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Lesson 3 from: Music Theory for Electronic Musicians

J. Anthony Allen

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Lesson Info

3. Octaves

Next Lesson: Using Octaves

Lesson Info


so up next, let's look at our first interval. Now, a lot of what we're gonna be doing in this class is talking about intervals. And what an interval is is a space between two notes kept. So, for example, I'm gonna put, you know, here we don't even care what note this is for now. Now, I'm gonna put a note here. This is the interval of a second. Okay. Ah, second, as in not a second, as in time, but a second, as in the number two, Um, because this note to this note, the interval is Ah, second, it is the interval of a second because weaken tell it's an interval of a second. Because if we count up notes, we go one two and these are side by side in the key. And that's when things get complicated. Is when we start talking about in key. We're not gonna talk about in key quite yet, but what I want you to to know for right now is that we're going to focus on a single key, which is all of the white notes. So we're gonna ignore the black notes for now. We're going to get to those shortly. But for ...

now, we're on Lee looking at the white notes, OK? And if we look at just the white notes, here's one. And here's two. So this is the interval of A to this is the interval of a 31 23 Okay, so Ah, we're going to go through a lot of different intervals because the intervals are what make up. Ah, harmony. Right. We stack a bunch of intervals together and we get a sound that we like. So the first interval I really want to talk about is the interval of an octave. And if you want to pick apart that word active, it means the same thing. The prefix of the word oct O c. T. Means the same thing as it does in octopus or Octagon Ram or anything like that, which is something related to the number eight. Okay, eight. Um, so it's gonna be the interval of in eight. Okay, So if this is one, this is two. I'm only counting white notes, remember? Says three sues 4567 and eight. That is an active. Okay, So why do we care about actives? Here's why you can see that a bilton here for me and and whatever doll you're using, you've probably have the same thing happening. Is this a pretty standard? It's labeling all of the seas. So the pitch see? Okay, that's what I started on here. Um, and able turns labelling these with with the number the letter and and then then the number C two and C three. The reason is we have eight notes, make an active and there are only eight notes in a scale. OK, which means in a key there are only eight notes. There are actually only seven because the top in the bottom one are the same. So this note is a C write. This note is also a sea. So we call this one seat to two means what active were in and the top one we call c three. That's a different active but the same pitch. So those are the different pitches we have and every eight notes in a key. They repeat so by in a key I mean, in our case, the white notes, the white notes are what's locking us into a key for right now. If we I don't want to talk about just the white notes. It's every 12 1 including black. No, to be 123456789 11 11 12. And then it repeats. Um, so there are 12 possible notes, and if we count up the letter names free to these. So we call each note a letter. Every note gets a letter C D E F G d is our highest one, and then it starts over a B, and then we get see again. So why do we care why? Why not just count up forever? Right? Um, why do we repeat this? Well, these two notes this OC tive have a lot of really powerful similarities to them. Those two notes Let me let me play them for you here. I'm gonna throw. Ah, Let me throw just a piano sound on here. It's a simple piano, so we can hear these. Okay, so here are the two notes. Side by side. Ah, uh, right. That's an octopus. The interval of inactive. See him at the same time. Oh, that some of the same time. So I'm playing two notes that are an octave apart now. to explain why they sound good together. Um, since this is an electronic music class, let's talk a tiny bit about synthesis. Um, while nuts in this is per se. But let's talk about wave forms. When we look at the wave form of the lower active in this case C two, it looks something like this and then an octave higher than that looks something like this. Now, the reason these are octaves is because the wavelength of the higher active is exactly twice the wavelength of the lower octave. So it's gonna fit perfectly inside the lower octaves. The higher active to cycles of the higher active is gonna make one cycle of lower active. It's a perfect 1 to 2 ratio. And those perfect ratios always sound good, right? So whenever you're working on a track and you've got some melody, let me do this. Let's say we've got some melody I'm gonna stick Teoh. I'm just gonna like randomly hitting white notes. It's gonna sound pretty good right now. Mm. There we go. Uh, let's do that. Just extend. That went out. Okay, So here's my just random melody of white notes. Cool. Now, if I want to jazz that up a little bit, Select all of it. I'm gonna add an octave by just copying the Okay, So now this note is an occupier at the same time, this note is an active higher. So I've added an octave Everything. And this is gonna sound great, because when you add an octave to something Ah, it's a really safe harmony toe. Add because you can kind of blindly do it. Just add inactive, and it's going to sound good. Um, it'll sound a little tired, but word on these things, but let's say a little stronger right here. Okay, Here it is without the active on and with active way, right? So it the active makes a great sound. Um, if you want that little bit thicker, if we want to do something a little different but still want a thicker let's add a lower octave. So what we did here is we added, ah, higher active. Let's add a low. Okay, so now I've got my original melody here and my lower octave down here. Let's hear that, right? So it's still the same notes. I haven't changed any notes. I've just added in active, and you can always find an active by counting up eight notes of the key, which, remember, in our case, that means all white notes. 12345678 That is our active. So, um, that's why active sound good. That's what they are. Um, when in doubt? At an active. And you'll have a great time. Okay, so let's do one other thing. Here, let me show you some cool things you can do with octaves where I'm just gonna jam for a second with some octaves and show you just I'm just gonna put something together using pretty much just octaves, um, to show you how these could be useful to you in the next video.

Ratings and Reviews


this is great and very helpfull class, i make and wirte music for more than 2 decades and never gave much about theory, i trusted my feelings to what sound good and what not. Bu t recently i became interested but it all seemed very difficult to me and i didnt got the points behind music theory and how everyhing works together. This class was a game changer for me.. music theory is so simple if you have somebody to explain it in words so that you finally can understand it, and thats Anthony, he is a brilliant guy and he explains it in a simple way that you can easily understand whats going on. This is perfectly the case with this course, the sections are short and to the point, not much talking around and leaving the path, you can make fast progress end learn how music theory works, this is a 5 Star ***** course and hopefully there is more to come

Emane Filali

Fabulous course. As a person with dyslexia, trying to remember the notes and chords as letters only is impossible. I love the visual way the chords are demonstrated and explained. I was originally put off by the "electronic" aspect, thinking it was only for learning how to use piano edit roller. However, as a beginner in playing the piano, this course is applicable to all who want to learn and understand music theory in an interesting visual way. Looking forward to next lesson. Will definately be purchasing the course after. Fantastic tutor and course.

Giulio Lazaretti

Very good class!! Makes it much easier to understand and apply the rules of theory. Anthony is also very wise to suggest to trust your ears, even if what you've written doesn't fit into those same rules. I am so very grateful for you putting this together, Anthony, and for making it available for the general public, Creative Live. I am also very glad I was given the opportunity to learn english in my home country (Brazil), in which many barely know how to read and write in our own native language (portuguese) due to our public education being so bad (which, by its turn, has to do with the myriad of vile creatures that inhabit our representative chambers). Tks XoXo!

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