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Hello!  My name is Ronald Fontenot.  I have been composing music now for 6 years.  I started with children's melodies and grew from there.  This is one of my newer works titled "Run!".  It was composed for a video game, maybe for a scene where the main character is running or on horseback quickly traveling the countryside on a journey.  Please listen to it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KkrNc7b0tAc

Recently, I have been trying to compose songs for RPG (role playing games) or JRPG (Japanese role playing games).  I hope this track could work.

Concerns I have are the bell sound (I've heard mixed reviews about it), also if I should add other instruments (maybe drum sounds or something).  I compose my music in FL Studio, and I use the Nexus 2 plugin.  This song uses the Pop Keys Piano, the Pan Flute, and Big Ben Bells sound.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.  Thank you!

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There is a lot of music on the forum right now that no one seems to want to comment on. I'll get the ball rolling on your piece.

If you are going to use the same four chords, think about doing more that just switching octaves every so often. If you are not a piano player you might have to really experiment. But it will be worth it. 

I'm not familiar with Big Ben Bell, but this sounds more like a toy bell. Consider using a lower pitched bell, or chimes. Perhaps on every other one chord. 

I like the pan flute. Perhaps give it more repeating melody. Not too often, just enough to give us a bit of familiarity. 

Think of your piece as a arc. Start out sparse. Add interest until maybe 3/4 through. Then taper off to an ending. 

Thanks Bob for the feedback.  I think I'll try some of your suggestions and see how things work out.  Thank you!

- Ronald Fontenot

Bob Porter said:

There is a lot of music on the forum right now that no one seems to want to comment on. I'll get the ball rolling on your piece.

If you are going to use the same four chords, think about doing more that just switching octaves every so often. If you are not a piano player you might have to really experiment. But it will be worth it. 

I'm not familiar with Big Ben Bell, but this sounds more like a toy bell. Consider using a lower pitched bell, or chimes. Perhaps on every other one chord. 

I like the pan flute. Perhaps give it more repeating melody. Not too often, just enough to give us a bit of familiarity. 

Think of your piece as a arc. Start out sparse. Add interest until maybe 3/4 through. Then taper off to an ending. 

It's pretty sweet! Game music tends to be contextual, so if there's a bell in the game I'm sure it'll be very appropriate.

I try to listen to as much as I can, but I confess I give really bad MIDI renditions a pass... Shame on me!

Bob Porter said:

There is a lot of music on the forum right now that no one seems to want to comment on.

Getting off topic here, and if there is much more comment it might be best to create its own topic, but since coincidentally I've been thinking about this, I'll add my experience here.

There are two basic reasons I don't comment on much music here.  First, a large proportion of it is in genres I'm just not interested in, never listen to, and don't know anything about.  Most prominent of these are video game music, purely electronic music, and very free form music (with some exceptions in this last category.) I'm not saying that these genres are bad music or implying any criticism of people who like them; I'm just saying that they are not my kind of music, and there is nothing useful I could say about them.

Second, I find it difficult to comment on music from only a sound file without a score, but people often post music only as SoundCloud links.  I think people would get more comments if they made a point of always including a score (if there is one; I realize that not all music composed nowadays has a score,) either by posting to YouTube in a form which displays both audio and score, or using MuseScore (free software which allows you to post audio and score both to the MuseScore user site and to YouTube,) or posting a pdf of the score in the the discussion, which this site allows.



Claude Werner said:

I try to listen to as much as I can, but I confess I give really bad MIDI renditions a pass... Shame on me!

Bob Porter said:

There is a lot of music on the forum right now that no one seems to want to comment on.

Claude,

Everyone's definition of a bad midi rendition is different. The problem, I think, is that recordings today are darn near perfect. We don't seem to be interested in anything less. Is that fair? I grew up playing in school band from elementary school on, My parents sat through those early performances. I listened to my kids play in band. Even a bad midi rendition is in tune and in time.

Jon,

I used to be a big fan of producing a score. I don't mind doing it now, but think about it. When you go to a concert of music you may not have heard before, do you sit there with a score? Of course not. You use your training as a musician and a composer to listen. You take note of what you like and dislike. You listen to how things blend together.  You know if you like the cello entrance or not. I find that when I post a score, most of the comments have little to do with the music. Most comments are about what is wrong with the score. Fine if I was interested in handing my music to real musicians. My scores are marked in such a way to get my software to playback like I want. If the software doesn't read certain phrasing, I don't put it in. Yes I know it would be in a part for real musicians. 

You have to pay for MuseScore Pro to post a lot of music. Or audio.

We should definitely start a new thread, this not fair on the OP. I would do it, but I really don't understand how this forum works so I wouldn't know where to put it...

For the record, yes. Bad MIDI renditions are up there with children's bands, I just can't be bothered and I know it's wrong. But really, my tolerance for bad MIDI is much higher than most (musicians and non-connoisseurs). There are two proper ways to make one: 1.- in a DAW, where it takes almost as much as composing and the goal is to fool even musicians and 2.- a basic mock-up to showcase your work, this can be done by manipulating, on a basic level, your notation software (e.g. make staccatos play staccatos) or getting a decent soundfont or playback program like NotePerformer. My objection only starts when I can't even tell what instrument I'm supposed to be hearing...

Jon, I hear you man and I think you're right, what is the point if you have nothing to say? For me personally it just breaks my heart to see someone's post (especially one that's been there for a while) with zero comments so at least I'll say something like it sounds good...

Claude,

Select  FORUM near the top of any page. Select a subforum you think might fit. Select the "+ ADD" button near the upper right to start a new thread.

Breathe some life into the piano. The patch seems good enough (though I can't hear how velocity layering is set up) but it sounds robotic because every note is perfectly positioned on the grid, both start and end, velocities are repetitive and so on. Human beings don't play like this.

If you aren't a pianist, it may be difficult to pinpoint exactly which tweaks will make the sound better, but there's plenty of room for experimentation. A decent starting point is MIDI humanization. The name varies between DAWs but FL Studio should have something like this, it basically allows you to nudge the timing and velocity of a group of notes in a mostly random fashion, to a specified degree. This will definitely not solve everything, but it can produce a variety results for you; you listen to those, choose the ones that seem to be an improvement and extrapolate from there.

Hi Bob, yes thank you I know that part. The problem is which category... Perhaps we should ask Gav to create a new category for playback? I'd be happy to make some videos and give some tips...

Bob Porter said:

Claude,

Select  FORUM near the top of any page. Select a subforum you think might fit. Select the "+ ADD" button near the upper right to start a new thread.

Pick Miscellaneous then. Music Debate, Music Technology, plus a few others. It doesn't make a lot of difference. 

Done! Hope to continue there: http://composersforum.ning.com/forum/topics/midi-renditions-the-new...

Bob Porter said:

Pick Miscellaneous then. Music Debate, Music Technology, plus a few others. It doesn't make a lot of difference. 

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