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Topic: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

  1. #1

    Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    We now have back the Percy Goetschius Serious Composer Series. Books are available in both print and PDF.


    Dr. Goetschius\' books, in the suggested order of study, are:

    1) Elementary 18th Century Counterpoint
    2) The Homophonic Forms of Musical Composition
    3) Counterpoint Applied
    4) The Larger Forms of Musical Compositiong

    Complete tables of contents of all books are online.

  2. #2

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    Can anyone else comment on these books or the author. They look interesting.

  3. #3

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    What would be really be cool is if some of the trained composers could just post some mini-lessons. I quit reading Guitar Player after they started trying to tell me that Stone Temple Pilots\' guitar player was a Guitar Player. (Don\'t get me wrong, I like STP but I don\'t need any muscial help from them.) One of the things that was really great in Guitar Player were these little mini-lessons from godz like Steve Morse and Joe Satriani. They even had little classical guitar lessons. What if some of the obviously well-trained musicians on this forum stuck in some not-so-simple posts. For instance, some nice chord progressions. I remember when a piano player friend just introduced me to Eflat diminished resolving to E. Simple, but not obvious. How about it, guys?

  4. #4

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS U

    [ QUOTE ]
    I remember when a piano player friend just introduced me to Eflat diminished resolving to E. Simple, but not obvious.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Did he really call it an \"Eflat diminished\"? Assuming you\'re in the key of E, you would write it as a D# diminished triad (a chord built on the \"leading tone\"). However, in the classical literature, a diminished triad in root position is not as common as a diminished triad in first inversion or a fully or half diminished 7th chord in root position. Did your friend play a B along with that D# diminished triad? If so, it would have been a common dominant 7th in first inversion (B7/D#).

    For fun, play C/E to F# (from Debussy). Or arpeggiate F#/A# \"against\" C (from Stravinsky).

    Pat (a Yale-trained music theorist . . . once upon a time)

    P.S. The Goetschius books are worth adding to your collection. The material is timeless, particularly if you\'re interested in an old-school conservatory approach (a good thing, mind you). Still, contemporary theorists are always coming up with different ways of presenting these topics (I\'m a \"form-as-process\" kind of guy), so you\'ll find a plethora of texts out there, some useful, some not. When I taught undergraduate courses at UCSB many years ago, I was partial to Gauldin\'s books on harmony and counterpoint (Harmonic Practice in Tonal Music, A Practical Approach to Sixteenth-Century Counterpoint and A Practical Approach to Eighteenth-Century Counterpoint), though I always supplemented these with treatises from the period (e.g., Zarlino\'s The Art of Counterpoint). If you want to study \"species\" counterpoint (a.k.a. \"strict composition\"), pick up a copy of Salzer and Schachter\'s Counterpoint in Composition, in addition to the Fux treatise (the Peter Alexander edition, of course).

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Chandler, Arizona

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    Hey, I like the guitarist in Stone Temple Pilots! He actually plays a couple jazzy solos besides the rock stuff. Sometimes I like to hear some nice power chords instead of all the flashy runs.

  6. #6

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    You may also want to take a look at \'Twentieth century harmony\' by Vincent Persichetti, and \'Contemporary harmony\' by Ludmila Ulehla.

    I have found both books to be very useful. They both contain exercises dealing with topics covered and also provide examples that can be found in published works.

  7. #7

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS Users

    hehe, Pat said Fux

    I\'ve just about worn out my Harmony and Voice Leading Vol. 1 by Aldwell and Schachter. It covered the basics. When going through it, it asks you not to incorporate any theory that has not been covered in the book. This means that all my compositions will just be varying degrees of one key, and it will always sound baroque-ish. I need the next book, Vol. 2, or something similar. What\'s next after 7th chords? And how long til I\'m introduced to the theory that enables me to write 20th century music?

    That\'s the other thing. All the books I see at Borders and on Ebay are consistently introductory books. Any suggestions on books that continue on past introductory? Like I said, this book ends at 6/4 chord techniques. I need the next step [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]

  8. #8

    Re: Counterpoint & Composition Books for GPO/GOS U

    Hi Michael;

    I would suggest that the greatest tutor for writing 20th or (21 century) music is to go to the scores of the great 20th century composers. Traditional chord structure, voice leading and counterpoint rules don\'t necessarily apply. It is interesting that you mentioned the book by the author Carl Schachter. I studied with him at Mannes College of Music in the mid 60\'s. a brilliant music theoritican, but his approach is very academic (nothing wrong with that) I would suggest looking at the scores of Stravinsky, Debussy, Ravel, Ives, Poulenc, and Messiaen, etc, etc, if you want the real essence of 20th century composition. I don\'t think that you can find a good book which will give you the complete picture of the numerous styles which existed in the 20th century.

    Good luck
    Ira Kraemer

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