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#1
....that I'm not musically talented. A friend just pointed out to me that while I may be able to play instruments and produce music, I've never shined in composition.

Now I feel sad

I write a minute or so worth of music every few months then dump it all into a folder, never to be seen again.

inb4coolstorybro

Gif advice pl0x. I have ideas that I want to put into action, but despite sitting here at the computer right now I just am not motivated to open guitar pro and write it out.
#3
I do the same thing. On a good day, I bet I could write around ten awesome riffs an hour, including bass and drum parts.

But then trying to go somewhere with any of those ideas or adding lyrics always ends badly.
#5
don't worry buddy, you don't need talent to make it big.

Maybe.... just maybe.... maybe even spelling realisation with a z won't stop you.
You who build these altars now

To sacrifice these children
You must not do it anymore
#6
Quote by Bearded_Seth


I write a minute or so worth of music every few months then dump it all into a folder, never to be seen again.


Gif advice pl0x. I have ideas that I want to put into action, but despite sitting here at the computer right now I just am not motivated to open guitar pro and write it out.


There are your reasons, it comes with practice. You need to spend time doing it or you will be in the same place forever.
#10
I can't write music for shit either, but I don't have much to write about so I don't care that I suck at it

As long as I can play
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#11
Just keep working at it. You're going to get better if you keep playing. Try improvising. I love to just put a loop on some chords I played on my keyboard, then jam on guitar for hours. It's given me ideas for songs.
#12
Quote by Bearded_Seth

I write a minute or so worth of music every few months then dump it all into a folder, never to be seen again.


How can you expect to be able to write music when you don't practice it enough?
Dear God, do you actually answer prayers?

Yes, but only in a way indistinguishable from random luck or the result of your own efforts.
#13
Should've said really.. The way I write, it isn't just going on GP5 and pressing buttons like a madman. I usually jam and if I make a good riff, I think up riffs in my head to go with it, work them out on guitar and then write it all down in GP.

It's more of a motivational problem to find those pieces of music in my head.
#14
Not everyone is the best composer I find, but I find the best things I've come up with were when I knew little theory but was digesting a lot of different influences. Don't always be trying to apply skill and technique into everything, just let the inspiration com naturally. It's not the quickest way to write, but the results are better, I find.
"Let others bring order to chaos, I shall bring chaos to order."- Vonnegut.

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#16
Yeah, I know the feeling

My advice would be to try and get a band started, start pooling ideas, creativity comes automatically.
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#17
A musician doesn't have to be good at all aspects of music. Some of the best musicians in the world only play music, and some only write music. It's not a big deal.

If you want to learn the art of composition, you have to treat it as its own subject. Read and study classical harmony, 4-part voiceleading, counterpoint, orchestration, and analyze motivic/formal development. These are the basis for composition. Oh, and don't use fucking Guitar Pro.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#18
Quote by ChucklesMginty
Better than using Sibelius where you have to listen back in .midi. RSE isn't brilliant, but it at least gives an accurate depiction of how the piece should sound.

Are you high? Sibelius 6 uses a proprietary engine and the old versions use Kontakt, which are all acoustic samples. It also can use third party samplers/synths. Way better than anything "Real" Sound Engine is ever going to offer.

But that's not the point. You need to be able to express your ideas by pen and paper first and foremost. If you can't do that, you're lost.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#19
I find that jamming with the band always helps when you're feeling tapped of ideas.

Also, listen to new genres of music and keep your mind open.
It helps me when I feel creatively handicapped.
#20
Quote by ChucklesMginty

Bullshit. The technology is there, in the 2 years or so it takes you to become fluent in writing music the old-fashioned way you've lost hundreds and hundreds of ideas.

Technology isn't always for the better. Using the computer as a crutch for music is going to limit your ideas. Don't believe me? Consider for a second that you must always express your idea in strict proper measured notation on a computer program. Any deviation requires going the extra length for proper presentation. By hand, you are free to notate however you want, and there are many many examples when composers deliberately write the "wrong" way to express their ideas more accurately on the page, and it's much faster. You are also prone to having your ideas completely lost or corrupted by the awful performances from MIDI. Someone who relies on the computer to write will undoubtedly lose control of the music. I'm not saying that you can't use programs to write, because it is often faster to get a presentation done. But to use the computer to help you means you haven't got any real understanding or control of the music inside your head.

