Music can feel so intimidating because some people study it so much, but the truth is that anyone can appreciate or make music.
Here is a bit of base vocabulary to get you going:
The highness or lowness of a note. In Western music, there are 12 pitches in an octave.
A series of pitches arranged in ascending or descending order. Common scales include the major and minor scales.
Two or more notes played together. Chords are often used to create harmony in music.
The main pitch around which a piece of music is based. A key includes a specific scale and set of chords.
The speed at which a piece of music is played. Tempos are often measured in beats per minute (BPM).
A symbol that indicates the number of beats in a measure and the type of note that receives one beat.
The loudness or softness of a piece of music. Dynamics are often indicated by Italian terms like pianissimo (very soft) and fortissimo (very loud).
A series of pitches played in succession that form a recognizable tune.
Rhythm is the pattern of beats and accents in music. Having a good sense of rhythm can help you create interesting and dynamic improvisations.
Harmony refers to the overall sound created by the combination of chords and how they interact with each other. Harmony is the relationship between the notes and chords played together, and the way in which they support and complement each other to create a cohesive musical experience.
Form refers to the overall structure of a piece of music, including things like verses, choruses, and bridges. Understanding the form of a piece can help you create coherent and meaningful improvisations..
DIY Instrument Building
Players create their own musical instruments using household items and then perform together.
One player acts as the conductor and assigns different instruments or musical elements to each player. The conductor then gives cues for players to switch or stop playing, creating a dynamic and collaborative piece of music.
Players take turns humming a tune to the person next to them, who then plays it on their instrument and passes it on to the next player.
Players sit in a circle with percussion instruments and play together, taking turns leading and following the rhythm.
Keep the song going
Someone plays a song and then transitions into a jam where the same chords are used.
One person plays the same chord progression over and over again
Each person shares a song that means something to them, explains their connection to it then plays it.
One person at a time adds on a repetitive sound or musical element.
Analyze the lyrics
Listen to a song, and share what the lyrics mean to you and what they bring up.
"The Choral Warm-Up Collection" by Sally K. Albrecht and Jay Althouse. This book contains over 180 warm-up exercises and activities for choirs of all levels, along with suggestions for building vocal technique and developing musicianship.
"Group Vocal Technique: How to Teach Singing in a Group Setting" by Kari Ragan. This book provides practical tips and exercises for teaching vocal technique in a group setting, including suggestions for building breath support, improving resonance, and developing vocal agility.
"The Big Book of Choral Warm-Ups: 45 Warm-Ups from Around the World" by Peter Hunt. This book includes 45 warm-up exercises from around the world, along with suggestions for incorporating movement and percussion into choir rehearsals.
"Choral Music Methods and Materials: Developing Successful Choral Programs" by Barbara A. Brinson and Joshua Palkki. This book offers a comprehensive approach to choral music education, including exercises and activities for developing vocal technique, building repertoire, and creating successful choir performances.
"The Group Singing Songbook" by Community Music Victoria. This book includes a collection of songs and activities for group singing, along with tips for building vocal technique and creating successful group singing experiences. The book is designed for use in community singing groups and other group singing settings.