The names these were given at different times of history and how they were perceived have changed.  Meanwhile theoreticians have a way of putting things into neat packages which tie up the musicians, and that don't necessarily reflect what those doing the composing or improvising actually have in mind.
There is no "versus" in the "jazz theory vs. classical theory" question, and the idea of "which one "wins" is close disturbing.

No, I did not have 20 years to study anything.  Most of it was internalized and instinctive, and also narrowly within the type of music I was exposed to, and the theory has come over a few years.  The "few months" was classical - not jazz - and this involved RCM theory rudiments of preparatory to "grade 2" - the grade 2 often being put together with the teaching level exam.
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« Reply #27 on: September 03, 2016, 01:31:20 AM »

Once again, the founder/moderator of this website has been remiss, in regards a most important topic.  On point, the OP references what every single person who has ever matriculated seriously as a musician.

That means:   that they have had to study music theory, any form or manner of music theory, whenever and wherever they have studied!

Accordingly, I will once aqain reference my prior post because it will hopefully re-direct the prior responses to the OP's original question, in terms of a serious pedagogical discussion.
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keypeg
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« Reply #28 on: September 03, 2016, 11:32:09 AM »

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keypeg
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« Reply #29 on: September 03, 2016, 11:38:34 AM »

Accordingly, I will once aqain reference my prior post because it will hopefully re-direct the prior responses to the OP's original question, in terms of a serious pedagogical discussion.
When this comes right after my post, it makes me wonder, because what I had written was certainly not un-serious or frivolous, and it went to the topic.  I don't know how I feel about things being "re-directed" from it.  I'd rather have a response to some of what I said, or nothing, rather than a redirection, if that was the intent.
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #30 on: September 03, 2016, 06:27:17 PM »

... a lot of you are missing the point of this thread.

only some or 1 of you seem to have answered this question.

AGAIN: allow me to rephrase===>

Classical music is the traditional standard of piano theory, because it has come before Jazz theory. 

Jazz music is recent (50's? 30's?).. it just started in Louisiana.. or was it Tennessee? {i don't know} -

The theory of Classical music deep and THE ONLY WAY TO UNDERSTAND MUSIC AND IT'S THEORY.

Jazz Theory is important but not indispensable.

Some might say [not Me]:  "Jazz Theory is nothing without Classical Music; Jazz is just for those who want to play around and hack.. but play around an hack for serious fun and serious business and serious fun"

Billy Joel was a classical musician; so was Herbie Hancock.. and the list goes one... Phil Collins wasn't really Classically trained (or was he?), as he was a drummer.. but then again, I don't think Phil Collins was a "Jazz-ist", but a Pop artist more than anything else.

Because this thread is more about Jazz v. Classical, I will leave the them of POP music elsewhere.

Simply stated:  CLASSICAL MUSIC IS THE GRANDPA AND THE JAZZ IS THE GRAND-DAUGHTER OF MUSIC.

This is why I wanted to pose this question to see what you guys think about this... but the GrandDaughter plays far better than the Grandpa in many respects.

No specific theory should be disrespected.

Some are looking for SHORTCUTS to music.  ANSWER:  Study Jazz
Others want classical tradition 1st:  ANSWER:  Study Classical




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dcstudio
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« Reply #31 on: September 03, 2016, 08:00:11 PM »

... a lot of you are missing the point of this thread.

only some or 1 of you seem to have answered this question.

AGAIN: allow me to rephrase===>

Classical music is the traditional standard of piano theory, because it has come before Jazz theory. 

Jazz music is recent (50's? 30's?).. it just started in Louisiana.. or was it Tennessee? {i don't know} -

The theory of Classical music deep and THE ONLY WAY TO UNDERSTAND MUSIC AND IT'S THEORY.

Jazz Theory is important but not indispensable.

Some might say [not Me]:  "Jazz Theory is nothing without Classical Music; Jazz is just for those who want to play around and hack.. but play around an hack for serious fun and serious business and serious fun"

Billy Joel was a classical musician; so was Herbie Hancock.. and the list goes one... Phil Collins wasn't really Classically trained (or was he?), as he was a drummer.. but then again, I don't think Phil Collins was a "Jazz-ist", but a Pop artist more than anything else.

Because this thread is more about Jazz v. Classical, I will leave the them of POP music elsewhere.

Simply stated:  CLASSICAL MUSIC IS THE GRANDPA AND THE JAZZ IS THE GRAND-DAUGHTER OF MUSIC.

