#1
I know this might sound weird coming from me but here goes. I've been wondering how to harmonize a melody in chords like many songwriters and composers do. Is there a method to use or do I just take a leap of faith. I'm trying to improve my electronic music and playing. I'm referring to my own melodies/music of course but I could apply it to remixes as well.

Also I don't understand chord melodies so can someone please explain how that's supposed to work. I can never make chords sound any more melodic than noodling with the scales. Just curious.

Hope everyone had a nice Christmas yesterday ...
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#2
A big thing in "harmonizing" a melody through chords is to stop thinking about melody and harmony as two different things, and also to stop thinking about harmony as chords. Harmony is multiple strong melodies going on at once, so what you want to work on is going through progressions and find ways for each melody line (from the root, third, fifth and seventh, if you use seventh chords) to have a strong melody through the progression. For example if i go from C major to F major to G major, making the G in C jump up to F in the F major and then to then to the B in the G major that is not a very melodic and strong line, it has too many big leaps. So work on having each chord tone travel the least amount of distance to reach the new chord. Also, don't be afraid to use passing notes when doing this.

What is it you don't understand about chord melody? In the general sense for chord melody, you want to learn to play the melody on your top two strings only, then find suitable inversions and/or substitutes for the chords on the remaining strings.
Fusion and jazz musician, a fan of most music.

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#3
Your surest bet is just to dig into stuff that's already written and analyze. There's no foolproof way to harmonize a melody, unless you want to write insufferably dull music.

Can you read music and chord charts? Jazz/pop charts are probably your most accessible way of studying functional harmony. You can read classical scores, but they tend to be extremely dense to the unaccustomed reader.

You'll need a thorough grasp of basic harmony. Do you know what it means to harmonize a scale? Can you voice lead chord changes? Voice leading and harmonic function are the two root concepts at play when you're trying to put melody and harmony together.
#4
This will depend, to an extent, how much your melody sticks to using just notes from the scale (e.g. just the notes in C major). Assuming this is the case, then first off play that melody on the 1st string (treble string).

The 1 of the key appears in triads I (as root), IV (the 5th of the IV triad) and vi (as the b3 of vi).

The 7 of the key appears in triads vii (as root), V (as 3 of V triad), and iii (as 5th of iii triad).

So, with simple melody of C C C B, one possibility is to use C, F, Am, G. Or could replace G with Em or Bdim (less common)

And so on.

Try to work out the other possibilities for yourself.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, but same general principle applies.
#5
I would suggest starting with a melody and A bassline (so forget about multiple basslines ). The middle voices aren't really that important. When you have the bass and the melody, it's pretty easy to just fill the rest of the notes you need.

Yeah, analyze songs. That's the best way of figuring out what works.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#6
+1

Once you have a melody written, write a bassline that compliments it. This is your harmonic structure.

Another thing that works is to harmonize the melody. Does it sound better with a third above or a third below? Fifths? Do some notes sound weird? This will give you clues as to what chords you might want to use.
#7
Sickz, now I get what chord melody means (I thought it was an oxymoron). To MM, I've moved out of that multiple bassline phase and now focus on a mixture of melody (I compose my basslines and leads independently) and beats (I make those myself as well). I decided to just stick with one bassline (aside from the sub-bass) and find other ways to evoke interest.

I was wondering, how you would harmonize a melody with chords? I also have trouble understanding voice leading ...
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#8
a very basic example of voice leading...we are going to move the voices of C major triad to D minor triad...so C E G..the C moves to D the E moves to F the G moves to A..

This concept can be used in many ways...example: the inversions of C maj..C E G(135) -- the C moves to E the E moves to G the G moves to C (351) and then 513..doing this on different string sets and using wide interval voicing you can come up with some nice sounds from basic triads..

now it is more complex than that after you have the basics down..as some of the voices in a chord may move higher while others move lower..this is called counter point..a basic example of this would be the bassline moving lower and the top note of the chord moving higher..play with the inversions of just the two chords C maj and Dmin you may find the beginning of a melodic line..

the master of moving voices is Bach..study some of his chorales (they are not THAT difficult) to see this stuff work..
play well

wolf
Last edited by wolflen at Dec 27, 2015,
#9
Start with bassline and melody. After that figure out the other chord tones you want to use.

I would also suggest learning about chord functions.


