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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 7:32 pm    Post subject: a dark drear night.... Reply with quote

how do you start your lyrics for a new tune?

already got a melody?

tell a story"

a catch phrase/hook?

Does it start with a cadence, a rhythm, or just poetry plain and simple?

or perhaps a better question: Which comes first the melody or the words Z(kind of a chicken and the egg thing?)

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I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to start with chords, out of which a melody arises pretty quickly usually, and then when the thing is stuck in my head like an ear worm cuz I've played it twenty times, the words start to flow really easily. I like doing it that way cuz it's the most fun, but on occasion I'll do it differently; I was on vacation in Holland once and a tune and a lyric suggested themselves but I was without an instrument for support so I just got on with writing the lyrics to the melody that was in my head. It turned out pretty good, and I posted it in the listening room eventually - did you ever hear it - it was called Corkscrew.

But the more I do this, the more I think that fortune favours two classes of musical citizens - the brave, and the hard-working - especially the hard-working. So get an idea and turn it into an ear worm, and watch what comes up. I read about two weeks ago how Dylan does it similarly, although he often plunders an existing classic to get the initial idea. then he lives inside the song for some days until it's done.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For me, it's almost always the vocal melody first and that, for most intents and purposes is the song. And I'm almost never at an instrument at the time. Usually I'm doing something pretty boring like working or vacuuming my car. I usually hum it (along with the chords that make it "work") into the voice recorder on my phone and hash it out when I get to an instrument later. Every once in awhile I start with a cool riff, but it's rarer and only works for me if I can find the melody that's supposed to go with it. I try and get the words out at quick as possible, because after a week or so I tend to get complacent with any placeholder lyrics that are still in there... but sometimes a song will carry a placeholder lyric around for a couple months before the perfect line just falls on me like an Acme anvil in a Roadrunner cartoon, but the "fixed" lyric usually sounds almost exactly like the placeholder in terms of pentameter, rhyme scheme, even with a lot of the same vowels and consonants. It's almost like I know how the words have to sound before I know what they all are. Referencing Dylan again, I read somewhere that he wrote Lay Lady Lay in a similar way and it evolved from this LAYLAYLAY sound he was making over the chords.
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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modern_Times_(Bob_Dylan_album)

Re: Dylan - Check The section called 'Credit Controversy'.

I'd like to hear some of your stuff to hear what melody-based stuff sounds like.

Stan: I never know what you've written cuz you're such a collaboration guy. What have you written that you've posted in the LR?

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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

this ought to keep you busy Smile Smile

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40344&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40326&highlight=


http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40195&highlight=


http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39884&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39784&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39730&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39688&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39646&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39676&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39509&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39532&highlight=
[/url]

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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AbsolutelyUnlistenable Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Babar, I knew you were a snazzy dresser and king of the elephants, but I had no idea you were a prolific songwriter too.

Sounds like you do some tracking with a live band....some songs seem more labored-over than others. Standouts for me are Inside Out and When The Lava Starts To Flow. Inside Out kind of has a weird haunting feeling. I like. Smile
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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks... Inside out was the first recording (live) at a rehearsal)... Lava was also live, unfortunately our keyboardist quit (son was diagnosed with MS) and our attempts to find another keyboardist have proved difficult... the better players are looking for a working band or just didn't meld, despite one seemingly good 'fit" lasted only a few weeks

or players who have one or two shops... or can only play the white keys.... at the moment we're 3 piece... which has it's own limitations

and I happen to like keyboards in my tunes... so I wouldn't say we're floundering, but we've entered once again into uncharted waters....

my approach has shifted, especially these past year, and better gear has made recording life a little easier

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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AbsolutelyUnlistenable Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a little neurotic about putting my own stuff out there, but I wanna put up a proper page eventually (once I get a little better at playing and recording) but for now my stuff's a little wonky sounding. I'll PM you guys some links...
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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't be, you music is your own creation, but we all have things to learn.

Unlike some other forums, unless you're a complete ...jerk.... there are people here who will comment, some with very detailed suggestions.

I have learned much here and I believe my skills have improved as a result of being willing to get tore up a little bit Laughing

You may have trouble with the song of epic proportion.... that's a long one and I'll admit I didn't make it to the end, not because I found it wonky... i just don't have the time to sit still for that long a time.

The other tunes, I like your use of dissonance, though parts (to my ear) maybe push the envelope, but that's strictly an opinion based on my own prefs

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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AbsolutelyUnlistenable Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks stainless -

I'm aware some of it pushes the patience envelope a little, but I tend to go in for that type of stuff so I guess with it I'm just aiming for that 1 in 100,000 fruitcake listener. Smile
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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that's the wrong approach... people just need the time to put things aside an listen.....

I think music listening has shifted... we used to play a record (whether vinyl or cassette or CD) start to finish... now with i-Pods, most choices tend to be snapshots of an artists portfolio... a lot of really good material gets overlooked

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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AbsolutelyUnlistenable Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stainless I agree with you 100% there.
There's a lot fewer albums made these days, where the whole thing is a package meant to be listened to from beginning to end. We think a lot more about how to make the biggest impact in the shortest time instead of letting something develop slowly with patience and care.. I guess I'm just becoming an old curmudgeon.
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stainless Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

a curmudgeon? I'll cop to being old... Rolling Eyes
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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AbsolutelyUnlistenable wrote:
I'm a little neurotic about putting my own stuff out there, but I wanna put up a proper page eventually (once I get a little better at playing and recording) but for now my stuff's a little wonky sounding. I'll PM you guys some links...


