composing

March 13, 2020 at 8:15pm

The mad genius that Beethoven was, he was known to dip his head in cold water before composing. Not only that, he would pour water over his hands when he practiced and he would keep pouring until his clothes were wet.

The extent of this odd habit was so much that water would often leak onto the ceiling of the room below his, much to the discomfort of his hosts or neighbours. Considering the fact that Beethoven lived in Austria, it's a miracle he didn't catch pneumonia.

... See More

The mad genius that Beethoven was, he was known to dip his head in cold water before composing. Not only that, he would pour water over his hands when he practiced and he would keep pouring until his clothes were wet.

The extent of this odd habit was so much that water would often leak onto the ceiling of the room below his, much to the discomfort of his hosts or neighbours. Considering the fact that Beethoven lived in Austria, it's a miracle he didn't catch pneumonia.

#beethoven #pneumonia #composing #habit

March 2, 2020 at 2:30pm

If pop songs can so easily be written and then distributed into an unbreakable cycle of hits, can't they also be reverse engineered and reproduced? Can't a songwriter feed a topic into a machine and have that machine regurgitate a melody and lyrics, forming a pop song that's packaged and ready to go?

Not if you want the song to find an audience, says John Covach, the director of the Institute for Popular Music at the University of Rochester. Pop music has always been more about... See More

If pop songs can so easily be written and then distributed into an unbreakable cycle of hits, can't they also be reverse engineered and reproduced? Can't a songwriter feed a topic into a machine and have that machine regurgitate a melody and lyrics, forming a pop song that's packaged and ready to go?

Not if you want the song to find an audience, says John Covach, the director of the Institute for Popular Music at the University of Rochester. Pop music has always been more about cultural significance than musical inventiveness. The tunes that become hits today may not have five years ago.

The Beatles, he says, probably wouldn't have had the success they did if they released their music for the first time today.

#ArtificialIntelligence #ai #composing

March 2, 2020 at 2:27pm

Damien Riehl is a lawyer who has worked on copyright. Noah Rubin is a coder. They were hanging out after a long day at work when a “a lark, a thought experiment” occurred to Riehl:

Maybe they could exhaust all possible melodies—and in so doing, protect musicians from being sued for copying songs they don’t remember hearing.

On another level, the melody project asks some interesting questions about machine creation. Is writing some software to output MIDI melodies to a hard... See More

Damien Riehl is a lawyer who has worked on copyright. Noah Rubin is a coder. They were hanging out after a long day at work when a “a lark, a thought experiment” occurred to Riehl:

Maybe they could exhaust all possible melodies—and in so doing, protect musicians from being sued for copying songs they don’t remember hearing.

On another level, the melody project asks some interesting questions about machine creation. Is writing some software to output MIDI melodies to a hard drive the same as if you’d created the song, played it on your xylophone, and uploaded it to SoundCloud? Did Riehl and Rubin free music from restriction, or did they infringe on millions of copyrights?

#copyright #ArtificialIntelligence #ai #composing #law

February 9, 2020 at 12:07am

When Rachmaninoff's Symphony No. 1 premiered in 1897, critics utterly condemned it. A critic and composer César Cui compared the piece with a depiction of the Ten Plagues of Egypt and brutally suggested that it would be well-received by the "inmates" of a music conservatory in Hell.

Rachmaninoff fell into a depression that lasted for four years, suffered from writer’s block, and composed almost nothing.

#... See More

When Rachmaninoff's Symphony No. 1 premiered in 1897, critics utterly condemned it. A critic and composer César Cui compared the piece with a depiction of the Ten Plagues of Egypt and brutally suggested that it would be well-received by the "inmates" of a music conservatory in Hell.

Rachmaninoff fell into a depression that lasted for four years, suffered from writer’s block, and composed almost nothing.

#Rachmaninoff #medical #treatment #WritersBlock #composing #depression #symphony

December 5, 2019 at 12:52am

Let Nat Wu 健豪, singer-songwriter/keyboardist with the band Jumpstart, serenades you with his performance on the latest white Montage 8. In addition, he will be sharing his songwriting and composing journey.