The most important "rule" of voice leading is using as small leaps as possible. For example if you have C and F major chords, you don't want to go like

C -> F
G -> C
E -> A
C -> F

Look at the common chord tones. Both of them have a C in them, so you want to keep that in the same voice. F is just a half step away from E and A is just a whole step away from G. So you may want to go like

C -> C
G -> A
E -> F
C -> F

Bass goes from C to F if we don't want to use inversions.


Then there's also contrary motion to keep the voices independent. For example if you want to go from F major to G major:

F -> G
C -> D
A -> B
F -> G

Now all voices move a whole step up. That doesn't sound like the melodies are independent, so even though this way all of the voices move as little as possible, this is not what you want if you want "good voice leading". You don't want all voices to move in the same direction.

F -> D
C -> B
A -> G
F -> G

This would be the "best" option. C moves a half step down to B and A moves a whole step down to G. F moves a minor third down to D. Not a big leap and we avoid all voices moving in the same direction and keep the voices independent. Notice how the other voices move down and the bass moves up.

These are just the basics. It's all about what you are after. If you want independent voices, follow the voice leading rules. You don't necessarily need four voices. You can use two voices, three voices, ten voices, whatever you want. You don't need to follow the voice leading rules if you don't want to. For example parallel fifths and octaves are fine if you like the sound of them. They are used a lot in music. You don't need to keep every voice independent.


As I said, start with melody and bass. Those are the most important voices.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Dec 27, 2015,
#11
Yeah, I think I'm okay with that. Basically you take the notes of the scale and pick a root. Then add a third (one that is in the corresponding scale) and fifth. Is that right?

My problem is harmonizing a melody with triads. I'm mainly writing electronic music reminiscent of JRPG games. I'm not sure how to incorporate the chords into a piece and still have it sound decent.

Hope everyone had a nice New Year's Eve. Hope 2016 is a good year for us ...
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
Last edited by RonaldPoe at Jan 1, 2016,
#12
MM said it best:
Quote by MaggaraMarine
Start with bassline and melody. After that figure out the other chord tones you want to use.

I would also suggest learning about chord functions.

You're thinking too many voices for your level. Start with two. Then, learn about chord tones and functions.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#13
Quote by RonaldPoe
Yeah, I think I'm okay with that. Basically you take the notes of the scale and pick a root. Then add a third (one that is in the corresponding scale) and fifth. Is that right?
Exactly.
Quote by RonaldPoe

My problem is harmonizing a melody with triads. I'm mainly writing electronic music reminiscent of JRPG games. I'm not sure how to incorporate the chords into a piece and still have it sound decent.
I agree about getting a bass line first.
Melody on top, bass line beneath - then they will usually give you two notes of a triad at each point in the music.
But you still don't need to think like that. You can work by ear and just pick a random third note between melody and bass (ideally from the scale, at least to start with) that sounds good with both.
If the bass and melody are on the same note (octave or two apart?), you have more choice.
Of course, either the bass or the melody (or both) are likely to be moving around a lot, and you don't need to harmonise every note of either. Try finding a note that can stay the same while either the melody or bass changes.

Naturally "sounding decent" is the goal we all want! But your ear is a reliable guide there, better than any theoretical principle. I take it you can write melodies you like, and bass lines you like? And you can get them to work together?
If so, that's more than half the battle - it's 2/3 of the battle!
Maybe more than that, because melody and bass line are more important than any inner voice moves, which can (and maybe should) be very simple in comparison - the fewer and longer notes, the better, usually.
You don't need to worry about voice-leading either, IMO. If you keep that inner line only moving by one scale degree at a time (maybe two where really necessary), your voice-leading will be fine.

But if you really do want to work with triads (rather than the above trial and error method), take your melody, and - with every note of the melody - ask yourself what chord it could be part of.
If you know the scale of the melody, and your triad theory, there won't be a lot to choose from: basically just 3 chord possibilities for each note. (Eg if you have an E note in the key of C, then your chord choices are C, Am or Em.)
If the melody moves fairly quickly (more than 2 notes per bar) you probably won't want a new chord for each note - so look at the main notes only (longest or strongest), and maybe see if two (or even three) of them could fit the same chord. The other notes are then passing notes.
A good rule with chords is to resist too many changes. Don't change chord unless (and until) the melody really demands it. (A lot of melodies can sit on the same chord for several bars before really needing a change.)
Also remember that a strong melody note doesn't have to be a triad chord tone. Accented non-chord tones are often really effective as tensions or suspensions. The more the melody sticks to chord tones, the more "direct", "strong" and "safe" it will sound. The more it accents non-chord tones, the more expressive it will sound. As you might guess, there's a balance to be struck there!

