Where to start?

CaineIsCarter

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Hi folks
Been playing on and off for 30 years but to my shame, I know nothing about musical theory. I note lots of threads full of instruction that I’m sure is very helpful, but can some kind soul please point me to a start point? I’m finding the thought of finally confronting this huge gap in my knowledge quite intimidating.
Thanks a lot.
Damian
 

spitfire

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There's a huge number of books and web sites with music theory information. So I don't think there is any way to say, just get this book, though maybe someone has a good suggeston, I don't. Something may be too simplistic or too hard for your tastes.

Myself, I've come at it from the perspective of studying jazz. A book I have on the subject is:

"The Jazz Theory Book" by Mark Levine.

This however, is likely overkill and much is specific to jazz.

I'd suggest you start by just Googling "music theory" and see what pops up. Explore it a bit, take what you can from a given web site, and look at another. You're likely to find the fundamentals covered everywhere. Though keep in mind that jazz sites cover more theory than any others I've seen. You pretty much don't get into jazz without understanding some theory.

And that may be all you need or are interested in. After you study what a few web sites have to say, you'll have a good idea what those fundamentals are and whether you want to look for more detailed info.

I do think you'll find that it really isn't all that mysterious. And, believe it or not, there are very systematic ways to come up with those fancy chords like Ebm13(b9) or whatever. Those things aren't just names for chords, they define exactly how they are constructed.

Also, don't think in terms of studying "guitar music theory". That's not to say that theory doesn't have it's place for specific instruments, but the main things apply to all instruments.

If you enjoy learning new things, I think you'll enjoy the effort.
 

CaineIsCarter

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Sorry for the delay in replying, and thank you both very much indeed. I now have a week off work and plan to finally start looking at the things you have suggested.
Best
Damian
 
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