Im having problems when writing a melody my problem is,well I just cant do it, Ive been listening to Joe Satriani and he has really cool melodys. Any tips on how to write melodys?
well, and easy way is to take notes out of the chord progression you're playing over. piece them together, see what sounds good.
Use notes from the underlying chord, then learn different ways to use non-chord notes, so you can use them for effect rather than throwing them in at random. Look up passing notes, changing notes, appoggiaturas, and suspensions to get ideas how to use non-chord notes. They're all different ways of incorporating notes from outside the chord, but if you learn what they are, you can use them for effect.
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Very good post Marmoseti, you're on the right track.

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^ What does Pitch Axis have to do with this? Satriani uses it in like 5 songs.

Coming up with melodies is hard (and not just churning out something that sounds good). Coming with Satriani-worth melodies is even harder. All I can say is - ask yourself questions like - will the melody just repeat and end at let's say 4 measures or will it transform and turn into something else, does it lead into something more important or not, what does the song mean to you in the first place, what attitude or personality does the song have and how will it compliment it, etc. You should ask yourself these questions before really playing a note. Just listen to that melodious-less verse and chorus and see what comes in your head (and it doesn't have to be musical notes).

And of course, listen, analyze, and listen to your favourite melodies and others.
He uses pitch axis a lot more than just five songs. Its a great intro into his style of playing. From your comment, you must know a lot about Joe Satriani. Have you ever met him? Have you ever sat around and jammed with him?
All right.

Basically, when composing a melody (a cantus firmus), there are several established guidelines that can help you to create something that actually both sounds pleasing to the ears and gives a sense of "direction" - rather than just wallowing around.

Here are things to remember when trying to write a good cantus firmus:

1. Stepwise motion prevails. There are usually no more than 3 leaps in a single melodic line.

2. A melody usually rises to a climax tone, then falls back in descent.

3. Avoid two successive skips unless they outline a triad.

4. Avoid all melodic skips of a 7th and all diminished and augmented intervals.

5. Avoid a melodic range of more than a tenth.

6. Avoid repeated melodic figures or sequences.

7. Avoid melodic segments that outline a tritone.

8. Approach the final by either a half step or a whole step.

Those should hopefully give you a good start...
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He uses pitch axis a lot more than just five songs. Its a great intro into his style of playing. From your comment, you must know a lot about Joe Satriani. Have you ever met him? Have you ever sat around and jammed with him?

o_O No. What I wouldn't give!

Yes, I know the songs, but I took the question as either a verse or a chorus or whatnot. Unless he's looking at Lords of Karma or Not of This Earth, or Engines of Creation or With Jupiter in Mind and maybe a few others, then parellel key changes will only really come up in solos or breaks, or transitions from verse to chorus, whaich is hardly what one focuses on when they're writing the melody. I'm thinking more Ten Words or If I Could Fly or Friends or Cryin' or over a hundred of other songs, not a small handful. I can't imagine him thinking up a musical idea or melody and the very first idea that comes into his head is 'Pitch Axis'. It's just...unusual. Especially if the vast majority of verses or choruses are diatonic anyways. Like Surfing, the verse is Dorian, but the Chorus is more Major - okay, that's fine, it's not like the transition is what he thought about when focusing on either one. And even with the unusual case of Lords of Karma, the melody isn't solely the #4 or the minor 7th!
Last edited by wasp2020 at Feb 17, 2007,
Melodies are much simpler to make than harmonies, but some people find it much more dificult to create them. Think about all the things that others have said, and add a little more to it, go out of key with a few passing tones (notes that are out of key) to lead into a nice chord or up-beat.

I have never composed anything formally, but when I come up with something that I like, it is always through pissing about with odd fingerings, then arpegiating them and then adding a few more notes. It doesnt take a genius to make a good melody, some say it does to utilize one...
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