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Topic: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

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  1. #1

    Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Okay, here's the deal. Folks at my church have told me they want to here more of my horn playing in a solo situation. So, I decided to orchestrate church melodies in GPO, record them to CD, and have them accompany me on the horn. Easy enough, right?

    WRONG!!! Church melodies are so simplistic I'm going out of my head! So, can any of you help me, here? The following is a link to "Jesus Loves Me" by William M Bradbury, orchestrated by me.

    I think I'm going to scrap this piece at 1:03 and do a complete re-write. The link is not the completed work, as I got disgusted with it and stopped. Just let me know what you guys think. The re-write, if I do it, will probably keep with the "deep south" feeling I had for the first minute. BTW, this piece should not be more than 2:30 in length (another problem I'm having, since my stuff is usally at least 5 minutes in length)!

    https://home.comcast.net/~foster.payne/jlm.mp3

    Thanks for any comments.
    C. Foster Payne
    Amateur Composer/Orchestrator
    http://FosterPayne.com/default.aspx

  2. #2

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Scrap it at 1:03? That's where the piece starts... lol.

    Foster, this kind of assignment is (excuse me for swearing in church) a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" proposition -- 2:30, with your developmental tendencies? That's too small a box for what I hear, here.

    You know, just for starters, I think I might flip the sections of this piece around -- might give you a different perspective on the one hand, and I think it might haul back the flow so you can contain the length better.

    Or not. Maybe you should just write the piece the way it wants you to write it.

    In any event, though I don't know where you're going with this, either, I do like where you've been with it.

    Best,

    David
    www.DavidSosnowski.com
    -

  3. #3

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Foster,

    I'm with David, here... write it the way it wants to be written!

    I've been writing music for church for a LONG time... it isn't always easy, believe me!

    One question, though - why does it "have to be 2:30" ? Is that all the time you've been given - perhaps for an offertory or some other slot in the service? If that's the case, think outside the box a bit... is there any chance you could do longer pieces as preludes?

    Having said these things, I'll also say that being constrained by limitations like time and simplicity is a GOOD discipline... whenever a composer is given parameters to work within it forces him or her to be creative within those bounds, and can have surprising results.

    I'd also say that even though you think these melodies too simple, do not decorate them so much that they are unrecognizable... your purpose within the worship service should be to uplift the people, and since your pieces have no vocals, they need to be able to recognize the tune... (!)

    The 1:30 you have given so far sounds like it could be even an extended fantasia on this tune... I say write it the way you hear it, then set yourself a project to write something shorter. One suggestion - when writing miniatures of this kind, the tune has to appear pretty quickly without an extended intro see:
    http://evensongmusic.net/audio/adagio_silent_night.mp3
    or
    http://evensongmusic.net/audio/Orwig...s-DemBones.mp3
    both of which are around 2 minutes.

    Hope this helps - feel free to ask more questions if you need (we can even take this offlist if you like, since church music and the minutiae of composing for church are probably out of the scope of this list)

    Cheers,

  4. #4

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Thanks, guys, for the feedback. This piece is to be played for the offeratory, hence the shortness of it. And I thought that would be cool, forcing a discipline upon me and getting me in the practice of satisfying the customer (in this case the congregation). My problem probably has more to do with ego and lack of experience. I want to write large orchestral numbers, but that isn't always appropriate for church. Writing stuff for church will teach me a lot about writing within a set of parameters... it's just hard to get started.
    C. Foster Payne
    Amateur Composer/Orchestrator
    http://FosterPayne.com/default.aspx

  5. #5

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Quote Originally Posted by FossMan
    This piece is to be played for the offeratory, hence the shortness of it.
    Isn't that when they pass the hat around?

    I should think they'd want the piece much, much longer... lol.

    David
    www.DavidSosnowski.com
    -

  6. #6

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Hi,

    I probably shouldn't be putting my 2 cents in here. I don't know what kind of church this is, so don't know what kind of 'air' they might want about such things, but as far as the piece goes, I heard it crescendoing from where it ended, maybe going out with a bang. Course,,, that might get you kicked out of church. I don't know.
    Maybe I'm too upity, but I hate churches with lousy music, don't like too many restrictions, really liked your piece, so I'd say make it as long as it needs to be, and maybe it will be a big offering. They'd have to like that, right??

    Char.



    Quote Originally Posted by FossMan
    Okay, here's the deal. Folks at my church have told me they want to here more of my horn playing in a solo situation. So, I decided to orchestrate church melodies in GPO, record them to CD, and have them accompany me on the horn. Easy enough, right?

    WRONG!!! Church melodies are so simplistic I'm going out of my head! So, can any of you help me, here? The following is a link to "Jesus Loves Me" by William M Bradbury, orchestrated by me.

    I think I'm going to scrap this piece at 1:03 and do a complete re-write. The link is not the completed work, as I got disgusted with it and stopped. Just let me know what you guys think. The re-write, if I do it, will probably keep with the "deep south" feeling I had for the first minute. BTW, this piece should not be more than 2:30 in length (another problem I'm having, since my stuff is usally at least 5 minutes in length)!

    https://home.comcast.net/~foster.payne/jlm.mp3

    Thanks for any comments.

  7. #7

    Re: Arrgghh!!! Where is this piece going?

    Wonderful work here…!

    There are allot of great elements in this arrangement. Perhaps too many for the short duration restraint.
    I found a shift in mood around at 1:10,.. Which may be a bit strong, leaving you with little time to blend it into a proper ending. Perhaps keeping the same melodic shift but softer, will give you more options, and tie in better with the overall soft tonality.

    David made a good observation about shifting sections…

    I think your opening was well written. Soft, to loud, then back to soft again. I could easily see it re-iterated once again for the final ending, but varied to give it it's own distinction.


    … just a thought.

    Please do post the final version when your finished!. I'm eager to hear what your conclusion was.


    jeff

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