• Register
  • Help
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 33

Topic: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

  1. #1

    How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    sponsored links

    Dear Composers,

    I am a music illiterate from Tamil Nadu, a state in South of INDIA. My ultimate ambition is to compose music for films (songs and tracks). However, all I know about music is playing my keyboard-synth ( I have a Triton Studio 88) which I had been doing for about 3 years.

    Now, when I play my own \"tunes\", I find that they are very amateurish (not the least close to the film song tunes here). Also, I am not able to convey emotions in my songs. Impossible, it seems to me. Now, all I want to know is HOW to compose beautiful tunes (not complete songs) that can convey the right emotions (sadness, funny, etc.) Is there a connection between scales and emotions? Or, are there any basic techniques to build tunes that are good to hear? Are there any secrets in it? Please help me.

    Also, I would like to know if any music course in Trinity Music College, London or ABRSM.co.uk be of help to me in my endeavour. If so, please specify the name of the course (I couldn\'t decide myself because of the so many courses they offer).

    Please help me. You are my only hope. You can mail me at: robbiestanford007@hotmail.com

  2. #2

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    You\'ve only been playing for three years... so don\'t feel bad if your music sounds amateurish!

    Now, all I want to know is HOW to compose beautiful tunes
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Listen to Beethoven and Mozart! Lots of Beethoven and Mozart!

    Is there a connection between scales and emotions?
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">These are good rules to start with:

    Minor = Sad
    Major = Happy
    Mode = Either

    Or, are there any basic techniques to build tunes that are good to hear?
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Yes! There are! You should buy a book on counterpoint (18th Century NOT 16th Century) and read the chapters on melody. It will be exactly what you\'re looking for.

    Are there any secrets in it?
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">A simple way to write a pretty melody is to always go back to a root note. Something like:

    (All quarter notes)
    F# B C# B D B E B F# B E B C# B E A B A C# A D A E A

    Phillip \"Bad Composer\" Glass does that sort of thing a lot.

    I don\'t know what exactly the colleges you\'re asking are about? Generally in America when you decide to study music you have to start with 4 Theory & Sight Singing classes. If they offer those where you are perhaps you should take them?

    edit: and take piano lessons if you aren\'t already!

  3. #3

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    I think you are being too hard on yourself. I have been writing songs for 24 years and some are very emotional and can connect with people, and some are just songs that are meaningful to me and only me. I would try to think about things that have caused you joy, pain, smiles and sadness and try to combine simple major and minor chords and start there. The previous replier to your post is correct when it comes to which types of chords deliver different feelings. As for your songs not being \"great\", all that matters is what you feel. There is a group Air Supply that is still touring the world after 28 years. They haven\'t had a hit single in the United States since 1985 but still have songs that are on the charts from CD\'s they have released in the past 10 years in Singapore, Indonesia, Mexico, and Taipei to name a few. Critics in the U.S. have always been very hard on them but the songwriter in the band, Graham Russell still writes what is in his heart and about things that affect him emotionally and is one of the happiest people that I know, despite not being \"hip\" enough for America. So, don\'t be too hard on yourself. Don\'t compare yourself to others, just be you and be proud of what you write and you will feel better.

  4. #4

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Like I read in some other post somewhere, try singing, sometimes you will come up with some good melodies. The trick is notating words into the accurate notes. I find my natural note when I sing is A, so I have a decent reference there. Then again tapping out drum beats when you\'re bored can give you the tempo and perhaps snare (or whatever instrument) beat to be used. Also, if you don\'t like your own music there is something wrong, appreciate what you have accomplished. If it sounds too bland try adding a harp or something playing an arpeggio or trill. E.G violin playing E7 whole, have a harp play G5,C5 16ths (that is a major triad rooted in c if I am correct, i don\'t go to school for music). It may be simple but it will add something. The best people to ask for advice would be people schooled in the arts, like Thomas Bergerson or Maarten Sprujt.

  5. #5

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Thanks JudasCloud for your astounding reply. It was simply great and very very useful to me. I have already started listening to Bach, Beethovan and Mozart and it\'s great! But, as far as \"COUNTERPOINT\"s were concerned, I couldn\'t get a single book in the bookstores and music shops here. In Amazon.com, it seems the only book on 18th century is OUT OF PRINT. So, is there any other resource on the web where I could read them? Btw., what exactly is counterpoint? [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] And, regarding the courses, I am going to take theory and piano classes, but, is \"sight-singing\" classes as you had suggested really useful to me? For becoming a composer? Please help...

    And, dear Mr.Elliot, thanks very much for your encouragement and techniques for creating emotions with music. Thanks Adam as well for your suggestions.

    Thanks again. I will also appreciate more comments/suggestions/answers/anything!

  6. #6

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Imagine the tune as a wave which goes down and up. Good tunes has almost always an low point (lowest note in the tune) and a high point, stay away from repeating those notes elsewhere in the tune.

    Also in general it\'s not good idea to repeat the same note more often than 2-3 times because it is a quick way to elimimate the wave feeling we like to get when we hear a tune.

    Hope this helps.

  7. #7

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Dear Falcon1,

    Thanks very much for your post, but, since your idea/suggestion is completely new to me, I am very sorry to say that I could not completely understand it. So, I would be very very glad if you could give me an example with explanation.

    Waiting for your reply,
    Robbie Stanford

  8. #8

  9. #9

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Dear Robbie

    Make a list of your top ten favourite tunes. Whatever they are. Then learn to play them by heart. Then try and write the eleventh one.

    Counterpoint is the study of harmony as four independant voices. The aim being that each voice is a good tune in itself. However the most important is usally the soprano. Historically that carries the tune.

    Film music generally does\'nt have good tunes. It has great title themes maybe but for the bulk of the score nowadays its really atmosphere. You have to really pick which genre you wish to emulate and try and learn to what makes it tick, Sometimes the instrumentation can be as important as the tune. For instance \"the good the bad and the ugly\"

    You could try writing a tune just by stringing together some cool chords and then moving the notes a bit. Do it in a sequencer if you have one to get you started. Move the top line about change the rythm. Try and move by step. If you make a big leap don\'t follow it with another big leap. Try writing in modes. Or a melody with only three notes . I heard LOLA on the radio yeasterday . Great song Three notes.

    Good Luck

    ed [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

  10. #10

    Re: How to compose "tunes"? Please help ...

    Sight Singing (and ear training) is incredibly important for a composer! Have you ever seen the movie Amadeus? If you have, you\'ll remember that Mozart wrote all his music with just a pen, a piece of paper and his sight singing/ear training skill. He had no instrument whatsoever around. This is the goal of sight singing classes for composers.

    If you never really sing, it will be a little embarrassing at first, but you really should take these courses. They\'re required for absolutely any music degree in America, so I think it might be the same over there too.

    And here\'s the music book I used:

    Gauldin\'s 18th Century Counterpoint

    This will help you write classical melodies (which is a good place to start) but don\'t forget that 20th century music breaks a lot of the \"rules\" in these books.

Go Back to forum
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Tags for this Thread


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts