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Old 05-11-2017, 01:16 AM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: May 2017
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Thumbs down Help with the Basics of Composition

Firstly, I'm new to the forums. Sorry if this is the wrong section. I always look around as a precaution. I also think I picked a terrible title, but I'm not yet sure how to change it.

So I've just started composing, on and off for the past few months. I'd say I've become pretty good at reading rhythms and constructing them due to the practice I've had, but I am not yet at a point where I can compose something on my computer as fluidly and brilliantly as I'm able to play it on Piano, Viola, etc.

My main problem is the fact that as I stop playing to write whatever I had come up with down, I lose it really quickly. I have hundreds of melodies that have come and gone within minutes, it's very frustrating.

I can write things when I just sit down and come up with a melody in my head, but it sounds terrible, dull, bleak, etc.

Do you guys do anything to help write it down in time? Do you do some sort of outline? Recording? I've tried a few of these things but I'm in limited on time, in terms of when I can play my stuff.
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Old 05-11-2017, 11:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm a very intuitive, stream-of-consciousness type of person when it comes to composing sketches, it's all very neurotic for me.

I'm also an improviser, so one of the best methods you should utilize if you're playing it it on your piano, is to RECORD IT.

Do you study music? How long have you been playing? just wondering, that could help to specify further.

Composing is a personal experience, which has personal significance to the composer, so it will vary person to person. The best way to become as efficient as possible is work out the way you think and take advantage of it.
But for instance with recording, the more you practice transcribing your improvisations, the better you'll get.

If your'e studying theory, you'll start to automatically say e.g. "that's a minor 6th", "that's a major 2nd" and so forth.

Hope this helps, let me know!
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Old 05-12-2017, 09:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default This Is What You Should Do

If you can get the financing, you should apply to a music conservatory. If you have actual talent, you'll be accepted, and what you'll learn will both change and fulfill your life.

If you have talent, music theory'll come easily and quickly to you.

If you've picked a good conservatory, they'll stress that you break any habit you've developed of composing at a keyboard - or any other instrument.

The reason's that is twofold:

1] It slows you down. If you really have a compositional gift, then music should come to you "in your head". With sufficient training, you should be able to get it all down on paper - know as notation - quite easily. After all, all of the greatest composers in history have managed to produce their masterpieces in exactly that manner. Once the music starts flowing, you don't want to be hampered with picking it out on some instrument - and then pausing to notate it. As you've already found, that really slows you down, and you loose the music that's just occurred - probably never to occur again.

2] It's not natural. If you're actually gifted, then music flows naturally in your mind.

However, before you get to that point, you might try just using your cell phone to record material. You may then play it back later and notate it, develop it, assign instrumentation, etc.
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