Colgate University

First-Year Course Offerings — Fall 2024

MUSI 103   Musicianship and Songwriting (TH)
Core Area
Area of InquiryHuman Thought and Expression
Liberal Arts PracticesArtistic Prac & Interpretation
RecommendedStudents who have taken private lessons or have high school music performance experience should take MUSI 203

Music is for everyone. Yet, it can seem almost mystical to the uninitiated. “Musicianship and Songwriting” provides an environment in which students with no prior musical experience are encouraged to explore the fundamentals of musical practice. Through group singing, rudimentary keyboard, and rhythm exercises, students establish connections between their bodies, ears, and minds that are essential for making music. Individual hearings are conducted over the course of the semester to guide students’ practice. Students learn to read notation and examine music’s core elements (rhythm, melody, and harmony) as expressed through popular, folk, and traditional idioms. At the end of the term, students apply their understanding of these elements through the composition of a song. Whether students ultimately aim to be vocational creators or more well-educated listeners, the skills and methods in this course prepare them for a deeper study of music; guiding them to a better understanding of the music they hear every day.