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Topic: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

  1. #1

    Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

    This is a soft and simple but reflective remix I created for Terra's Theme from Final Fantasy VI. I created this from scratch. Terra's Theme is still my favorite composition from any video game. The goal I wanted out of this remix was to bring out the memories of this character. For those who played the game will understand how dramatic and intense the story was.

    Instrument Libraries Used:
    - Garritan Instant Orchestra
    - EWQLSO Silver

  2. #2

    Re: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)


    You may have noticed from my posts on your other threads that I'm not familiar with gaming music, or with most Anything associated with games. It's a whole big, mysterious sub-culture to me!

    So after hearing this simple, softly sad sounding "Terra's Theme," which makes nice use out of one of Instant Orchestra's string patches, I just Had to get on Google and find more out about what you mentioned on this new post.

    I see - One of the most beloved video games of all time, and with a theme song which is pretty much everyone's #1 fave also. With the game being played some years ago, during the very impressionable pre-teen years, I can see how this nice little theme would make quite an impression and stick to the bones of your memory in only the way music can.

    AND I uncovered the Composer's name - Nobuo Uematsu. His name should really be on your post, as the name of a composer should always be included when we're not posting original music.

    From my Google search, I also discovered that it's common now for people to do what they're calling "Remixes" of video game music - though what I heard are things I would call new arrangements. "Remix" usually refers to when the audio files of a release are toyed with, mashed up, new tracks added, new FX etc. Some of the new versions of gaming music seems to be in the "remix" category, more of them seem to be just new arrangements, like yours here on the post.

    BUT - I noticed a lush orchestral version of this "Terra's Theme" and the credits for that listing were given as:

    ReMixer: Jeremy Soule
    Composer: Nobuo Uematsu

    Quibble as I may about whether what Soul did was a "remix" or not, the credit on your video is:

    "Remix Composed by Richard J Durand" - OK so that's probably confirming that in this gaming culture, arranging and recording completely new versions of music is called "remixing" - But where's the actual composer's credit? Where's Nobuo Uematsu's name?

    Here's some info - When someone comes up with a new version of existing music, he/she is writing an Arrangement. The result isn't a Composition - that refers to the actual music itself, the core elements of melody, chords, and time which make a piece of music a unique composition. That same writer often writes the arrangement for that original composition. Later, when other musicians work with that piece, they aren't composing, they're arranging.

    But I see the nomenclature is different in the gaming world - But from what I saw online, it doesn't look different when it comes to the title of Composer. There seems to be the traditional, universally accepted title of Composer used for the person who actually wrote the music, Uematsu in this case. In your video, you wrote the Arrangement - or, using the apparent gaming term, you wrote the ReMix.

    Anyway - You Do need to give Uematsu credit, and your own credit should be for what you actually did.

    ---one more note - When I was going through the list of Google results, I noticed some video postings at YouTube have been removed due to copyright infringement. Be careful. It's a very big drag when YT busts people for infringement. On the 2nd strike, the user loses the use of YT permanently.

    I want to end on the most positive note - It's a lovely track you put together!


  3. #3
    Senior Member Frank D's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Suburban NYC

    Re: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

    Hi Sururick,

    I've enjoyed listening to your various gaming scores the past month or so and they all seem to fit the genre very nicely. There's a surreal, synthy feel to all of them which seems to integrate the music tightly to the visuals ... you have a real talent for producing this type of music.

    As I was writing my comments, I noticed Randy's response and he pretty much said what I was writing: As music performers and creators, we have an obligation (ethical and legal) to always clearly indicate what we actually did when we create content.

    On your clip, mentioning "Remix Composed by ..." is kinda an oxymoron. If we didn't have the Dance Music-HipHop-Gaming subculture, a remix would simply be an 'Arranged by ..." credit. "Composed by ..." conotates creation of the melody and harmony. Which one is it? See the conflict in terms?

    I think if you said "Remixed by ..." everyone would understand your contribution clearly.

    However, if what you actually did was make a recreation of an already existing remix (arrangement), you can't use the term remix or arrangement in your credit either ... that music (the remix) would have already been created by whomever's music you were using as the basis for the mock-up (a copy). Unless you have substantially created a new remix (arrangement), you need to use the terms "recreated" or "adapted" ... see, there would be no musical creation per se on the part of who made the mock-up.

    There is no stigma attached (or at least there shouldn't be! ) to what we actually create in music. I've composed, arranged, orchestrated, adapted, remixed (yes, I actually worked for a Dance Music/Hip-hop producer for several years!) ... and in many cases, the collaboration was split even further "Strings arranged by ...", "Horns arranged by ...", "New Orchestrations by ..." etc, etc, etc.

    I know from reading previous posts that you are not maliciously trying to take credit for something you adapted or remixed (I'll leave the semantical choices up to you). But if you want to be taken seriously and professionally, we all need to use the accepted conventions when it comes to credits. Even if it's a bit different in the gaming world, I would think you are posting here because you want a more diverse community to listen to your music (I know I do), so being aware of normal conventions is important.

