Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.
dasen
KVRist
89 posts since 15 May, 2012

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 1:54 pm

Hello,

Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

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jancivil
KVRAF
18839 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:08 pm

Absolutely, but the person cheated is you

Why do you want to fake it? Why are you in music, if you dislike the journey to mastery so.

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UltimateOutsider
KVRian
756 posts since 5 Oct, 2009 from Portland, OR

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:20 pm

No one listening to your music cares how it was made.

As far as "cheating" goes, that's up to you. All of us here probably have our own creative "lines we don't cross." I think a good rule of thumb might be to ask yourself, "Is this song going to feel like MINE if I use this tool/sample/loop to make it?" And if the answer is "no" then consider it cheating.

My own line is loops and "construction kits." I might use a percussion-only loop as one layer for a section of a song- especially complex ethnic rhythms with authentic instruments. But I'd feel zero creative satisfaction using one of those "construction kit" deals where you're just dragging samples and clips into a DAW and pressing Play, or having someone else's loop play raw/unmodified as if it were part of the composition. Where is your line?

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Forgotten
KVRian
1138 posts since 15 Apr, 2019 from Nowhere

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:23 pm

jancivil wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:08 pm
Absolutely, but the person cheated is you

Why do you want to fake it? Why are you in music, if you dislike the journey to mastery so.
That's pretty much how I feel about it. It's not like the theory behind forming chords is difficult, and it's not hard to hear if a chord is consonant or dissonant for you to adjust to taste.

If someone gets satisfaction out of a tool doing the work for them, then great. Personally I get no satisfaction out of that at all.

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jancivil
KVRAF
18839 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:50 pm

It's not different than asking: "Am I cheating if I paint-by-numbers instead of using a palette where I mix the colors myself?"

Nothing personal to the OP, whom I do not know, but I really think one should ask themselves why they're in music if they don't really want to even know enough to write your own chords.
For the approbation of one's peers? Something to show, ASAP; but wait, all that pesky study and practice, who needs it?

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jancivil
KVRAF
18839 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:55 pm

This sort of vacuousness wasn't possible before personal computers, and not then until a certain point. Imagine that to write a song you had to decide your own chords, in every case... in a world that didn't yet conceive of relinquishing one's primary decisions in what is supposed as a creative endeavor. Where no one who painted by numbers was taken seriously as a painter at all. :dog:

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jeffb01
KVRian
877 posts since 18 Apr, 2006

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:03 pm

"If you ain't cheating, you ain't trying!"

I guarantee you there are tons of people that will say everyone here cheats by making music with midi and computers. So you're all cheaters. CHEATERS!

I don't really know diplo, but this is a great advert about cheating...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5aOYZqXGwI
Last edited by jeffb01 on Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Karma_tba
KVRian
977 posts since 12 Aug, 2004

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:18 pm

jeffb01 wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:03 pm
"If you ain't cheating, you ain't trying!"

I guarantee you there are tons of people that will say everyone here cheats by making music with midi and computers. So you're all cheaters. CHEATERS!

I don't really know diplo, but this is a great advert...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5aOYZqXGwI
:love: :love: :love: :clown:

mholloway
KVRian
1136 posts since 11 Jan, 2009 from Portland, OR, USA

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:28 pm

Not only is it cheating, it's illegal, results in instant copyright infringement from the Chord Police, and you could spend years in jail.

It's just not worth it.
www.dwifh.com - old-school industrial music by DEAD WHEN I FOUND HER
https://tvhwy.bandcamp.com/releases - classic IDM / electronica by TV HWY

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jancivil
KVRAF
18839 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:46 pm

jeffb01 wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:03 pm
"If you ain't cheating, you ain't trying!"

I guarantee you there are tons of people that will say everyone here cheats by making music with midi and computers. So you're all cheaters. CHEATERS!
Well these persons can all kiss my ass, I made all sorts of music in the 40 yrs between starting (to get good at an instrument) and the time I really exploited MIDI. On several instruments including singing.

but you're really just taking the piss, isn't it

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jancivil
KVRAF
18839 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:57 pm

but this is a great advert about cheating...
How so?

"...it's what you do with them"

followed by some utterly unoriginal dross. Yeah, don't notice the irony of someone selling samples of synths, regardless of whatever prowess we're to take for granted, pretending to make the argument you don't need to go to the extreme of learning instruments; of course that bullshit appeals to that market. People with no skills. :lol: :party:

Reductio ad absurdum should really be illustrative of a really extreme position and show us something. Here it strikes me as vapid, and the people it appeals to it does because they are defensive.

Learning to write your own chords for your supposed own song is not extreme; learning something about what a drummer - in whatever given context - does, is not extreme. Learning what good bass players do with harmony (eg., voice leading), not extreme.

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Hink
Rad Grandad
28696 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:04 pm

Forgotten wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:23 pm
jancivil wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:08 pm
Absolutely, but the person cheated is you

Why do you want to fake it? Why are you in music, if you dislike the journey to mastery so.
That's pretty much how I feel about it. It's not like the theory behind forming chords is difficult, and it's not hard to hear if a chord is consonant or dissonant for you to adjust to taste.

If someone gets satisfaction out of a tool doing the work for them, then great. Personally I get no satisfaction out of that at all.
for me the finished product isn't what it's about, I am all about the creation, the journey, the personal growth, the fun, so I also agree. Unfortunately though, in the realm of total honesty I really cant say what would I would be like if I was turning 20 or 30 next month as opposed to 60. I would like to say I would still be exactly the same way but I cant say that for sure, what I can say is that perhaps one of the most fortunate things of my life has been growing musically and production wise (for lack of a better term) fairly in sync with the growth of modern technology, or at least this part there of. :tu:
Albert Einstein may have been a genius but his brother Frank was a monster

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Forgotten
KVRian
1138 posts since 15 Apr, 2019 from Nowhere

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:11 pm

Extrapolating, why involve a person at all? If a machine can make music without a person's input then why not just use AI as that douchbag real estate billionaire suggested (in another thread here)?

I'm sure paint by numbers and putting a quarter in the jukebox are very satisfying to some, but I would rather get the satisfaction of creating my own art.

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Aloysius
KVRAF
23950 posts since 11 Aug, 2008 from the Land of Soy

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:15 pm

Yes. A dirty cheater. You must make all your own instruments, code all your own software and design your own hardware alternative to iLok.
Broccoli is murder.

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el-bo (formerly ebow)
KVRAF
12639 posts since 24 May, 2009 from A galaxy, far far away

Re: Is using chord plugins and tools cheating if you do not know music theory?

Post Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:25 pm

jancivil wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:50 pm
It's not different than asking: "Am I cheating if I paint-by-numbers instead of using a palette where I mix the colors myself?"

Nothing personal to the OP, whom I do not know, but I really think one should ask themselves why they're in music if they don't really want to even know enough to write your own chords.
For the approbation of one's peers? Something to show, ASAP; but wait, all that pesky study and practice, who needs it?
In the given, specific case it is likely going to be very different than painting-by-numbers. And there are nany reasons why someone could be 'in music' and have no shame in not writing their own chords :shrug:

To the op: Is it cheating? Maybe. Doesn't have to be :shrug:

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