And who gives a shit if I've lost hundreds of ideas? A good piece of music uses just one or two ideas that are stretched and developed over time. The problem with most people today is that they think the more ideas that are crammed into a song, the better it is. Wrong. The more effective an idea is used, the more substantial the music is.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#21
Quote by ChucklesMginty
What if you notated it but didn't use the playback function and muted all your sound?
Then you know what you're doing. You're just scribing on to the computer. What I'm warning against is needing the computer to hear what you're writing.



I think that goes to show just how much you value composition. I'm leaving this here.

That goes to show just how little understanding you actually have.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#22
Dude, why so depressed? Ad long as you enjoy plying guitar and music there's nothing wrong with it. Just have fun man, that's all that matters.
I pride myself on my humility.
#24
Fuck, why are there so many people who have no reading comprehension skills?

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#25
Find some other musicians to write with! I find that all those little ideas that I can't think of a use for become really useful when writing with other people because they can build off those ideas and use them as starting points.
#26
Quote by obeythepenguin
not your tools that matter, so much as what you do with them

And if what you do with Sibelius/Finale/Guitar Pro/etc is to act as your ears and mind, then you don't have any control over the music. It's not a judgment call, it's just plain physics. It's like needing a pacemaker for your heart.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#27
Quote by Bearded_Seth
Gif advice pl0x. I have ideas that I want to put into action, but despite sitting here at the computer right now I just am not motivated to open guitar pro and write it out.


Guitar pro is a new invention, bro. The true greats don't use it. Even modern greats don't use it. But having the ideas is the important thing. if ideas come to you, all that remains to do is to set them in stone in some way. This can be as simple as writing chords down on a sheet of paper, or memorizing a lick you work on.

You've done the hard part, you've figured out what you want, now the only thing left for you to do is to flush those ideas out. the fact that you haven't done so thus far seems not for lack of inability on your part, but simply that you haven't really attempted to flush out your ideas.

Why don't you go back into guitar pro and try to flush em out a little bit? Then run it by the forums in the songwriting thread. Musicality I firmly believe is in each of us. Some more so then others, granted, but it is there in every person who is a true blue music lover. Its development is up to you and, like everything else in this world, requires practice, practice, practice, practice, practice.


P. S. George Gershwin (the greatest tune smith to ever live) once said that you should write 1 song every day. Even if its shit, just get the experience of writing one. Eventually, you'll work out the kinks yourself. But it is GRUELING work and you have to be dedicated to it.


Let me quote the man himself.

Quote by George Gershwin,
Inspiration, commonly considered the main spring of composition, is as elusive as it is illusive. I might call it an unconscious something that happens within you which makes you do a thing much better than if it were done self-consciously. When it does come, it may be truly called a gift from the gods. Out of my entire annual output of songs, perhaps two 0 or at the most, three - come as a result of inspiration. When I want it most, it does not come, so I never rely on it; that is, I don't sit around and wait for an inspiration to walk up to me and introduce itself. What I substitute for it is nothing more then practice, which in turn leads to talent and knowledge over time. If a composer's endowment is great enough, the song is made to sound as if it were truly inspired.

[...]

Composing at the piano [similar in the modern sense of composing with Guitar Pro] is not a good practice... The best method is one which will not permit anything to hold you down in any way, for it is always easier to think in a straight line, without the distraction of sounds. The mind should be allowed to run loose, unhampered by the piano, which may be used now and then only to stimulate thought and set an idea aflame. The actual composition must be done in the brain. Too much, however, should not be left to memory. Sometimes, when I think the phrase is safe in my mind, I will find that I have lost it the next day. So that when I get a phrase which I am not sure I will remember the following day, I set it down on paper at once.

[...]

Like the denizens of the prize ring, the songwriter must always keep in training. He must try to write something every day. I know that if I don't do any writing for several weeks, I lose a great deal of time in catching my stride again. Hence, I am always composing.



READ THE ABOVE. It is pure truth. And it comes from possibly the best source to get advice from, this man's work in songs was possibly more profound and had more of an effect then ANYONE who came after him. So please, read it.
#28
Quote by obeythepenguin
For shame, those lazy, ignorant people with no control over their hearts.

Still having trouble understanding what you read, I see.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#29
Quote by Xiaoxi
And if what you do with Sibelius/Finale/Guitar Pro/etc is to act as your ears and mind, then you don't have any control over the music. It's not a judgment call, it's just plain physics. It's like needing a pacemaker for your heart.

One thing I hate about music programs is that they're programs. You can't give it little instructions and make it lifelike.


