• Register
  • Help
Results 1 to 10 of 10

Topic: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

Share/Bookmark
  1. #1

    Question Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    I 've been stuck ever since I bought GPO a few months ago and I don't know what to do.

    Basically... if I already have the melody (lead line), harmony (chord progression to go with the lead), 4 of the most recommended books on orchestration, knowledge of how to use GPO, what's next?

    Someone please give me direct, specific instructions or advice. I promise not to disappoint. I have plenty of Music Theory education so, be as complicated as you like. I just really needed to get started with an efficient way of composing with GPO. Pleeease help me. I know one of you knows something. Seriously, I need specific instructions or advice and I'll develop my own methods based on the methods suggested by you GPO-using experts.

    Thank You.

  2. #2

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Hi 88,
    Here's what I do, maybe it will help you.
    I have a template of most of the GPO instruments in my sequencer (Digital Performer) with a midi track already set up and titled according to the sound. What I usually do is start by playing in the melody line. Then I play the violas, cellos and basses. Kind of like painting a picture, you have to start with a baseline, no not bass line Ok let me back up a bit. I usually know what I want the piece to sound like, (classical, baroque, pop, modern etc.) you get the idea. Once I know that, I realize that it will probably change as the project progresses. I use the list of instruments to go through like a kid at a candy store thinking.... hmmmmmm? maybe a few of these would taste good, let's see where that instrument would play in this piece? Sometimes I end up totally eliminating an instrument that I thought would sound good. Always keep the midi track because that could be used for a different instrument with some tweaking of attacks, duration and modulation.
    That's what I do.

    DPDan

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    NW Illinois
    Posts
    1,175

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Composing, arranging and orchestrating are all different things to me. For example, I can compose a melody and chord progression. Next take that material and arrange it. For this I just use a grand staff and piano. Come up with a satisfying accompaniment, bass line, counterpoint melodies, where should the melody be used alone, in octaves, harmonized completely. I end up with a complete piano arrangement of my piece. Next I orchestrate by deciding what instruments play what parts of the piano arrangement, experiment with different orchestral colors of instrument combinations. Others probably work differently, but that's what I do.

    JT

  4. #4

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    When I start (or continue) writing, I try to concentrate on the idea that feels most "important" or "urgent" to start with. This can be: a structural idea (this will result in somethin I write down on a paper, not in cubase first), a rhythmic idea (I'll try to sketch some notes, e.g. with celli or drums), a melody line (with an instrument that has the necessary range, but which may be changed later), a harmonic progression (e.g. with violins, violas and celli first - may be changed later), some interaction of melodies (again, instruments used for that sketch may change later), etc.
    Then, there are phases where I mostly vary existing material: take a melody from the beginning, put it on another place, use it as bass figure (celli & bass, e.g.), change its key, change its rhythm, use it as harmonic progression, etc.
    This is somewhat similar to the process when I do some oil painting: start with an idea, let the result "speak" to me and continue changing the "wet oil" until everything seems to fit together.
    More technically: I use cubase and 8-10 instances of kontakt player. Usually, I decide the size and staff of the orchestra before I start (when I'm painting, I do the same with a selected range of color tubes that remain for that picture). I set up tracks for each instrument similar to an orchestral staff (woodwinds on top, then brass, then percussion and finally the string ensembles).

    Just start experimenting, you'll find the method that fits to your very individual needs.

    Best regards,
    Andreas

  5. #5

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Quote Originally Posted by AndreasKrebs
    When I start (or continue) writing, I try to concentrate on the idea that feels most "important" or "urgent" to start with. This can be: a structural idea (this will result in somethin I write down on a paper, not in cubase first), a rhythmic idea (I'll try to sketch some notes, e.g. with celli or drums), a melody line (with an instrument that has the necessary range, but which may be changed later), a harmonic progression (e.g. with violins, violas and celli first - may be changed later), some interaction of melodies (again, instruments used for that sketch may change later), etc.
    Then, there are phases where I mostly vary existing material: take a melody from the beginning, put it on another place, use it as bass figure (celli & bass, e.g.), change its key, change its rhythm, use it as harmonic progression, etc.
    This is somewhat similar to the process when I do some oil painting: start with an idea, let the result "speak" to me and continue changing the "wet oil" until everything seems to fit together.
    More technically: I use cubase and 8-10 instances of kontakt player. Usually, I decide the size and staff of the orchestra before I start (when I'm painting, I do the same with a selected range of color tubes that remain for that picture). I set up tracks for each instrument similar to an orchestral staff (woodwinds on top, then brass, then percussion and finally the string ensembles).

