Music Theory

The Place You End Up

Music Theory.  Ok, this is probably not the most exciting subject for a lot of people.  If you want to take it to the next level there is no way around it.  You can do this.  And you should!

Reward yourself with some ice cream!

Everything on the CHORD page of the site is also music theory.  Enjoy!

| Augmented Chords | Suspended Chords | Diminished Chords | 7th Chords | 9th Chords | 11th Chords | 13th Chords | Add9 Chords |

Theory Lessons


Understanding intervals when playing the piano can tell you a lot about what you are doing.  Using certain intervals can give you happy, sad, or even scary sounds.  Open your eyes to new discoveries!

Intervals Basic
Intervals Intermediate
Intervals Advanced

Build It!

Learn how to build triads (three note chords) and major scales.  By following a simple formula you’ll be able to build these important musical staples.

Build Triads
Build The Major Scale

Time and Key Signatures

It’s time to learn something other than the key of C!  Branch out and learn how to identify different time and key signatures on the piano.  This is very important information to be able to communicate to other musicians.

Time Signatures
Key Signatures
Remembering Key Signatures (Trick)

Diatonic 7th Chords

The major scale naturally creates different chords when you play it.  Here are all the 7th chords that happen all on their own.

Diatonic 7th Chords



Most teachers explain theory at the beginning–which can be a total turn off–but this TRULY is where you end up if you keep playing music over the long run. I’m not talking about fundamentals like note names and such because those are the necessary things you have to learn in order to play (actually there are probably people that can play without even knowing the notes names…but I digress). By theory I’m talking more about the analyzing of what you are doing, the ability to understand it, then create new music from it. If you learn theory at the right time in your journey you just might enjoy it much more!

This is the final step…and the thing that makes everything else make sense. Not necessarily the last thing you should study in your music career, but the last thing you look at when learning each new skill.

Let’s say you have a good golf swing…and then you learn WHY your golf swing is good…then you become even better because now you know how to adjust the swing to make the ball do cool amazing things!

At the beginning of your journey you might be satisfied with being able to play a major chord. If you find yourself asking, “What is this major chord made up of and how can I create others from that formula?” then you are doing theory.

NOTE: Music Theory can really be learned at any point. Some teach this successfully and have great results with beginners. My opinion is derived from teaching college for eight years and what I saw from my students. It is not a rule of thumb, just something I like to do.