From Thaddeus Cahill’s 7-ton Teleharmonium1 to today’s portable synthesizers, electronic music has come a long way since its emergence in the 17th century.2 The most interesting feature of producing electronic music is the possibility of creating faster and more precise rhythms than traditional music production methods. 

The difference between songs that have electronically processed sounds and those that have music that is produced from instruments is obvious to most listeners. Electronic music can sound unusual; at first, it can feel like it doesn’t adhere to the musical norms that we are used to. Some people love the deviation from the usual styles of music, while others never warm up to it. 

This doesn’t bother most music producers who are into electronic music, as they probably want to retain the progressive elements that make electronic music what it is. This is also the reason most electronic music producers avoid music theory,  fearing that it may curb their creativity.3  

According to music experts, this is the reason why most music producers who create music electronically don’t feel the need to learn music theory or play music instruments to compose electronic music. However, some experts from the music industry believe that having a foundation in music theory can help artists in the genre in many ways. So, how important is music theory in producing electronic music? Here are some advantages and disadvantages of learning music theory for electronic music producers. 

Advantages of Music Theory in Electronic Music Production 

Professionals from the industry who have benefited from having a theoretical background in music believe that learning music theory allows you more creative freedom. It equips you with the knowledge to create a style or sound that can otherwise end up taking too much time and effort to figure out on your own. 

According to music professionals, even learning the fundamentals of music theory can help immensely. Knowing the descriptions of basic musical elements such as music notes, melody, chord progression, harmony, etc., can help you communicate better if you are collaborating with other artists. 

Disadvantages of Music Theory in Electronic Music Production 

The same experts also suggest keeping your curiosity in check when learning music theory, as diving too deeply into the subject can lead you to become fascinated with the structural and foundational aspects of music. This can influence your composition and make your style too individualistic for other people to enjoy it. 

Another pitfall of getting too familiar with music theory is that it can keep you stuck using the same chord progressions, harmonies, and melodies, which can end up making all your musical creations sound similar. It is important to use it as a base to explore your creativity. 

So, as long as music theory is used in a balanced way, it can make things easier when producing electronic music. It saves time by helping you compose music faster and communicate your ideas more clearly.  

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1. Electronic music – New World Encyclopedia. (n.d.). New World Encyclopedia. Retrieved July 21, 2022, from
2. A short history of electronic music: the instruments and innovators that defined a genre | MusicRadar. (2022). Retrieved July 21, 2022, from
3. How Important is Music Theory in EDM? (2021). Retrieved July 21, 2022, from