This is why I wanted to pose this question to see what you guys think about this... but the GrandDaughter plays far better than the Grandpa in many respects.

No specific theory should be disrespected.

Some are looking for SHORTCUTS to music.  ANSWER:  Study Jazz
Others want classical tradition 1st:  ANSWER:  Study Classical






How can you make such statements if you haven't studied jazz theory? It sounds like you haven't had much theory in general because I don't quite understand your logic. The info is the same. Instead of a Neapolitan 6 for example in jazz we would call it a sub 5 chord... traditional theory puts a lot of emphasis on determining functions through harmonic analysis.  Jazz theory is a language that is far  less cumbersome to speak... 

I have to disagree with you on this one.  If I had to choose I would have to go with jazz, having studied both. It's far more concise.
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« Reply #32 on: September 03, 2016, 08:20:41 PM »

I'm going to stick my foot in my mouth and voice my personal interest:

I never had any use for structure.  Yes, knowing terms like recitative, etc. are nice for polite conversion, but the real meat is melody and improvisation.

Folk Music is very simple.  It can exist with the Root and the 5th.

Dewey Redman, well... I don't know if they have theory to follow that.  (Ligeti for Classical nuts)

The jazz chords are pretty much anything under the sun - stuff Beethoven would never dare.  It's fun to see Prokofiev whip out some jazz voicings.

The more theory you know, the more enzymes you have to break down a piece of music.  Some people need this more than others.
_________________________

My experience taking some jazz improv courses: 

Starting Point:

I took 2 jazz improv courses at Univ of Pitt taught by Nathan Davis.  At that time I was in my mid 20's, classical bred since 6, gifted sight reader, quit memorizing at 10 and lost the ability to speak off, jammed with friends in rock style, never good enough to get in a band because pretty dumb at playing by ear and total loser at improv.

Ending Point:

Only thing I took from this was the budding ability to transpose Beethoven when sight reading for 1st time.  Obviously I didn't waste any more time on a completely useless ability since I still could not improv to save my butt.  And yes, I saw a country western band where the leader sang and played a Dobro slide style and he knew two notes:  Root and 5th.  And that was all he played.  Through all the primitive changes.  And he even soloed on those 2 notes.  AND HE PULLED IT OFF.  Guy was a genius.
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stevensk
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« Reply #33 on: September 03, 2016, 09:18:02 PM »


The jazz chords are pretty much anything under the sun - stuff Beethoven would never dare. 



In Debussy´s and Ravel´s music you can find chords that is picked up by jazz musicians in the  sixties. -Futher, play J.S Bachs little preludium in C, WTC 1 you will find lots of "jazzy" chords there
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themeandvariation
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« Reply #34 on: September 03, 2016, 10:02:23 PM »

PStar!,
you say:
  
"Jazz music is recent (50's? 30's?).. it just started in Louisiana.. or was it Tennessee? {i don't know} -

The theory of Classical music deep and THE ONLY WAY TO UNDERSTAND MUSIC AND IT'S THEORY.

Jazz Theory is important but not indispensable."….


Your posts are all over the map, convoluted, cliche, strange, and absurd reductions … one can't help but wonder..
If i may ask, What is Your background in music?  

Please respond to lend even the tiniest bit of credence to what you say.
Thankyou.
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keypeg
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« Reply #35 on: September 03, 2016, 10:46:13 PM »


only some or 1 of you seem to have answered this question...........
In everything you write after that sentence,you never get to any kind of question.  You made a statement. I have a feeling that everyone who tried to contribute to the thread has wasted their time, because maybe you only want your own opinion reflected. (?)
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louispodesta
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« Reply #36 on: September 04, 2016, 10:20:55 PM »

To "Pstar" and "dcstudio," I proffer once again the following reality:

1)  It makes no difference what school of theory, and there are many more than what I listed in my original post, such as the Schoenberg 12 tone school, the Schenkerian school, and many more.

2)  Once again, until any of this is put into actual real-time practice through arranging, composition, and performance, it all means nothing!

3)  My late father studied classical music for years, but until he started playing in early jazz bands in the 30's, none of it meant anything.  At his death, he could sight-read and play anything on the fly, including transposing in all twelve keys.

4)  And, do you know what?:  so can dcstudio.  However, there is a composer/pianist in my city who is a classically trained organist.  He can do exactly the same thing.

5)  It is not a question of the particular genre or the nomenclature, it is the transition from theory to actual arrangement, composition, and then finally performance.
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #37 on: September 04, 2016, 10:44:19 PM »

"podesta" has touched upon this issue now ... FINALLY.

to learn jazz theory just makes life and music and lot lot easier... it's quicker too.

