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AngelCityOutlaw last won the day on June 22

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About AngelCityOutlaw

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    Intermediate Composer

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  1. Some music I wrote for a video game with a medieval/fairytale setting. Let me know what you think.
  2. Thanks! It's actually a soprano recorder in this one. Yeah, I'm loving it. Wasn't cheap...but I can tell I'm gonna get a lot of mileage out of it.
  3. I arranged the opening tune from "Hearthstone" using Era II: Medieval Legends, which I'm still learning the ins and outs of. I was inspired to do it because of my mousepad, of all things — which I got from the artist for Hearthstone himself, when I met him a few years back. I haven't actually played the game in years, and I just played from how I remember the song going, so I might have made some mistakes — but it sounds as I remember it.
  4. Yes. Melody is the essence of music, and all that chords are is the simultaneous occurrence of 3 or more different melody lines. Every tune implies harmonic changes beneath it, and you can hear where these would occur on stressed beats. From there, it's just about identifying which harmonies would not only be consonant, but which ones would work for what you're trying to achieve contextually, voice-leading, etc. If you start with a harmonic sequence, the resulting tune will become subservient to it; always working within the confines and pull of established chord tones. Remember that melody came before harmony in history, so it should be subservient to melody and not the other way around. The reason you are struggling with this, is because you haven't developed your ability for phrasing or thematic structure yet. The latter can be learned by reading up on things like "sentence and period" structure, which is the organization of motivic patterns and developments in a phrase of usually some multiple of 8, as well as contour: the shape of the melody. The former is largely intuitive, and comes from developing not just your ear, but muscle memory and sense of rhythm. This is best done by listening to a lot of music, and learning to play music as well. A strong knowledge of voice-leading will also help you. It will also help to develop your voice and singing ability because most strong tunes are easily sung. This is basically, as instrumental ability and respect for the craft among a lot of modern composers has diminished, what has been lost in a lot of modern orchestral music and the like. Melody and its phrasing are directly related to language due to the structural similarities between them. In fact, in the past, singing was used in Scandinavia to call cattle down from the high mountains. A call and response; the cows hear the singer and the singer can hear the cowbells — both of which would carry well through the fjords and mountains. Curiously correlated, is the standard for orthography, vocabulary and general communication in the west is on a serious decline due to technology. https://www.ultius.com/ultius-blog/entry/the-decline-of-communication-due-to-technology.html http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20171108-the-uncertain-future-of-handwriting As an aside: I have no studies or anything to back this up, but it's my personal observation that a lot of the best tunesmiths out there, tend to also be very well-spoken individuals, with strong written communication ability to boot.
  5. Well, by "renaissance" I meant the instrumentation, as I didn't want to simply call it a "cover" or something lol but hey, thanks for listening and the feedback, as always.
  6. Oktoberfest is on, and I decided to make an arrangement of one of Faun's tunes for renaissance instruments like the lute and virginal. I cut down the song mainly because it's actually really repetitive, and without vocals I didn't really have time to make a billion difference harmonizations and such. But I still covered all the parts of the song. Let me know what you think. I'm pretty stoked for their upcoming album
  7. You said a lot of stuff here, but I'm going to mainly focus on this in my post. Despite the tortured wishes of people like Jacob Collier, this isn't a thing. If you take a piece of music that was in C minor, for piano, and then perform it up one whole step, it doesn't suddenly sound "more or less X". Especially if the audience is not intimately familiar with the piece. Specifically because the "X" is entirely subjective and the description only makes sense within your own mind. Key changes within a piece only seem to create some sort of emotional effect because they contrast what came before it. This effect is often more pronounced because this often accompanies a change in the rhythm, or other established norms in the piece up until then. "Key" by definition, is entirely relative because intervals are relative. There are plenty of good reasons to transpose an existing work when you're adapting it for a different ensemble apart from that which it was originally written. Ranges, ease of playing, and timbrel differences. For example, if the original key of X melody line was in a key that would be most suited to the lower range of the oboe, then you should probably transpose it up because it's probably going to sound terrible in the low register. Tin whistles? You're going to want to stay in either E minor or D major on most whistles not just so you don't have to half-hole, but because the upper range is tough on the ears after not-too-long and requires more airflow. Generally speaking, if you can shift around the key, and run into no timbrel, play-ability or range issues, then it doesn't actually matter if you've transposed it or not. Because this whole "X key sounds more X than Y key" is nonsense.
