Questions tagged [composition]

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

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4answers
121 views

Question on antecedent phrase and Secondary Dominant Chord

I am interested in the discussion entitled "Proper Uses of Minor Seventh Chords" in this question proper uses of minor seventh chords. Chord I7 is "secondary dominant" meaning that it has dominant ...
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6answers
1k views

Why is Baroque composition called "more complex" than Classical composition?

I've been researching the difference between Baroque and Classical and every time it mentions that the former is far more complex than the latter. Looking at the two most prominent composers in both ...
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2answers
403 views

Question about cross-staff beaming, unnecessary rests, Debussy

Two questions: 1) Why in Debussy's Arabesque No. 1 the first two measures written without the rests? What's the rule? 2) If I write notes in different clefs and beam them together, what clef will ...
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2answers
89 views

Rhythm & Composing

Can someone help me fully understand rhythm. To my understanding as a new artist, Songwriters have focus on 2 rhythms at a time during composition. 1. The rhythm of english using metric feet, and 2. ...
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1answer
81 views

Polyrhythmic clash, how to get rid of the rhythmic dissonance without losing the polyrhythm?

So I'm midway through composing a movement of a suite I am working on and I have reached this section that is primarily triplets. It starts off as a solo violin, and then later, more instruments are ...
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11answers
7k views

Why does Bach sometimes end with flat 7ths?

I've been studying the Bach inventions, and I see a common patterns in the first 3 inventions: They tend to include the flat 7ths in the very end. Examples: C major: D major: E♭ major: From a ...
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0answers
39 views

Why are Tarantellas usually in a minor key?

Why are Tarantellas usually written in a minor key? Is this an unwritten convention?
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4answers
451 views

Anything else I need to know about the Tarantella before I compose one?

So, the thought just crossed my mind of composing a Tarantella. But the thing is, I have only listened to and played a few of them in my 10 years of piano playing, so I don't know much about what is ...
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1answer
70 views

What percentage of the time did Bach and others use chord inversions in chorales?

I know the frequencies of his "Normal Fundamental Harmonic Progressions" i.e., the progression of chord roots. I'd like to know the percentage of time that he used 1st or 2nd inversions in his ...
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1answer
83 views

Associating modulations with emotions [closed]

I once read a book (pdf) from imslp or forgottenbooks that was about composition (or harmony), and it had a list of every possible modulation and its emotional association. For example, Up a perfect ...
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1answer
200 views

Are there any other tempo descriptors that imply melancholy?

So I got this inspirational idea for composing a piece from a fellow composer: His life was good, a girlfriend, friends and a nice family; then out of nowhere, he loses the love of his life for ...
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3answers
159 views

What criteria do composers use to choose the key of a song? [duplicate]

I would like to know what criteria composers use when choosing the key of a song. In the case of music composed for orchestra or, in general, for instruments with limited tessitura or tuned in a ...
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5answers
162 views

What is the theory behind this chord progression?

first time posting here, although I've read quite a few posts before. So, I was analyzing the theory behind a song (Savatage - Gutter Ballet), and while it is primarily in the key of D Minor, it ...
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3answers
312 views

Using an augmented chord to modulate to a distant key, will this work?

So, in the same piece for which I asked about how to notate my 2 layered staccato, I'm halfway through writing the piece and I feel like I want to modulate again. Here are my modulations so far: E ...
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2answers
198 views

Am I notating this 2 layered staccato right?

How should I notate syncopations happening at the level of the sixteenth note? I'm composing a piece and in the piano accompaniment, there are 2 layers of staccato, one being on beat eighth notes so 1 ...
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3answers
118 views

Is the C chord here C minor or C major?

