The language of Music… as Bach gave it to us

These are not lessons in the music of Bach, per se, but he knew it all and gave it to us who are the benefactors of his genius. Indeed, he gave us the very scale we use; the ‘tempered scale’ that makes it possible to compose in all keys major and minor. That’s huge! Then he gave us harmonic identities, functions, and extended notes; 9ths, 11ths, and 13ths, and so much more.

If you intend on learning your music, other than, ‘memorizing and practicing’, the material in these videos will be an answer for you. The materials I present are unique, quite different than you have worked with in the past.

As you work on this material, you will find eventually that you know what you are doing; understanding and hearing the various elements, and will not rely strictly on memory, and can visualize clearly what you are playing.  Memory then, will be automatic because you will know what you are playing.  Your playing will take on meaning, as opposed to just notes that you have memorized.

This is the beginning of your journey into the language of music…

There are seventeen (17) videos using the Prelude at the piano. There are also six (6) videos on areas that you can use, not the rules and procedures of the theory manual.

The Bach Prelude…
Video Measures 1-4 — Learn by writing
Video      “           “ — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 5-8 — Learn by writing
Video      “           “ — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 9-12 — Learn by writing
Video        “          “ — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 13-16 — Learn by writing
Video       “            “ — Learn by playing/improvising.
Video Measures 17-20 — Learn by writing
Video        “            “ — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 21-24 — Learn by writing
Video       “            “ — Learn by playing/improvising. Using these measures as an intro to popular songs, including a demo.
Video Measures 25-28 — Learn by writing
Video Measures 25-28 — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 29-32 — Learn by playing/improvising
Video Measures 33-36 — Learn by playing/improvising
Video And finally a lead-sheet type analysis.

Video Key Circle: full, Diatonic and Roman numeral
Video Key Signatures. These are necessary, and you see how to write them well.
Functional Names of Scale Degrees. You must know these. They are part of the vocabulary of music.
Video Writing the major scales on manuscript via the tetrachord.
Video Learning the major scale at the piano with tetrachords.
Video  #01 ‘Normal’ intervals; major and perfect, and altered intervals; minor, diminished and augmented.
Video #02 Applying intervals covered in #01 to triads and seventh chords (quadrads)

If you enjoy these videos, you may purchase and download them by using the buttons below, or you may send a donation in any amount via PayPal to

Purchase and download the 17 Bach Prelude videos:

Purchase and download the 6 Rudiments videos:

5 Responses

  1. Erik Johnson July 21, 2020 / 6:33 pm

    Great advice and approach, Ralph.

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