  8. I'm going to give some non-classical examples, in no particular order. Since I'm old, jaded and the childlike sense of wonder has been beat out of me long ago by the woes of modernity. Anyway, here's a few that still give those "chills of wonder" from time to time. I'll start all clips at the relevant spot. 1. When this Duduk solo ends and that woman begins singing over that guitar and ethereal pad. 2. When sh it gets real in Mairead Nesbitt's violin solo 3. The masquerade ball...and that haunting, distant, singing.
  9. Yes, it does sound off. One of the main reasons for that is it sounds like the piano chords are voiced too low. Here's how I'd harmonize your melody But because the melodic movement is weird and since this is basically just these four bars looped, it never feels satisfying with any harmonization that would be appropriate. You have this setup where it feels like it should be a i VI VII progression, which would sound good on its own, but then your melody notes in the last bar don't fit with that. So, one could have opted for the D minor chord in bar 4, but to my ears, especially on loop, this still feels incomplete. F would be the best option, but the F chord strongly wants to pull to the G (dominant in the relative major key), but instead we are pulled back to A minor because of the loop, and we already used G in the preceding bar. We could've used C in that third bar, but it doesn't feel as good of a fit as G does, since in bar 2, you have descending movement from C down to B, which means that the C chord or the G chord would already be suitable choices. I suggest instead, that both bars 1 and 2 are left as an A minor chord so that the B note in bar 2 serves as a passing tone. Put simply: The phrase needs to be longer, and with stronger melodic movement. The strongest options available for the given melody do not create a satisfying cadence, and the phrase is incomplete. The melody should be what dictates the harmony and not the other way around.
  10. We might look to our own time for answers. One thing that's crazy to think about, is that it's only in the last 100 years that we actually have a myriad of distinct genres of music to listen to. In the past, in the time you speak of, it's not that different styles didn't exist, but they were fewer in number, and mostly used the same instruments; which back then, instruments weren't exactly easy to come by. So it was more about developing music itself. And something about genres or periods of musical development, is that they coincide with generations of people. Every generation has its icons, and every generation also gets old and dies off. There were many more Rock N Roll performers than Chuck, Elvis Presley, etc. but how many can you name? Elvis and the like remain the most iconic musicians of their day, of that style, and the generation who listened to it all and pioneered it? They're almost all dead and gone now. Could anyone who would want to take up traditional rock n' roll ever hope to escape the shadow of those icons? I doubt it. We actually are going through this right now in our time with heavy metal and hard rock, which is barely 40 years old. When I was a teenager, 80s Hair Metal made something of a comeback. The bands, who were then in their 40s, got back together, new festivals and tours popped up, etc. Most of the people I noticed who were going to the concerts, were the same baby boomers and late Gen Xrs who were around in its prime; reliving their youth once more After that, it quickly fizzled out. Any new bands like Crashdiet, Crazy Lixx, etc. failed to gain much worldwide, mainstream success. The music simply did not appeal to the Millenial and Z generations enough for them to "carry on the torch"; I believe this to be for many political reasons, but also generational differences and millennial and gen z forging their own musical legacies. In fact, the most successful band from that is Steel Panther, whose whole schtick is a parody of the Hair Metal absurdity. Indeed, there is a complaint in rock/metal today that no NEW bands are taking the spotlight. It's STILL the old guys like Ozzy who sell the most tickets, get the radio airplay, etc. But most these guys...they're dying off. https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/news/general_music_news/black_veil_brides_frontman_you_cant_let_people_tell_you_that_music_of_your_era_is_not_valid.html Check this out: Basically: We're at the stage where the generation of rock is over, the icons have long been established, we're forever in their shadow, the new generation has their own music, and so those who are still into rock and metal are not achieving the success of the icons. Perhaps they never will. The same thing has happened to every "old" genre and generation of music. Once the people who made it are gone, we remember those who were most iconic of the era, and move on. Inevitably, some gems will be lost. and just like how people today aren't generally digging for who else was out there aside from Elvis, or who else rocked like Ratt or Bon Jovi, they aren't looking for composers much beyond Beethoven, either. That music has had its time. I believe it's just the course of nature.
