Music Theory Comprehensive: Part 4 - Modes and Counterpoint

——   Created by Jason Allen

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Course
44
Lessons
4h 08m
Lesson time
intermediate
Skill level

More about this course

For years I've been teaching Music Theory in the college classroom. These classes 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 to an online 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 4: Modes (Musical Modes, AKA The Church Modes) and Counterpoint.

Throughout this class, I'll be providing you with many worksheets for you to practice the concepts on. If you get stuck, you can review the videos or post a question, and I'll back to it as fast as possible. Also in this class, I have several complete analysis projects that we will complete together - just like in my college classes.

In this class, we will cover:

  • My approach to Music Theory
  • Tools you will need to learn Music Theory quickly and efficiently
  • How Modes Work
  • The History of Modes
  • Identifying the Musical Modes
  • Incorporating modes into popular music
  • Analysis of popular and classical music, including the Simpsons TV Theme Song, and the Beetles.
  • Interval Exploration
  • Compound Intervals
  • Rules for Inversion
  • Augmented Intervals
  • Diminished Intervals
  • Enharmonic Equivalence
  • Labeling Dissonance
  • Counterpoint in Species 
  • The Rules of Counterpoint
  • Compositing with Counterpoint
  • Types of Contrapuntal Motion
  • Creating music with Counterpoint
  • ...and much, much more!

And of course, once you sign up for Part 4 - Modes and Counterpoint you automatically get huge discounts to all the upcoming parts of this class.

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

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."

The course project

Throughout this class, I'll direct you to work on the following worksheets. These are for practice and reinforcement. The answers are on the last page.

Project: Writing Modes

Write a short composition that uses modes. Just focus on a single melody for now. Here are some tips:

  • Let's use Lydian as a mode for this composition.
  • Remember that Lydian has a raised 4th scale degree. Until you use that note, it is just a major scale. So be sure to hit that note a few times in your melody to make it really feel like Lydian.
  • Pay attention to skips and leaps - make your melody sing-able!
  • Do not jump to (or away from) the altered note with a leap. That makes it very hard to sing.
  • Write 16 measures using Lydian, in whatever key you want.

44 Lessons

0:05:10
Welcome & Overview
free preview
0:04:28
Tools We Need
free preview
0:06:39
Review: Scales
0:06:07
Review: Diatonic Chord Progressions
0:03:06
Overview of Modes
0:07:46
How Modes Work
0:10:12
The History of Modes
0:02:39
The Ionian Mode
0:06:50
The Dorian Mode
0:04:03
The Phyrgian Mode
0:02:39
The Lydian Mode
0:04:32
The Mixolydian Mode
0:02:13
The Aeolean Mode
0:05:15
The Locrian Mode
0:02:50
From Old to New Again
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Class benefits

  • Certificate of Completion
  • 30 day satisfaction guarantee
  • 24/7 streaming access
  • Project included
  • Direct teacher access
  • 4h 08m of on-demand video
  • 1 downloadable file
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About the instructor

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 …

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