Welcome to FunctionalSolfege.com!

I’m David Newman, and I’m a musician, a creator, a songwriter, a teacher, a thinker, a classical singer, and I teach Music Theory and Voice at James Madison University in Virginia. A significant part of my week is devoted to teaching second year Aural Skills, and I’ve developed a YouTube channel where I have put material to help my students, and the community at large, learn more about how music works.

Expect to see this grow and change over the next few weeks. I’ve just started the website, and it’s a mess right now. But over time, you will see links to my infamous Ear Training Songs, along with explanations of their pedagogical value, and also to my upcoming Kickstarter project to record them professionally!

I will also be featuring a pair of new YouTube series I’ve introduced for absolute beginners who know no music theory at all. The concepts I’m using are not brand new, but I’m not aware of anyone who has done them systematically in a distributed way. My hope is that the series will allow the amateur musician or aspiring professional to quickly ramp up their theory understanding through singing games and the music they already know. Eventually, we will start transferring that musical language to notation in an intuitive way.

I am also working on making sheet music for my ear training songs available for purchase, as well as supplemental materials for the beginner courses I described above.

Keep an eye out for updates!