  11. Something which defies expectations as per conventions, but I think in the context of this discussion, it's probably more fair to say "a style that is somehow identifiable to a particular composer" But really, everyone who isn't trying to imitate someone else will develop a style of their own without having to really think about it. This depends entirely on what you want to do If all you want to do is write a good piece of music, then less "originality" and more "familiarity" is good. Having a distinct style there is not a bad thing, but not required. If you want to be a composer for film and stuff, then having something that sets you apart from the endless waves of competition is vital. Newcomers in that business generally complain about being undercut by guys who will "do it for free" or at least less. However, what they fail to realize is that they're all making the same "trailer" and Hans Zimmer knock-off music; the only thing they can offer their potential clients is a cheaper price. Meanwhile, guys like Silvestri, whose signature is clear in their scores, can basically command their price and get tons of work — because they bring something no one else can authentically offer to the film. There are two things that people who are into primarily orchestral music generally fail to realize: 1. The kinds of music that they study and put on a pedestal was not the music of the common folk. "Art music" was — and I don't care how much you flame me for saying it — mostly a trend designed to appeal to the aristocracy. It HAD to be different from what the peasants were listening to, or else the rich would have no interest in it. Just look at this self-righteous letter penned by Chopin Yeah man, screw all those disgusting normal people who like music they can dance to. The bulk of Beethoven and Mozart's pieces that remain popular with most people today, are curiously their simplest ones. The reality is that the kind of music most people listened to back then, was not much different from what appeals to people to day. A good tune and rhythm. This is why old folk tunes have maintained their appeal through the ages while rich-people music from the times has waned. Suspiciously, interest in it has greatly waned now that everyone can afford it. Because now, rich people can afford yachts and fancy vacations and disgusting "gourmet" foods that are over-rated and they probably don't even like, but they can flex on the normies with it. I find it amusing that all the great sculptures, paintings and architecture of European history are still appreciated the world over, and in most cases were BUILT by the underclass. But suddenly, when it came to art music and they said they didn't like it, now they were wrong. They were "dunning-krugered", etc. Same with the inane tat that is "modern art". Now, the rich people know what's best! Meanwhile, orchestras are doing everything in their power, playing "lesser" music, to stay relevant in 2020 and with good reason: There is no rule that says society must have orchestras. So if those orchestras aren't playing music people want to hear, they will die out. 2. Most deliberate attempts at "revolutionizing" music have failed Shoenberg and his serialism are gone, and probably for a reason. Now look, I'm willing to agree that standards have fallen greatly since the 20th century due to technocracy, industry nepotism, and consumerism. But like I said, you'll find that what MOST people like about music has not actually changed. Most people would rather listen to old sea shanties than schoenberg, just as most people would rather listen to AC/DC than Mahler. When you compare The Parson's Farewell to Thunderstruck, it immediately becomes clear what the musical appeal and similarities between to the two are that are responsible for their longevity. Given that, I think it's pretty clear that if you try to reinvent the wheel, you're going to wind up disappointed in the long run.
  12. A maximum-cheese, power metal tune I composed as a battle theme for an indie game. Let me know what you think.
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