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Questions tagged [composition]

For questions about the creation of new music and the techniques used to do so.

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1
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1answer
29 views

Time Signature Dilemma, should I change the time signature for my Scherzo?

When I started writing my Scherzo in D, I initially thought of having the time signature be 3/4 since that is a very typical time signature for a scherzo, especially earlier scherzos that are closer ...
3
votes
4answers
110 views

Should I keep the piano part “self content” when writing a trio?

I am recently writing a piano trio. At first, I treated every part (piano L, piano R, flute, cello) as independent parts of a little "orchestra" and only consider the harmony as a whole. As a result, ...
2
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3answers
67 views

What makes a good fugue subject?

Realization I think I might have found my weakness in fugue writing, and it is one that isn't easily helped by all the counterpoint studies that I have been doing. That is the part of the fugue that ...
0
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3answers
99 views

Why I always end up composing same type of melody? [closed]

Why I always end up composing same type of melody? Do every beginner composer face this problem?
29
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4answers
8k views

How did composers “test” their music?

How did composers "test" their music, especially in multi-instrument works (eg. chamber, orchestra) or in pieces for instruments they didn't know how to play? Did they really have an orchestra (for ...
2
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4answers
147 views

what are the characteristics that define a “good” melody?

When composing a song, I think it might help if I understood what some of the characteristics of a good melody might be, and do those characteristics apply generally across the board or are they ...
1
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2answers
62 views

Major differences composing for strings as opposed to piano

I have been been composing for piano for some time (with Sibelius), and now I have the interest to try strings (solo instrument for the beginning, e.g. violin). Obviously I cannot take piano scores ...
5
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1answer
74 views

How to use “synthetic modes”

Im having trouble understanding a concept in Persichetti’s book 20th century harmony (Page 43) where he introduces new scales he calls synthetic scales. Just before that he talks about the church ...
4
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2answers
129 views

How can I reproduce this harmony?

In Bury Me by Bayside at about 3:09 (the line that starts with "I want your respect..."), they use a strange dissonant-sounding harmony: time stamped youtube link. It sounds to me like he's using 3 ...
2
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1answer
53 views

Where to get a feedback on composed baroque music? [closed]

I am trying to write music in baroque style. Are there places (on Internet) where I could get feedback on my compositions?
8
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3answers
173 views

Unintentional plagiarism while composing

I have recently started composing using some knowledge that I got after a few months of studying counterpoint and harmony (well it is more like trying to compose). And I have mentioned that quite ...
3
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1answer
168 views

No connection between two melodies in an opus

I was listening to Beethoven - Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67: I have noticed that the opus has two parts: the first part with the famous melody we all know, and ...
1
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1answer
81 views

The New Complexity movement

What are the main ideas incorporated into the New Complexity movement (contemporary classical music, late 20th century)? What kind of notation, musical techniques, or theoretical ideas would composers ...
4
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1answer
65 views

pieces that stand alone *and* intended to be played together

I just learned that Milhaud wrote two string quartets which can be played separately or can be combined into a single octet performance. Would this count as an example of polyphony, or is music like ...
2
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0answers
27 views

Best digital distribution platforms [closed]

I want to sell a full catalog of my composition. What platform digital is the best to use for distribution. I want to be able to profit off of my music I compose.
3
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2answers
84 views

Modulation from D major to D minor, should I go sudden or gradual?

I am composing a Scherzo in the key of D major and I have the first section of my Scherzo already written down. Now I'm into the second section of the Scherzo that precedes the Trio. And in this ...
2
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3answers
84 views

Should loop based songs conform to whole measures?

I've been doing some loop based compositions lately. And I was wondering if I should conform to measures or is it ok not to. Sometimes when I'm loop recording I don't really bother to look at how ...
2
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1answer
85 views

Examples of composers and pieces heavily using four-part harmony [closed]

As I am currently deeply involved in studying four-part harmony, I am interested to know some examples of composers and pieces, which heavily use the rules of four-part harmony and not wildly (...
0
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1answer
91 views

Guitar rif comparisons and similarities

Consider the bass guitar line of a song called "Schism": and another bass guitar line of a song called "Pneuma". When Pneuma was ...
2
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3answers
96 views

How to make my piece feel like a Presto

Intro I am writing a piece in D major that I intend to be at a Presto tempo. This piece that I am writing, at first I intended for it to be a Scherzo. But it would be so short as a Scherzo and I didn'...
11
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6answers
4k views

Can the bass be used instead of drums?

I noticed how there's not a lot of drums in orchestral classical music, in comparison to today's beat-based music. Do they get away with that in the orchestra by having instruments in the bass range ...
4
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4answers
1k views

Are great composers almost always prodigious performers?

In classical music, all the greats I can think of also displayed prodigious performing talent (usually on the piano) at an early age. I'm thinking guys like Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Prokofiev. Also ...
0
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2answers
67 views

Composition types of music [closed]

Composition types in Western classical music. Is it possible for people to recognize the types of composition without the knowledge of the name given for the piece?
2
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1answer
77 views

Composing on guitar - Fingerstyle vs Classical

I'm wondering about the difference in the process of composing a song for a Fingerstyle Guitar vs what would be considered a Classical guitar piece. Note: I'm an amature hobbiest, so please excuse my ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

To what extent a song's words determine its music [closed]

Imagine you want to compose music for a song and only for a single instrument: the piano. What are the guiding principles? How much freedom does one have in this process? My reason for asking this ...
1
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1answer
45 views

Are there existing paganini no. 1 caprices for piano?

