Music as Organized Sound an Introduction to Basic Music Theory

Author: White, Sylvia
This book provides a basis for understanding the essential principles and concepts of music. It attempts to develop a musical language for anyone who needs to explore and communicate the sounds of music. It will benefit those who need to develop a command of the musical language but have neither knowledge of, nor experience in, the musical world. A typical user of this text would be someone who needs to read music and acquire a working knowledge of a keyboard, or anyone who sings or plays a musical instrument but can neither explain nor read music. Detailed chapters include summaries and skill exercises.


“. . . an exceptionally well-presented music theory book. As an educator who has had experience performing in the music area and teaching basic skills to students, I was particularly intrigued bu the way the material was put together. . . . the illustrations were strategically placed and easily understood. The skills exercises were concise and to the point. I was fascinated by the way the material flowed throughout the book. . . . The author uses a clear and direct method to this theory and makes it approachable by anyone who reads or uses it. . . . It is a treasure.” – Delta Kappa Gamma Journal

Table of Contents

Table of contents:
Foreword, Preface
1. The Nature of Music: Character and Uses
2. The Language of Music: Musical Vocabulary; Elements and their Images; Devices and Elements; Art Form v. Musical Shape; Summary; Skill Exercises
3. The Tools of Music: Musical Media; Voice and Ensembles; Instruments and Ensembles; Instrumental Families – Strings, Woodwinds, Brass and Percussion; Electronic Instruments; Summary, Skill Exercises
4. The Notation of Music: Pitch Notation; Melodic Notation; Harmonic Notation; Time Notation – Beat, Rhythm, Meter, Tempo; Dynamics Notation; Directional Notation; Summary; Skill Exercises
5. The Horizontal Structure of Music: Melody; The Scale – Tones/Pitches, Melodic Intervals; Diatonic Scales – Modal, Tonal; Tonal Scales – Major, Minor; Other Scales – Chromatic, Whole/6-tone, Pentatonic/5-Tone, Artificial; Summary; Skill Exercises
6. The Vertical Structure of Music: Harmony; Melodic and Harmonic Intervals; Unit of Harmony – The Harmonic Interval; The Chord and Harmonic Intervals; The Chord and its Function; Chord Families – The Inversion; The Chord Extended; Summary; Skill Exercise
7. The Composition of Music: The Musical Score; The Musical Composition; Summary; Skill Exercises
8. The Compositional Analysis of Music: Theory and Application; Compositional Analysis; Summary; skill Exercises
Appendices: Glossary of Terms, Symbols and Function; Expression marks; Major and Relative Minor Scales; Melodic and Harmonic Intervals
Bibliography; Song Index; Subject Index