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This is an orchestration of a little something I wrote or piano. Pretty much the same 8 measures over and over.

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Steven,

So, can you give me an example of where I used improper voice leading, what a better choice would be, and why? I'm always willing to learn something, if you are. The choir part doesn't count. Nothing about that is correct. I might fix it if I do more with this piece.

I cannot attach files-I dont have a text editor again.
Closing down my laptop and starting again
Sorry Bob, I have finished my reviewing of your piece and the NP re-rendering, but the last few days in this site sometimes I dont have a text editor to attach files, and i need to attach 5 files for this review. Well today I dont seem to have a text editor at all, it simply doesn't work, just a box for typing text and nothing else.
:-(

If we friend each other, I can give you my email and you can send it to me. Interesting that you are having this problem.

Thanks, Steven,

It would really help if you could give me measure numbers. Is measure 17 and example of the A major chord over a D that you are talking about?

I have the feeling that most of the things you are pointing out as "mistakes", you have done so because it is not the way you would do them. There is a difference.

For the most part the bass line can't be changed because it is the recognizable melody.

But, please, continue.

That is a "rule" for strict Bach vocal writing that does actually have several exceptions (see below). 

Bob, I see the big problem is that your piece contains parts for clarinets, which we all know haven't been invented yet...

...

 Dissonance should be resolved immediately by step, except in these cases:

 The cambiata and double auxiliary figures
 The escape tone (which must be downward)
 An essential tone may rarely intervene between a dissonance and its resolution.
 Two successive dissonances may be allowed if they are quick, stepwise in the same direction, and the first one is unaccented.

steven gustin said:

they are most certainly mistakes.  it is the only rule to which there is no exceptions.  that no dissonance can ever be resolved by anything, but 1 step.  i mean, the other parts are more recognizable due to having more harmonic variety, than the bass which is only doing 1-5-1-5-1.  and the most recognizable bass is the chromatic descending one.  fwiw, the 1-5-1-5-1 bass is wrong in every instance it is sounded.  so it most definitely shouldn't be suited for thematic material.  if the 1-5 is desirable then the upper harmonies need to be changed.  one option that would be closest to your idea is reversing the order of the upper harmonies.  ie: instead of d over d the A over d, leading to a in bass, use A over d then d over d, leading to a bass.  also, a c#dim chord sounds much better than an A triad over the d bass.  

Steven,

If I were trying to write something in the style of Bach, I might be able to see your point. Bach couldn't have been further from my mind. When the 1-5-1-5 figure comes in, it is an ostinato type figure (which is based on the opening Chime part) which leads to the purposely dissonant Amajor over D. Which does not resolve at all as the D is removed a beat later. I like the A major over D. It's just the uncomfortable effect I wanted. The whole piece is supposed to be uneasy. 

I agree that there a few improper spellings. And I'm sure there are a host of things that are mistakes that you didn't list. I have the feeling that the things you listed were things that you didn't like the sound of. We all have things that we don't like the sound of. That doesn't make them mistakes. I hope that soon you will find the Shift key on your computer.

steven its ok to just say you dont like something you dont have to lean on a bunch of dead composers for explanation and youre right i do like it but that doesnt mean i think its perfect or that everyone should write the way i do

Socrates sent me his version of this piece. Absolutely fascinating. You all should listen to it. I think it is valuable for both of us. He gets to spend some time inside the music, and realize it differently than I did. Much like hearing some other director play my music. And I get to hear my music a different way. I wish there could be more interaction like this. Of course, it takes time and you would only want to do it with pieces you think are worth while. Is this piece worth while?

In this case he did it because he thought  Note Performer could do a better job. He sent an incredibly long list of thoughts and changes, a score and several other files. All of which seem to be well above the call of duty.

I will address NotePerformer. 

The chime patch seems anemic. Listen to the opening WWs. Their vibrato is in sync with each other, like it was added mechanically to a non- vibrato patch. I do like the darker bassoon sound, but not the string sections. There are other things, but those really jumped out at me.

I'm not going to comment on matters of interpretation unless he wants me to. I will say that I like the articulations in the last tutti section. 

Remember that I marked the score, dynamics wise, to get Sibelius to do what I wanted. Socrates had to wade through a ton of markings, some of which seem to oppose each other, to try to make musical sense. Not an easy task. In some cases the score is way too busy, so balance is a real problem. In both our versions, some lines are lost.

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"chopin, brahms, all these composers would say it's wrong."

They're all dead.

"but, w/e i you like it, fine, that's all that matters."

Pretty much.

I really don't think Chopin would fuss too much about unusual dissonances or their resolution.  Sound, sound, sound matters more than rules - then and now.  The truly great composers knew when to break the rules or simply ignore them.  Hats off to Bob for a very appealing piece!

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