zzzAUDIATION – What is Audiation? - The Improving Musician


What is Audiation?

What is Audiation and Why Do You Need It?

Audiation is the ability to hear and understand music for which the sound is not physically present. In short, it’s the ability to think musically. Performing music is a lot like speaking a language.

In order to speak, we must have a vocabulary of words, and the ability to put those words together into a sentence so it makes sense in the context of each unique situation.

In music, we must have a collection of tonal and rhythm patterns, and acquire the ability to perform them in musical context, that is, within the harmonic and rhythmic constraints of the tonalities and meters of our culture.

Independent Musical Thinkers

We must seek to understand how music works, so that we are not dependent on others to teach us music, or to rely strictly on musical notation. We want to be independent musical thinkers.


Free Lessons

These free lessons will teach you the language of music: melody, harmony, and rhythm. 

Musicianship Level 1 lessons teach you to audiate, to think musically, in Major and Minor tonalities, and in Duple and Triple meters. 


Learn the horizontal aspect of music: melody. You will learn basic melodic patterns in Major and Minor tonalities. 


Learn the vertical aspect of music: harmony. You will learn the primary harmonic functions  in Major and Minor tonalities. 


Learn the foundational layers of rhythm, and how to chant and improvise rhythm patterns in Duple and Triple meters. 

Video Introduction

Next Steps

Explore the Tonal Objectives and Outcomes of Musicianship Level 1.

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A resource for musicians, music teachers, and parents of future musical prodigy

Recent Projects

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Short songs in varied tonalities and meters with words to sing for your baby. 

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Vocal musings for listening and audiation purposes. 


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Andrew Mullen is a teacher, folk musician, multi-instrumentalist, song-writer, and lifelong learner. He has taught all levels of students in a number of subjects, and is currently a middle school teacher and curriculum coach in Burlington, Massachusetts. Mr Mullen holds Masters degrees in Music Education and School Administration, as well as certification from the Gordon Institute of Music Learning (GIML) in Elementary General and Early Childhood Music. He is currently entertaining Doctoral scholarships.


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