But - however you work - your ear is always the final judge. Theory is there for those moments when you really can't decide between two or more choices that seem to sound equally good (or equally bad!).
Last edited by jongtr at Jan 2, 2016,
#14
I'm primarily involved with chord-melody in a jazz context; that's what I've been working on for the last couple of years. You see a lot of different approaches from different jazz players.
Some, (like Martin Taylor) work as above, setting down a nice bass line and then filling in the chords. Some don't.... In a jazz combo you frequently don't want to "step on" the bass player.

Depends if you're playing solo or in a combo.

Some players use chords minimally, at the beginning or end of a phrase, filling in the rest of the phrase with single note lines. Others harmonize almost every note, even the passing notes and such.

Joe Pass had some rather simple but appropriate advice....."Figure out the melody and find some chords that sound nice. It all comes down to good-sounding music, after all.
#15
I love playing bass and am trying to learn jazz bass but that's another thread. I'm actually asking so I can improve my electronic music.

Anyway I got the lead and bassline to a song/piece I'm working on with a veru basic snare thrown in. Here's a link

https://soundcloud.com/dark-ronald-poe/masky-melody-and-bassline
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
Last edited by RonaldPoe at Jan 2, 2016,
#16
Quote by RonaldPoe
I love playing bass and am trying to learn jazz bass but that's another thread. I'm actually asking so I can improve my electronic music.

Anyway I got the lead and bassline to a song/piece I'm working on with a veru basic snare thrown in. Here's a link

https://soundcloud.com/dark-ronald-poe/masky-melody-and-bassline
OK, there's not a lot there to hang chords on. Essentially it's in Am, and an Am chord would work throughout.
Your bass line is moving around as much as your lead line, within quite a narrow range of the A minor scale.
The real problem (in terms of harmonizing or developing it melodically in any way) is that everything is 8th notes. That's fine for a kind of techno groove like this - and maybe it needs nothing else anyway, certainly no chords. It's more or less an arpeggiated Am chord as it is (maybe with 7th and 9th here and there). You could develop it by using other drum patterns, or different effects and processing, rather than melodic or harmonic developments.

But without changing what you've got, you could still add a harmonised line beneath the melody. Probably just adding a 3rd below the melody all the way (using the same scale of course) would work.
(NB: adding a 3rd below any A note - sticking with A natural minor - will give you F, which will start to imply an F chord at that point - which could be an interesting guide to your choices; if you don't want that F sound at that point, then use an E note, to maintain the "Am" harmony. Alternatively, see how it sounds to harmonise an A with F# instead of F... )

Of course, I don't know what kind of composition you're going for, but if it was me I'd change either the bass or melody. Eg keep the melody and trying using single repeated bass notes (implying chord roots) for a bar or two at a time, which could be any note in the scale. Or keep the bass line and open up the melody into longer notes. (But this genre is not my forte.... )
#17
Your melody is pretty much emphasizing the Am7 chord. I don't think it needs any more "harmonizing" (if you don't want to change the bass or melody). If you want to add something to it, add a melody that moves slower. That would add some contrast to it. Or maybe take a more rhythmic approach.

It already sounds pretty full to me. You could try some other kind of sounds to add some clarity - it sounds a bit messy IMO. Also, to me it feels a bit like it's not going anywhere. You may want to add some rests or something to it to make it feel like it's going somewhere (if you want that - and because you are talking about harmony, I assume you want it to go somewhere, that's pretty much what harmony is for). Changing the bassline would be another thing. Make it move slower (and make it have a direction) and it will have more "meaning" to it. Instead of changing the notes all the time, repeat the same note many times. That way the bassline makes more "sense" and it will also have more sense of harmony to it. Now it's just one chord all the time. You could try having just two different bass notes per bar. Try what that sounds like.

Or if you want the bass to move all the time, come up with a progression and emphasize the chord tones with the bass. Don't just move around the Am scale - have certain notes that you emphasize. But I think it's easier to start with a simple bassline. Try single notes first (for example one or two per bar) to get a sense of some kind of harmony. Then start coloring it.

Another thing would be playing a different kind of rhythm with the bass. If the melody is moving in 8ths all the time, maybe add some syncopation to the bass.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#18
Bass isn't supposed to always be played; if you want functional harmony, go slower on the bass at first. When you start understanding bass lines, you can add more notes.


