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Gavotte in G Major, What do you think of my progress over 5 days?


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So, I've made significant progress in this Gavotte over 5 days. This is how I've progressed over the past 5 days:

Day 1: First Phrase melody and bass

Day 2: Second Phrase melody and bass

Days 3 and 4: Thinking about what to do for the B section, listening to more Baroque Suites, especially Gavottes, even playing some Gavottes on the piano

Day 5: Third and Fourth Phrase melody and bass, First and Second Phrase countermelody

Not all of my countermelody ideas worked out, but a few of them, like the inversion idea did work. One that didn't work out like I hoped is the suspension chain idea. I mean it kind of worked, but what I was going for was like an F# followed by an E or some other diatonic note in a suspension chain and only the F# suspension worked. I did get a chain of 2 suspensions with the C and B though, so not a total failure, just not what I was going for initially. I used another tied note to prevent parallel octaves and have a stepwise motion in bars 11 and 12. The countermelody I have though is just a draft and is unlikely to be the final countermelody when the Gavotte is finished. I was mainly going for a balance between leaps and steps, richer harmony, and no parallel octaves. And I made sure that if the countermelody got a ninth or further from the main melody, that it was at most an octave away from the bass.

At first, I was a bit worried that I'd have to change the bass line, but somebody else told me that the motion of the left hand reminds them of the Baroque, so I've left the bass line as is. You can tell which line is the countermelody, because it has all the stems pointed down. I haven't decided yet if I'm going to double the Gavotte and have Gavotte II in G minor followed by a Da Capo to Gavotte I, but this Gavotte is going to be part of a suite. Here's my Gavotte as of now.

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Hello! Thank you for commenting on my piece. It means a lot.

You might be surprised to hear this, but, all of your talk about inversions and resolutions and such I do not understand. I am actually quite lacking in theory knowledge, despite the music write! Weird, right?

So, I cannot comment on literally anything about how this sounds as a baroque style piece, other than that it sounds like a baroque style piece. It sounds good to me, but my style is 300 or so years later with energy and dissonance. I do not want to give any criticism for something I know nothing about!

I enjoyed it though, and send me a dm once you finish it and I will give it another listen through. 

Evan

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3 hours ago, Eickso said:

You might be surprised to hear this, but, all of your talk about inversions and resolutions and such I do not understand. I am actually quite lacking in theory knowledge, despite the music write! Weird, right?

Maybe, re music theory, it's like what old-time musicians are fond of saying when asked if they can read music, the standard response being "well, not enough to hurt my playing". Now, now, the study of music so called theory is all well and good, just don't fall prey to the idea that it is absolutely necessary.  

If you want to learn about counterpoint - and really, why shouldnt we - then you could start by letting Fux be your initial guide:

https://avserzhen.files.wordpress.com/2016/06/fux-jjthe-study-of-counterpoint-alfred-mann-trans.pdf

He doesn't get into inversions but "proper" read "effective" resolutions of dissonance as well as their preparations could probably be said to be the most important part of this book.  

Have you heard of dissonant counterpoint? Perhaps it would be right up your alley. In these forms dissonance is the norm and consonants are resolved to dissonances, the opposite of what we see in Fux and in practically all "classical" music forms up until the 20th century. 

Whatever anyone is attempting to do in music can be aided greatly by studying individual notes and how they interact with each other so Fux and a close look at dissonant counterpoint would, I think, give us even more knowledge and skill in the way we combines sounds into that which is called "music".

After Fux, to get into invertible counterpoint and related matters, well, opportunities abound, consult Dr Google or Mr DuckDuckGo for resources. For anyone fascinated by musical notes, invertible counterpoint might just be the most fascinating thing of all.
 

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13 hours ago, caters said:

Not all of my countermelody ideas worked out

You seem to have a good command over some (most? all?) of the basics of counterpoint but may i ask you, before answering your post specifically, how you reached that knowledge? Self study, universities or other organized classes. What books, treatises did you consult? etc,etc? 

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Just now, Advanced Blowhard said:

You seem to have a good command over some (most? all?) of the basics of counterpoint but may i ask you, before answering your post specifically, how you reached that knowledge? Self study, universities or other organized classes. What books, treatises did you consult? etc,etc? 

 

It's mostly from watching Alan Belkin's On Counterpoint series repeatedly, all the trial and error I have done trying to compose fugues, and Richard Atkinson's Bach analyses. That brings up a point that Alan Belkin's series is more focused on fugal counterpoint than the counterpoint found in pieces like dance suites. As for how I know things like how the Gavotte has many similarities to the Minuet and how the Allemande tends to gain contrapuntal voices as each section progresses, it's mainly from listening to many Bach suites.

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12 minutes ago, Advanced Blowhard said:

with teachers like those i am not sure i have anything that would help you any more, not at all sure! It seems like consulting those sources is the way to go. But...what exactly were you thinking of finding out via this thread?

 

If and how I can improve the countermelody mainly.

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Maybe try incorporating the 4 eighth note fragments into a question-answer type feel with the left hand? I like the suspension chain idea, why not continue with the tied notes to give a little syncopation? Not too proficient with the heavy Bach style, wish I could offer more, but keep us updated!

 

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I think your main melodic ideas are pretty sound in this piece.  I think the feminine cadence in meas. 8 beat 3 is a poor choice.  The expectation is that the resolution should be on beat 1 of meas. 8.  Then you would leave beat 3 and 4 for the next pick-ups for the next phrase (since gavottes start with a 2 quarter note or 4 8th note anacrusis just like you did here before meas. 1).  But that's just how I would approach it.  Thanks for sharing and I hope that helps a bit!

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