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Topic: A Symphonic Poem

  1. #1

    A Symphonic Poem

    Entitled, "Blue Chalcedony".

    First off, i have to apologize for not finishing my responses in my last post. We went away for 4 days to a snowy hideaway. I wasn't able to post replies to everyone that was kind enough to give comments and compliments. I thank you all now for taking the time to post.
    I didn't want to reply again because it would jump that post back to the top. And i'm sure it's outlived its time on the front page as it were.

    I bring you today a symphonic poem (a.k.a. tone poem).
    I finally found some time to start converting my material to use the new sample libraries. YAY! And i must say, i just LOVE the Steinway Piano! I can't believe it's just a software sample. I swear i can hear harmonic overtones. The tone and dynamics are just remarkable. I can't wait to use it more.

    In this piece, the piano, harp, oboe, & horns are GPO. The strings and alto flute are Edirol. I'm having a problem getting the GPO strings to behave the way i'd like. But i'll get it sorted out soon.

    TIP: Close your eyes and think about the title while you listen.

    PS: I understand a tone poem usually has a specific 'programme' attached to it, but this one is still in my head and i haven't put it to paper just yet. So feel free to be imaginative when you listen.

    Thanks for listening.
    Here's the link: http://www.box.net/shared/d14jvsxrg3


  2. #2
    Senior Member bigears's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Central Illinois

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Hi, I just saw your reply on my recent song and looked down the page and saw this. I'm glad I found it as I enjoyed what you have done. How did you get the koto sounding instrument that starts off the piece? Is this done in notation or a sequencer? However you achieved it, this is remarkable and I hope it gets a good hearing on the forum! Regards, John

  3. #3

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Hi John, thanks for the kind words. Glad you liked it.

    What part exactly did you hear the Koto in? I have other pieces using a Koto, but this one uses the GPO Steinway piano in the beginning. And there's an Alto Flute in there also. Oh and there's the GPO Harp in there too. Is that what you're hearing?

    I'm just wondering if you're not hearing a different song, lol.

    There's an audio sample of a real Koto on this page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Koto_performance.ogg Hit the blue play button.

    BTW: I really enjoyed your piece.


  4. #4
    Senior Member bigears's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Central Illinois

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Hi again Mark, I'm listening again to your piece and it's right from the very beginning that the piano (I think) has some similarities to a koto sound. Did you use the pitch wheel on it? I think I will download this so I can hear it with some fidelity. Nice work on this one! John

  5. #5

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    I find this very enjoyable and very blue!

    I can picture a rainy afternoon in the city while I sit in an apartment looking down over Manhattan and all the umbrellas drawn out and people leaning against a late fall wind.

    Musically it works very well, too. The little opening motive is developed very nicely and returned to just remind one of the opening.

    The orchestration is well done as well. Hmmm, can I think of anything to criticize or second guess.... ah, let me see.... actually NO! This is a nice piece all the way around! Thanks for sharing it!
    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong


  6. #6

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    WOW! Great piece Mark. I'm so glad you are finding time to start converting some of your music to GPO & GAS; it really shines.

    I love the loose feeling of the music at the beginning. The combination of harp and piano has a wonderful aura about it. How did you get the timbre of the Steinway in this...I really like that sound for this composition;it does have a koto quality to it.

    The overall feeling is definitely a cool-blue misty atmosphere which is portrayed here perfectly. Really liked the climatic chord at the end (before the piano reiteration) which just incrementally but almost imperceptibly grows and grows to a full luster---very nice indeed!

    Great work Mark!


  7. #7

    Re: A Symphonic Poem


    You have created a wonderful poem!

    It is mysteriously enchanting.

    One feels that you picked your instruments carefully and used them well at the right moment.

    I like that flute!

    Original ideas keep the listener right on track all the time.

    Thanks for posting and I will look forward to hearing your next piece.


  8. #8

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Wow everyone thank you very much for all the kind words and comments. I appreciate them greatly.

    I should answer John's last questions first... this was done solely in Cubase SX John. No scoring just playing/recording. It's been awhile since i scored anything. It would take me ages to write that way lol.
    No pitch wheel John. That would be blasphemous on a piano sample.

    I think what you and Cass may be hearing is a combination of variables... 1, your speakers probably sound different than mine, 2, the verb used may be causing some subtle overtones that are a natural characteristic of the Koto, 3, the mode that motif is played in is a half-diminished, which has a distinct Asian flavour to it.

    That's about all i can think of guys. But i'm glad you found the sound interesting none-the-less. I'm sure that added an extra dimension to the piece for you both. Right on!

    I like the flute too Sunbird. I think it's from all the 70s fusion i've listened to. I especially like the open, resonant timbre the alto can get.

    I guess i should tell you guys now the main theme behind the 'programme' for this sonic poem... it's to do with the demise and destruction of this "blue jewel" (chalcedony) we live on. Listen to the piece again but this time, run through your mind images of how we are destroying the planet, and all of the suffering it's causing around the globe. Then you'll get a better feel for the music itself.

    HAHA... boy i bet THAT cheered everyone up huh?! Sorry about that. Just thought you might like to know the real inspiration for this piece. Sorry if that bummed anyone out. I do like Rich's visual take on it too though.

  9. #9

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Loved it!

    I realize from your comments this is perhaps still somewhat
    formative, but the textures, use of orchestra, overall
    organization of the piece... very well done -- innovative,
    interesting; and with its often reflective tenor, yet still vital
    and evocative with a clear sense of direction and almost
    cinematic narrative.

    Stay on this track, my friend -- it's a rich avenue for you.

    All the best,

    David Sosnowski

  10. #10

    Re: A Symphonic Poem

    Gee thanks David i appreciate your kind words and concise analysis. Glad you enjoyed the piece.

    I have lots more like this. Just have to find time to reproduce them with the new samples. I tryin'!

    Have a good one.


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