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MUSICAL COLORS is primarily a set of professionally designed, color coded, removable stickers, with a protective aqueous coating, that are applied directly to the surface of almost any musical instrument.  These stickers are custom made for each type of instrument and do not interfere with the performance of the instrument whatsoever or physically damage the instrument in question. More importantly, these stickers connect the student or musician to his or her instrument through an interactive theory manual and method that is an unparalleled resource of musical information. The manual has spent many years in the making and it was created in such a way as to facilitate the cross referencing of scale and chord information in order to efficiently impart the art of music progression and modulation.

So what is our system really all about?


Western music is based on a twelve tone system composed of seven whole tones and five half tones. The idea of using color to represent musical whole tones (natural notes) in tandem with the idea of combining these same colors to represent the musical half tones (accidental notes) between them is practically as old as the science of music itself. This brings us to keep in mind that these whole tone natural notes can also be considered accidental notes, depending on the key that their music might be in. Therefore when talking about accidentals, they are generally spoken of as notes occurring in a musical score anyway (not static), and therefore if occurring, are seen as notes that can alter any note outside the key that the music is in (i.e. using a sharp, natural or flat form of notation). The sharps and flats are often called the accidentals simply because they are outside the scales that can be created with the seven natural notes.

Whether these half note color combinations are represented as actual mixtures of two colors (i.e. one resulting mixed color), or whether these half notes are represented by two separate colors (i.e. not mixed into one color but never the less shown in tandem with one another), does not really matter, for the two colors chosen are still present in referencing half notes. Therefore, the theory behind such an idea remains consistent.


There are twelve notes in music and they have all been color coded:


One specific and fairly recent example that validates these principals quite poignantly is the U.S. Patent No. 2,284,868, which clearly states that "...seven elements representing the natural notes of an octave in the musical scale are preferably colored...” (and understand that this is an arbitrary selection of colors); while the “...five elements representing the half notes of the octave are preferably colored as a mixture of the colors applied to the natural note-representing elements at opposite sides thereof...", also being arbitrary, although enharmonically theoretical in nature based on previous musical knowledge. This patent was granted on June 2nd, 1942 to Gertrude M. Heaney, an elementary school teacher, and it provides that this knowledge is now and forever legally in the public domain.


These color coded notes are based on our following theoretical model:


Our system is for helping you begin to visualize, through the use of color, how musical notes are laid out on the surface of your musical instrument.  It is a visual aid and tool that will help you uncover musical concepts and applications to improve your overall musicianship. You will learn firsthand about how music is made, what it is composed of and how to get around musically to open up avenues for your own creativity. At first, it may seem complicated, however color will help you see many connections.

Just look at this color coded guitar fretboard,


and check out this musical color coded wheel.

You can also enjoy Standard Musical Notation
converted to
MUSICAL COLORS Notation.


The seven natural notes (i.e. the White keys of a piano) are colored (as illustrated in the chart below) and are each displayed with their standard symbol, for “natural”, directly to the left of each colored note. This “natural” symbol is not necessary when notating a specific natural note (i.e. to designate it as “natural”), however, it should always be used to cancel out any other version of its “accidental” form (i.e. a sharp or flat note notation) preceding it; that is if a natural version of that note is so desired. This type of colored coded musical notation stands out as you can clearly see.


Notice that the note C is colored White or Gray depending on the lightness or darkness of the background on which it appears (i.e. as on a computer display or printed on white paper).

The remaining five half notes (i.e. the Black keys of a piano) and the two natural half steps found whithin the natural note scale (i.e between E & F and B & C), all have fourteen possible forms of accidental notation. Remember that natural notes can also be considered accidental notes, depending on the key that their music is in. That when talking about accidentals, generally they are spoken of as notes occurring in a musical score anyway, and seen as notes that can alter a note outside the key that it is in. These following fourteen notes are due to the seven natural notes each having both a sharp and a flat form of notation representing half steps away from each.


Notice that our color coded notation system shows the implied movement of a musical note to resolve up or down, using color to see the correlation between notes that are a half step away from eachother.

The five half notes in music are C# or Db, D# or Eb, F# or Gb, G# or Ab and A# or Bb. The two natural half steps are between the natural notes E & F and B & C. Therefore, each accidental form of these four naturally occuring half step notes can reference one another when in their own altered accidental forms. They are sometimes refered to as the “False” accidentals. For example, E# is Yellow (i.e. the sounding natural note F) while Fb is Orange (i.e. the sounding natural note E). Likewise, B# is White (i.e. the sounding natural note C) while Cb is Violet (i.e. the sounding natural note B). The five chromatic half notes, or “True” accidentals, all have two forms of enharmonically derived names, each having a version of a sharp or a flat notation (i.e. enharmonic spelling), as well as a mixture of their two adjacent colors (i.e. enharmonic coloring). This clearly shows the difference between the two.

In addition to the fourteen accidental forms of notation (i.e. single sharp and single flat), there are also ten forms of double sharp or double flat notations based on the five natural whole step notes found within the seven natural note scale (i.e. between the notes C &
D, D & E, F & G, G & A and A & B). These are, in essence, the seven natural notes, however in this case, these natural notes are used as enharmonic extensions.



At first, all of this might seem overwhelming, however, after some time for study, this standard twelve tone system will begin to make sense to you. You will then begin to grasp some music theory terminology and how it applies to music; as color can and will accelerate your learning if you are dedicated and enjoy of the art of MUSICAL COLORS.

MC Composer Music Theory Manual Interface

will help you, teach yourself music, right from your own computer!

Click here to learn more...


With MUSICAL COLORS you will...


• learn to play all musical scales quickly and accurately in any position or key.

• know how chords and melodies are built and in what scales they originate.

• see the complexity of relationships that occur when music is heard.

• find a comprehensive way to understand the function of music.

• learn the basic building blocks of Melody and Harmony.

• play chords anywhere and in any position or key.

• play all types of music on your instrument .

• compose your own unique music.

B
e c o m e your
own
T e a c h e r


Copyright © 1991-2005 by Michael John Wiley
All Rights Reserved

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