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This is the unabridged republication of the classic edition and is an excellent manual which remains as useful and instructive today as it was at the turn of the 20th century. Be the first to Write a Review for this item!

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We will not accept unsolicited returns arriving at our warehouse. Earn 4 Loyalty Points. Clearance Sale This item is part of our clearance sale and is available at the discounted price while stocks last. Great information. Thank you for sharing your knowledge regarding chords, notes, techniques and more. Your article is useful to me.


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I am content with a kind of plagiaristic goal — to write a composition that sounds like Bach or Haydn I think Mozart is beyond possibility. For that reason, I am learning counterpoint, and Gradus is very helpful. I do believe it needs to become instinctive. I start with a good Cantus Firmus Handel, Vanhall, Albinoni and try to write good counterpoint to that melody.

I am slowly getting it, Gradus is a major help. I also write counterpoint to my own melodies, but for now I learn more from using melodies from great classical composers. It makes a huge difference in being able to feel how the counterpoint is working. Turns out Chopin was a counterpoint junky and wiz. It is VERY approachable and often a great starting point when investigating a topic.

Things have moved beyond Fux ages ago.

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There are dozens of modern books that take a simpler approach. Alan Belkin ex-professor has a free counterpoint book on his website. The best thing a person can do in the beginning is think about bass-line writing. Learning to write a melodic bass-line combined with a melody takes you a long way. Practice is the key. Let me know when your course on counterpoint is up and running.


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  4. I am all in. My current focus is still orchestration, but I will probably finish tackling counterpoint after that. May I suggest, as a very guitar-centric musician, the two-line contrapuntal jazz fingerstylings and fascinating lines of Jimmy Wyble. He was a guitarist in western swing bands, and played with small combo jazz groups, like Benny Goodman. His book on improvising two-line counterpoint solos over jazz standards is a missing link in contrapuntal composing. Writing contrapuntal music is a worthy effort, but building up technique and chops to take solos over jazz standards in multiple contrapuntal lines is amazing.

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    I shall search out Jimmy Wyble. I still admire the lines of Ruby Braff and George Barnes. I shall look for the man first and then the book. Thanks for the pointer. I am self-taught in music theory and composing, just like you.

    Free Download E Book Guide to the Practical Study of Harmony Dover Books on Music

    Now 33 years old, at the age of I decided that I would like to compose my own music, although not necessarily classical. I have studied from various textbooks on classical and jazz harmony, as well as on counterpoint, and am still studying. I have also read a few acoustics-related books, such as Helmholtz, in order to deepen my understanding on the laws of tonality and tuning systems I have interest in this, as well as in sound synthesis.

    I believe this is the best, the most useful counterpoint book a composer can read, written by a prominent self-taught composer. The book uses the species approach in tonal context. Another good book related to tonal counterpoint is Kent Kennan, but I think Schoenberg is superior in equipping the composer with a broader linear, contrapuntal thinking for music of all kinds. But the tips are good for other composers to read. I think the main problem for me, is the book is in Spanish. Seems good though. Hi, do you have book recommendations and pdf links if possible to learn modal and tonal counterpoint on my own?

    I would thank harmony recomendations as well. Thank you very much, you have a nice webpage. Some of the best are from Peter Schubert. Counterpoint is only 4 part writing where you would erase some notes. To be convinced, take a Bach 2 part invention and fill the gaps to get constantly 4 notes articulated.

    This is hard work but more long than difficult. Try to stick to I, IV and V when you can. This will end in a pretty hectic chorale but you will understand where counterpoint comes from. Beginning with the first composition, actively listen to the melody a few times. Really focus on it. Where does it ascend, descend, pause? Where does it hold a note? The next day, listen to the same composition again, only focus on the chords. The third day, listen to the same composition again, focusing on the counterpoint.

    If it helps, read along in the score, if you have it. You may wonder why I suggest listening to on part of the music, then setting it aside for the rest of the day. While you are going about other activities, your brain continues to learn. The evidence of this becomes apparent when you are casually listening to some music and begin to recognize what the intervals between each note of the melody, the duration of those notes, and what chords are being played. When your brain develops this kind of understanding, it becomes effortless and natural. At that point, the music is part of you.

    This is the point at which you will experience a kind of liberation, a freedom that opens wide into your creativity. This intimate relationship with the compositions of others will naturally inspire your own composition in ways you never imagined. Thinking in terms of figured bass has given me harmonic insights as well. Ultimately, and this is just my opinion, the rules are only syntax. A very stringent and superstitious one at that! If we are to call our work art, instead of math then we are Obligated to write what we hear.

    I think that to be able to truly understand counterpoint or any other compositional technique with that amount of rules one should understand the reasoning behind those rules so one can see those rules more as recommendations and less as rules. I feel your pain.