Go Back   UG Community @ Ultimate-Guitar.Com > Music > Musician Talk
User Name  
Password
Search:

Reply
Old 02-13-2013, 04:47 PM   #1
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels
Alright, I want to begin composing.

I only have the vaguest idea. But I want to begin studying 'classical' composition, I can't study at a college so I'm just going to have to teach myself.

I've studied up to Grade 5 theory (just about) and I can play a tiny bit of piano.

Now where on Earth do I begin?

Books, online courses? What kind of form or instrumentation is easy to start off with? Do you just start writing and improve from there, or get an idea of what you're doing first before you begin?

I can't afford Sibelius or anything fancy like that, this is a pen + paper and piano deal. Learning to read it and hear it in my head with audio reference.
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.

Last edited by ChucklesMginty : 02-13-2013 at 04:49 PM.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 05:02 PM   #2
Reagar
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Listen to lots of music. I think that's more important than anything you can formally learn. Beethoven, Mozart and stuff. Try and work out why the greats are so great.
Reagar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 05:07 PM   #3
Weirdbag
UG Member
 
Weirdbag's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Germany
get piano lessons
__________________

Post-Rock Project



Weirdbag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 05:08 PM   #4
Macabre_Turtle
UG's UGer
 
Macabre_Turtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Hermitage, PA
Guitar Pro. It costs money (unless you're computer savy, arggh), but I owe my whole musicianship to it's creators.
__________________
My upcoming album.
Atlas Burden'

Covers:
STS - Emersion - Dual Guitar/Bass
STS - Redwoods - Dual Guitar
BTBAM - The Backtrack - Bass/Guitar
BTBAM - Sun of Nothing - Guitar
Macabre_Turtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 05:38 PM   #5
Hail
kill both bass players
 
Hail's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Dallas
he said classical composition you nuts

find a good university, get their composition class' books - should be easy to find. or scour your library and read everything you can.

or be enroll in a class at a junior college nearby (just enough to get an ID) and go apeshit on their library
Hail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 05:38 PM   #6
CelestialGuitar
Celestial Wish Guitarist
 
CelestialGuitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Birmingham, UK
I'm an orchestral composer and while programs like Sibelius are great for that, it's so much better to invest in some real orchestral plugins, such as EWQLs software, and compose in something like Reaper, as it's so satisfying to hear your piece come to life as you write it, and with a bit of mixing, it can be ready to be licensed out and sold almost as soon as it's done.
__________________
Gear

Mesa Dual Rectifier
TC Electronic Polytune
T Rex MAB Overdrive
Boss NS-2
ESP Horizon NT See Thru Black (D Standard)

Celestial Wish on Youtube
CelestialGuitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:01 PM   #7
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reagar
Listen to lots of music. I think that's more important than anything you can formally learn. Beethoven, Mozart and stuff.

Doing that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weirdbag
get piano lessons

And that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hail
he said classical composition you nuts

find a good university, get their composition class' books - should be easy to find. or scour your library and read everything you can.

or be enroll in a class at a junior college nearby (just enough to get an ID) and go apeshit on their library


We don't really have anything like that around here, and I can't really afford any more classes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CelestialGuitar
I'm an orchestral composer and while programs like Sibelius are great for that, it's so much better to invest in some real orchestral plugins, such as EWQLs software, and compose in something like Reaper, as it's so satisfying to hear your piece come to life as you write it, and with a bit of mixing, it can be ready to be licensed out and sold almost as soon as it's done.


I specifically don't want to use any software because I want to learn how to write straight to paper and do it all in my head. I've got no interest in producing anything.
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.

Last edited by ChucklesMginty : 02-13-2013 at 06:03 PM.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:12 PM   #8
jazz_rock_feel
Banned
 
jazz_rock_feel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucklesMginty
I specifically don't want to use any software because I want to learn how to write straight to paper and do it all in my head. I've got no interest in producing anything.

Why? Will the music you write be better for having being written by hand? Does the music care?

I'm a huge advocate of lessons, as composition is a really difficult craft to learn on your own. If that's not possible, read Arnold Schoenberg's Fundamentals of Musical Composition. It will get you thinking a bit more like a composer and show you how composer's should look at and analyze music. Also, listen, listen, listen, listen, listen, and then listen again. I can give you some stuff to check out if you need some direction for listening. And don't just listen to Bach/Mozart/Beethoven/Brahms and call it a day, explore more music is both directions of time (renaissance and 20th century).

Other than that, begin composing. I like the idea of starting with chamber music for a couple of reasons 1) it's less daunting than writing for an orchestra and 2) you can't hide behind instrumentation and orchestration, your form and technique has to be dead on or the piece will suck.
jazz_rock_feel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:17 PM   #9
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazz_rock_feel
Why? Will the music you write be better for having being written by hand? Does the music care?


No, but I'd to learn to be able to hear music just by reading it. Plus not need a computer to write stuff down. Oh, and good notation software costs a fortune. Sibelius is like 450 right? Manuscript paper costs virtually nothing.

Quote:
If that's not possible, read Arnold Schoenberg's Fundamentals of Musical Composition. It will get you thinking a bit more like a composer and show you how composer's should look at and analyze music.


