There isn’t one formula for writing music. Every composer has a somewhat different process for how they write. However, there are common threads to writing music that bring the process together. Learning to write using different instruments, following a progression of chords, developing a rhythm and even adding lyrics if you so choose, are all important parts of the process. The following is how professionals tend to write music:
How to Start Composing
The beginning of the composition process tends to go in one of two directions. In Music World, Cliff Goldmacher wrote about how some composers begin with the progression of chords and establish a groove first. Other musicians will start by writing a melody and build the song out of that material. Both steps are important for the song regardless of which comes first.
Developing a Melody
Next, composers take their chord progression and develop a melody that fits within it. Or, they fit chords into the background of the melody. At the same time, they are structuring the form of the song. During this time, a composer will also figure out how long the melody will last and where it will carry the song. Furthermore, composers often create variations on the melody to give the music additional layers. Variations are similar to the original melody but have a few slight differences.
Don’t Forget the Rhythm
The rhythm is what drives the speed and feel of the piece. It includes different percussion instruments to keep the beat moving forward. Often different instruments are used to help establish the beat of the song. Guitars and violins are popular for providing rhythm. Although, virtually any other instrument can complete this task if used correctly. The best composers find new rhythms and interesting ways to enhance the style of the piece.
Using Instruments in Your Composition
The instruments you use in a composition are referred to as orchestration. Professional composers know how to make varied sounds and create different emotional feelings. They do this by using combinations of instruments. The voice is also an instrument and can’t be forgotten in the composition process. Composers will often use the help of lyricists. These professionals write the sung text in music. Lyrics tell the story and enhance the emotional connection people feel from the music. Many composers write both the music and the lyrics to their compositions.
Professional composers spend years working to understand the basic fundamentals of music. They use this to enhance their passion for creating new expressions of art. It all starts with the exploration of musical talent. Contact us to begin your musical journey and start writing a soundtrack to your life.