Don't feel bad, I suck at all my instruments and can't write at all.
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#30
We're in the same boat. I'm useless at composition, and I'm far more ambitious than I am talented. However, I don't put a lot of time into it. I don't sit down and think, "and now I will write a song". Most of the stuff I come up with comes from messing around and trying out new shapes and patterns, and that happens very rarely.
#31
Quote by BladeSlinger
One thing I hate about music programs is that they're programs. You can't give it little instructions and make it lifelike.


That's a pretty essentialist statement. Depending on your finesse with Finale/Sibelius or whatever, you can come pretty close. I, for example, punched in the score for a concerto I'm playing and literally spent weeks fine tuning every dynamic/tempo change and then recorded myself playing the piano solo part, editing the orchestra in with Audacity. I was able to fool every non-musical person who listened to it, and most of the musical people thought it was me or someone else performing on a synthesizer or something, since the issue was not with expressiveness, but rather with the "unrealistic sound" of the instruments.


Point is, with enough work, you can make it lifelike, but it will be static-ly lifelike, it will be the same every time and won't allow for change in nuances that comes with your change in mood/audience from day-to-day.
#32
Just restrung my guitar and had a quick jam.. Even my playing ability has dropped significantll because of lack of motivation. My musical aspirations are fading away

Better get up on the horse and start practising moar.
#33
I'm not that good with them.

My point was that you can't talk to them like a director to a band. Like with accents. Our director might tell us to back off on some staccato accents but still keep it separated but only in the trumpet section. Not to where they aren't staccato but less than what a computer would recognize as staccato.

I know that skilled users can make it sound very lifelike but there's a certain human element that can't be replicated in my opinion.
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#34
Quote by obeythepenguin
I'm an English major, so I probably understand what you've written better than you do, though probably not in the sense you intended it.

But seriously, to my mind, writing music with Guitar Pro is no different than writing a novel with Microsoft Word. Yes, it has an automatic spell checker and print preview. So what? It doesn't pick out the words for you, nor does it invent plots or create characters. Yes, P. J. O'Rourke still uses his Selectric typewriter -- and Tom Robbins takes issue even with that -- but that doesn't mean everyone has to be a Luddite too.

(And all right, O'Rourke's not a novelist and the typewriter thing with Robbins is a running joke, but you get the point. You have nothing to gain by being a blind purist.)

Well, with what follows that first claim, you clearly don't. Again, the problem isn't putting notation to a medium. It is using the computer to do the hearing for you within the broad context of the music because you can't figure it out in your mind. That means YOU don't have a solid understanding of music. No novelist has that problem. Now if you still don't get what I'm trying to get across, then you should switch your major.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#35
Quote by Xiaoxi
Well, with what follows that first claim, you clearly don't. Again, the problem isn't putting notation to a medium. It is using the computer to do the hearing for you within the broad context of the music because you can't figure it out in your mind. That means YOU don't have a solid understanding of music. No novelist has that problem. Now if you still don't get what I'm trying to get across, then you should switch your major.

The question is, is a solid understanding of music necessary to create music? Is a painting drawn by a blind man still art?
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#37
Quote by entity0009
The question is, is a solid understanding of music necessary to create music? Is a painting drawn by a blind man still art?

To create good, solid music that has direction and clarity behind it? Yes. Beethoven's deafness didn't stop him from writing because he had the technical skills to write. He didn't need to physically hear it played before him so he knows what to do with the other voices, or to then figure out what the harmony is. Likewise, a blind man can paint if he has built in control.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#38
I would say not to worry about being able to compose a whole piece of music. Instead try and take different riffs that you have and twist and turn them until they flow well.
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#39
Quote by Xiaoxi
That means YOU don't have a solid understanding of music. No novelist has that problem.

After reading all of your posts in this thread, you're either an asshole, or an outright troll. After taking a year of music theory, I see absolutely no reason that using a computer application takes away from a composition.

In fact, my music professors encouraged us to use the music composition programs in the computer lab to help us compose.

I think your problem is that you assume anyone using a program just punches keys and places notes, playing it over and over until it finally sounds good. That's not how it works at all. I use Tuxguitar, one of the worst-sounding programs I can use. When I sit down in front of it, I already have a song playing in my head. I just then have to rearrange the notes until the computer plays it the same way I hear it in my head. It's no different than using pen and paper; except that the computer can play four instruments at once, while I cannot.
#40
I leave the composing to those who know how so I can do badly done covers of them.
I shall grant you three wishes.

None of which will work.


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Good.


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