Gray’s Handbook of Harmony: A Primer for Students and Teachers of Music



It is impossible to underestimate the importance of reading and writing music. It is my intention in Gray’s Handbook of Harmony: A Primer for Students and Teachers of Music to give the student a comprehensive understanding of harmony, and though being able to read notation and understand harmony are essentially the same thing, I have found in my experience that to introduce the discussion of notation and the reading of music simultaneously with a discussion of harmony and chord symbolism is as much harmful as it is helpful. My concern is to keep things direct, simple, and to the point. I do not feel that the fundamentals of harmony are that sophisticated, and my aim is to dispel the confusion and perplexity that usually confound the student. Call it a basic book if you like. One cannot argue that a solid understanding of basics will do anything to harm one’s comprehension of harmony, especially when its usage does become complex. There are a million books on music theory, but I believe you will find that this book is simple and will allow you to come to an understanding of harmony, and music, that you did not have before. Good teaching is reductionist. It reduces the natural confusion produced by technical jargon, so that the jargon leads to knowledge, like it should, instead to everything seeming like it were Koine Greek, the classical Greek.