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i(don't)suckatcomposing

Turns out that I suck at counterpoint

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You clearly have a great deal of self-respect. (I'm being sarcastic.) I don't think your compositions sound anywhere near as bad as you think they sound. This fugue isn't perfect, of course, but it certainly shows that you have some skill as a composer.

I'm curious as to why you think it's a "crap fugue," as you so fondly named it, lol.

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I think it sounds good man, don't be too hard on yourself, the first step to success is the willingness to look like a fool!

side note: I prefer the term "melodically challenged"

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I think it is a 'crap fugue' because it is very short, very sketchy moments, It only work with keyboard instruments because if a note is held out for the intended time it would be extremly dissonate.

I listen too much to the masters like Bach and Handel, Mozart ect. 

I like to compare my music to the grand-scheme of everything. It may be good for me, but its not good enough for me.

And your right @Tónskáld I have no self-respect.

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To gain skills in counterpoint I would (I did) this:

1. Study some book, or better do a course... Not focused on Fux old concepts and rules (which is good to know but just that) but on:

2. Chord tones and non-chord tones and how they work: passing notes, neighbour notes, suspensions, retardation, escape notes, and etc...

3. Basic consonant and non consonant intervals.

4. Motive manipulation.

5. Cadences, and how and when to use the perfect cadence.

And, definitively, start with two line (voices) counterpoint. And with easier forms (canon, free counterpoint, rounds...)

 

In your example the voices are crossing all the time, that's confusing.

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I learned most of those things in Music Theory. But It was more centered around harmony and not counterpoint.

I don't really have an option to get into a course until I go to college.

I learned 2, 3, 5 on your list.

I'll definetally work on 2 voice counterpoint and simpler forms.

@Luis Hernández Thank you for the advice.

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If you ever have extra time, take a look at Palestrina's music: 18th century counterpoint is comparatively way more lenient. Buxtehude ricercares are also great imitative pieces.

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I really believe counterpoint is essential in tonal music (even in non-tonal, in other sense).

Of course, renacentist and baroque music were totally focused on counterpoint, but classic and romantic period use it. Although it is more in the architecture of the piece, less evident perhaps, but without it, the music wouldn't work.

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Good start - Baroque music is all about the harmony, there are some moments in your piece where the harmony is weak and clashes occur. Also melodically if you leap, you have to counter it with movement in the opposite direction. Start with two-part writing, ace that and then build up to four.

NewBaroque - Counterpoint Lessons

Edited by anthonydaly10

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It's a good start. I think the main criticism I have with this piece has less to do with counterpoint and more to do with your pretty bland theme and harmony. Instead of half notes going straight up the scale think of how you can make it interesting rhythmically and melodically. That will make the harmony more interesting if the notes aren't completely within a very small box. Listen to how Bach starts his fugues and how he develops the material. Yes, he stays within a certain formula in terms of harmony and melody, but you will find the way he develops his themes is never repetitive and always stays interesting.

Listen to his fugue in f minor WTC 2 and see how he starts off with an interesting motive that he develops throughout the piece.

Edited by LayneBruce

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I think one core problem when students attempt to write fugues of this nature is that more often than not modern theoretical principles are applied. You must listen to more music from that period and practice applying the sounds you enjoy into your own music (with maybe a little help from a score). To become good at this, you need to understand how to exploit the potentialities of the primary subject. This is a theme by JS Bach, which I believe is from his Art of Fugue. This is clearly far too complex for you. However, thanks for sharing and starting this constructive discussion.

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