Music Theory Comprehensive: Part 10 - Diminished!

——   Created by Jason Allen
2h 03m of on-demand video

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  • Jason  Allen
    Jason Allen

    PhD, Ableton Certified Trainer

  • Biography

    J. Anthony Allen has worn the hats of composer, producer, songwriter, engineer, sound designer, DJ, remix artist, multi-media artist, performer, inventor, and entrepreneur. Allen is a versatile creator whose diverse project experience ranges from works written for the Minnesota Orchestra to pieces developed for film, TV, and radio. An innovator in the field of electronic performance, Allen performs on a set of “glove” controllers, which he has designed, built, and programmed by himself. When he’s not working as a solo artist, Allen is a serial collaborator. His primary collaborative vehicle is the group Ballet Mech, for which Allen is one of three producers.

    In 2014, Allen was a semi-finalist for the Grammy Foundation’s Music Educator of the Year. 

    J. Anthony Allen teaches at Augsburg University in Minneapolis, Minnesota., and is an Ableton Live Certified Instructor. He has a PhD in music composition, 2 Master’s degrees in music composition and electronic music, and a bachelors degree in guitar performance. Through his academic travels, Dr. Allen has received numerous awards along the way.

    Born and raised in Michigan, Allen has worked with many forms of interactive media including audio, video, installation and dance. Mr. Allen’s work has been experienced all over the world, and has been called “a study in ominous sound and motion,”(Baltimore Sun) “An aural hallucinogen,” (Minnesota Public Radio) and “A beautiful and engaging use of technology. ” (Cogapp: The Art and Science Blog). In 2003 Allen joined the team of the Spark Festival of Electronic Music and Art where he was the assistant director and lead producer through 2009. 

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    Total students


    Course content

    5 mins
    Introduction & Overview
    free preview
    5 mins
    Tools We Will Need
    free preview
    3 mins
    2 mins
    The Master Example File
    3 mins
    Two Types of Diminished Chords
    6 mins
    The Whole Diminished Chord
    5 mins
    The Half Diminished Chord
    5 mins
    Finding Them in Key
    7 mins
    Spotting the Difference
    4 mins
    Ear Training Quiz
    6 mins
    Expanding Tonic
    4 mins
    5 mins
    vii VS V7
    4 mins
    What to Watch For
    5 mins
    Doubling Options Major
    4 mins
    Doubling Options in Minor Keys
    6 mins
    The Tendency Tones
    3 mins
    Resolution Options
    4 mins
    Unequal Fifths
    3 mins
    Summary of the Rules
    2 mins
    Expanding Tonic With VII dim7
    7 mins
    Harmonizing With vii Version 1
    4 mins
    Harmonizing With vii Version 2
    3 mins
    Harmonizing with vii7
    3 mins
    Mystical Properties of VII7 Chords
    3 mins
    5 mins
    2 mins
    4/2 Chord Refresher
    4 mins
    Using ii4/2
    2 mins
    Using ii4/2 in Minor
    5 mins
    Secondary Dominants
    3 mins
    Passing 4/2 in Minor
    2 mins
    What Next?
    3 mins
    Thanks, Bye!

    What you'll learn

    For years I've been teaching Music Theory in the college classroom. These online classes I'm making use the same syllabus I've used in my college classes for years, at a fraction of the cost. I believe anyone can learn Music Theory - and cost shouldn't be a barrier.

    Recently I was named as a semi-finalist for the Grammy Foundation's Music Educator of the Year award because of my in-person university classes. Now I'm taking those classes online in a new format in order to reach more students and give them the joy of Music Theory.

    My approach to music theory is to minimize memorization. Most of these concepts you can learn by just understanding why chords behave in certain ways. Once you understand those concepts, you can find any scale, key, or chord that exists. Even invent your own.

    This class is a Comprehensive class - it will have many parts, going through my entire annual curriculum.

    This class is Part 10: Diminished Chords and Tonic Expansion. It continues what would be the second semester of a college music theory class (according to the typical American academic system for learning music theory).

    Throughout this class, If you get stuck, you can review the videos or post a question, and I'll back to it as fast as possible. 

    In this class, we will cover:

    • Tools of Music Theory
    • Identifying types of diminished 7 chords
    • Whole diminished chords
    • Half diminished chords
    • Training your ear to find diminished chords
    • Expanding tonic with leading tones
    • The viiº6 chord
    • Doubling in the viiº chords
    • Tendency tones
    • Unequal fifths
    • Resolutions for viiº7 chords
    • Expanding tonic with viiº
    • Harmonizing with viiº7
    • Mystical properties of the whole diminished chord
    • Pivot chords
    • 4/2 Chords as tonic expansion
    • Using ii4/2
    • Neighboring 4/2 chords
    • Passing 4/2 chords
    • ...and much, much more!

    You will not have another opportunity to learn Music Theory in a more comprehensive way than this. 

    Dr. Jason Allen is an Ableton Certified Trainer and a Ph.D. in Music Composition and master of Electronic Sounds. His music has been heard internationally in film, radio, video games, and industrial sound, as well as the concert hall and theater. His 2015 album, Aniscorcia, reaching the CMJ Top200 Charts and radio broadcasts nationwide. In 2014 he was named a semi-finalist for the Grammy Music Educator Award.

    He currently is a professor at Augsburg University and the CEO of Slam Academy in Minneapolis.

    Praise for classes by Dr. Jason Allen:

    "Without a doubt the best explanation and east of use that one can get. It leaves you enough room to go explore. The classes go by quickly, so you can be on your way to being proficient. What are you waiting for!"

    "Amazing - Seriously Loved It! I took all his courses and have to say I'm so happy! Learned loads! Jason is an awesome teacher!"

    "I have never had any formal training in music at all. Trying to learn all the notes and how everything translated was a serious challenge. After going through this class, Dr. J has totally brought down the barriers. The content was very useful and was easy to grasp for me."

    "I like these courses because you can get up and running quickly without having to spend hours of time wading through TMI (too much information!). Jason hits the high points but shows you what you need to know. Thanks!"

    "I've watched many other videos on scales and chords before, however, this one has been the best. I now understand minor scales and chords and even how to analyze songs. It really gave me the confidence to start producing music because I feel like I have some structure and guidelines to follow. AWESOME!"

    "Clear and Informative - Jason has a clear uncluttered style (with the important dashes of humor) of presentation that is focused on the important key aspects of this course. Recommended for those starting out!"

    "Dr. Allen does it again with his music theory series. This course really opened up everything I learned from the 1st section, and now I understand more about the composition side of things for music. I highly highly recommend this course to anyone!!! Really opened my eyes to many things I wasn't aware of."

    "The Best Teacher Ever, who makes you understand the ins & outs of Music Theory by all means without giving what you don't want to know."