Why do I add this? Because for each measure, there's one bass note. One. Most of the movement is in the melody. Also, there are other things that make the song interesting. Layers that are staggered.

Bass does not move very much, but what makes it interesting is the rhythm. (and chord substitutions, but that's a different discussion.)

I think one of the things you're missing is that the majority of Western music does not contain just harmony and melody. It also contains rhythm.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
Last edited by NeoMvsEu at Jan 2, 2016,
#19
To Neo, I use drums (snare, kick, and hi-hats) and some quiet DJ scratches (for a mixture of melodic and rhythmic interest) to add rhythm to my music. I gave the bass pattern to a subtle string ensemble (taken from a Kingdom Hearts soundfont) and wrote a different bass pattern. I'm a very melodic man but I also take longer than you'd think getting the rhythmic elements right. After all what you saw was merely proof of concept and not a finished piece.

I admit I based the piece off a Am chord with hints of C major and Em.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#20
Honestly, if you're not going to vary the rhythm any between the two parts, it sounds like a melody and a countermelody that's not independent, not a melody and bass accompaniment.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#21
I've got a demo for my new piece. It's just part of a loop but could easily stand on its own. It's called "DJ Masky". Tell me what you think and give an honest but not caustic critique.
https://soundcloud.com/dark-ronald-poe/dj-masky-loop1
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#22
It does have the signature RonaldPoe sound to it...

I think the problem with your melodies in general is the fact that they lack rhythm (I think this was what Neo tried to say when she said that music also contains rhythm - she was talking about the melody, not the drum beat or anything like that). They seem a bit "random". They don't have a direction. You can fix that by making them rhythmically more interesting. Also use rests. Rhythm adds some kind of structure to the melody. It's not just notes one after another. Well, you can write a good melody by using just one rhythm too. But your melodies sound kind of repetitive. One of the things in common with all of your melodies is repeating the same two notes one after another many times in a row. That makes it sound repetitive. Think about it - do you want the melody to move all the time? Use longer note values sometimes. It becomes a bit tiring to listen to when it's 8ths all the time. Focus on the rhythm of the melody.

Don't take this too harshly, I'm trying to be constructive.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Jan 4, 2016,
#23
Thanks for expanding!



This thing moves at a snail's pace, but the bass has an eighth note pulse, which differentiates it from the whole note melody. When more harmonies come in at ~1:07 (cello), it's C(1/2)+B(1/4)+A(1/4) (then G-F#-E, B-A-G, F#-E-D. It makes a sequence). Variety of rhythm in harmony is something that's less discussed in voice leading and harmonic analysis, but it is very much a thing in all music.

Bear in mind that the drums thing in the forefront came in the 20th century and not before. Musical pieces are often made with the melody and harmony in mind, with rhythmic elements incorporated into both. (Good) drummers will add to that.

Check this out:

https://youtu.be/XUA_n04C1bs
(Actually, I'm well aware that this was probably drums-first writing, but the fact is that there is rhythm on all levels, and drums are just the most explicit of them.)
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
Last edited by NeoMvsEu at Jan 4, 2016,
#24
I've decided to redo the track from the ground up as I want to try something new (making a more rhythmic melody and string part). Got any more tips? Thanks for the ones you two have given me.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#25
Yeah, I agree with the others; it lacks some rhythmic logic. I don't think it's bad at all, but it's hard to follow because it just seems to go on and on without much rhythm.

Either way, it's a vast improvement from your earlier ones, I think. (I'm talking about the chaotic ones with over 9000 bass lines)
Last edited by Elintasokas at Jan 4, 2016,
#26
Quote by Elintasokas
Yeah, I agree with the others; it lacks some rhythmic logic. I don't think it's bad at all, but it's hard to follow because it just seems to go on and on without much rhythm.

Either way, it's a vast improvement from your earlier ones, I think. (I'm talking about the chaotic ones with over 9000 bass lines)

Yeah, definitely an improvement.

But it's kind of hard to figure out any kind of structure behind the melody because of the lack of rhythmic variation. And it's not even really about variation necessarily. You can write a melody that makes sense with just one note value. But yeah, there's kind of no logic behind it. And with rhythm it's easy to add some logic to it.

