Fundamentally Music

Like most people, you probably have favorite styles of music - but have you ever tried to explain to others why they are your favorites, and didn't always know what to say? 

This course will give you the basic vocabulary and understanding to help you share with others specific reasons for your enthusiasm!

What explains the magic of music? How is it put together?

Check your understanding of the basics of music!

Take a moment to think:

When you listen to music, what does your mind focus on?  You're hearing lots of sounds - some notes or pitches are higher, and some are lower.  Some are shorter, others are longer.  And sometimes music sounds dense or "thick" with lots of things going on, while at other times, it can sound very simple and almost transparent.

How do composers achieve this?

By creatively using the basic elements of music, listed below.  See if you can match the correct definitions with their terms.

  • Melody
    A series of musical notes, read horizontally, left-to-right, which form the most "singable" or memorable part of music.
  • Rhythm
    Describes the length of notes - short or long - and how they are grouped together through time.
  • Chords
    Two or more notes which sound simultaneously.
  • Harmony
    Formed by a series of chords which help establish the overall emotions or mood of the music.