Jazz and Popular Music Theory

This course is based on an immersion approach, exploring the language of jazz and contemporary music, and fostering a close connection between theory and practice. Learn the basics: scales and modes, chords, forms, rhythmic structures, and jazz styles. You will learn how to listen to jazz and contemporary music, and define and describe what you hear. You will practice improvisation techniques in class. Ear training is a key component: singing bass lines and jazz solos, and practicing harmonic dictation, learning to “hear the changes”. We explore the fundamentals of jazz and popular music harmony, including tune analysis, the II-V progression, secondary dominants, re-harmonization, and jazz piano voicings. We also put these concepts into practice, completing jazz compositions and transcriptions, and using music software to publish assignments. Musicianship lab supplements the class meeting.

Units: 1

Max Enrollment: 15

Prerequisites: MUS 100 (or exempted by the Music Theory Placement Evaluation).

Instructor: Zeitlin

Distribution Requirements: ARS - Visual Arts, Music, Theater, Film and Video

Semesters Offered this Academic Year: Fall