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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3answers
22 views

Are parallel 5ths 8tvs allowed between beat 4 and beat 1 of new bar?

I am working in a grade 4 melody writing exercise textbook and it says that you should not have parallel 5ths and octaves on the upbeat before the new bar and the 1st beat of the new bar. It was my ...
1
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2answers
44 views

What is the order of operations for writing half notes against whole notes in three parts?

FYI, I am referencing The Study of Counterpoint (Alfred Mann's translation of Fux's Gradus ad Parnassum) When writing in two voices, I understand the standard procedure to involve writing a ...
3
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0answers
36 views

Where can I find related materials in connection with Johann Joseph Fux's The Study of Counterpoint?

Allegedly, Beethoven condensed Fux's work into a "cheat sheet" version for ready reference (from the back cover of the Alfred Mann translation), and Mozart apparently annotated his own copy (...
3
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1answer
63 views

What is typical for a Mazurka besides the accent pattern?

So, I know enough about most common Romantic Era dances to feel comfortable composing them, even the Polka that I’ve never tried to compose and the Polonaise that I only ever composed once, but the ...
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4answers
1k views

Why didn't more composers who composed violin concertos compose viola concertos?

Wouldn't the glut of violin and cello concertos from the Baroque and Classical eras motivate composers to compose Viola Concertos? Isn't adding to the deluge of violin and cello concertos more ...
8
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1answer
187 views
+50

What techniques and methods govern how melody can suggest a certain harmony?

In The Art of Strict Musical Composition, Volume 2 chapter 3, by Johann Philip Kirnberger (student of Bach) he writes “Here it must be stated first that every good melody is based on a proper harmony, ...
1
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0answers
67 views

How do I fit a complex melody in a measure? [closed]

I’m a classical pianist who plays/listen to mostly romantic music. And I’ve developed some complex melodies in my head that I would like to write down. Problem is I can never get everything to fit ...
1
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1answer
61 views

how to harmonize a melody when the bassline changes to a non-chord tone

I am working on trying to harmonize a tenor and bassline part in 4 part writing and I really like the way they sound together so far but the initial chord I had in mind for this bar was Fm/Ab which ...
7
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2answers
660 views

Is staggering fifths a good way to avoid parallels?

I was wondering if composing by staggering 5ths was a good way to avoid parallel 5ths and if any famous classical composers actually did this on purpose to avoid consecutive parallel 5ths. EDIT By ...
3
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2answers
256 views

Is there a way to get around using quarter notes/rests?

I'm currently trying to compose a song in a game. Being as it is pretty much a children's game, it is rather limited in its abilities (2). I've been able to get around other limitations, such as the ...
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6answers
2k views

How to write music if you already know music theory

Everywhere I go on the internet, I see people telling me to learn music theory if I want to write songs. Problem is, I'm playing the piano for over 10 years now and I had music theory for 1 and a half ...
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6answers
3k views

Primary school child writing music

My young (8 year old) child is starting to play around with writing music, and he's done a bit both on pencil and paper, and with a tablet app that is still writing on a staff, but takes some of the ...
2
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1answer
72 views

What are the “strong” beats in a 16th note funk groove?

In classical music there is this term of strong and weak beats or "accented" beats. In 4/4 time this would normally be on the quarter notes... so there would be 4 strong beats a bar but I ...
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2answers
111 views

How can I add two middle voices if I have a bass and vocal melody?

I am writing a song and have the bassline and vocal melody how I want them to sound and would like to add two additional voices to the arrangement. Could someone give me a few tips or some help on how ...
2
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3answers
91 views

How to use sus2/sus4/add9 in minor key to stay within the key

I understand how to use sus2/sus4 and add9 inn major to keep all notes within the chosen major scale, but how can I use the same chords in a minor key and still stay in key?
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0answers
143 views

What characterizes My Chemical Romance's music?