#NatWu #yamaha #montage8 #... See More

Let Nat Wu 健豪, singer-songwriter/keyboardist with the band Jumpstart, serenades you with his performance on the latest white Montage 8. In addition, he will be sharing his songwriting and composing journey.

#NatWu #yamaha #montage8 #composing #songwriting #performing

October 18, 2019 at 11:14am

The Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) has invited renowned Hollywood orchestrator and conductor Tim Davies to conduct a two half-day orchestration workshop next January.

The workshop aims to provide insights into orchestration and arranging, and is suited for composition students and individuals with arranging experience in any genre for a symphony orchestra. Up to six candidates will be selected to work alongside Davies and the SSO to further hone their art of orchestration. This... See More

The Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) has invited renowned Hollywood orchestrator and conductor Tim Davies to conduct a two half-day orchestration workshop next January.

The workshop aims to provide insights into orchestration and arranging, and is suited for composition students and individuals with arranging experience in any genre for a symphony orchestra. Up to six candidates will be selected to work alongside Davies and the SSO to further hone their art of orchestration. This will be Davies’ first such workshop held in Singapore.

#sso #TimDavies #workshop #composing #conductor

October 16, 2019 at 5:13pm

Jazz musicians, almost by definition, seek an active dialogue between the impulsive and the rational. For some, the terms of that negotiation become a central feature of their art. Dan Tepfer is one of those: a pianist and composer who sees improvisation as the ideal expression of freedom within a framework.

He's fond of interrogating this process, finding new pathways by way of self-imposed restrictions.

#... See More

Jazz musicians, almost by definition, seek an active dialogue between the impulsive and the rational. For some, the terms of that negotiation become a central feature of their art. Dan Tepfer is one of those: a pianist and composer who sees improvisation as the ideal expression of freedom within a framework.

He's fond of interrogating this process, finding new pathways by way of self-imposed restrictions.

#DanTepfer #composing #improvisation

January 8, 2019 at 3:52pm

I just finished my 12th original composition and released the piano solo sheet music, that to me is kind of a milestone.

The new piano solo piece is called "An Unforgettable Adventure". You can listen to it on SoundCloud by clicking the image below (don't forget to "Follow" me there to get updates). The background for this piece is where you have a truly memorable adventure, one filled with peaceful moments, reflective moods, and quite a bit of excitement.

A friend of mine... See More

I just finished my 12th original composition and released the piano solo sheet music, that to me is kind of a milestone.

The new piano solo piece is called "An Unforgettable Adventure". You can listen to it on SoundCloud by clicking the image below (don't forget to "Follow" me there to get updates). The background for this piece is where you have a truly memorable adventure, one filled with peaceful moments, reflective moods, and quite a bit of excitement.

A friend of mine actually interpreted "An Unforgettable Adventure" as a monument to life. She said that the first part of the song reflects childhood and youth, the middle part is akin to sprinting through life in your career, and for me, I feel that the ending part reflects old age. Nevertheless, that's still an adventure to me. An adventure in life!

Hope you will like it. I might perform it at Pianovers Meetup one day. Thanks.

#composing

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Gavin Koh

I just finished my 24th original composition... you can listen to it on my Soundcloud at https://... See More

I just finished my 24th original composition... you can listen to it on my Soundcloud at https://soundcloud.com/gavinkoh/a-threnody-for-freedom-piano-solo. Here's to many more original songs.

March 13, 2019 at 12:50pm
Gavin Koh

Phew... here is my 36th original piano composition since I started composing in August 2018.

Continuing the "Piano Ballades for the Road" album, here is the sixth piece from the set; it has... See More

Phew... here is my 36th original piano composition since I started composing in August 2018.

Continuing the "Piano Ballades for the Road" album, here is the sixth piece from the set; it has been given the moniker of "Angst". Grit your teeth and finish playing this challenging piece.

