Learn both but pick one.
What do I need for music theory? I’m going to be studying with a major, so I’m ready to begin reading books!
What are the most common mistakes in learning violin?
What are some ways to overcome them?
What is the most important thing to remember about music theory? What I feel is the most basic of ideas.
And so on…
Of course, my main point about learning theory in general is that you should be thinking about it in a way that has value and not just a “what do I learn at my end of year exams” or just a “how to pass a course” exercise. I’m not saying it doesn’t matter, just that you should be thinking about music theory in order to be able to do it in an educational context. If you’re just thinking about memorising it and can’t do the work of reading and thinking about it in order to do the things you’ve been promised, then I would suggest you learn something else. (If that’s you and you’re in a bad spot, I would really encourage you to do some research on music theory. For my part, I’ve been studying for more than a decade, and there’s a wealth of articles and guides online about it, as well as books that I used when I wasn’t studying it.)
Of course, if there’s something specific you are looking for or need but can’t find out about before you get into the syllabus (i.e. theory of music), you just need a little bit of extra advice, but if you don’t really feel you’re learning anything useful, you should probably skip that.
Why is this important?
Because music students today have no choice but to be really organised. They can’t do this on their own without a lot of hard work and lots of study, and if you don’t take part in that then a lot of the fun stuff they’re going to be doing is just sitting at desks and reading books. That’s not what they’re here for. You should be learning about theory in order to be able to teach it in some way to others, whether they become students, or not, but in order to do anything about it there needs to be some work and attention.
This section covers the basics of music theory, from the basics of scales and chords to the theory of intervals, the theory of intervals (and why it is important to use it),