I’m composing a funeral march and I have noticed that just from looking at the bass, the C chord is ambiguous. The piece is in the key of F minor. That doesn’t really help because both C minor and C ...
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1answer
104 views

Substitution of minor chord for major VI chord

I came up with this progression while trying to make a song that involves guitar arpeggios and string sections: Em Cm Em/B C6 Em C B-B+ Cm6 (Em/B I mean with a chord inversion and B-B+ I mean half ...
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1answer
181 views

Bach Reference in "The Penitent Man Will Pass" [from Indiana Jones]

I was recently listening to the composition John Williams - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Penitent Man Will Pass and was wondering if the first few notes of the theme of that composition are ...
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2answers
81 views

Alternate Criterias for MA in Music (or any other Degree that increases likelihood of getting Orchestras play my works) [closed]

Greetings MusicStackExchange, I put my intention first (I'm in HighSchool, You might need this information to understand why I'm asking this question) : I wish to work with Orchestras and Hopefully ...
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1answer
245 views

What type of bass clef is used for the organ pedal?

regular bass clef or 8va bassa?
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1answer
216 views

Adagio sounds like an Allegro, should I change the time signature to reflect this?

So, after a bout of composer's block, I started composing this piece for Cello Piano Duo. I find I have fewer issues with the Cello Piano Duo than the Violin Piano Duo when it comes to things like ...
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2answers
2k views

Meter/ Rhythm/ Time signature

Can someone explain to me what meter is and how to change and control it? Im a beginner songwriting and im not sure if meter refers to feet per line or if it refers to duple, triple, quadruple, simple,...
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1answer
77 views

Changing time signatures

As a songwriter im wanting to understand how to change the time signature/ meter of my lyrics to give them a more interesting affect? I've read many articles indicating that changing the rhythm/ meter ...
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2answers
1k views

How to understand the meter and pulse of lyrics in songwriting?

I've been learning many different concepts as a beginning songwriter and have been working on applying them in my work. However, I can't seem to full understand how to control lyric meter and lyric ...
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1answer
2k views

Is there a place to get scoreless film clips to practice with? [closed]

I have written a lot of pieces that I feel would fit nicely for a film or commercial and I would like to practice doing some scoring for films. Rather than filming myself, is there a website made for ...
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2answers
94 views

How to make ideas as different as types of weather sound like they belong together?

I have had this idea come time and again for me to write a suite about different types of weather. However, when I think of the different types of whether in musical terms, each one is different. Here ...
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0answers
184 views

Should I have the time signature change from 4/4 to 2/4 or from 2/2 to 2/4?

So, I am composing another piece that involves time signature switching. I'm starting with the piano solo improvisation that I recorded and I'm thinking of expanding it from solo piano to orchestra. ...
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2answers
107 views

Where to cut off a sonata theme for Theme and Variations?

I am thinking of writing a Theme and Variations based on a sonata. With sonatas, I tend to gravitate towards the first movement, which is most often in sonata form, and this poses a bit of a problem. ...
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2answers
95 views

Is this an acceptable way to resolve a vii° chord?

In a choral-style piece I am writing, someone said that this vii° chord (within a phrase) never resolves properly. I would be grateful if anyone could give me some advice about whether it works or not,...
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1answer
139 views

Can my lack of piano practice affect my creativity in song composing & arranging?

I would like to firstly apologize for this lengthy post. I just want to give a background to my question. I am not, by any means, a professional pianist. I do not have a Music Degree to boast of, ...
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2answers
55 views

Composition question...any advice on changing tempo?

I'm writing a piece of electronic music on a Digital Audio Workstation. I'm not sure what you would call the genre - trance, ambient, maybe even electronic jazz. It starts off slow and ...
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2answers
232 views

Is B major harder or easier to play on strings than Ab major?

I started improvising a nocturne in B major that I think I will write for a piano sextet(string quintet + Piano). But, there is one thing I feel that I need to ask first before I get 25% of the way ...
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0answers
68 views

How objective is the structure of a notated piece of music? [closed]

How objective can the analysis of a notated piece of music into a hierarchical structure of some "constituents" be? Consider a given piece of music in notated form and structurally analysed by ...
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0answers
48 views

How to improve the harmonic cohesion of my canon?

