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Topic: We're Almost There

  1. #1

    We're Almost There

    It's been ages since I've posted. This is my first orchestral post (my first were 2 piano solos). This is an unfinished song that I began while my wife was going through chemotherapy for breast cancer. It is unfinished and I'm a little stuck as to where to go from here. I wanted to convey a romantic trip to Paris after she completed her treatment. She finished with flying colors - as for the trip - Ah, one can only dream.

    It is all GPO except for the Fr Accordian which is Reason.

    Thanks for any input you may have.



  2. #2

    Re: We're Almost There

    Hi, Tom

    What a pretty beginning you have, and a wonderful inspiration for writing it--Thanks for giving us the background, and big congratulations on your wife's successful completion of her treatment.

    Where to go from here? A logical thing would be to move to the relative minor, perhaps with a melody based on a retrograde version of your theme. That's a fairly traditional thing to do at this point, but could be a starting point for you.

    I wasn't sure I was hearing the Accordion at first - I had my speakers rather low, so heard it when I turned the knob up. But mostly the Accordion is duplicating the strings, in the same octave, and for the same durations - that's also what helped keep it rather inaudible. I understand you want this smooth, but perhaps shorter notes, less Legato would help define the instrument more, and maybe touches of lightly done counterpoint.

    The Piano sounded a bit thin and bright. I think perhaps you did some fairly radical EQing on it, since the GPO Steinway is a bit dark? The results are a bit harsh to my ears, contrary to the romance of the mood.

    You have plenty of inspiration to draw on to carry this forward---Hope you sit down and do more!

    Thanks for the lovely piece.

    Randy B.

  3. #3

    Re: We're Almost There

    Thanks, Randy. What great input. I will give it a try. I wanted the accordian to sound like a scene from a movie with the accordian dubbing the melody but maybe it would be better to have it play underlying chords. So many places one can go with this.

    Thanks, again.


  4. #4

    Re: We're Almost There

    Hi, Tom,

    I think you have written here a very romantic and dreamy beginning, which I really like. The instruments are well chosen and blend very well together up to the entrance of the piano. It needs some softening to continue in the same mood.
    The accordion can definitely get more attention as well and sing it's own song, maybe in a duet with the piano or the flute.
    As to how to continue, you can repeat it with variation (or introduce a new theme) by going up two intervals to the minor on the third. I think this transition gives an uplifting feeling.
    Do continue! This has excellent qualities!


  5. #5

    Re: We're Almost There

    Thanks, Sunbird -

    Is the entry of the piano melody too abrupt - should I stay with the same melody but mellow it out - or should I dump the piano melody?

    Can't thank you enough for your time and input.


  6. #6

    Re: We're Almost There

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas J
    Is the entry of the piano melody too abrupt - should I stay with the same melody but mellow it out - or should I dump the piano melody?
    I listened to it again several times and I feel that the piano with the accordion come in too early, as if the flute hasn't finished its part.
    I would continue its part and later enter quietly with the piano and/or accordion for their individual parts or in a duet.
    Also the piano and accordion parts are identical in certain places which sounds unbalanced.
    The piano melody may sound totally different once mellowed down and in the right place. Likewise I think that the accordion would sound better with just a melody without chords, because you have them already in the strings.
    By the way there's an instrument coming in quietly at 00:16, what is it? It's lovely.


  7. #7
    Senior Member Leaf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Dallas, TX

    Thumbs up Re: We're Almost There

    Tom, it is so great to read that the recovery went well for your wife, and this is a beautiful start for a piece you have posted here. I hope something comes throgh to make that trip possible.

    I hope you don't dump the piano, but whatever has changed it's sound so much needs to be maybe dumped. The part it is playing is very nice, it just doesn't sound as good tonaly as the GPO Steinway usually sounds.

    I like this piece and hope you post the result after adding the finish and whatever of these great tips people posted you decide to employ. I think this has a very pleasant mood and feel to it and it reminds me of some of Henry Mancini's music, who is one of my favorite composers.


  8. #8

    Re: We're Almost There

    A terrific beginning, Tom!

    Wouldn't change a thing to the melody.. Quite lovely!

    As mentioned, it could be softened up a bit...

    My first impressions were: The beginning came in a touch fast.. I might slow the first few bars down to ease into things more gently.... In fact I felt the overall tempo is a touch ( a slight touch) fast. Seems to be in a hurry.

    This is Paris after all! Time to relax.. lol

    The piano intro is a bit strong. and on the bright/harsh side.

    I also agree with Randy that the Accordion is barely audible.

    Truthfully, it sounds great even with the few voices here... (Much softer) but could be worth bumping the accordion up to give it the Parisian atmosphere you're looking for.

    As to where to take this?

    .. it can easily go in any direction..

    Not sure why but the song "Blue Spanish Eyes" came to mind.... could be a source to listen for ideas.

    And a good place for a chord shift could also be inserted before the flute or piano intro. Too many repeating motifs can make it difficult to break away.

    just a few thoughts..

    Great work!


    ... and please do post when it's completed.


  9. #9

    Re: We're Almost There


    A great beginning.

    I agree with the comments already stated and one more thing. The attack on the notes at the beginning of the piano is what throws me off. It might help if the notes were struck a tad lighter at first.


  10. #10

    Re: We're Almost There

    I am so appreciative of the comments that I received from all of you.

    Randy: Thanks so much again!!

    Sunbird: The instrument that enters in at approximately 00:16 is the GPO harp. Again, many thanks for your time to listen and critique.

    Leaf: To be mentioned in the same breath as Henry Mancini is something that I will use as tremendous inspiration. I will tweak the piano as per your recommendation.

    Jsp2: Thanks so much for your comments. I hear from you that I should make the Accordian more front an center. Will give this a go.

    Rolifer: I note your comments about the piano too. Although I gather that the piano melody is OK but its overall tone and execution needs to be softened.

    Although I am not trained in composition, I have the greatest of inspirations in my wife Michele's clean bill of health after many months of difficulties.

    PARIS HERE WE COME!!! (I just don't know when )

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