Liszt wrote famous Paganini Études for the piano, which consist of transcriptions of the Paganini caprices which are originally for the violin. For example, 'La Chasse', which is Liszt Étude Liszt ...
2
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0answers
68 views

What are good resources for composing music in the style of sea shanties? [closed]

I've not been able to find any literature on the topic so far. If anyone could point me in the direction of some good books or other, that would be great.
3
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2answers
145 views

Dotted quarter rest vs. eighth note rest + quarter rest

Is it ever appropriate to use a dotted quarter rest vs. an eighth note rest along with a quarter rest?
2
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2answers
89 views

Composition software for checking harmony mistakes [closed]

I am not very experienced in the music theory. I constantly get lots of ideas on composing choral (SATB) music and I write them, but I am unsure about their correctness. Until I will finish to learn ...
4
votes
5answers
461 views

Handwriting Music

I am a composer who started on computer software to write, but am now switching to handwriting music. I have read that one writes everything out in pencil first, then goes over it in pen, but how far ...
3
votes
2answers
58 views

Simple way to add an additional octave in Musescore?

I wrote an arrangement in Musescore, and I got complaints that some (most) notes on a particular instrument were too high for a beginner. So now I want to add an additional lower octave for each note. ...
0
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2answers
86 views

Defining Key concerning the starting chord

I am writing a song, and the progression for the verse is Fmaj7, Emin7, Fmaj7, Am, G and so on. The chorus is a cyclic Am - G - F. I've had one musician tell me it should be written as in F, as it ...
2
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0answers
54 views

How to figure out a tone center in an ambiguous/chromatic situations?

This question bugs me since I started writing music. I'm asking in general, but I'll show an example so it would be more clear. Keep in mind the notation is arbitrary, as I don't quite know what I'm ...
1
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2answers
85 views

Composing a polonaise, anything else to consider?

So the thought has came to me several times to write a polonaise. I'm not Polish so I barely know anything about that side of the polonaise. But so far I have come across these commonalities across ...
2
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0answers
71 views

Repeat-modify-mix technique for developing a musical theme

The level of my musical education leaves much to be desired, so I apologize in advance for maybe amateurish question. Several times I've encountered a situation when a composer repeats some piece in a ...
0
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1answer
87 views

How to turn Beethoven's fifth into a fugue?

I am composing a Theme and Variations based on the first theme of Beethoven's fifth. And one of the variations that I plan on doing is a fugal variation. I decided to write the fugal variation first, ...
-1
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1answer
57 views

What motivates the dissonant minor third in the beginning of Respighi's Notturno?

Ottorino Respighi's Notturno is a Nocturne that begins in the key of F#. A melody is played atop the chords, however in bar 7 the melody hits the A note, which is the minor 3rd of the F# scale: This ...
3
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0answers
29 views

Song Cycle Texts, all at the beginning or placed individually before each song?

Following the recommendation that the text for a song be provided separately as part of the front matter of a vocal composition, what is the best way to handle the texts for a song cycle if each text ...
3
votes
2answers
128 views

How can I overcome this difficulty?

I'm pretty young and I have played the piano for a long, long time. Now I 'm learning about composition and orchestration. But I always stumble into this problem: I can hear music in my head, I can ...
0
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2answers
54 views

Can bagatelles be in Sonata Form?

I am composing a bagatelle and it is turning out to be sort of a hybrid between your typical bagatelle and a sonata. However, even once the piece is finished, it would be too short for me to put ...
0
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3answers
200 views

Choosing appropriate accompaniment chords for a waltz melody

I wanted to write a simple 'classical sounding piece' of music and I find that waltz is the easiest as I have trouble finding chords. I wrote this simple meoldy in A melodic minor but I can't seem to ...
1
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3answers
135 views

I have a problem understanding Mono and Stereo

So I have some gears and instruments and they say that one Synthesizer I have should be connected in Stereo and not Mono, so I want to connect it in Stereo but the sound-system in the bar I want to ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

So how can you tell if music is good or not? How can you compare between two pieces of music? [closed]

So if we talk musically in terms of harmony and melody (apart from lyrics) how can you tell if music is bad or good when all music are just different chord progressions and different melodies? If you ...
3
votes
1answer
44 views

Is there a way to record music with a collaborator remotely and live?

Is there a way to record music with a collaborator remotely and live? Appreciate the help!
2
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1answer
166 views

What makes a piece a bagatelle?

Now I know length is part of the answer. Nobody wouldn't consider a 10 minute long rondo to be a bagatelle. Bagatelles tend to be around 3-5 minutes in length. Also, from my experience(though this is ...
14
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1answer
2k views

What do these symbols mean?

This is part of Hasse's "Mea Tormenta, Properate". I think the one on the second staff is some sort of repeat sign, from the research I've been able to do, but I have no idea what the one on the ...
2
votes
1answer
172 views

Do scales have a relation to certain genres or themes?

If someone was creating music to fit a genre or to match a certain theme/mood would this influence their choice of which scale to use? Are some scales used more than others within a genre of music?
13
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4answers
5k views

Why doesn't a marching band have strings?

In a regular orchestra the violin takes an important role. Why is it that in marching bands there are no strings usually? To give some context I'm working on a march composition and I like strings ...
4
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4answers
430 views

Relationship between woodwinds and brass in a marching band? [closed]

In a marching band I noticed there's three main components: percussion, woodwinds and brass. I was wondering what the relationship between brass (eg. trumpet) and woodwinds (eg clarinet) in a march. ...
4
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3answers
826 views

Opposite of “Concerto Grosso”?

Sounds like a joke, but in fact asking for a friend who is not a musician. Was there ever a "Concerto Piccolo" or some such contrast to the "Concerto Grosso" format?