Two really cool free online courses on Notation and Sound from FutureLearn.
Critical Listening for Studio Production – From Queen’s University Belfast
This free online course is a technical ear training programme designed to improve critical listening in a music studio context.
About the course
There are many qualities required to be a skilled sound engineer: the theoretical knowledge of sound and audio, the technical mastery of studio hardware and software, and diplomatic people skills, for example. But perhaps the most obvious (and often overlooked) quality required of all sound engineers is the ability to listen.
The course begins by examining the nature of sound and how properties of sound (frequency, amplitude and sound intensity, for example) are expressed. The relationship between these physical properties and the more subjective characteristics of music such as pitch, loudness, dynamic range and timbre is then examined. The remainder of the course focuses on the signal processing techniques commonly used by sound engineers when mixing multitrack recordings – for example, equalisation, compression and reverberation.
From Ink To Sound: Decoding Musical Manuscripts – University of Basel
Travel through the history of musical notation, learning how to decode medieval music manuscripts, with this free online course.
- What happens to music when we write it down? How did this evolve through history?
- Who wrote down music? And why?
- Which strategies of visualization came into play?
- Are notes just another scripture?
- How does it help us play and listen to music today, if we understand how music was written in earlier times?
Transcribe early music manuscripts
This course will enable you to understand the theoretical and practical principles of reading musical notation from the Middle Ages until the Early Modern Period. We will show you how to decode and transcribe early notational systems. And we will discuss the challenges and principles of music notation, referring to semiotic approaches and visual theory.
Enjoy medieval music
As well as the theoretical and practical parts, this course offers more than 15 recordings of ancient music performances provided by musicians of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis – the renowned institution for ancient music in Basel. These will give you the opportunity to listen to many of the musical pieces that we will discuss during the seven weeks.