So this canon is what ends the Presto section of my Springtime Springs piece. As it is now, I only get 2 parallel fifths and no parallel octaves in the entire canon, which I am fine with, since I am ...
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2answers
518 views

are there common techniques to make a piano version of a song that has very little musical content?

I'm looking at doing a piano version of very simple rock song and since there is really not much in the original song, this is not a problem I have approached before: here is a cover of the song so ...
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1answer
161 views

Is this fortissimo passage in the flute possible?

I am writing this piece for a piano flute duet to represent Spring and it has 3 main sections. Those sections are: A - Quiet, Molto adagio, A minor, very melodic, rocking fifths in the bass, melody ...
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0answers
261 views

How should a composer use Scales/modes as a tool for composition? [closed]

I've been studying music since I was 15 but I must admit there are many gaps in my knowledge. So although I may know some of the answers to this question, I think it'd be a good idea ask, in case ...
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0answers
115 views

What key to use for the Trio part of my Scherzo?

As you know from my previous question about tempo conservation and time signatures, I am writing a Scherzo in Eb major. Now, if I were writing this for solo piano, I would gladly do an Eb to Ebm key ...
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2answers
1k views

What is the difference between the Romantic and post-romantic periods?

This question came about when I was reading Blair Allen Johnston’s dissertation, ‘Harmony and Climax in the late works of Sergei Rachmanioff’ He loosely groups the post romantic period within 1890-...
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3answers
111 views

What Title For String Music?

I'm working on a musical composition and I would like to know how to title it. It consists of 5 separate, but related, movements that vary in tempo and mood. The instruments are: Solo Violin Violin ...
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0answers
38 views

What authors have tried to compare a wide variety of styles, specifically with regards to orchestration?

I have never found a guide to orchestration which systematically discusses differences in the theory behind the orchestration/composition choices with regards to different typical stylistic genres, ...
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1answer
95 views

Are there pieces that have extreme tempo markings?

I'm trying to recall if I ever came across such a piece that uses whole note = tempo, or 16th note = tempo. To my recollection, I don't think I've seen the whole note before. As well, I have seen ...
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3answers
239 views

Is there a reason an arranger/composer will choose a particular chord voicing when charting chords for guitar on a particular song?

When I look in music books for guitar or chord arrangements (or tabs) online for songs I want to learn to play on guitar, I notice that often a specific voicing for each particular chord is indicated. ...
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1answer
114 views

Is there a certain way to voice chords for an orchestration?

I am new to composing, and I am working on a piece for an orchestra. Currently, I am working on the string section. I have four parts so far (violin, viola, cello, double bass). I am considering ...
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2answers
153 views

Is this melody too complicated for a first variation?

I asked in a separate question whether Theme and Variations would be the best fitting form for my "Dance of Nature" movement. I decided that the multi-movement work this is part of would be a symphony,...
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2answers
89 views

Confusion with dynamics

I'm not sure if anyone's asked these before on here but I'm trying sort some dynamics out on my composing project and I have some questions: 1) What I want to do is have a diminuendo from ff to p ...
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5answers
441 views

Can I transcribe accoustic piano in a DAW [closed]

I'm looking for some software that can transcribe my accoustic piano playing into notation so it can be written down and played back. It's okay if the software can only notate simple one voice music. ...
2
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1answer
158 views

Dance of Nature Finale - Would Theme and Variations fit the best?

So I have been thinking about another piece lately, this one being a multi-movement work related to nature. I'm not sure if this will turn out to be a symphony or not. I certainly seem to be getting a ...
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6answers
3k views

What is the purpose of the rules in counterpoint composition?

When composing in any form of counterpoint, there are many, many rules to follow. But why? What is the ultimate goal of following the(se) formula(s)?
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4answers
161 views

Problems composing transitions and bridge passages

Background: I have been composing orchestral sketches (non-professionally) for some time now. I see the progress and notice, that everything becomes much simpler after practicing multiple hours a day (...

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