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The art of crafting a 30 second "awesome" song...


rockinrobby

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I've been watching a lot of TV shows on NetFlix lately?

 

And I've been noticing some REALLY excellent songs written for these show? And the songs "obviously" have to be in the 30 second range?

 

So they're not really songs "per-se?" But they are?

 

The one I'm watching now is "Lie to me..." EXCELLENT SHOW!!"

 

And the theme song is listed below.

 

My point is, "there is a HUGE art..." to writing a song? That only lasts 30 seconds? Yet draws the listener in? And is powerful and memorable?

 

I believe we should all aspire to this skill/talent/ability...

 

This is the theme song I'm referring to; But there are lots of good ones. This one just got me thinking. 30 seconds is what you get? What could you do? I need 3 minutes? (for a song too...)

 

[video=youtube;uVPdElyHpB0]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVPdElyHpB0

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Actually, I'm a 30 second kick. I'm determined to take the next few songs and just do them in 30 seconds. Can I get the concept over in that time frame, can I proceed? I've several outlined currently that are in the 2:40 space but I can realize them. I'm thinking I might turn them into 30 second pieces just to get over the hump to see if they work.

 

If so, then i'll develop them further. I'm thinking it's a pretty decent exercise to weed out the concepts that never make it from my brain to the keys.

 

Note, I used to work in advertising where 30 seconds was the key. Add donut sections at @18 and @24 for regional advert to place their name and *bing* you've got it.

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Robby - Id be almost certain (maybe not in your example case) that these ARE in fact your usual 3 and a half minute song..... cleverly edited down by the production house.... Bang of intro, into chorus...bang out


Much like the friends theme.

 

 

Yeah. I played a gig with The Rembrandts and they joked, "Here's the rest of the story" before launching into I'll Be There For You. As I went searching for 30 second themes on youtube that I remembered... they all came up at 3:30 or so. But there are certainly those 30 second gems crafted for that duration. The Flintstones, The Jetsons, the Beverly Hillbillies...

 

Then again, maybe the writers did pen 3 verse for those too. Hmm.

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I'm with stickboy to some extent, particularly with regard to today's industry. Since it's typically cheaper to just license a song you already know you like, you get that a lot more these days that in the old days. But even then, folks would often write a song or theme that was or could be extended out.

 

Even when dinosaurs ruled the earth, Ogg and Thogg dreamed of getting a hit on the radio, when they wrote a purpose-driven song or theme for a TV show. Maybe less so back then for straight advertising jingles... which sometimes were amazingly slipshod, using nursery rhyme or other public domain melodies under jawdroppingly trite lyrics. People would save a couple bucks at the front end and then spend hundreds of thousands over the course of the jingle's life putting it on the air.

 

I've written a few, short, purpose-driven jingles (a few for radio with lyrics, sort of, and a few instrumental beds for advertising or PSAs) and it can be tough. It's also sometimes a bit of a chore to get the timing right -- especially if you have to match your music to voice over or onscreen events.)

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"lol Too long!!"

 

If I had a dollar for every time?

 

"First, I want to point out to a couple of chronic abusers of this forum that they need to resist the urge to post even though they have nothing of value to say. I'm sure I'm not the only one who is getting sick of the nonsensical and often vulgar prattle from these individuals"

 

Whoops... What if I write and post a few pro socialism tunes? I'm working on a cover of "I give, you give, blind" CSN? That might help?

You know? Bill Murry told Sgt Hulka, that every unit needs a leader? And he volunteered to lead the unit? I think I may have what your unit needs?

 

Seriously? Prattle aside? 95% of people who post here don't seem to give a rats rear about anything other than what they have to say? Seriously? I think that's a reasonable estimation? 95% of people who post here, post and say "look at me!! look at me!!" Get my #'s up!! Listen to my stuff!! But 5% or less, actually listen critically? Read critically? And comment "critically..." I like to be part of that 5% some of the time? It's hard to be most of the time? Sometimes, I comment "to bump a post of the person who was the OP?" Some may think (wrong headedly...) that the comment adds no value? Yet, it does bump the post, giving others an opportunity to read and respond? That they otherwise would have missed if they only read the first few posts when they login/logout...

 

So yeah, let's put the kibash on that 5% The 5% who actually read, who actually listen critically? Who occasionally have something very valid and very valuable to add? ;-) And let's do so in the spirit of the countries of the Middle East who are "clamping down HARD on free speech, and expression?" Hell? Let's machine gun a few people? And start with me? I'm politically incorrect? Let's control speech? THAT is MUCH better! The more tightly we can control speech, thought, and ideas and expression? The better off we all are... Right?

 

Let's get it down to 1 or 2% of people who actually listen and comment critically? :-) Hell, let's just make it a bulletin board service? Where there's no feedback whatsoever? Just people posting saying "look at me!! look at me!!" That would make it virtually impossible to offend ANYONE!! :-D

 

That will help HC? When can we implement this?

 

I personally feel that more speech is better than less speech, as long as it is not "directly offensive." i.e, you are a "insert your favorite here" And I hate you because "insert your favorite here." Outside of that? This is America... And we're all big boys and girls... And to endeavor too aggressively to sanitize free speech and open discourse IMO is "Marxism..." Comrade.. Again, as long as that speech is not overtly inflammatory or defamatory... But hey? It worked for the Khmer Rouge!!

 

So go for it? My too scents...

----------------

 

I guess it's true that these 30/60 second songs are actually carved out versions of real songs? What is amazing is how powerful they can be? The example I posted from "Lie to me" really sticks in my head?

 

And that's what we all set out to do? To create something that sticks in someone's head? "like a dagger..." (not a threat! not a threat!)

 

It's all about the hook... (not a threat!)

 

The hook needs to be memorable... It needs to draw you in (not advocating kidnapping or imprisonment!!)

 

It needs to be something you remember (sorry, nothing that fits the acceptable use policy here...)

 

Yet something unique? It has to stand on its own? And to make "all of that work together, in unison?" Well... "Good luck" Like the terrorist told Liam Neeson in "Taken..."

 

Almost impossible? But people do it? So it's possible...

 

----------------------------

 

Dr. King sought to judge men, not by the color of their skin? But by the content of their character? I agree with Dr. King... Judge men by the content of their character? Not whether or not that content matches your prism of righteousnesses? Fight tyranny wherever it exists... Confront it, "fight it."

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No you are not Grace. You give? And you give back? That particular comment was more directed at those who post "look at me?" And "never" post anything else. Other than what they have to say? And trust me? it's high 90s... It is what it is? I'm merely stating facts.

 

And again? Re-read the top of my last post?

 

"First, I want to point out to a couple of chronic abusers of this forum that they need to resist the urge to post even though they have nothing of value to say. I'm sure I'm not the only one who is getting sick of the nonsensical and often vulgar prattle from these individuals"

 

That was what I was getting at, did you really think that was directed at you? I was commenting on "that" in quotes, above... If you believe that was directed at you, I'm sorry, it was not...

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Stick to the music Robby - you're good at that!

 

Ans on the original subject, im sure you have a hook, decent chorus in your reportoire, surely this is nothing new that what we need to do is write a new, catchy, memorable hook?

 

I reckon if you took one of your own chorus' looped it and stuck it on tv...then it would get it peoples head....

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I can always remember the punk label Fat Wreck Chords releasing loads of promo albums with all their acts doing 30second songs or minute long songs. Always made for quite interesting listening and of course a very clever idea for labels/promoters/managers with plenty of acts on their roster.

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