I want to write a song like My Chemical Romance, but I don't really know how to. What characteristics make their sound distinctive? In particular, I'd also like to know what makes Gerard Way sound ...
-2
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2answers
58 views

What makes descending chords so Sci-Fi? Psychologically [closed]

I have noticed that descending chord progressions seem to feel sci-fi-ish. I'm playing on an acoustic piano, so I mean that it just feels that way because of the composition, not some synth filter. ...
1
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2answers
59 views

How to balance my phrase structure? [closed]

I'm trying to compose a verse (with refrain?)-chorus (bridge?) pop song (optional: Instrumental intro, bridge before the final chorus, instrumental solo somewhere) about 3-4 minutes in length. I've ...
-2
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3answers
561 views

How do I make the sound of a car horn, car engine, on instruments? [closed]

I am making a composition that contains the sounds of traffic. How do I do this?
1
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4answers
97 views

Theme seems complete enough, but Variations seem to need that extra harmony, what should I do? [closed]

So, I’m composing a Theme and Variations based off of the La Folia progression and I started really basic for the Theme so that I would have some more wiggle room for Variations. I’ve even considered ...
2
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0answers
85 views

The Harmonic Language in 60's Sci Fi [closed]

Does anybody know what techniques John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, and others used in this genre. I hear octatonicism, pitch sets and some tone rows. Is anyone aware of techniques or disciplines (...
3
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1answer
141 views

Does it have a name what John Williams is doing in these pieces (and lots of others)?

I noticed a very common thing John Williams does. My knowledge in music theory is pretty limited. The only thing I could name are lots of passing notes and chromaticism? - but maybe there is a special ...
4
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4answers
323 views

Does using a portable keyboard with slim or mini keys mess with muscle memory, as a pianist?

I am an amateur pianist who would love to compose in a tight place or on the go with a small MIDI keyboard. I face this dilemma Buy a standard key size mini keyboard with 2 octaves only (and 25 "...
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0answers
49 views

What did Claude Debussy write? [closed]

Can someone please tell me where to find how many works did Claude Debussy write. Because I found two different results.
6
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3answers
1k views

Do film scores match film dialogue pitch?

Human speech (including dialogue in movies) has a certain pitch. The harmony between the film dialogue and the film score can be influenced by the filmmakers. For example, the score can be composed ...
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0answers
69 views

Is there a miniature handheld/lap acoustic piano? (not electronic) [closed]

So as I understand it a piano works by the keys pulling strings that make hammers ring bells based on how hard you hit them. I would guess that would be quite a sophisticated instrument. I myself have ...
7
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6answers
1k views

What is the difference between a triplet and a dotted-quaver/dotted-quaver/quaver rhythm?

I am aware of how in theory these two are different, that the triplet are three notes with same length and the dotted-quaver/dotted-quaver/quaver have the third notes slightly shorter in tempo. But I ...
2
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1answer
67 views

Connecting Acoustic Piano to Laptop for Recording in Logic? [duplicate]

I know about connecting digital pianos (MIDIs) to a laptop for use in logic. My question is concerning a standard normal acoustic piano. My baby grand has a silent piano Yamaha system attached to it ...
8
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1answer
212 views

How to apply Paul Hindemith's harmonic theory

I have been studying Paul Hindemith's "The Craft of Musical Composition, Book 1: Theory", trying to apply Hindemith's principles to my own harmonies and melodies. As you may know, Hindemith'...
20
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2answers
1k views

How could I get my Classical Music Compositions published and known?

I'm a first timer on this site. Have patience and mercy with me. For years I've been a professor, performer and Conductor. I'm a composer, not that many would know, I'm on my 711th opus. All classical ...
3
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2answers
82 views

Two questions about altered countersubject in Bach's first invention

Above is the opening subject and counter subject. My two questions are about the transformed counter subject in bar 5. When restating the counter subject why does Bach: Displace the circled D by an ...
0
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1answer
54 views

Does this song use chromatic mediant in G major? and what other music theory concepts this song's verse utilize

I'm currently learning basic music theory and along the way I review old songs on my playlist then analyze what key, chord progression and somehow discover the composer's way of creating music. The ...
3
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2answers
96 views

What are the trends that led to fizzling of ars antiqua and rising of ars nova?

