#1
Whenever I sit down and try to write anything, I suck. I like to blame my lack of knowledge in music theory and scales, but my mate is a drummer who occasionally picks up the guitar and writes awesome stuff. He knows no music theory at all, he doesn't know any chord shapes, nothing. He just picks up and writes awesome shit.

I have another drummer mate who is pretty knowledgeable in theory, although he never bothered to learn scales, because he's all about the rhythm.

Am I doing anything wrong with my writing? I sit down and just play... but everything I play sounds terrible. Or do I just suck?
#3
Quote by Martinman300
no your shit loooooool


no your useful looooooooool

seriously, whats the point of your post? this ain't the pit....
#4
Quote by Ezuma
Whenever I sit down and try to write anything, I suck. I like to blame my lack of knowledge in music theory and scales, but my mate is a drummer who occasionally picks up the guitar and writes awesome stuff. He knows no music theory at all, he doesn't know any chord shapes, nothing. He just picks up and writes awesome shit.

I have another drummer mate who is pretty knowledgeable in theory, although he never bothered to learn scales, because he's all about the rhythm.

Am I doing anything wrong with my writing? I sit down and just play... but everything I play sounds terrible. Or do I just suck?


Hey someone from perth! *waves*

Heres a tip. DO NOT sit down and go "I'm going to write the best damn song. I'm going to use a G major 7th chord progression bla bla bla"

I'm not saying 'dont use theory' thats just dumb. Basic theory is very important in song writing. Basicly don't approach it like its serious business.

Your writing for yourself. Just sit down and start playing anything. Play a few notes of a scale. Just pick any random part of about 4-5 notes and play that. Add a few bends, slides whatever. Dont feel pressured and dont get frustrated if it doesnt work out.

If all goes well, soon those few notes should turn into a riff. If not, shit happens, Try again later.

Hope that was helpful.

Quote by Martinman300
no your shit loooooool


Piss of you idiot.

Quote by adr11iano
no your useful looooooooool

seriously, whats the point of your post? this ain't the pit....


No offence mate but whats the point of your post?
#5
Writing = improvisation + emotion
improvisation = ( knowledge × practise)² + emotion.

Don't get frustrated, just.. Do it
First 10 songs are whack, then you'll write one hellova good song
#6
What I do is just jam, play a few chords and if I get something going I work on it, sometimes it better to start off with no idea than with an idea.
Guitars:
Ibanez RGR321EX
Schecter Omen 7 (with Dimarzio D-Sonic in bridge and Air Norton in neck)
Effects:
Tokai TFL-1 Flanger
Boss RGE-10 Graphic EQ
Ibanez DE7 Delay/Echo
Boss TU-2 Tuner
Amp:
Laney IronHeart IRT60 212
#7
Quote by LordPino
Writing = improvisation + emotion
improvisation = ( knowledge × practise)² + emotion.

Don't get frustrated, just.. Do it
First 10 songs are whack, then you'll write one hellova good song


Writing = Improvisation + knowledge + Emotion + Luck.

If your lucky, for example, you might pick up your guitar at a certain time, feel inspired randomly or you might play one note instead of another. "Oh that sounds good" And build from there. Thats how it happens with me sometimes...
Last edited by Final !mpact at Oct 17, 2008,
#8
Composition is a skill like any other, and improving it takes practice. Maybe you're just attempting to do too much too soon. The first and most important step is to develop your aural skills. You should have no trouble translating what you hear in your head to your instrument. Start by humming a simple melody and trying to play it perfectly on your guitar. Pay close attention to the way different intervals sound. As for composition itself; start small. Trying to write a ten minute epic as your first project is absurd. Pick three or four separate notes and force yourself to write an interesting one or two minute piece using only those notes. Putting yourself in a box like this forces you to use your li9mited resources in ways you may not have thought of given the option to do everything all at once. Once you've exhausted every possibility with those notes, add one more, or trying altering the tempo or the time signature.

Instead of trying to accomplish everything at once, start with the framework of the piece. Before I even begin the actual process of writing, I create a fairly detailed template in my head that allows me to focus on specific elements of the music without trying to maintain multiple trains of thought at once, which tends to result is must that sounds cluttered and disjointed. I'll decide on a name and get a rough idea of the atmosphere I'm trying to create. At this point, I'm usually attempting to imagine the entire song at once. I'm not thinking of the individual pieces (melody, chords, etc), but rather the overall rise and fall of tension, and other general characteristics. When I've satisfied that I have a clear enough picture, I'll start thinking about the foundation of the song (form, tempo, time signatures, etc), trying to create a general outline that lends itself well to whatever mood I'm trying to get across. I've even been known to create graphs that detail changes in things like tension and tempo throughout the song. The point is to get as much information out of your head and on paper as possible, so you can focus on whatever part of the song your working on at the moment without having to consider everything else along with it.

I usually try to divide the song up into segments at this point. Not necessarily verse-chorus-verse, as my music rarely has that kind of structure, but rather into sections that are somehow thematically related to each other. From this point onward, I try to focus on each segment individually. I'll usually start at the end, because I find knowing where the rest of the piece will ultimately end up keeps me focused, and keeps the piece from wandering aimlessly. I usually try to visualize the end in as much detail as possible, and then use that material to decide on the structure of the other sections.

At this point--and this is where plain old experience comes in--I'll start deciding upon things like chords progressions and time signature/key changes. I say this comes from experience because I'm generally not anywhere near my instrument at this point. I'm using my prior playing experience to decide on characteristics that would best suit my "musical goal". I strongly advise developing this ability. Start educating yourself about music theory, and try to incorporate every new concept you learn into a piece of music. Start toying with different chord progressions and different key changes. Go through every chord you know and experiment to see how different intervals sound over them. Do the same thing over every chord in every progression you can think of. Once you're familiar with diatonic harmony (and only then), trying the same thing with modal music. Get a sense of how each of them sounds, and modulate between them in every combination you can think of. Get a good sense of what you like and what you don't. The ultimate goal is that, instead of trying to translate what you hear in your head to your instrument, and instead of experiment to create different moods, you already know exactly how to make the music sound the way you want it to, and you can devote your time to deciding exactly how you want it to sound.

I seriously only intended to type a few sentences^
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#9
Quote by Ezuma
Whenever I sit down and try to write anything, I suck. I like to blame my lack of knowledge in music theory and scales, but my mate is a drummer who occasionally picks up the guitar and writes awesome stuff. He knows no music theory at all, he doesn't know any chord shapes, nothing. He just picks up and writes awesome shit.

I have another drummer mate who is pretty knowledgeable in theory, although he never bothered to learn scales, because he's all about the rhythm.

Am I doing anything wrong with my writing? I sit down and just play... but everything I play sounds terrible. Or do I just suck?


all i have to say to you is, never lose hope... Compositon is a very hard skill to develop... It takes time but you will be able to write some good stuff later...
just keep writing, even if it sucks...
and it dosent mean that if you think it sucks, other people may think it does too..
so keep your stuff for C4C and let us crit what you have written...and help you improve...
just dont stop writing...at any cost...even if it sucks..
cheers!!

edit: knowing how to play scales and chord shapes wont make you a musician, you need to know the application...
Last edited by sbikram at Oct 17, 2008,