I sincerely hope you enjoy it.

https://soundcloud.com/gavinkoh/ballade-of-angst-piano-solo

April 26, 2019 at 5:09pm
October 14, 2018 at 2:16pm

Time to share my 5th "nugget" of musical knowledge:
Chordify is a website that automatically transforms music from Youtube or Soundcloud into chords. Relying on deep neural networks to output chords for your song, they are geared to help pianists, guitarists, and ukulelists. So, if you rely on chords or play by ear, then save some time with Chordify. Paying members can transpose and even play around with the tempo. If you don't wish to create an account, you can use their search tool... See More

Time to share my 5th "nugget" of musical knowledge:
Chordify is a website that automatically transforms music from Youtube or Soundcloud into chords. Relying on deep neural networks to output chords for your song, they are geared to help pianists, guitarists, and ukulelists. So, if you rely on chords or play by ear, then save some time with Chordify. Paying members can transpose and even play around with the tempo. If you don't wish to create an account, you can use their search tool for free to check whether chords already exist for your favourite song.

For example, here are chords to Broken Vow, a lovely piece from Lara Fabian.
https://chordify.net/chords/lara-fabian-broken-vow-marcopantoja

#composing

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Liew Soo Hin

This sounds interesting. How accurate is this? Have you tried extensively?

November 15, 2018 at 4:05pm
Gavin Koh

Good enough... there was one week where I used it to quickly get the chords I needed for a Hari Raya performance. Accuracy seems reasonable. But if you want more features, like transposing and so... See More

Good enough... there was one week where I used it to quickly get the chords I needed for a Hari Raya performance. Accuracy seems reasonable. But if you want more features, like transposing and so on, you have to pay. Read here for a better idea: https://www.reddit.com/r/musictheory/comments/22e7dy/chordifynet_has_any...

November 15, 2018 at 5:07pm
Liew Soo Hin

Thanks! I've read the link you sent. On a technical note, I reckon the software analysed the frequencies?

I mean, there's nothing in the mp3 file, except frequencies, right?

November 16, 2018 at 11:45am
Gavin Koh

You can read about how Chordify works by looking at this answer in Quora.
https://www.quora.com/How-does-Chordify-work... See More

You can read about how Chordify works by looking at this answer in Quora.
https://www.quora.com/How-does-Chordify-work

And unless you know about Artificial Neural Networks and terms like neural weights, back propagation, and recurrent/recursive neural networks, it's going to be tough understanding what happens under it's hood.

November 16, 2018 at 11:55am
March 19, 2018 at 11:31pm

When composing a song, does the melody come first, or the lyrics?

#composing

of 5
Adelynn Khoo

Is there a formula used by the many successful composers? You know, maybe writing the melody first is *easier*?

March 23, 2018 at 12:48pm
Goh Zensen

If you are talking about composer and lyricist being two different persons, then we have cases for both. However, by default, it is usually the composer penning the melody first, then the lyricist... See More

If you are talking about composer and lyricist being two different persons, then we have cases for both. However, by default, it is usually the composer penning the melody first, then the lyricist filling in the lyrics later.

March 26, 2018 at 8:03am
Gavin Koh

As Zensen said, "by default" the music comes first followed by lyrics. In the next Pianovers (#75 on 22nd Apr), I will be playing an exception, a song where the lyrics came first.

"When... See More

As Zensen said, "by default" the music comes first followed by lyrics. In the next Pianovers (#75 on 22nd Apr), I will be playing an exception, a song where the lyrics came first.

"When October Goes" had music composed by Barry Manilow only after the lyricist's widow sent Manilow the lyrics. Manilow set a lovely melancholy tune to what Johnny Mercer wrote (Mercer had died of a brain tumour diagnosed just months before) and the completed song was released as a single by Manilow (and it was quite a success).

Listen it on Youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Reiqwbo4b7Q or come to Pianovers #75 to listen!

April 14, 2018 at 6:55pm
Gavin Koh

In the case of "When October Goes":

"Setting the Mercer lyrics to music, Mr. Manilow discovered, was one of the easier tasks of his career. "The tunes came like that", he said snapping his... See More

In the case of "When October Goes":

"Setting the Mercer lyrics to music, Mr. Manilow discovered, was one of the easier tasks of his career. "The tunes came like that", he said snapping his fingers. "I struggle with the pop stuff till I bleed, but this stuff... like that." [Article ref link]

So, it could be easier to compose music around the lyrics after all. Maybe, you only need to connect with the lyrics, be inspired by them, and voilà!

April 14, 2018 at 3:18pm

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