Music Theory: The TL;DR version

For too long the EDM world has overlooked theory, or only superficially skimmed the surface. This post is the first in a comprehensive, in-depth look at music theory and how it applies to the electronic world and popular music in general. Since we’re all children of the internet, though, I’ve made posts as concise as digestible as possible. In other words, this is Music Theory: The TL;DR version.

This series is going to be divided into three parts:

  1. The fundamentals (aka, this post and it’s articles)
  2. Intermediate/advanced ideas and composition tricks
  3. The overlap of theory and production

I’m particularly psyched to get to the third point; It’s a relatively unexplored area.

So, without further ado, here are the fundamentals of music theory to burn into your brain:

  1. Why Theory Matters
  2. The Major Scale
  3. The Minor Scale
  4. Interval Basics
  5. The Minor Scale Expanded
  6. Compound intervals
  7. Inverted Intervals
  8. Triads
  9. Chords
  10. Chord voicing variations
  11. Modes
  12. How Keys Work
  13. The Circle of Fifths
  14. A Tip on Intervals

So there you go, kiddos. Burn those in your brain until you’re having dreams (or nightmares?) of them, because once you understand those and can move onto the intermediate concepts, things get really interesting really fast.