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Old 06-19-2013, 06:42 PM   #1
Akula KO
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I fear I am too "left brained" to write original music.

I have problems with being creative and fear I am too "left brained". This pretty much sums me up regarding my outlook to things in life:



I particularly struggle to come up with interesting and creative ideas (song writing, painting, writing poetic verses, short stories). Like with guitar (obviously since I'm on this site)... I can learn to play a song accurately and with precision but I really, really am bad at making up original melodies or riffs. I'll just rehash songs from other songs. Or I'll hear a song and think of great ways to better it or include other instruments - it's like I lack individual creativity.

How do I become more balanced or more right brained?

PS: I've read the top rated lessons from this site. It helps a bit but... I feel like it doesn't come naturally enough for me.
If I'm a little drunk or high I can loosen up a bit but for health reasons I don't like that too much.

What do?
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Last edited by Akula KO : 06-19-2013 at 06:43 PM.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:53 PM   #2
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I can empathize with you on this. It'll all come with practice. I started with third-rate Gothenburg riffs, then worked my way up to memorable melodies, then cohesive song structures, over a couple years. There's literally hundreds of TuxGuitar files left over from all that. Just keep writing.
But from your post, it doesn't sound like you're as bad as you think you are (I haven't heard anything yet, though):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Akula KO
I'll just rehash songs from other songs.

You'd be surprised at how much that happens. From your personal text, you've probably heard of Finntroll? In the charts for how their songs are laid out, every riff is named after something it's based on. This is "Fornfamnad". See the parts labeled "Thy Serpent"? "Bal-Sagoth"? "Star Wars"?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Akula KO
Or I'll hear a song and think of great ways to better it or include other instruments

That's really important, actually. Any idiot can put together a bunch of riffs and make a partly-coherent song. The editing afterwards is what takes them from mediocre to great.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:30 PM   #3
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Being right-brained has it's advantages for song writing. A lot of it comes down to the theory of how songs are structured. If you can analyze other people's songs you can learn a lot about composition.

Also, learn theory. It doesn't sound "creative", but it will help.

Furthermore, I was reading something recently about the brain and how to increase different aspects of your intelligence. For musical intelligence, the suggestion was to listen to types of music unfamilar to you. So if you listen to metal, you never know, listening to traditional African music might help you as a writer.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:04 PM   #4
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you're just making excuses. LOL pointing fingers on your own brain
Yes you are struggling, but so is everyone else.

Try to write anything you want to say in a piece of paper, anything relevant or irrelevant, or stupid, it doesn't matter. It will give you many ideas. A broad vocabulary helps a lot as well.

Last edited by rolandroi : 06-19-2013 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:09 PM   #5
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It may not sound like it, but creativity is a skill just like anything else. You have to learn it, and practice it often. Just keep writing.
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Old 06-22-2013, 04:19 PM   #6
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Old 06-22-2013, 07:11 PM   #7
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I suggest you find a new outlook on life that isn't based on severe oversimplifications of how the brain works. Left brain/right brain is a bunch of malarkey.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:07 PM   #8
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Make sure that you're developing your ear. You need to be able to hear music to write music.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:32 PM   #9
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Akula, why do you think you cannot write original music when you post stuff like:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akura KO
I don't like tossing out something original I've come up with. I'll only toss it (lyrics or music) if I find it's actually me remembering some song and I've basically subconsciously plagiarised. Even if you think your original piece sucks I think in most cases you can rework it. At least it doesn't hurt to keep it written somewhere.


http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/foru...90#post30678990

Sounds like you're pulling our leg here, unless you've been in some sort of accident and lost half your brain in the process.
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Old 06-23-2013, 03:49 AM   #10
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Right and left brained is pop psychology. I once met this really gay dude who was like oh I am so creative like a bumblebee, my mind is free, and my tattoos are proof I am an artist. Lol. Just because you suck at math doesn't mean you are automatically creative or good at it you aren't. Its not mutually exclusive.

Don't let that brain reject your good ideas!
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Old 06-23-2013, 05:51 AM   #11
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Some good advice above on improving your weaknesses, but don't forget to improve on your strengths too. Try writing in odd times, with rhythmic or melodic phrases which mutate according to rules and patterns. Almost-repeating cycles which overlap often form the core of my music, I then smooth it out and add artistic touches with the right brain. You can also exploit a lot of left brain by composing in a daw or guitar pro, chopping and rearranging, and finally learning how to actually play it..
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Old 06-23-2013, 09:58 AM   #12
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stop making excuses.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:00 AM   #13
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I think when everybody started to write songs, their first song wasn't that great. You'll learn to write songs if you just write songs. I have listened to some of my first song ideas and they are pretty generic sounding. Now I have written some more songs and they sound a lot better. Though I don't really like writing alone. I think I write better stuff when I write with my friend.

I wouldn't look at that "left brained/right brained" stuff. I think it's complete BS. It just makes you think you can't do it. And because you think you can't do it, you aren't even trying and of course you can't do it. And how do you know you are "left brained"?

OK, there are people who find it easier to write songs but it doesn't mean you can't do it. Songwriting is a skill, not something you are born/not born to do. For example my friend is really good at maths but he also writes lots of songs.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:53 AM   #14
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Well TS, you can always write tone rows or some hymns according to the voice leading rules of Gradus Ad Parnassum. Both of those processes are very left brained. It's almost a science.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:55 AM   #15
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Left brained music: serialism.
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Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

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Old 06-23-2013, 01:01 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetdude3000
Right and left brained is pop psychology.


It's a metaphor that is actually very useful.

Betty Edwards' "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" is a great example of how that metaphor is incredibly helpful in teaching people. I know dozens of people who couldn't draw at all until they learned her approach.

It may not have anything at all to do with the actual physiology of your brain, but that's irrelevant. As a way of describing two different ways of approaching something mentally, it is very useful.

Like anything else, a right-brained approach to things is something you can learn. The challenge is that societally we tend to push people towards left-brained thinking. It's not about math-vs-art, or whatever, it's about methods of perceiving and understanding. The left-brained approach (again, for lack of a better term, making no claims about physiology here) is about separating, labeling, categorizing.

So music theory, for example, is a left-brain exploration of music. And I tend not to think that's a great place to start your creative explorations, even though I a pro-theory. But I'm also, for a lack of a better term, "pro-listening," the advice I always give about songwriting ("listen to the silence and don't play anything until you hear the sound in your head") is a very right-brained approach.

If you can't draw, and want to experience the power of this switch, get Edwards book. If somebody could do the same thing for music, they'd be very successful. I find it unlikely, however.
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Old 06-23-2013, 01:13 PM   #17
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sounds like you learn from tabs to me. rather then from your ears. so you lack creativity. at least your technique is good eh?
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Old 06-23-2013, 03:55 PM   #18
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"Finding excuses."
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Old 06-23-2013, 06:03 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaggaraMarine
Left brained music: serialism.


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Old 06-23-2013, 06:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaggaraMarine
Left brained music: serialism.


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