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What to learn so i can compose songs ?

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What to learn so i can compose songs ?

Post by Mitya on Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:34 pm

What things should i learn so i can compose music, what are most important things ?

Thanks.

Mitya
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Re: What to learn so i can compose songs ?

Post by VictorCS on Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:24 pm

Scales, they are selected keys from the 12 keys in an octave. They are made in "sets" so the sound "good". Try play on your piano/keyboard using all the keys. Then try playing a song on only the black keys. This is the easiest test you can do to understand how scales works.

If you only play the black you play a japanese scale ( dont remember the name atm ), it got 5 keys. And you'll notice that playing only those 5 keys you'll play a good sounding piece, compared to the song where you play using all the 12 keys.

Ofcourse, before you compose you might ask yourself how you're gonna write it down. Are you planning on writing on a sheet? Or maybe record midi right into the computer? Atleast you'll need some knowlegde in reading/writing a sheet.

1. Learn how to write a sheet
2. Scales

That's the start, you might just learn one scale, and experiment with it before you learn more scales. When you know a few scales, and how to write what you compose down on a sheet you'll need to know how a piece works. Stuff like harmony and melody, music genres, theme, repetition, variations, how to end a piece with perfect cadence etc.

Scale = Group of keys
Theme = A melodyline
Variations = The theme, but changed so it sounds different.

The scale let you work with what I mentioned over here, lets say a country is all the keys, and a city is a scale. Instead of messing around all over the country you wanna stick in one city and get a job, house, family etc. In the city ( scale ) you make a family (theme), and the family changes by the time goes by ( variations ).

Now you got a composition made in a scale, the melodyline is written, and you've also added some variations of the melodyline.

Now you wanna add som additional stuff to the theme, to add more depth, so you'll get a job ( a melody/chords that connects the theme and different variations ). As time goes by you're a busy man going to work and together with the family, this creates harmony ( how the different keys sounds merged together ). Life is usually in some degree repetive, that makes you feel safe, and to make a piece feel "safe" you'll need some repetition in a piece too. Pop music is extreme this way, you get a verse, then the refrain(?), and the music itself repeats itself 3-4 times, while different lyrics are used to make you feel it's still different ( kinda like variations ). Tension and release are very important in music to make it feel alive. The tonic, first key of a scale, is very released, but when you go further away it get more tension, and at some point it wanna go back to the tonic. That's kinda need alot of explaining, wikipedia is nice for that ^_^

This is just a little bit of a very huge explanation, there is no right or wrong, just guidelines. You can make a song with alot of tension and disharmony, but it wont be something you'll wanna listen to. Then again a piece will sound flat and boring if you go for the relaxed released with no disharmony. My explaining need more explaining too, and I probably have forgotten alot of stuff you'll probably dont wanna miss out, but with this you'll atleast be able to make something.

A good start:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_theory
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Re: What to learn so i can compose songs ?

Post by Mitya on Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:33 pm

VictorCS wrote:Scales, they are selected keys from the 12 keys in an octave. They are made in "sets" so the sound "good". Try play on your piano/keyboard using all the keys. Then try playing a song on only the black keys. This is the easiest test you can do to understand how scales works.

If you only play the black you play a japanese scale ( dont remember the name atm ), it got 5 keys. And you'll notice that playing only those 5 keys you'll play a good sounding piece, compared to the song where you play using all the 12 keys.

Ofcourse, before you compose you might ask yourself how you're gonna write it down. Are you planning on writing on a sheet? Or maybe record midi right into the computer? Atleast you'll need some knowlegde in reading/writing a sheet.

1. Learn how to write a sheet
2. Scales

That's the start, you might just learn one scale, and experiment with it before you learn more scales. When you know a few scales, and how to write what you compose down on a sheet you'll need to know how a piece works. Stuff like harmony and melody, music genres, theme, repetition, variations, how to end a piece with perfect cadence etc.

Scale = Group of keys
Theme = A melodyline
Variations = The theme, but changed so it sounds different.

The scale let you work with what I mentioned over here, lets say a country is all the keys, and a city is a scale. Instead of messing around all over the country you wanna stick in one city and get a job, house, family etc. In the city ( scale ) you make a family (theme), and the family changes by the time goes by ( variations ).

Now you got a composition made in a scale, the melodyline is written, and you've also added some variations of the melodyline.

Now you wanna add som additional stuff to the theme, to add more depth, so you'll get a job ( a melody/chords that connects the theme and different variations ). As time goes by you're a busy man going to work and together with the family, this creates harmony ( how the different keys sounds merged together ). Life is usually in some degree repetive, that makes you feel safe, and to make a piece feel "safe" you'll need some repetition in a piece too. Pop music is extreme this way, you get a verse, then the refrain(?), and the music itself repeats itself 3-4 times, while different lyrics are used to make you feel it's still different ( kinda like variations ). Tension and release are very important in music to make it feel alive. The tonic, first key of a scale, is very released, but when you go further away it get more tension, and at some point it wanna go back to the tonic. That's kinda need alot of explaining, wikipedia is nice for that ^_^

This is just a little bit of a very huge explanation, there is no right or wrong, just guidelines. You can make a song with alot of tension and disharmony, but it wont be something you'll wanna listen to. Then again a piece will sound flat and boring if you go for the relaxed released with no disharmony. My explaining need more explaining too, and I probably have forgotten alot of stuff you'll probably dont wanna miss out, but with this you'll atleast be able to make something.

A good start:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_theory

Thank you very much for taking youre time to answer, some of these things i already knew some not and im gonna look wikipedia.And im not planing to write music on sheet ill recorded in computer, thanks again.

Mitya
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