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About Dr. Greg McCandless

Dr. Greg McCandless is an assistant professor of music theory and composition and is also a session musician who has recorded bass, guitar and trombone tracks for artist releases, film scores, production library music and video game soundtracks. McCandless’s research interests include theories of rhythm and meter, music theory pedagogy and the analysis of popular music. His dissertation and related article in “Music Theory Online” (2013) focus on the music of the progressive metal band Dream Theater. He also co-authored a textbook with composer Daniel McIntyre for Routledge, “The Craft of Contemporary Commercial Music (2017).

A native of Rochester, New York, McCandless graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Music degree with honors in bass performance. He later received Master of Music (2007) and Doctor of Philosophy (2010) degrees in music theory from Florida State University.

Areas of Expertise
Analysis of popular music
Music technology and production
Music theory pedagogy


Present Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Composition, Appalachian State University Hayes School of Music


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Honors and Awards

  • Honorary Member, Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society
  • Education Leadership Award, Full Sail University, 2013


  • MUS 1003 Contemporary Musicianship I
  • MUS 1002 Music Theory II
  • MUS 1001 Music Theory I


2010 Ph.D., Florida State University ‐ Music Theory
2007 M.M., Florida State University ‐ Music Theory
2005 B.M., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ‐ Bass Performance

Contact Information