Music Courses

By Frank Bolger - Last update

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Isn’t it time you dusted off that dream and did something about it like take one of the many music courses available There are so many music lessons out there, whether you’re a budding reluctant rock star or a concert pianist. As you’ll already know, music has changed over the centuries, although the basic tenets remain the same.

It’s not a bad idea to learn a bit about the history, genre and styles of music. In the meantime, here are the principal historical trends in the development of music: Medieval (400-1400) Renaissance (1400-1600) Baroque (1600-1750) Classical (1750-1800) Romantic (1800-1900) 20th Century / Modern (1900-present) You’ll want, and need, to know something about the technical side of sound too.

Sound is composed of three elements: frequency, amplitude and timbre. These are the characteristics of a sound wave. A sound wave is defined as a vibration in the air that eventually reaches our ears. Frequency is the number of cycles per second (cps or Hertz, Hz). In music, we call this pitch the relative highness or lowness that we hear in a sound. The range of human hearing varies, but normally falls between 20 Hz and 20,000 Hz (or 20Khz).

Singing or music lessons

Singing is one of the most ancient ways of making music. Voices are categorized by range, which is determined by the length and thickness of the vocal cords. You can increase your range with training, but you can’t exceed the limitations of your vocal chords.

Men have larger and thicker vocal chords than women. That’s why they have lower voices – their vocal chords do not vibrate fast enough to produce the higher frequencies that women can reach. If you want to take up an instrument, there are literally hundreds to choose from. There are string instruments such as the guitar, bass guitar, violin, lute, banjo and cello. Popular wind instruments include the saxophone, clarinet, trumpet and bag pipes. Drums are known as membranophones; and percussion instruments such as castanets, the triangles and the xylophone are classed as idiophones. There are hundreds of courses that will teach you to play an instrument, whether you are a beginner or need improvement.

Frank Bolger

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