The melody is kind of just moving up and down. It has no direction. That's the problem with it. Again, rhythm will help with that, so will harmony. You may want to have some kind of a repeating chord progression.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#27
I would like to thank MM and Neo for inspiring me to incorporate half notes into my melodic phrases (it sounds incredible and kinda classy). I finished my DJ friendly boss theme for Masky. It might be one of the best things I've written yet. Check it out yourselves.

https://soundcloud.com/dark-ronald-poe/dj-masky
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#28


Well, now it sounds like it makes more sense. But it sounded pretty repetitive because it was basically a loop. If you want to make it a full piece, you want to have some more parts in it. You may not want to repeat the same melody all the time. Repeating the same thing twice is very usual. Repeating it 4 times is fine but after that it starts getting too repetitive.

Also, I'm not sure about those harmonies... They sounded a bit weird and also pretty unclear. It was pretty hard to hear what was happening harmonically. It sounded kind of noisy. Maybe it's about the sounds you use. I don't know.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#29
Do you have any suggestions on how to improve the harmonies? I tried to write a good melody for lead, bass, and fake string ensemble. Got any tips for that last one. Also this was practically a loop when I wrote it anyway but next time, I'll add a little more variety in the melody.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#30
Can you post something without the extra percussion? Like, only the melodic and harmonic material. Ideally in a way that makes it easier to hear.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#31
^ Yeah, and maybe use clearer sounds too. For example only piano sound and it may be easier to hear what's happening. (Yeah, I know using piano only may sound boring, but it would add clarity to it. Now it just sounds a bit noisy.)
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#32
Maybe I'll post a bonus version of my next piece with only piano, bass, and quiet strings. So how would you suggest I make the fake string pattern more harmonic, dark, clear, and sensible.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#33
The problem is we can't hear it. Post something less aurally cluttered.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#34
For me, you have a melody that isn't much of a coherent memorable phrase, and that has another sort of melody which is pretty much the same, and doesn't complement it especially well, and then this swing sort of trip hop kind of upbeat, which is in no way complemented by the other parts.

A lot of art and design is kind of the same, in that all the parts need to work with all the other parts to make the whole. They need to be different, but complementary.

Like, if you design a living room, you don't want to get something modern and clean and single tame color, and then something from renaissance era all gold and elaborate, and then something bright red and plastic from the 60s, or whatever. You want everything to follow the same theme, and be different but support each other and complement each other and drive the whole thing home.

If you want to start with a melody and then harmonize it, what I would do in a DAW, is just put the melody in, and then click and drag notes on top of it in piano roll, or I would often prefer to play something on the keyboard first. The thing is, you don't necessarily want your harmony timed with your melody, you would for the bar duration, but you might want your harmony to be stabs on the offbeat, and your melody to be on the downbeat, for example, or whatever other of the endless number of possible combinations.
#35
I'll give an idea of what I was going for. I'm going for a KH boss theme for Masky (Marble Hornets/Creepypasta). You don't need to know much except that Masky is one of Slenderman's proxies and is slightly timid. Basically I want a slightly myterious, dark, boss like (JRPG) theme that's slightly diatonic with a hint of horror. I also wish to write better melodies. Here's three examples I'm using as major inspirations.

"To The Ark" by Madame Macabre. It's a song about Marble Hornets and has a nice dark mysterious feel to it. The vocals are also pretty good.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FhUHcyAid2M

"Hunter of The Dark" by Yoko Shimomura (from Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep: Final Mix). Probably the darkest, most atmospheric boss theme in KH history.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiVlIUix54g

"Dread of the Night" by Yoko Shimomura. Another good yet dark boss theme from KH (this time Kingdom Hearts 3D).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2eUgF8Kf-0

I also have this habit of listening to lots of different songs/pieces for like 2 hours (a little of that time is spent listening to my own music) and mixing what comes to mind with diatonic patterns. This is how I write most of my parts for music and it definitely gets me in the mood.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).
#36
I think the main melody is okay, but we really can't hear much outside of the one idea, and the harmonies are really unclear (read it's hard to hear)


2 sections, melody and countermelody with harmony that follows the drum rhythm. Everything is less cluttered. Simple, but effective.
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#37
My last piece (as in the one I uploaded to Soundcloud yesterday) suffered from major instrumentation problems so I'll link the one I'm currently working on. Thanks for your help guys. However I find emphasizing a piano part is giving me lots of trouble.
"I don't know what you're trying to suggest. There's no shame in taking what you need to hold your position!"

Super Buu (DBZ) on assimilation (it could also apply to blues guitar and guitar soloing in general).