How Long Does It Take To Learn Music Composition

Charlie K    |

Learning how to compose music is like learning any other skill — it takes time! There are many ways to learn music composition, but most have you starting with creating melodies or riffs.

Most people start there because these can be the easiest to access and/or create. Many musicians begin by copying and pasting notes into an instrument sound until something sounds “good” and then changing up the timing, lenth, etc.

However, this isn’t true composing. You will always know what note every musician has said that they thought was cool, so why not just copy them? Writing your own songs is hard enough without using bits and pieces of things that others have already done!

This article will talk about some strategies for developing your writing skills, including how to write lyrics, poetry, and tunes.

Then, you need to find a teacher

how long does it take to learn music composition

Finding a good music composition instructor is not an easy task! There are many things that determine the quality of teaching that someone will provide for students.

First, they must be certified by a professional organization such as The Royal Conservatory or Trinity College. Second, they should have done at least two years of collegiate studies in music (band, orchestral music, jazz, etc.). And third, they should have received certification as a classroom lesson coach from somewhere like The Ohio School Board Association or ACTFL.

These three points are crucial because they prove that this person has studied how to teach music beyond just being knowledgeable themselves. They also show that they are trained in student success, which is important when seeking out lessons.

By having proper credentials, teachers can put their name into effect for reward programs where they get credit towards their credential for certain achievements.

Practice makes perfect

how long does it take to learn music composition

Learning how to compose music is like learning any other skill. The more you practice, the better you will get! There are many ways to learn compositional skills, from listening to music and practicing notations of musical pieces to taking formal lessons with a trained instructor.

Most people start by trying to write their own melodies or chords, but this is only half of the process. Once they have those down, then they must connect them together into compositions!

Practicing every day is essential for progress towards becoming a professional composer. Setting time aside each week to devote to composing can make all the difference in your career as a musician!

Music composition is an art form that requires creative thinking.

Write down your thoughts and ideas

how long does it take to learn music composition

Writing music is more than just picking notes, it’s thinking about how notes fit together into phrases and sequences, it’s figuring out what rhythm feels good, it’s knowing when to use an accent or not, it’s understanding harmonic progressions, it’s analyzing musical patterns, it’s defining melodies, it’s writing lyrics, and it’s recording and producing your songs!

All of these things take a lot of practice, so you will need to know how long it takes to learn music theory effectively. Some people may say that being able to read music is a basic skill, but I disagree. Reading music is great, but reading about music theory is different – it goes beyond individual note names and chord structures.

It involves exploring the relationships between sounds, concepts like tritone substitution, parallel fifths, dominants, submediant, and others. It means identifying intervals, determining their size, and establishing rules for using them in chords and melodies. All of this applies to diatonic scales as well as chromatic ones!

Practicing music theory takes time, which can be hard if you are someone who wants to quickly pick up the basics. But don’t give up! In fact, I would recommend investing in some music textbooks (like those mentioned above) or buying a beginner level course through Udemy or YouTube.

Keep a diary of your progress

how long does it take to learn music composition

Keeping a notebook or diary is a great way to track your music lessons! You can make notes, doodle, write down thoughts and all of that!

You can also include in this book review note what you have learned recently and anything related to your lesson today. This can be for example if you listened to a song few times and now you are practicing it, making a note of that or looking at some theory about chords and how they relate to each other.

By using your own handwriting, you will feel more comfortable writing in this journal and there are no rules about length or number of pages.

Challenge yourself

how long does it take to learn music composition

Learning how to compose music is like learning any other skill – it takes time, practice, and you have to challenge yourself. There are many ways to learn compositional skills, so do not feel that just because you cannot create music at lightning speed or using very few tools that this will not help you!

Many people start composing by copying what others did before them. This can sometimes work, but only if they put in the effort to make their pieces their own. They must explore different styles and techniques to get inspiration for new melodies, rhythms, and harmonic progressions.

Also, instead of focusing on creating elaborate compositions, try experimenting with short sketches, fragments, or motifs first. These shorter chunks of music can be linked together to form longer songs later!

Final note: Do not give up! If you ever struggle to play a piece, go back to the previous one and see where you made mistakes.

Read constantly

how long does it take to learn music composition

A music student will never truly “know” music composition unless they read consistently every piece of literature related to it. This includes textbooks, notes, essays, and even YouTube videos!

Music theory is always changing so reading up on those changes can be tricky at times. There are many ways to learn about music theory, so whatever works for you is best.

But one thing that does not change is the value of learning how music comes together in terms of rhythm, melody, and harmony. These three components all work together to make a song or piece.

They also each have their own level of complexity which makes them separate fields within music theory.

So whether you want to study jazz, classical, hip hop, or anything else, knowing how these parts come together is a universal way to start. Because it applies to any type of music, this article will focus mostly on teaching you music theory as a beginner composer.

Learn to recognize good music

how long does it take to learn music composition

Now that you have learned how to identify musical notes, it is time to move onto another fundamental element of music composition — rhythm!

Music comes down to one thing: rhythmic patterns. You will learn about many different types of rhythms in this course, but there are two main categories that most people learn early on: syncronized (or steady) beats and irregular or unsteady beats.

Syncronized Beats

These occur when a strong pulse is set up and someone else adds their part onto that pulse at the same speed. For example, if the pulse was a walking foot, then somebody would need to step on the floor with each beat of the music. An easier way to think of this type of pattern is having someone else’s footsteps matching your own!

This type of rhythm is very common in songs and dances. There are several styles of dancing that use syncronized rhythms, such as rumba, swing, and waltz dance. In fact, some experts say that the basis for all Western classical music comes from dancers adapting melodies to syncronized rhythms.

In music theory courses, students are taught terms like meter, accent, and timing to describe these rhythms. Meter refers to what kind of structure the song has, while an accen­t is how much longer or shorter each syncronized pulse is than the one before it. Timing means whether the pulses come together more quickly, slowly, or evenly.

Be intuitive

how long does it take to learn music composition

There’s no such thing as an expert composer, only people who are passionate about music and writing songs. If you love making music yourself, then you’re already more than halfway there!

As we know, musicians make up their instruments (string bassists or guitarists, for example) and how they play them (picking strings instead of using fingers) so that they can learn how to read music.

But beyond that, everyone is different in what kind of music they like and how they want to use it. Some people write lyrics first before thinking of melodies, while others do the other way around.

Whatever style you choose to compose, be intuitive and honest with your creations.

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