Thanks, that's all I was after!
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:39 PM   #10
Nietsche
Registered Hoover
 
Join Date: May 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucklesMginty
No, but I'd to learn to be able to hear music just by reading it. Plus not need a computer to write stuff down. Oh, and good notation software costs a fortune. Sibelius is like 450 right? Manuscript paper costs virtually nothing.


You can turn the sound off and there are free options like MuseScore for starting off with. I think manuscript paper and pencils is pretty good for scribbling down solutions to short excercises or short phrase ideas and I have a notebook for that purpose, but it's just a pain to go through and edit anything of substantial length with it if you mess up, which you probably will a lot to start with. I'd probably be reaching for notation software as soon as what I was writing started to look like it was going to be more than a single system long.

In terms of reading material, if you've done up to grade five, I've looked over ABRSM grade 6 with my Mum and that seems to be the level at which they begin to introduce basic concepts which will aid with composition like four part harmony. I'd look into getting Harmony in Practice by Anna Butterworth which is the reccomended accompanying text that's in the ABRSM grade six workbook. The Schoenberg book is great too.
__________________
.
Nietsche is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:54 PM   #11
Xiaoxi
Indeed.
 
Xiaoxi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Bodymore, Murdaland
...no idea why everyone keeps advocating for technology. EastWest libraries are not going to teach you counterpoint or musical development. THESE are the basics, not which goddamn software to use.

Sons, I am disappoint
__________________
"Man, modes 'n' scales ain't got no users, only abusers." - X.X. Little

Analyzing Brahms: Insights to Help Us Improve Our Music

My New Workstation
Xiaoxi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 06:57 PM   #12
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels


Brahms needed no software, only cereal.
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 07:07 PM   #13
Hail
kill both bass players
 
Hail's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Dallas
wait you don't have a library where you live?

or the ability to google "GOOD MUSIC THEORY SCHOOLS" and look up their booklists for composition and theory then proceed to google thepiratebay amazon [bookname]?

Last edited by Hail : 02-13-2013 at 07:09 PM.
Hail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 07:19 PM   #14
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels
None of them seem to give out their booklists.
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 07:44 PM   #15
Hail
kill both bass players
 
Hail's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Dallas
Hail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 07:50 PM   #16
d1sturbed4eva
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
I heard good things about Twentieth-Century Harmony by Vincent Persichetti from my music theory/composition professor.
d1sturbed4eva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 07:52 PM   #17
Xiaoxi
Indeed.
 
Xiaoxi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Bodymore, Murdaland
I wouldn't read books. I haven't gotten anything useful out of books when it comes to writing music.

Just remember that music is a language. Not LIKE a language, IS a language. You don't read a book on how to write a novel. You read novels, digest them, think about them, and develop intuition/sensibilities/tastes into writing your own works. Same thing here with music.

Actively listen to the music until you can speak the language fluently. I don't read about Bach. I don't read about counterpoint or fugues. I listen to him to the point that I know his distinct idioms and tendencies. And from there on, you start to really know counterpoint and develop your own realizations of what all these things really are.

And also, you want to begin composing. Ok, why are you making a thread about it? There's no official certification that dictates when and when you can't start. You start NOW. I guarantee you after reading the 50th book on the subject of composition, you still won't have a clue what to do. The only way to learn is to do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by d1sturbed4eva
I heard good things about Twentieth-Century Harmony by Vincent Persichetti from my music theory/composition professor.

That book is completely useless. Like, even more so than all the other ones mentioned.
__________________
"Man, modes 'n' scales ain't got no users, only abusers." - X.X. Little

Analyzing Brahms: Insights to Help Us Improve Our Music

My New Workstation

Last edited by Xiaoxi : 02-13-2013 at 07:54 PM.
Xiaoxi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 08:01 PM   #18
ChucklesMginty
Avicii - Levels
 
ChucklesMginty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Avicii - Levels
I know what you're getting at. But what on Earth were you studying at college then?
__________________
Eric Whitacre is for casuals.

Last edited by ChucklesMginty : 02-13-2013 at 08:02 PM.
ChucklesMginty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 08:10 PM   #19
Xiaoxi
Indeed.
 
Xiaoxi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Bodymore, Murdaland
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucklesMginty
I know what you're getting at. But what on Earth were you studying at college then?

I didn't read any book in college when it came to writing. And the ones I did read for more mechanical matters (like harmony, jazz chord scale theory, counterpoint, etc), I had to abandon their conceptualizations and turn to actual music instead to truly understand.
__________________
"Man, modes 'n' scales ain't got no users, only abusers." - X.X. Little

Analyzing Brahms: Insights to Help Us Improve Our Music

My New Workstation
Xiaoxi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 08:31 PM   #20
Hail
kill both bass players
 
Hail's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Dallas
nigga how you gonn be like "don't use software to understand mechanics" then say "don't use books cause the mechanics themselves are inherent in the music"

i agree with breaking down and analyzing music for the brunt of your studies, but i'd go about reading textbooks (read: working with a professor who explains the processes to you, but if you're gonna be a hoe then textbooks are an unfortunate substitute) to learn how to break it down before you go and try and bite off more than you can chew. you can do both.
Hail is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:22 AM.

Forum Archives / About / Terms of Use / Advertise / Contact / Ultimate-Guitar.Com © 2014
Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.