art, math, music, physics

Mathematical Music Theory 3: Combination Tones

Today we'll cover one of the most dangerously overlooked consequences of what we've been talking about. I say it is overlooked because most people can probably get a degree in music composition without this ever once being mentioned. It should be obvious by the end of the post why it is dangerous for anyone writing… Continue reading Mathematical Music Theory 3: Combination Tones

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art, math, music, physics

Mathematical Music Theory 2: Derivation of the Western Scale System

It is extremely important that you believe that the overtone series is inherent to music in a natural way before proceeding, because now what I want to do is make an argument that the reason the 12 note chromatic scale that is so fundamental to Western art music and sounds like the "natural" way to… Continue reading Mathematical Music Theory 2: Derivation of the Western Scale System

art, math, music, physics

Mathematical Music Theory 1: The Overtone Series

Since I'm coming up dry on actual math, I thought I'd give a few lessons on music theory from a mathematical viewpoint. The overarching argument I'm going to try to make is that students of music (and of music composition in particular) need to know some math and physics. I think for the most part… Continue reading Mathematical Music Theory 1: The Overtone Series