What is the trends that led to the fizzling of ars antique and to the rising of ars nova?
4
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2answers
60 views

What are some techniques used to make a song sound more cinematic or invoke imagery in the listener?

Maybe cinematic is the wrong word to use(?). But techniques that might evoke imagery in the listener? Maybe for example: I know this is highly subjective and there’s ...
3
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1answer
40 views

How to emulate a piece effectively as exercise

I'm a starting composer and I've been trying to write some pieces "in-the-style-of" to hone my craftsmanship. Today I tried to emulate Schumann's Op 94 first movement by looking at the ...
5
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2answers
86 views

Military band music

Which instruments typically double up (play unison) in military bands? I have googled this question in different ways, but without an answer.
8
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2answers
2k views

How “hard” to read is this rhythm? A rhythmic comparison

I've recently heard a rhythm that sounded like this It seems slightly tricky to play it perfectly, so I wonder if I could somehow improve this writing to make it more natural and "readable"....
0
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1answer
103 views

Help! How would you write this rhythm (audio linked below)? [closed]

The audio source can be found here. I'm interested in the section highlighted in blue. There is naturally some freedom in the artist's interpretation, but I would like to transcribe it in a relatively ...
2
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1answer
73 views

How do you begin a 16th note triplet on the last third of an eighth note triplet?

My piece has a 16th note triplet motif. In the B section, the theme is slower and is based on eighth note triplets. I would like to begin the 16th triplet motif again on the last eighth note of an ...
1
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1answer
84 views

How do I improve my composing skills [closed]

I've been composing for over a year, since the pandemic has started. I've been composing a lot of simple pieces, most of them are SATB. I want to improve my composing skills because when I listen to ...
1
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3answers
152 views

Why Should I always follow the rules of functional harmony? [closed]

I have used functional harmony many times in my compositions to write chord progressions with success, however there are times when using functional harmony doesn't sound good to me and others when I ...
1
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2answers
93 views

Composing music for an insane/deranged character [closed]

I was wondering what techniques you could use in songwriting to write a song for an insane sort of character. The song idea I have in mind is a kind of frantic deranged circus song, but I need a bit ...
1
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0answers
54 views

Is the “Compose” music tablet by Ouyang Xi available? [closed]

Anyone know if this hardware device, where you write music on a tablet and it plays back, ever made it to market? (See link below). I would pay handsomely to get one. No jokes about using an iPad ...
5
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1answer
185 views

Modes — C Lydian feels like G Ionian [duplicate]

I've been studying modes recently and since I have a piano, tried to experiment with them by improvising simple tunes. My problem is that as soon as I use something else that Ionian, my perception of ...
2
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1answer
56 views

Question about Inventions and writing an episode (sequences)

I am writing the first part of an invention. I wrote it to the first cadence (C Major) but realized I did not create an episode with sequences. I am a little stuck on how I would go about doing that. ...
4
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7answers
561 views

Why do some composers/songwriters choose inverted chords over root position chords?

I know that if you want to go from one chord to another, using an inverted chord might make the bassline smoother and more melodic without big jumps but are there other reasons why root position ...
11
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8answers
3k views

Does the starting note for a song have to be the starting note of its scale?

Does a scale always have to start off with the note it is named after? For example, the Dm scale is defgab♭cd`. If I wanted to sing a song in D minor, would I have to start with the note D? Or could ...
1
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0answers
40 views

What is the name of this raga [closed]

I know this question is out of the blue, but please, if anyone knows what is the name of the sitar composition Pandit Ravi Shankar is playing while teaching George Harrison in this clip then it would ...
1
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1answer
54 views

Critique on Composition I made [closed]

I was hoping someone with a solid background in jazz music theory to give me a solid critique on a jazz blues composition I made last month. Here's the link: https://musescore.com/user/6040626/scores/...
1
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0answers
92 views

Why do some songs change while fading out? What is it called?

I noticed that some songs repeat a theme and then fade out at the end, but before completely fading out the song "changes". For example, the singer sings different words (that don't appear ...

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