    Just start experimenting, you'll find the method that fits to your very individual needs.

    Best regards,
    Andreas
    Hi Andreas,
    I liked your posting... a question, do you use the metronome when you are putting all this together or do you work off the melody line only?

    danke,
    Addo..
    ___________________________________
    Anonimity is hard to achieve .. Addo Zappler

  6. #6

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Quote Originally Posted by addo
    Hi Andreas,
    I liked your posting... a question, do you use the metronome when you are putting all this together or do you work off the melody line only?

    danke,
    Hi Addo,

    since my english is not too perfect, I hope I understood you correctly: no, I don't use a metronome (neither the one in the sequencer software, nor a mechanical one). Actually, I don't use a keyboard to enter notes in real-time, everything is done with mouse-clicking, printing out parts of the score, working with a pencil on the score and entering the new notes again with the mouse. Keyboard only when playing around with new melodies, rhythms, etc. Does this answer your question (I have to admit I didn't really understand the part with the melody line )?

    Best regards,
    Andreas

  7. #7

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Hi all,
    Ive just purchased GPO and I am very impressed. This is my first post, but I doubt my last. I think this question is excellent, I am in the same situation as the thread owner.

    What I have been doing is putting in chord sequences/ cadences using semibreves over say eight bars, then experimenting with voicings by moving the notes around - dedicating them to different instruments changing octaves, etc. Because I am new to GPO I have confined myself to strings in an attempt to try to get to know the sounds well.
    After I am happy with the voicings I then substitute a more interesting motive in the track but centralise it around the same original semibreve - so, if, for example, I am working with an A, I might put in a leading tone of G resolving to keeping the A as the dominant tone by using it on the beat etc..
    This way I am getting some interesting orchestral textures

    When I am happylastly trying to squeeze every ounce of expression out pf the part by fiddling with modulation, maybe the merest smidgin of pitch bend. I am still getting tgo grips with this last bit -= what's the best way to get authentic Vibrato?

  8. #8

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Quote Originally Posted by 88chopin
    I 've been stuck ever since I bought GPO a few months ago and I don't know what to do.
    I'm personally excited about getting GPO because it will let me put my ideas into reality without all those pesky years of Violin and French Horn lessons.

    Basically, the way I intend to use GPO is more or less as a mental copy machine. Other than the rock / pop stuff I write on guitar, I compose in my head (and sometimes even for the guitar stuff). I may wander around for days letting my mind play with various melodies and counter melodies, supporting chord movement, percussion, etc. Once I'm happy with what I hear in my head, where there are no constraints beyond imagination, I then sit down with my tools and write down the individual instruments as I hear them. Of course, after that it's a matter of tweaking to get what I want.

    In other words, it's a lot like making an ice sculpture of an elephant: first and foremost, see the elephant in your mind, and then chip away everything from the ice that doesn't look like an elephant...

    Hope this helps!

    Chris

  9. #9

    Lightbulb Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Hi Andreas,
    Ah... the old fashioned way... that's good.
    I have been trying to write using the melody line and then building the arrangement around it...
    I have to get cracking on my dots !

    Thanks Andreas
    Addo..
    ___________________________________
    Anonimity is hard to achieve .. Addo Zappler

  10. #10
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    West Seneca, NY
    Posts
    11,075

    Re: Somebody Pleeeease help me get started..

    Hi guys!
    Did I miss something? No one has talked about how important the bass line is in supporting the (a) melody(s). What about the lowest voices in helping you achieve your end results?
    Just wandering -
    Styxx

Go Back to forum

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

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