Lindsey Buckingham talks craft.

Like Mark Knopfler, Lindsey Buckingham (Fleetwood Mac) disparages his own lack of musical knowledge and training while describing how he plays songs that are imprinted on our cultural DNA.  He doesn't read music, but he has played and composed some of the most adored music in rock and roll.   This is important to keep in perspective.  Learn your craft, learn to play, learn your vocabulary, and study your favorite players.   We learn the theory to make the process faster.  Music theory organizes our communication in a similar way that diagramming sentences does.  To put it another way, it is the grammar and punctuation of music.  Can you communicate without it?  Most definitely.   Does it help?  Certainly, but you still have to practice and play to apply it.  The idea here is that learning theory will, in the long run, help you become a better player by aiding your comprehension of the musical situations you become involved with, and thus improving your learning curve.  It is not a substitute for practicing and playing, however, nor is it to be used to shame someone who doesn't have expertise in it.   A musician that doesn't know their way around a music theory book may still be an accomplished player or composer by virtue of determined hard work, talent and useful experience.   We will study music theory in practical, applicable ways.   To emphasize the practical importance of the music theory we use I tell my students that they should have a sound in their head for every term I ask them to learn.   The terms I have posted in this blog help us communicate faster and focus on important ideas.

You'll need to detune your guitar to play along with Lindsey here. 


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