"creosote" also answers the question .. somewhat.

jazz theory  is the new mode of theory. bar none.

well this is what it sounds like to me based on your responses
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stevensk
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« Reply #38 on: September 05, 2016, 04:55:56 PM »

"podesta" has touched upon this issue now ... FINALLY.

to learn jazz theory just makes life and music and lot lot easier... it's quicker too.

"creosote" also answers the question .. somewhat.

jazz theory  is the new mode of theory. bar none.

well this is what it sounds like to me based on your responses



-Ok, but still, its not two  contradictory theories. You dont accept that and I don't bother
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keypeg
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« Reply #39 on: September 05, 2016, 07:50:07 PM »

"podesta" has touched upon this issue now ... FINALLY.

to learn jazz theory just makes life and music and lot lot easier... it's quicker too.

"creosote" also answers the question .. somewhat.

jazz theory  is the new mode of theory. bar none.

well this is what it sounds like to me based on your responses
I still think that you have a preformed opinion, you are not asking for feedback and ideas but rather confirmation of your own.  You seem to have pigeonholed bot people you mentioned, interpreting what they said to fit what you want.  It is not what I get from those posts.
Everyone basically is saying that there is no competition between the two.  There is an overlap. 
They are part of one and the same thing.  And that practical experience matters.
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georgey
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« Reply #40 on: September 05, 2016, 09:44:11 PM »


jazz theory  is the new mode of theory. bar none.

well this is what it sounds like to me based on your responses

I just voted "Classical" in your poll, so classical wins 100% to 0% (at least for now)  Wink  Great poll!
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pianoplayerstar
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« Reply #41 on: September 05, 2016, 11:12:43 PM »

again.. classical theory is the gramps... while jazz theory is the great granddaughter..


a student should always know where he came from if he had a master /teacher
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dcstudio
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« Reply #42 on: September 06, 2016, 12:27:35 AM »

You do not have enough information to draw these analogies. Why don't you study for yourself instead of relying on others to determine which is best.

To provide my own analogy....  its as if you are taking a basic math course and expecting to understand differential equations.  You must first pass the prerequisite classes before enrolling in calculus 3. How can you possibly understand this topic when you have yet to study it?

If you have yet to grasp the circle of fifths or basic key signatures how can you make such a conclusion?  furthermore why do you keep asking these questions and what do you hope to accomplish.

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« Reply #43 on: September 06, 2016, 12:51:18 AM »

To "Pstar" and "dcstudio," I proffer once again the following reality:

1)  It makes no difference what school of theory, and there are many more than what I listed in my original post, such as the Schoenberg 12 tone school, the Schenkerian school, and many more.





There is only one "theory" it really should be named FACT maybe then people would stop arguing.

The 12 tone matrix is not a substitute or a different school of theory.  Schenkerian is a school of thought not a different theory altogether. You didn't make it to third semester theory class? no music history either? Second Viennese School?

Music is governed by the laws of physics and those laws don't change.  There is no winner. just different  ways of explaining the exact same thing. Both are necessary.

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keypeg
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« Reply #44 on: September 06, 2016, 01:08:56 AM »

again.. classical theory is the gramps... while jazz theory is the great granddaughter.
I have a feeling that you have a limited and narrow view of either, including what this "gramps" might be.  I forget whether you have told us anything of your background to help us orient - I do remember it has been asked.
Music has evolved and continues to evolve.  It has changed its form, structure and context numerous times, so it is not like there is some kind of "gramps" as a solid entity.  Anything you study from any period is a slice of time in the evolution of music.  Jazz, in the meantime, evolved from different influences from different parts of the world that had their own traditions and backgrounds.
But again it doesn't matter, because there is no competition between them.  Music itself is as dcstudio stated in her last post - I'll simply refer to it.
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louispodesta
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« Reply #45 on: September 06, 2016, 11:20:17 PM »

There is only one "theory" it really should be named FACT maybe then people would stop arguing.

The 12 tone matrix is not a substitute or a different school of theory.  Schenkerian is a school of thought not a different theory altogether. You didn't make it to third semester theory class? no music history either? Second Viennese School?

Music is governed by the laws of physics and those laws don't change.  There is no winner. just different  ways of explaining the exact same thing. Both are necessary.


"You didn't make it to third semester theory class? no music history either? Second Viennese School?"

