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Are you looking to rekindle your knack for singing? Maybe you’re interested in this mysterious History of Rock Music class that you’ve heard so much about. Or perhaps you have a few credit hours on your DARS to kill.
Whatever the case may be, wonders await you in the School of Music. You don’t have to be a musical prodigy to enter Glidden Hall--you just need to be an OU student who’s ready to get schooled in the fine arts.
Here’s a list of options to make your spring quarter schedule sing.
Class Voice (MUS 147A): Have you always dreamed of auditioning for American Idol? This two-credit hour class just might be your ticket to Hollywood.
Students briefly learn some basic music theory, but the rest of the class is devoted to good singing technique. Breathing and stage presence are both emphasized, as well as physical and vocal warm-up methods. And yes--you have to sing in front of the class for a grade! But don’t fret--once the quarter’s over, you’ll say ‘adios’ to stage fright and ‘hello’ to stardom.
Intro to Music Theory (MUS 100): If you’re looking to gain in-depth knowledge of how music works, then this is the class for you.
“This class is all about how music is put together to make different sounds,” says professor Matthew Morris. “I hope [students] can apply it to their recreational music making, and I hope to better equip them to enjoy music.”
Students learn how to read and write music in different keys, build harmonies and construct scales. “When we start studying chords, it gets a bit difficult,” Morris said.
His tip for success? “I tell all of my students, ‘Do the assignments I’ve given you, and if you have any questions, come see me.’ I encourage them to listen for what we’re learning about in the music they’re listening to so that it’s relevant and useful in their personal lives.”
Folk Music in the U.S. (MUS 427): For a school that’s nestled in the foothills of Appalachia, it’s no surprise that there’s a class based around folk music.
“It was cool to learn where music came from specifically,” said Ohio University sophomore Cameron Rader, who took the class last spring.
The class mainly focuses on genres as opposed to artists, but Bob Dylan fans will take comfort in knowing that their idol is a small part of the curriculum.
And don’t let the history aspect of the class scare you away--Rader says it’s not too difficult.
“We had, like, four papers that we had to write,” he said. “But Milton Butler. . . he was awesome. He is passionate about music and he really made me like [the class].”
Introduction to World Music (MUS 121): For those adventurous kids desiring to be more cultured, Intro to World Music has a place for you. The class combines elements of different cultures, such as mannerisms, customs and food, with music from around the globe.
“We would learn about one or two different places every week,” said senior Jordan Poorman, who took the class last winter.
Between listening to tribal tunes, sampling ethnic foods, and a group project, the class is highly interactive. But although she says it’s a fun class, Poorman advises students to study hard.
“If you don’t take notes, you’re pretty much screwed,” she said. “But [Professor Younge] did not want to give Cs. He wanted us to learn and get good grades.”
History of Rock Music (MUS 124): It’s rumored that Andre Gribou is a god. Or maybe a glorified grandfather-type figure. Regardless, History of Rock Music is one of the most talked-about classes on campus, and Gribou is just as popular.
“I’ve gotten some nice feedback, but I’m willing to bet if I stopped teaching it, the class would still be full,” he said. “I think people are simply interested in rock music.”
The course covers the British Invasion and the rise of rock in the 1950s and continues to the end of the ‘60s. If you have a short attention span, the two-and-a-half-hour-long lecture might be a struggle. But if you’re a beast at naming tunes and can write endlessly about rock and roll, add this class to your MyOHIO shopping cart.
Exploring Musical Styles (MUS 120): If you’re a history buff who happens to love music, there’s a spot for you in MUS 120.
“We talk about how different instruments and genres of music change over time and how this all relates to the events of the time,” said professor Dorothy Bryant.
Students study music from as far back as the Middle Ages until the 20th century, so be prepared for musical variety. As far as assignments go, Bryant says that there are no papers, but students take quizzes and exams periodically. And although it’ll count as an arts credit, this ain’t a blow-off class.
“I think a lot of people think it won’t be hard, but you do have to apply yourself and study,” said Bryant.
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