#1
So, I'm just starting to get a band started up and I've been having huge writer's and musician's block.

When i try and write guitar pieces, I try to make something really complex and I always end up losing any sort of chord progression I have built.

Anyone have any pointers on writing my own original songs? I don't really enjoy metal compositions, I enjoy more of a punk/classic/alt/prog guitar composition style.

btw... I know a fair amount of theory so feel free to use theoretical principals.
"There was a time you let me know
What's real and going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?
And remember when I moved in you
The holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah"
-Leonard Cohen
#3
Quote by s0ulgl0
Get high and write music then.

HAH!

no.... most people are awful when they're high. bands like pink floyd are the exception, not the rule

i think the TS simply needs to work on composing. it's a skill that takes practice like anything else.
#4
^ don't listen to Soulglo, getting high just makes you want to watch family guy and eat pringles (well sometimes), family guy is designed to be watched while high lol anyway on topic.

I made the same mistake, then realised you don't need to write complex music for it to be original (of course using the sme old chord progressions can be dull), just honestly play what you like the sound of, if something sounds good to you chances are other people will feel the same way.

What I do is get a simple progression going, add some accents to it (like hammering on another note in a chord) and try and build it around a main melody I have. My music will be inherently different from yours, I have rhythm lead and drums, sometimes bass but more often than not just the first 3, I learned a lot from Joe Satriani about chords and soloing, that's what kind of music I make.
Last edited by Helpy Helperton at Oct 29, 2008,
#5
I don't mean to sound rude, but knowing theory, and knowing composition are sort of two different things.

When I tried to compose for the first time, I had a pretty good knowledge of theory, but couldn't get anything good.

Then I read up on different compositional techniques and aspects. A simple knowledge of themes, motifs, cadences, etc can make a huge difference. For one, it helps you organize and structure your ideas. Study and analyze guitar pieces and try writing something with the exact same structure for starters. And I don't mean plagarize .

Also, learn different types of chord movements which aren't diatonic. They'll make your music more colorful, for lack of a better word. Google "Augmented sixth chords", I think the first response is a good site to learn. Also, secondary dominants, tritone substitution, chromatic harmony.
That stuff is pretty easy to understand if you have a decent knowledge of theory.
#8
Thanks for the link, I think that would help.

I guess my main fear is that I don't want my music to be as simple as a simple 3 power chord progression yet I'm not talented enough to compose something like Goliath (mars volta) or satch boogie...
"There was a time you let me know
What's real and going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?
And remember when I moved in you
The holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah"
-Leonard Cohen
#9
One thing to remember is that you need to work your way up. Someone else on here said the other day (don't remember who, sorry) that you shouldn't try to write a 40 minute prog rock epic if you can't yet write a basic 2 minute pop song. Honestly, I was in your shoes before as far as wanting to write giant complex songs, but I couldn't do it then. If you try to write a decent sounding song with just your guitar for a while, and get sone of those under your belt, you'll most likely find it easier to write something more complex. Hope this helps.

Edit: I forgot about this part. You DON'T HAVE TO keep songs you don't want to keep. The point here is only to build your songwriting skills.
Last edited by dst127 at Oct 29, 2008,
#10
Quote by z4twenny
HAH!

no.... most people are awful when they're high. bands like pink floyd are the exception, not the rule

i think the TS simply needs to work on composing. it's a skill that takes practice like anything else.

If you look at the making of dark side of the moon its clear they werent ****ed up much and they also talk aobut lots of theory that they had knowlage of. It was a result of 4 well trained and expiranced musicains working together who were also very talented and creative. Not a case of they got stoned. they all know plenty of theory dont think pink floyd just got high to make music. Watch the amking of darkside dvd with interviews with the members and see if you think weed had anything to do with it. Z4 i know you dont think this so this wasnt directed at you. I know you know better.
#11
i cant write for shit either... awell *goes and plays other artist's music*
Current favourite bands:
METALLICA
MASTODON
NILE
#12
Quote by /-\liceNChains
If you look at the making of dark side of the moon its clear they werent ****ed up much and they also talk aobut lots of theory that they had knowlage of. It was a result of 4 well trained and expiranced musicains working together who were also very talented and creative. Not a case of they got stoned. they all know plenty of theory dont think pink floyd just got high to make music. Watch the amking of darkside dvd with interviews with the members and see if you think weed had anything to do with it. Z4 i know you dont think this so this wasnt directed at you. I know you know better.

Pink Floyd did drugs. They made music. The two often intersected. It means nothing bad on the band.

I wish I could help, TS, but I'm in the same boat as you right now.
ALWAYS

WANNA BE WITH YOU,
MAKE BELIEV
E WITH YOU,
AND L
IVE IN HARMONY, HARMONY,



OH, LOOVE!
#13
ya getting high can help or just compound the problem i found when high i can have moments of glory and moments of WTF was that all about.

I find your surroundings are really important part of composition i.e i write my best stuff just after i have had a killer surf session or had anything happen to me thats uplifting usually gets me in the mood.

Truth is you cant magicaly create creativity its either there or not and sometimes you can go weeks with out anything inspiring and sometimes in a day you can come up with 3/4 good songs. Always hit record. I have a hard drive with 100's upon 100's of sessions jams and idea's its great to go back and listen and see if something is there or not so i always hit record even if im sounding pants
#14
You Shouldn't push yourself to compose something, after a lot of experience in guitar you should be able to get an Idea and build off it. Let everything come naturally.