I'm new to the forum (first post) - so I hope I'm not being cheeky, but I thought a good way to introduce meself is to accompany that introduction with one of my pieces of music.
I'm a pianist, but have always aspired to writing grander music for a full orchestra. Of course, now with todays sample libraries and other great composer software am I able have a go and get some results.
The title of the piece is 'The Final March' - and the link is
(note I sometimes get choppy playback from the browser - if that happens please save the file and listen in your usual music program if you don't mind)
This is basically my first complete orchestral piece. I used:
Garritan GPO 4.2 (notation instruments)
I aimed for a very dynamic playback result from finale (I find it quite amazing really) - and used every garritan trick I could get from the manual to produce what I hope will be the first of many pieces.
My main influences range from Rachmaninov, John Williams (the film composer) and Ennio Morricone. I think you'll hear a distinctly Morricone influence near the end of my piece.
Hope you like it and thanks for listening. I'm off to listen to some of the great pieces in this forum now...
Well, I'm quite a novice when it comes to composition and using GPO itself, so to be entirely truthful, I can't think of a single bit of constructive criticism I can give you. Doesn't mean I can't give you some compliments, though: absolutely stunning! Just listened to it the whole way through, and I may as well have been listening to Rachmaninov or Hans Zimmer or any of the other big names in my iTunes playlist. The composition itself was brilliant; loved the structure, your use of the instruments, the contrasts and the orchestration in general. What's more, it's beautifully rendered - if those "garritan tricks" of yours can do something like that, I should have my head stuck in the manual for the whole day! Again, sorry I can't give any constructive criticism. All I can say is 'Bravo!'. Oh, and if this is your first orchestral piece, I can't wait to hear the next ones!
Your influences that you list are evident, but nicely assimilated - they never sound like imitations. I agree with Raymond, in that we hope it won't be a Final post! I assume the title refers do some extra-musical/dramatic image? Very nicely done, and very imaginatively orchestrated. The lyrical section about 3/4 of the way through was quite effective.
Welcome aboard. I look forward to hearing more in the future.
First of all, thank you all for your kind words and comments. Feedback is always appreciated, be it constructive critisim to make a piece better or complimentry comments highlighting the 'good' in a piece - I write music that I myself would enjoy listening to, its great to hear when others also enjoy it. Especially fellow musicians.
It of course wont be my first and final piece, the title is beacuse I envisioned an end, some finality, brought on with the last section of the piece. I toyed with the idea of returning to the main march theme immediately after what are now the final bars, but then I thought that it took the listener back to the start for no real reason - the piece is short enough to stand without a repeat (apart from the transition to the minor of course).
Thanks, glad you liked it. I assume '5:24' is a typo, else you liked it from the very last note onwards
Any specifics about the dynamics or mix? I'm always looking to improve, and it could help with future pieces.
According to WMP your piece is 08:11 long so there’s no mistake…
As to dynamics in general, it should be very clear to the listener where the highest and lowest levels are and all the rest that goes in between. It didn’t get through clear to me and I used the volume slider to adjust when it was too loud or too low.
Another thing is that notes, especially long ones, should have more variety of expression. Real players will have different levels at the start of a long note, the middle part and end of it. With a piano there’s no such thing, but with strings and winds there is.
As to the mix, here too it should be very clear as to which instruments are at the lead at a certain point and which aren’t. A tangible example just came to my mind…
Let’s say your music is represented by a puppet on strings. If you want the audience to understand exactly what your puppet is doing and what it expresses, you have to manipulate the right strings, in the exact time, pull, tension etc.
Hi Sunbird - thanks for elaborating, some very useful feedback there.
On the length of the piece, your WMP is telling you porkies because the piece isn't that long. Don't ask why, but my WMP tells me the same thing. But every other player I used says 5:24
Also if anyone uses KMPlayer to listen to files, I wouldn't recommend it unless you go into the audio options of it and disable the 'normalise' option which appears to be on by default. It completely taints the listening experience of any piece.