    The composer's credit: As Randy mentioned, anytime you are using someone else's composition as the basis for a remix, arrangement, orchestration, etc., you need to give the composer a credit. Put yourself in their shoes: If someone took one of your original, lovely gaming melodies and used it in their original arrangement, you would want listener's to know who wrote the core composition ... you!

    I hope you take my comments as education; I've learned so much from fellow musicians here and that is part of the journey for all of us.

    Keep posting your very nice music.



    (PS: Be careful with the art work you use in your Youtube creations as well ... unless they are original, Public Domain (PD), or you have permission from the creator, there could be copyright issues. Just want you to be aware. Oh, and if they are original: WOW ... REALLY nice!!

  4. #4

    Re: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

    Thanks for the feedback guys. This piece was created from scratch based on my own memory of the composition. There was no copying of midi files or the such. The picture used in the video is fan art and not related to any official artwork from square-enix. I only did insert my own name in the picture, it really is a habbit. When I remix games, I tend to follow others. Most don't have the original composer's name. I agree, it should be in there. Merely just a bad habbit. As far as copyright goes, I already had a few placed on my youtube account for these kinds of remixes. However, all of them have been disputed and the companies that monitor these have accepted my videos therefore the copyright issues aren't a problem for me. I make remixes from scratch or midis. A lot of the time people get banned accounts is because they post original work or even live recordings are subject to account banning. I have had my account for years posting remixes and such. I have no pending copyright issues with any company. As I mentioned, the ones I did have are now already been released and I am allowed to keep the videos. Thanks again for listening to the track. I will place a new video with the original composers name it.

  5. #5

    Re: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

    Hello again, Richard "Sururick"

    Thank you for taking our posts so well. It probably seems like we came down a bit hard on you. Frank and I had the same concerns, and especially since this is a Forum for composers and musicians, we felt the need to explain our concerns. Neither one of us wanted to squelch your creativity or enthusiasm or over-look the main point of your posts which is to share with us the work you do.

    We appreciate your presence here. I've really been enjoying the variety your posts has been bringing to The Listening Room.

    I felt rather sure you'd agree that the composer needs credit, since he's the creator of the music. By giving the composers credit from now on in your videos, you'll be setting an excellent example for the other people who also record their versions of game music and post them online.

    You bring up MIDI files in your new post- I don't think either Frank or I thought you had copied MIDI files to produce this sound track. But you do understand that whether recorded "from scratch" or worked up from existing MIDI files doesn't change the status of the piece's ownership. No matter what someone does to put together a recording, if the melodic structure, in this case, is still "Terra's Theme," then the piece is still Nobuo Uematsu's.

    Your recording is in the vein of other orchestral versions of this music, and in most musical circles, your work here would be called an "arrangement," as I said in my other post. You've done the instrumentation (choosing what instruments to use) and you've put together the parts for those instruments - you've written an Arrangement. I understand that in the gaming world, this is called a "Re-mix," and so that's understood in gaming circles. In the Pop music world, a re-mix involves working with the original audio tracks - that's where the term "re-mix" came from, and it's perfectly descriptive - the engineer of a re-mix has created a new mix based on the original tracks.

    That was informational only, I understand there's no way a whole sub-culture is going to change a term they use. Since you're a musician, I just wanted to remind you that in most musical circles, what you're doing in a project like this one is Arranging.

    The only reason I brought up Copyright is that when I did a Google search for info and examples of this theme music, the first link I tried was for a "re-mix" of this same composition which was posted at YouTube. But when I got there, the video had been removed, and there was a disclaimer that the copyright owners had requested the vid's removal because of infringement.

    YT is extremely inconsistent with how they handle things. Basically they've left it up to copyright owners (and that's All of us - we all automatically have the copyright to anything we create) - to alert YT when a post at YT infringes on them. It's easy to find thousands of examples of YT posts which make unauthorized use of copyrighted material. Entire movies are posted in segments for instance, that's a really common example.

    Sometimes individuals or companies make the effort to root out those infringing videos and file the complaint. Because of the enormous legal pressure YT's gotten over the last couple of years, after getting a complaint, they simply remove the video and give the user one black mark. Their policy is that if the same user gets one more complaint, YT prvileges are suspended permanently. So that's why I brought up copyright. Many people go along for years with no problems. Other people get busted without warning.

    Wrapping this rather redundant post up on a positive note - It's a sweet, nicely gentle rendition you've done of Uematsu's simple, pleasant theme, and I enjoyed it. Thanks for posting it.


  6. #6
    Senior Member Silh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Alberta, Canada

    Re: Final Fantasy VI - Terra's Theme (Childhood Dreams)

    Ahh, Terra's Theme, possibly the most rearranged video game theme of all time, whether it be fan creations or official/authorized ones. Must admit I've got a good number of them in my CD collection (though sadly, was never able to get a hold of the Piano Collections recording with the sheet music ... wonder how much that would go for these days *ponders*). I like your arrangement, perhaps a bit on the sadder side, but that's fine with me since I tend to lean towards that aspect of the theme (and character) more so than the more 'heroic' sounding arrangements (especially some of the orchestral ones...)

    Which also reminds me... completely forgot about Uematsu's Symphonic Odysseys CD, which I must look for...
    -- Matt Wong

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