Are you a beginner musician wondering whether or not to learn music theory? This is a question that many budding musicians ask themselves.

Some believe that theory is not necessary and others believe that it’s crucial to becoming a great musician. So, the question is, should beginners learn music theory?

What is Music Theory?

Music theory is the study of the fundamental elements of music such as notes, scales, chords, rhythms, harmony, and melody. It helps musicians understand how music works and how to create their own music.

The Benefits of Learning Music Theory

1. Improved Musicianship: Learning music theory can improve your overall musicianship by giving you a deeper understanding of the structure and composition of music.

2. Enhanced Creativity: By knowing the rules of music theory, you can break them creatively and create your own unique sound.

3. Better Communication: Understanding musical terms and concepts can help you communicate more effectively with other musicians.

4. Increased Opportunities: Many music schools and colleges require a basic knowledge of music theory for admission.

The Downsides of Learning Music Theory

1. Can Be Overwhelming: For beginners, learning music theory can be overwhelming due to its complex nature.

2. Time-Consuming: Learning music theory requires time and effort which may take away from practice time on your instrument.

3. Can Be Boring: Some people find studying musical concepts tedious rather than inspiring.

The Verdict

While it’s true that learning music theory can be overwhelming, time-consuming, or even tedious at times, it’s still essential for any musician looking to improve their playing skills and creativity. Without proper knowledge of the fundamentals, it’s impossible to understand musical concepts such as chord progressions, key signatures, and time signatures.

Therefore, it’s highly recommended that beginners learn music theory to enhance their musicianship, creativity, communication skills and increase their opportunities in the music industry.


In conclusion, music theory is an essential part of becoming a great musician. While there are some downsides to learning it such as being overwhelming or time-consuming, the benefits far outweigh the costs. So if you’re a beginner musician wondering whether or not to learn music theory, the answer is a resounding yes!