Friday, March 11, 2011

A Step by Step Guide to Writing a Tune (sort of) - Part II

I present you with Part II (and the conclusion) of my first vlog entry which offers some insight into my composition process. Here is a  link to Part I in case you missed it! I often video myself to help remember the ideas - both good and bad. Also, since the writing is often spread out over several months, or more, it is a solid reference point to get me back to the essence of the tune in process. I hope you find this amusing and somewhat insightful. I have.

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Time for a change of pace. I have established a pretty solid and consistent groove up to this point. Here, I am pretty much playing off what has already been established, but, slowing things down and re-arranging some notes. This is what will become the C section and will open up some space for a little improvisation later on.

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The missing link. I needed a way to get out of the breakdown and establish a connection back to the intro. It is a slow build back to the main groove with some slight melodic variation.

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Frustration sets in. After spending several hours (days) on a piece, things can tend to get muddled and oddly worse before it all gets better. I hate these moments but thoroughly believe they are a necessary part of the process. It really challenges you to believe in what you are creating.

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 Sewing together the B-C-D and sections. Now all I need is...

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...the end.

I will post a performance of the completed tune next month on my YouTube channel. Thanks for viewing, reading, and listening!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

A Step by Step Guide to Writing a Tune (sort of) - Part I

I present you with my first vlog entry which offers some insight into my composition process. I often video myself to help remember the ideas - both good and bad. Also, since the writing is often spread out over several months, or more, it is a solid reference point to get me back to the essence of the tune in process. I hope you find this amusing and somewhat insightful. I have.
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The gathering stage where I record the initial ideas soon after discovery. This is what will be the Intro and the A section of the tune. 

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This is one of many searching stages. It is the initial process of developing the tune after landing on the hook. Just brainstorming and trying to figure out where the tune is going to go. This is the infant stage of what will become the B section.

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Distractions. The initial process of writing this tune was accomplished sneaking away while Sadie (my daughter) had friends over. At the end of this clip you will hear the tune Footloose cranked. They were playing a game they called, "Let's annoy Daddy". An apt title. Also, I have no idea why there is a shirt draped over my shoulder.
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The next morning after the initial gathering. Here you will see more searching and a hefty dose of WTF?

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Starting to gel now. The tune is starting to come together as I clarify the parts and start to assemble a form. This is the Intro - A section - B section. Also, I had just installed my new webcam. Looks and sounds sooo much better.

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I often drink coffee while I write. I often need to drink coffee while I write. Especially when I am stuck. To be continued...