The Creative Power of Advanced Harmony

Move beyond cliché chord patterns by understanding how to apply more complex harmonic concepts to your music.

Gifting options available at checkout.

Starts March 6

Six Week Mentor-Guided Course

Money‑Back Guarantee

The best part about learning the rules of harmony is learning how to break them. Moving outside of predictable chord patterns is what gives D'Angelo his swagger, Grizzly Bear their sophistication, or Erykah Badu her sense of ethereal other-worldliness.

In this six week course, we're going to show you how to transcend tired harmonic clichés to build more nuanced, interesting chord progressions. We'll explore modal interchange, secondary dominants, dissonance, chromaticism, and other ways to bring a "jazzy" sense of harmony to modern music. You'll be challenged to write your own mood-setting music by creating tracks for topliners, TV ads, film trailers, and more, and get personalized weekly feedback on your work from an expert. By the end you'll feel comfortable crafting more sophisticated chord progressions to create more nuanced emotions in your music. 

If you're looking for an intro to harmony in modern music, check out Unlocking the Emotional Power of Chords

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Ethan Hein

Music Technologist & Theory Nerd

Ethan Hein is an adjunct professor of music technology at NYU and Montclair State University, and a founding member of the NYU Music Experience Design Lab, under the leadership of Alex Ruthmann. You can follow all his explorations of music theory, music education, and pop music at

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theory for producers
music theory

2 Weeks Left to Join the Next Session

Payment plans available. to find out more.

  • Unlimited access to interactive and video content
  • Weekly feedback and support from an expert Soundfly Mentor
  • Downloadable course pack with extra resources

Price $499

Transcend tired clichés.

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to extend your chordal knowledge and create more complex emotions and harmonies.

More interesting chords

Create More Interesting Chords

We examine extended chords, such as 7ths, 9ths, 11ths, and more, to add more sounds to our repertoire.
Complex emotions

Explore Complex Emotions

We explore how borrowing from different keys and harnessing dissonance can create more nuanced moods in our music.
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Practice Turning Theory into Action

We give you realistic mock writing prompts to challenge you to translate your learning into your music right away.
Study complex chords

Study Complex Chord Progressions in Use

We analyze popular songs from across genres and how they use non-diatonic chord progressions to create fresh sounds.
Are you an educator? If so, you can access educator discounts. !


Our expert mentors do whatever it takes to ensure that you achieve your musical goals for the course and leap forward in your learning.

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Martin Fowler

Producer & Composer
  • Produced & composed works for TV, film, & podcasts
  • International touring & recording artist with over 15 years experience
  • Studied bass & music technology at Berklee College of Music
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John Hull

Producer & Composer
  • Mix engineer for full-length film scores, including Experimenter
  • Former composer of ad music at Human World Wide
  • Studied production & engineering at Berklee College of Music

Course Outline

  1. Start
    Section 1

    Getting Your Bearings

  2. Start
    Section 2

    "Jazzy" Chords Demystified

  3. Start
    Section 3

    Leaving Diatonicism Behind

  4. Start
    Section 4

    Chromaticism & Passing Chords

  5. Start
    Section 5

    Tricky Tritones

  6. Start
    Section 6

    Embracing Dissonance

  7. Start
    Section 7

    Stacking Beyond Sevenths

  8. Start
    Section 8


  9. Start
    Section 9


  10. Start
    Section 10


  11. Start
    Section 11

    Slash Chords

  12. Start
    Section 12

    Putting it All Together


What will I learn in this course? 

You'll learn how using more complex chords and chord progressions can create more interesting and nuanced moods in your music. You'll also learn a ton of music theory concepts, including sevenths, extended chords, modal interchange, chromaticism, effectively using dissonance, and much more. You'll use all this right away in a series of real-life writing and production challenges.

Is there a money-back guarantee? 

YES. If you sign up and the course isn't what you expected, we will give you a full refund as long as you tell us before the start of the second week. The reason that the second week of the course is a cut-off for our guarantee is simply because if we go past that deadline, our mentors will have likely put in a lot of time, energy, and effort already. 

We're also happy to move you to a subsequent session, if you end up not having as much time as you expected. Once again, let us know as soon as possible! 

Are there any pre-reqs?

This course is really the second of our series on harnessing the emotional power of chords. As such, while not required, it will definitely help to have a working knowledge of scales, notes, and basic diatonic harmony, or to have taken the preliminary Chords course. Additionally, you'll want a working knowledge of a digital audio workstation (DAW), such as Ableton Live, Logic, FL Studio, or something else.

What do I get as a Mainstage student? 

Mainstage courses are for students who are ready to take their music to the next level through more sophisticated chord progressions and harmonic choices. You'll receive immediate, unlimited access to online materials, a downloadable Course Pack, and in-depth personalized weekly feedback from a Soundfly Mentor. This Mentor will help you stay accountable to your goals, answer your music theory questions, and offer guidance along the way.

What does it mean that the course starts on a specific date?

As soon as you purchase a course, you can begin exploring the course material immediately. On the start date, the session begins, which means you'll receive your Course Pack and begin the guided experience that includes weekly activities, feedback from Soundfly Mentors, and much more. This is intended to help you stay accountable and get the feedback you need to succeed. 

Will there be future sessions of the course?

Yes! We aim to start a new session on the first Tuesday of every month. Check back shortly for firm dates, or sign up for a Soundfly account to receive email updates about course dates and new course launches.

How do I give the course as a gift?

Soundfly courses make great gifts for the music lover in your life. To purchase a course as a gift, first sign into your Soundfly account, or create a new account for you (the purchaser). Pick the course you'd like to give, click to purchase, fill in your information, check the box below the credit card form saying you're buying the course as a gift, and click to pay. You'll shortly receive an email gift certificate that you can give to a friend.

How do I sign up for a course using a gift certificate?

Create your own Soundfly account, navigate to the course you've been gifted, and click to "buy now." On the check out page at the bottom of the form, you'll see a field where you can enter the code on your gift certificate. Enter the code, no credit card info needed, click "Apply," and enjoy the course!