Music Composers Unite!
I had an interesting visit from my eldest brother yesterday and we got down to talking about my compositions and how they are reproduced electronically. I compose using Sibelius software and enhance the sound with Note Performer - I haven't the time, money or inclination to go down the DAW route and am very happy with the way the sounds are reproduced via my PC (with good quality earphones). I record my pieces as MP3s via the standard facility on Sibelius.
Because he (brother) has what I consider to be a good appreciation of 'Classical' music I send him copies of my pieces in the hope a) that he'll enjoy them and b) be sufficiently excited to contact Victor Hochhauser (or some other impresario) telling them they'd be missing something special if they failed to listen to my compositions.
I sadly discovered yesterday that, specifically with reference to a piano piece, the music sounds dreadful on his computer and, in the past, he's simply been humouring me when telling me 'wow! that's great' or similar. I dragged him kicking and screaming up to my computer to listen to the piece again (It's called 'Norwich Promenade') and he was enraptured (well, that's what he said and I believe him) he said he couldn't believe what talent I have (I still believe him) and that he has misjudged me for years (I still still believe him!).
My point is, whilst I'm merrily enjoying my own stuff played on my own system I have been blissfully unaware of the rotten noises other listeners have been putting up with - what's the solution, can anyone help me out here?
Stephen, I'm sorry I never know where someone is technically and usually tend to go on pontificating for far too long thinking I'm helping when it comes off sounding as if I misjudged someone's know how.
The main take way for me from this thread is I think you may need to reevaluate the translation of your recordings on a large cross section of systems if that's important to you. I say tongue in cheek and hopefully it doesn't offend, who cares what your brother thinks? I understand that this idea has led you to reconsider how your recordings are coming across on other systems. In that regard it is helpful. It SHOULD sound decent on any system including his.
Hi Mr. Lines, to my 'ear' this was a fractured piece of work. It's shining moments were the slower segments. I thought that they had the most potential as an 'outtake' to build a genuinely good piece out of. When hearing any 'rendition', IMO...
a savvy listener will take into consideration the 'means' of delivery and also the limits of their receiver. I mean at the level of initial recording - not professional recording. I personally try to hear 'potential' in a work at the 'forum' level. That is one of the main reasons I joined this forum. The gist and potential of any piece can be 'tweaked', so to speak, and with constructive input from others 'of a similar mindset', be honed and perfected.
I have always been disappointed with the audio output of Finale... but that is what I have to work with.
Your piece here has some somewhat bazaar, to my ear, chord changes- that distract from the heart and character of a comprehensive composition. In general, linear notes, while they may work on paper, do not always add up to a higher expression of the art of music. One of the underlying questions I always have, no matter what the genre, is- what is the composer attempting to express or communicate via the language of their music. The quality of the 'technical delivery' is secondary. The gist, or essence of a good piece of work, dwells in a realm where the concept is greater than the sum of it's parts, where linear is transcended by essence. That's my opinion, and I'm stickin' to it. Happy Harmonies RS
Well hello Mr. Stancill (why the formality I wonder?),
I must say it's very good of you to comment on the construction of my Norwich Promenade and, although that wasn't the point of my original post, I'm always delighted to receive feedback whether it be good, bad or indifferent. In regards to the construction of the piece - it's an imagined walk through places I know and love in the great and ancient city of Norwich - these are the sounds I hear in my inner ear as I walk these particular landmarks. The principal leitmotif comes from the hurly burly of the permanent covered market - as I perambulate from one place to another it involves walking back through the market - hence the reiteration of the thematic material. You might say: 'Well, if you're walking why isn't the piece headed Andante and why isn't it in common time?' A good question - have I parked myself on the back of a three-legged donkey for the trip (it's in triple time, as you know)? My reasoning is that I feel myself floating along in a waltz-like fashion (what a sight!). There is also very good reasoning (to me) for the rather sometimes exotic nature of the selected harmonic progressions - and that is that it's what I hear and what best expresses to me those thoughts as I walk (waltz) along.
I note what you say about the quieter interludes - but my feeling is that they sound as they do because of the contrast between what preceded and follows on from them - it's all to do with the overall texture of the piece and it's what has led to the structure of it as it stands.
I am unsure of what you mean by your final sentence and think, by the bye, that your misuse of bazaar for the word bizarre is serendipitous - one could think of the covered market as being something of a bazaar. I entirely understand your thinking of some of the harmonies being bizarre - opinions are everyone's entitlement and I completely respect yours - but, as I've said, I see those harmonies as being a vital and essential part of the construction of the piece. (Possibly as the result of some of my earlier pieces being commented on as being 'a bit traditional in their use of harmony' (whatever that means - presumably they were a bit obvious in their progressions) - but so are most of Mozart's and his outputs to me often disappoint a bit for that very reason of predictability).
Ho hum! Wouldn't life be boring if we all agreed all the time.
Seriously, thank you for going to the trouble of 'putting pen to paper' as it were. I find your comments interesting and informative and feel quite humble that you should even bother.
All the best,
Stephen (or Mr. Lines if you prefer).
Well then, now that we've been formally introduced... Stephen it is. ( I tend to mix it up, just for fun and color ) and respect.
You have the advantage of the visual as you listen to your own work. I think that gives a prejudice to any and all
composers as they listen to something they have created. To an uninitiated audience of 1 or more, the music does not have that same 'grounding'. The question then becomes, what does the work inspire in others. Everything that I have ever written makes perfect 'sense' to me, and so, that was why I originally joined this forum... to gain the advantage of educated ears. Not necessarily for rave reviews, but for helpful criticism and points of insight that I lacked.
The mechanical side of recording has come a long way. I remember the old records my grandfather had. They were scratchy and full of 'noises'. So, I guess my point was more that I don't worry or concern myself as much about the conveyance as I do listening to the architecture of the piece. Sorry if I crossed wires and got off topic... but it made 'sense' to me. lol. ps- it is bizarre, but that word has always been a trip up for me. Some day, odds are, I will get it rite. RS