Jump to content

Do you sketch, score, notate, diagram, write out....your original compositions?


mfergel

Recommended Posts

  • Members

So, how many of you actually put to paper (in any manner) your original compositions? I get the impression that a lot of folks nowdays just record to tape/etc. without really sitting down, writing out their stuff, editing, arranging, etc......

 

Is musical notation/etc. a dying art? Post some photos of your chicken scratching if you have any.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I'm just now learning how to read and write notes. I played my first self notated tune not so very long ago. yeah it was simple but so fun.

for the time being, I write lyrics and put the chords down where they change according to the lyrics.

I record a plain jane version so I'll know how it goes.

maybe in a few years I'll be able to write it down so other musicians can play it as I hear it .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Funny you posted this, because I've been thinking about looking around for new musical notation software. I've been using PrintMusic 2004. I write music on the jazz side. PrintMusic 2004 is good for doing lead sheets with chord symbols. It's sometimes limited in which chord symbols are available for the jazz genre.

 

It has a mode called "hyperscribe" which is supposed to allow you to play a (piano) keyboad with the notes transcribed in both the bass and treble clefs. It doesn't work very well and I want to find something that works better. All I want to do is write music for piano - not orchestrated scores.

 

Guess I will need to post my own question.

 

Dave

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I'm afraid my typical procedure is to scribble the chords someplace over the lyrics (when I'm even on my game that far).

 

When I write a new song, it tends to be in flux for some time so I like to keep things kind of loose. Sometimes I'll find two or even three different sets of chords on the same lyrics print out. It can be amusing when I'm in front of an audience and get that spotlight amnesia... (I play rarely but I'm playing tonight so it's on my mind.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

When I'm writing/composing, I usually start by working out lyrics and chord changes in a little black moleskine notebook.

 

Then I usually try to make a junk recording as soon as possible (I've had too many instances of coming up with a cool progression on Tuesday, only to totally forget the strumming pattern on Wednesday.)

 

Once I've got things pretty well set I print up "structure sheets" for my band, which basically give lyrics, chord changes, length of solos, all that sort of stuff.

 

I usually don't work any notation on sheet music, just because I spend too much time trying to figure out how to notate all the syncopation and grace notes I hear in my head. The closest I get to that is trying things out in Guitar Pro, just so I can hear how various instrumental parts will sound together.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I can remember music very easily once I have played it - but sometimes I have an idea and there's no guitar or piano-type thing lying around.

 

I'll write down my ideas in little notebooks.... but most of the time I'll just write the melody, in guitar tab. So long as I remember the timing I'll be fine.

 

When a song gets to "that stage", where everything is falling into (or being forced into) place, I'll write a diagram which details where all the instruments are and the structure. Kind of like this...

 

Guitar : ||||||||||||| ||||||||||||||

Lead guitar: ||||| |||||||| |||||

Vocal: |||||| ||||||

Drums: |||||||||||| ||||||||||||

 

 

If you get what I mean... I hope you do because I spent about 5 minutes writing this crappy post. lol the diagram looks like some sort of dodgy glasses.

 

EDIT: the diagram is messed up when I post it.....

 

Then when I have a decent picture of the song I'll start recording versions of it onto a computer. I'd record it onto a tape recorder if I had one, but they're becoming worryingly difficult to come by. i'll normally listen to the recorded version to come up with an idea for the vocals, but sometimes I'll get an idea for them beforehand.

 

Then.... I dunno what happens next. That's as far as I have got with anything. I'm a noob!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

 



When a song gets to "that stage", where everything is falling into (or being forced into) place, I'll write a diagram which details where all the instruments are and the structure. Kind of like this...

 

 

Despite the fact that your diagram got messed up, I know what you're driving at. I do that too, if I get an idea at a place (usually class or work) where it's not practical for me to actually figure out pitches.

 

I'll make little marks relative to each other that vaguely show how close the notes should fall to each other, both in terms of rhythm and pitch. No one else would be able to read it of course, but I can usually get close enough that I'll remember what I meant a few hours later.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

 

So, how many of you actually put to paper (in any manner) your original compositions? I get the impression that a lot of folks nowdays just record to tape/etc. without really sitting down, writing out their stuff, editing, arranging, etc......


Is musical notation/etc. a dying art? Post some photos of your chicken scratching if you have any.

 

admit I read notes on paper about as well as I read Chinese on paper..

 

I'm an idiot.. *slaps head*

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

If the words begin to come first, I write what has come to me so far and then put down a detailed guideline of the concept including any 'rules' I want to follow about setting, direction, mood, mindset, etc.

 

If the music begins to come first, I tab it out (or notate, depending on if its guitar bits or vocal melody).

 

Then as the rest of it comes I fill in the blanks.

 

I end up with big numbers next to guitar parts and corresponding numbers in my lyrics as well as A, B, C etc. notation for the vocal melodies.

 

When I'm getting ready to take it to the studio I will draw a box and detail the orchestration for each section, right down to the timbre of the instrument (guitar tone, vocal mic/pre, etc), as well as a list for what order things need to be recorded in to make the session flow as smoothly as possible.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I write down the lyrics, since it would be hard to keep them in my head all the time. But I don't write down any music.

 

I haven't done enough full tunes yet to work out an overall process that works best. But, it's becoming kind of obvious to me that the best way to go (for us folks who are doing it all ourselves) is to track the whole song with guitar (or piano or whatever your primary instrument is) and voice. This seems like it will have a number number of benefits:

 

1. If the song is good, it should resonate and move you in this form. If it doesn't, it probably isn't good enough yet. If it does, then it will inspire you as you do the rest ofthe parts.

2. All the instruments are there to serve the vocal, so if there's no vocal there when you are tracking the other instruments, it's really hard to react to the nuances of the vocal performance.

3. You can get the basic flow of the song in place and react to that as well as you are tracking the other parts (volume, intensity, density, etc...)

4. You avoid the tendancy to overplay the early parts because they are so alone at that point.

 

Once you get the bass/drums down, toss that original guitar guide track and do the real guitar parts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I always start with lyrics. If something strikes me as interesting, i try to expand on it. I have 2 or 3 notebooks full of finished and "in progress" songs. Then I play with chords and usually I hear the meldoy as i write the words so, it's just a matter of finding the right chords. After that, I try to spice up the chords a little bit. if that works, then I'm done.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Not all of my songs are written out, but many of them are in lead sheet/fake book format. I use Sibelius G7. Great tool.

 

I have three main methods for capturing ideas ...

 

  • , which is transposed from the original key of A to E.

 

I haven't had a chance to put it into Sibelius yet, but when I do it'll look very similiar to what you'd see in a fake book.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I have a couple things i have been working on .... I use a digital recorder. Its faster and easier than writing things down. While you do end up with a really fragmented deal ... it helps to not loose the roll you have going. Its really easy to stumble on to somthing... and wake up the next morning and its gone ... and its easy to stop to write it down ,, and kill the Big mo you have going. I am not a serious writer ,,,,and only have a few things in the can that i havent finished. But I do have what i have recorded ,, so i can pick the ball back up and run if i choose. rat

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...