You should call that first one 'Andover'. Laughing It's good (although it's hard to tell exactly what's going on cuz I'm listening through iPad earbuds). It's got musical and lyrical interest (that dissonant guitarrismo is very cool) (catchy word stuff like "I had to dig another hole for you, I think that's all these two hands are gonna ever do" and "do as all the old ones do and do it again"). But based on the earbud listen, the vocal could come up a bit in the mix, but that's the sort of thing that you'll get better feedback on in the LR.

I like that Dropbox player, too. Smile

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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

stainless wrote:
this ought to keep you busy Smile Smile

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40344&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40326&highlight=


http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=40195&highlight=


http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39884&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39784&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39730&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39688&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39646&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39676&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39509&highlight=

http://www.recordingproject.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=39532&highlight=
[/url]


That list is most or all of the stuff I've heard from you in the last while. So do you write all the stuff for your group?

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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dobro wrote:

I like that Dropbox player, too. Smile


I like the Wordpress.com approach too, but for finished stuff. Here's what Tjarko's page looks like. It's cool that you can post lyrics and comments and pictures and videos, all on the same page. (If you click around his page, you can find a video he posted.)

http://tjarkobusink.wordpress.com/

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dobro wrote:
lyrical interest


Thanks, it's about gardening Smile
Yeah I mostly use Dropbox because it allows me to break my links from the computer by just changing that subscript after the filename... more control. But that Wordpress page looks great. I also like .bandcamp alot, because of the high-quality player, and it allows the artist to create different "albums" with cover art, which appeals to my antiquated sensibilities.
Is Tjarko a mod here or something?


Last edited by AbsolutelyUnlistenable on Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:24 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dobro- your own stuff I've heard of course (and like), as you've passed through "other boards" I'm on.
Hope you guys don't mind me hanging out shootin the breeze in here... I can see it's kind of an insular community Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dobro wrote:
That list is most or all of the stuff I've heard from you in the last while. So do you write all the stuff for your group?


THe bass player writes, but I seem to write the majority. His tunes are more "classic rock/Beatl-ish", whereas I tend to purposely avoid what I consider the more oft used chord changes.

Our 2nd keyboardist wrote a couple of tunes. Out drummer has penned some lyrics, can sing... but it's progressed beyond that. I tried collabing with both, but their time seems ore musically limited than mine.

The 3 piece thing is hard for me (I've done a number of times, and the bands got plenty of gigs...) but I really like a fuller sound. I've started doing a bit more on-line collab as well as more virtual... though my real preference is to sit down and play with someone.

I've thought about revamping my tunes into an acoustic version and hitting the songwriters/open mic things around time (of which there's enough I could do it damn near 7 nights a week)

The 3 piece thing is one night a week and at times seems almost like I can hear it's swan song....

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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dobro Offline
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Absolutely U: We're not insular, we're just disliked or spurned or forgotten. This site used to be much more active, but nowadays most of those people have drifted away. Tjarko used to be one of the regulars here. I don't see a renaissance happening anytime soon, cuz to be successful and popular, a site has to have a certain number of pros who can answer questions reliably, and/or have a slightly anarchic off-topic forum where people can abuse each other. This site has neither. But it has people I like and that's why I come here.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

stainless wrote:
dobro wrote:
That list is most or all of the stuff I've heard from you in the last while. So do you write all the stuff for your group?


THe bass player writes, but I seem to write the majority. His tunes are more "classic rock/Beatl-ish", whereas I tend to purposely avoid what I consider the more oft used chord changes.

Our 2nd keyboardist wrote a couple of tunes. Out drummer has penned some lyrics, can sing... but it's progressed beyond that. I tried collabing with both, but their time seems ore musically limited than mine.

The 3 piece thing is hard for me (I've done a number of times, and the bands got plenty of gigs...) but I really like a fuller sound. I've started doing a bit more on-line collab as well as more virtual... though my real preference is to sit down and play with someone.

I've thought about revamping my tunes into an acoustic version and hitting the songwriters/open mic things around time (of which there's enough I could do it damn near 7 nights a week)

The 3 piece thing is one night a week and at times seems almost like I can hear it's swan song....


Strip it down. Reach for less. Achieve more.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

wise words!
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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyway, we're talking about songwriting. How does it typically happen when you pen a tune?
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the idea can come from most anywhere... something on the radio or tV (When the lava starts to flow), or something someone said that struck me as a "keeper" (Why does she smile), or it can be more personal, whether myself or someone close to me (Better Days)

or some silly nonsensical thing (Original thinker)... Usaually bits and pieces of me end up in every tune, but there can be "themes" that are also completely fabricated, or where I've tried to put myself looking at a situation through their eyes (Dear Diary)

Usually enough of the words flow to anchor the tune, though I may rework lines, or flip the arrangement.

the music follows... and often that's the easier part (both to come up with, as well as adapt/change)

I tend to fit the music to the prose

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Stainless ....

I wish I could be traded like a penny in the arcade for a token to be played
on a cello strung with strings that are my dreams



Check out our music at http://www.reverbnation.com/#!/stainlessbrown[/url]
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was thinking the other day how music, like ice cream, can either be chunky or smooth and how there are people who like one type more than the other. They aren't really mutually exclusive, but some songs are more chunky than smooth and vice versa. The smooth in music is where what you expect to happen next in a song actually happens, and the chunky is where the songwriter tries to "trick" you - lyrical misdirection, wacky time sigs, generally "abrasive" tones.... Some folks like chunky because it's "adventurous" some like smooth because it "rides a groove"... What do you think about this and where does your own stuff fall in the spectrum?
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