Harmony Courses

HR-112

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: All
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: PW-111
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus, Valencia (Spain) Campus

This course is a continued exploration of major key harmony, particularly secondary and extended dominant relationships. Additionally, students continue to study melodic construction and motif development. Students learn principles of linear harmonic continuity and guide tone lines; minor key harmony; subdominant minor; blues theory and chord progressions. Students also learn melodic rhythm, form, and melody/harmony relationship.

 

HR-211

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: All
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-112
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus, Valencia (Spain) Campus

Students continue their analysis and application of major and minor key harmony; elaboration of subdominant minor and modal interchange; and chord scale theory. Students review melodic construction and the melody/harmony relationship. They also review the individual note analysis of melodies. The course introduces substitute dominant and related II-7 chords, diminished chord patterns, and modulation.

 

HR-212

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: All
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-211
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus, Valencia (Spain) Campus

This course provides continued study of principles of modern chord progression, particularly deceptive resolutions of secondary dominants, dominant seventh chords without dominant function, and contiguous dominant motion. Students examine melodic construction, form, and melody/harmony relationship; modal interchange; pedal point and ostinato; modal harmony and modal composition; compound chords; and constant structures.

 

HR-231

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-211
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

Identification and analysis of rock harmonies and melodies. Examples from the mid-1950s to the present day will be studied. Pentatonic and diatonic harmony, linear/open harmony, modulation, and classic rock chord patterns will be included. Emphasis will be placed on harmonic dictation.

HR-241

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-211
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

A study of how harmony interacts with melody, lyric, rhythm, style, and form in Brazilian popular song, accomplished through examining the works of the principal songwriters of three major styles of Brazilian popular music: samba, bossa nova, and MPB (musica popular Brasiliera).

HR-261

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-211
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

Songs written and recorded by the Beatles, as well as songs written by the Beatles and recorded by other artists, will be analyzed for their harmonic content, melodic construction, modal focus, rhythmic phrasing, and lyrical construction. The course will be structured around the 10-year rule for composers and the three stages they move through in their career, from being engaged in others' music, to development of the current style, to innovation. In addition, an understanding of each member's personal history will be presented as a means of understanding the group's music. Also addressed will be the social environment from which the group emerged and developed and consideration given to its effect on their musical development and progress.

HR-325

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: JCMP majors
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-212
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus, Inside Berklee Courses (Online)

Functional, extended, and bass line reharmonization. Incomplete chord structures and reharmonization of diminished chords. Application of the above techniques for writing turnarounds, introductions, interludes, modulations, and extended endings. Corrections of faulty lead sheets.

HR-335

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-212
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

Emphasis on newer harmonic concepts to enable students to write and analyze tunes in the style of Mike Gibbs, Chick Corea, and others. Discussion and use of nonfunctional harmonic techniques including multitonic systems, constant cycles, and patterned material. Analysis of representative tunes.

HR-345

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-212
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

Modal chord progression and melody using traditional, synthetic, and other modes. Analysis of modal jazz compositions. Modal voicings using characteristic tones and spacing considerations. Use of polytonal and polymodal relationships in original compositions.

HR-355

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-212
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

A study of the music of this popular jazz fusion ensemble. Students will analyze original manuscripts and transcribed scores to discover the variety of harmonic, melodic, and rhythmic concepts used that make the music unique, and will write tunes that demonstrate their understanding of these elements. Selected compositions will be performed by the Yellowjackets Ensemble, ENFF-325.

HR-361

2 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring
Required of: None
Electable by: All
Prerequisites: HR-212
Department Code: HARM
Location: Boston Campus

An introduction to the musical elements of several non-Western musical systems will provide alternative approaches to contemporary composition and improvisation. Topics explored will include melody, mode, improvisation, form, rhythmic organization, and preferences of timbre in the music of India, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Japan. Contemporary world beat styles from these regions will be discussed in relation to underlying traditional genres.

HR-511

3 credit(s)
Course Chair: George Russell Jr.
Semesters Offered: Spring, Summer
Required of: None; elective course in CPPD
Electable by: CPPD graduate students
Prerequisites: Written approval of program director
Department Code: HARM
Location: Valencia (Spain) Campus

This course is a study of the pervasive harmonic language and techniques of popular American song. The goal of this course is to foster an understanding of the harmonic ideas that have carried American music through the latter half of the last century, and to discover harmonic alternatives to the traditional tonal systems that pervade American popular music of this time. Students come to understand the contextual relationship between melody and harmony through observation of different song forms from different styles of popular music, including show tunes, jazz standards, blues, rock/pop/R&B, and through-composed works in the jazz idiom. Harmonic options, both diatonic and otherwise, will be observed through study of the scale(s) that relate to the chord/tonality of the moment.

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