Getting Started with Music

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When I first understood sheet music, it changed my life significantly. I no longer just heard what an orchestra or a band was playing. Instead, I visualized the arrangement of the piece through chord layers and selective voicing. My high school band director, Mr. Huffman, first started explaining the written aspect of music in junior high school. It took me a few weeks at first, but after I grasped the basics I was learning something new every day. From then on, I started relating other things like science reports and literature to music. I was always asking myself why someone wrote something, how did they write it in comparison to standards, and what are they expressing when saying it.

My first experience reading and understanding music was in my fifth grade band class. I was one of the slowest learners there. I was never playing the right notes at first and my rhythms were horrible, but once I did do something right it stayed that way. Things were starting to get easier with the more I learned. I know it sounds cliché but the more you learn, the easier it is to learn. This is also true in music.

From sixth grade to my junior year of high school there wasn't that much of a big change in my development. I still learned more and more but it was still all just notes on a page to me. I started reading a new clef, or format, of music and my peers even suggested that when I go to college I should become a music performance major. None of this interested me on a professional level; I just wanted to keep music as a hobby of mine but continue my high school studies of the art. That is when I decided to take a course in music theory.

My junior year of high school is when I enrolled in the music theory class that was only to be taught that year. My expectations of the class were set very high by my experience with Mr. Huffman as a teacher of the last 6 years. I knew I would learn much about the basics of music, but I never expected it to change me on...
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