Answer:  BA in Music, University of Texas at Austin, 1981, Berklee School of Music, 2009

Now then, progressing on to more serious analysis.

It is, in my opinion, a simplistic delineation to describe, proscribe, and then suggest/promote a so-called "classical music theory" versus so-called "jazz music theory."

During the 17th, 18th, 19th centuries, most serious musicians started out as child/adolescent "copyists."  These were students assigned to transcribe the works of the past and current "Masters."  Published copy was expensive.

After a thousand times of re-writing Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, et al, these young kids then entered formal Music Theory and most importantly Composition matriculation.  This, most importantly, included only those chord progressions (and its associated nomenclature) present AT THAT POINT IN TIME!

This was in part was delineated to me by Dr. Clive Brown the author of "Classical and Romantic Performing Practice 1750-1900.  Oxford: OUP.  He has stated many times (in papers, lectures and interviews) that the term "Classical Music" is a misnomer.  In January of 2015, on the New York Classical Radio Station WQXR, he said in the following interview:  (Go to their website, enter Clive Brown in their search engine, and then look it up!)

"The term “classical music” – coined in the 19th century to describe material that had been judged worthy of inclusion in the pantheon of great art – is now used somewhat misleadingly to apply to everything that might be performed in a concert hall or opera house, rather than in more informal venues. The old assumption that “classical” music has more cultural value than “popular” music is no longer orthodox – it has become one genre amongst many."]

Conversely, how many posters here (like I did, "dcstudio")  have taken a one semester course under the saxophonist/educator, Rick Lawn, entitled "The History of Jazz?"  This is where I learned that the so-called jazz theory nomenclature (as it very directly correlates to its particular "style") varied from city to city and from time period to time period.  Everyone did it differently.

Therefore, it makes no difference whether one uses Roman Numerals, figured bass (from Bach to Mozart) or whether they use modern jazz terminology.  And, for the record, when I studied at Berklee, they used the same above the line chord symbols as do all the classical music schools.

I guess if any of the posters here ever study at Berklee, they should most assuredly correct them on their mistake!

What matters most, in my opinion, is the real time functional knowledge of chord structure, rhythm character and melodic line.  Accordingly, without composition training, ones performance knowledge will never be complete, regardless of the underlying descriptive symbolism.

And, do you know what?   There actually is pianist, theorist, musicologist, who teaches (at a University level) how to effectuate "real time," music theory.

I will not give you her name or school because the particular discourse here would be a waste of her time.

On second thought:  Come on "dcstudio," you are the expert on theory pedagogy.  Please give us her name.  Every university music theory teacher in the U.S. knows here name, but we want to hear it from you!

Conversely, if any of you are truly serious about theory/composition matriculation (and I truly hope you are), please contact me by PM.  I would be most glad to help in any way I can.
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dcstudio
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« Reply #46 on: September 07, 2016, 11:42:09 AM »

We all know her name Louis you talk about her all the time and when did I ever claim to be an expert at anything? I would like to see a demonstration of how this method helped you personally. Why don't you post a video and play something so the students you are soliciting will know that you are indeed a pianist.

I know I would sure like to hear you play something. I mean that sincerely
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visitor
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« Reply #47 on: September 08, 2016, 04:32:40 PM »

Hi Keypeg

obvious joke  Grin

insipid, drool of a piece..

If uncertain, look as visitors accompanying image…  Lips Sealed Shocked Grin    Munch comes to mind:
http://img2.rnkr-static.com/list_img_v2/12355/992355/870/famous-edvard-munch-paintings-u3.jpg

it is time to be in solidarity about this  Wink

lol yes. usually best humor is when not obvious being humorous.

What point are you making?  Was this serious or ironic?
Hi keypeg, i am sorry for any confussion, i tried to be obvious with my use of 'dis , Richard Clayderman, and lol meme guy

reference:

http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/lol-guy

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keypeg
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« Reply #48 on: September 08, 2016, 04:37:20 PM »

Thanks - one never knows for sure.  I have seen "visitors" who were new to music, took themselves seriously, and if one commented on the joke, would get terribly insulted.  So I trod carefully.  Grin
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visitor
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« Reply #49 on: September 08, 2016, 04:41:07 PM »

Thanks - one never knows for sure.  I have seen "visitors" who were new to music, took themselves seriously, and if one commented on the joke, would get terribly insulted.  So I trod carefully.  Grin
Smiley
I take 'not taking myself seriously' quite seriously :-)
I am always visiting and always a 'beginner' (*at heart )  Cheesy
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