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Posts posted by joeharmony

  1. thank you all for the wonderful advice. i will take it into account.

    I think the best source of action would be to write the libretto in english myself...as finely as possible, and then perhaps find a frenchman...or spanish :P man to translate. There are websites that you can actually pay to have it done for you...professionally...its jsut a LOT of money for 5000 words to be translated to french/spanish.

    And if that fails, then at least i can use the english libretto i would have written, and try turn that into an opera

    Thanks again.

    Language is not just about words and ideas. It's primarily about feelings. And so is music. If you try to write in a language you can't feel you are going to end up with an opera that sounds like your attitude - apologetic and mediocre.

    If you can't use the language you use every day, don't use any. And if it doesn't work in english, it certainly is not going to work in any other language.

  2. As a "new composer" I have mixed feelings about this site. There is a lot of experience and knowledge available, and that can be really useful. And it's great to see and hear the music others are writing.

    BUT music has it's own language, and if you're just learning it, this can be a really alienating place to visit. Especially if you're like me and don't have much formal music education.

    AND some of the contributers are loving arrogant, and use the discussions to get their rocks off on feeling superior to everyone else.

    AND the tone of most of the discussions reflects the age of most of the participants - under 20.

    I give it 2 stars

  3. I've been away for a couple of weeks, and it's amusing to read the discussions now I'm back.

    There's a "truth" in music - don't ask classical musicians/composers to talk about improvisation, let alone do it, because mostly they don't have any idea what it really is.

    I suggest you all first admit that you're totally ignorant about it.

    Then listen to some music where improv is a way of life rather than just something extra to do because you're bored with following the notes. Start with Jazz - Diana Krall, Art Tatum etc, etc ..... Then try some Blues - Bessie Smith, B. B. King, Eric Clapton ('Rock me Baby' on the album Deuces Wild), Ben Harper, etc, etc ...... Follow that with some Gospel - Mahalia Jackson, Aretha Franklin etc, etc.

    Then talk to some good Jazz/Blues musicians about improv.

    Then come back and have your discussion, based on knowledge rather than ignorance.

  4. I consider myself a democratic socialist - i.e. ever person in a society should have basic needs for shelter, food, education, health care, etc. provided.

    The problem with the arts is this: if I am a worker in a factory mass-producing tables I expect to get $15 an hour; If I am a craftsperson making a table by hand I expect to get $150 an hour; If I am an artist creating a sculpture in timber which has a plateau-like top section and four lower protruberances I expect to receive $15,000.

    Who decides which music is "deserving" of income support for the writer? Should other writers, or should it be the musicians who will perform the work? Or a panel of "experts" who can pick 'real' music (obviously cassical musical would be more deserving than pop.....)? Or academics who have studied music theory? Or bureaucrats who are the ones who would have control of the money anyway? Or would we just throw it to anyone who stuck two notes together, played them on a vacuum cleaner pipe and called it music (this is what happened in 1972-75 when Gough Whitlam was in government in Australia, and it took ten years afterwards for the freeloaders to be weeded out).

    Or should we go back to the system of sponsorship that Mozart and Beethoven had? It worked for them. (But not for the Impressionists)


  5. My birthday says I'm 58, but my songwriting says I'm 5 (anniversary of writing my first song on 4 Jan), and my "serious" music says I'm about six months old. Take your pick. :wacko::wacko::wacko:

    Getting older is no problem. You just have to live long enough. - Groucho Marx

  6. That's a good way to become familiar with the different chord structures and sounds. Also have a look at some of the basic blues and jazz chord progressions, like 12-bar blues (lots of songs use that eg by Paul Simon), 16-bar blues (eg attached) 3/6/2/5/1, Nature Boy (great minor progression), Ray Charles. Start simple and keep working at it.

    Unfortunately Finale is not free, but it's a great program for wherever you are in your writing (I think it's better than others like Sybelius or Motzart).

    And remember, it's GOOD not to know much, because then you're not restricted by "The Rules" and you can find the style that suits you.:toothygrin:



    I Just Didn't See You Coming.MID

  7. It's sounds like another attempt to use African people's instruments and styles into chamber music. Needs some bottom end grunt and a melody, for the embroidery to attach itself to. Good as a starting point.

  8. You can't convert freely between the two as midi is digital data, and mp3 analogue, so you have to record an mp3 while the midi is playing. Youll be able to do this in any program that deals with midi and audio ;)

    Finale lets you save files as mp3, but it can sound pretty thin. You can run the midi through your keyboard using whatever software you've got, adjust the sound to what you want, record it on Audacity or Audio Cleaning Lab and edit and mix to the sound you want.

  9. :cool: "Classical" = ??? Does anyone have a good definition?

    Does snobery = parochialism or chauvinism, or is it about "He doesn't speak the language, so he's less of a composer/musician/person than I am"? Or does Snobery come from a basic insecurity in one's own view of the relationship between myself and the rest of the world.

    It's in all genres. The classical snobs rubbished Rhapsody in Blue. The Jazz snobs hated "What a Wonderful World". The gospel/blues snobs moaned about Aretha Franklin singing with Annie Lennox.

    It's about having a closed mind and heart and spirit.

    Quote The Big Bopper: "I know what I like".

    Quote Louis Armstrong when asked to define Jazz: "Daddy if you gotta ask you'll never know". :D

  10. Hey guys, a teacher of what? Singing? How to play the piano? We're talking about putting the accompaniment to existing melodies, not learning to play an instrument. I agree that some good basic music theory lessons would help, or talking to someone who is already competent at arranging. And some of us can do harmonies in our sleep, but still needed to learn basic music theory.

    Musicgirl, the way I started writing the accompaniments was to write the vocal harmonies with the melody as mid voice, and then use those as the basis for my chords. Start with a simple chord accompaniment, and then experiment with ornamenting it. Most songs have a really simple chord structure under them. You'll get better with practice. And find someone (in your community or online) to ask for constructive advice.

    Alternatively get Band in a Box, put in your melody, and let it do the arrangement. Finale PrintMusic has B in a B as an add-on.

    Keep on writing:toothygrin:

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