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Aspect of a song do you start with?

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LazyBucks
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Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 09:36 AM Reply

Hey again.
(Whoa LazyBucks, stop making so many threads man. Well to that I say I've had success with great discussions in my past few threads but ok this will be my last one).

This is more out of curiosity then anything, I love learning about people various different approaches.
Beside my setup I have my keyboard that is on 24/7, I never turn it off. When I play games I am usually playing little melodies with my left hand on it. When I'm watching something on youtube I play little melodies on it.
I've been doing this for so long, since I was about 14 when I got the keyboard that I passively do it and friends have observed that sometimes when drug my left hand plays a invisible keyboard in the air. Its second nature to me now to just make melodies.

So thats where I usually start a song. Eventually I come upon a melody that I really enjoy and I load up logic and open a Piano Patch. Then I put down the melody, fix any timing issues, loop it and have a think about what genre I would like this song. When I create a melody I don't have a genre in mind. I'll put a DnB beat to it, then think about where the song could go. Sometimes I put a more dance beat to it and play with bass, while other times I put up my mic and play some violin along to it.
So all in all I start with the melody, only ever a short 4 bar melody then I work from there to determine the direction the song will go.

How about you? How do you start a song and what are some of your creative processes?
^.^

Troisnyx
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 09:42 AM Reply

In most cases, I come up with melodies or chord progressions. For lyrical pieces, it depends. I may either start with a melody line and add lyrics later, but I do this less often -- I oftentimes come up with a line or two or lyrics, and set them to music, and usually, it falls from there.

In rarer cases I start with rhythm (drum parts); that'd likely be for pieces with a tribal-ish feel.

Scenes -- usually visual pictures -- are my usual motivation for songs. Otherwise my motivation comes from prayers, real-life experiences and perhaps even my interactions with my friends.


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LazyBucks
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 09:43 AM Reply

At 4/18/13 09:42 AM, TroisNyxEtienne wrote: In most cases, I come up with melodies or chord progressions. For lyrical pieces, it depends. I may either start with a melody line and add lyrics later, but I do this less often -- I oftentimes come up with a line or two or lyrics, and set them to music, and usually, it falls from there.

In rarer cases I start with rhythm (drum parts); that'd likely be for pieces with a tribal-ish feel.

Scenes -- usually visual pictures -- are my usual motivation for songs. Otherwise my motivation comes from prayers, real-life experiences and perhaps even my interactions with my friends.

Thats cool, I have little experience with writing lyrics to melodies but I imagine its quite a fun process. Shaping a melody to suit lyrics, or vice versa

Mawnz
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 10:00 AM Reply

Sometimes I melody just pops up in my head, and from there I just draw the notes in whatever I have nearby. That may not always lead to a new song, but it's something I can get back to in the future otherwise.
Other times I just sit by the piano and improvise, figures out a chord progression that sounds good and take it from there the same way as above.

What I like to do, apart from the other two ways, is to take a song I like (new or old), and try to create something similar. Like having the same basic idea for the overall feel and structure of the song, but, for example, adding melodies and instruments that are closer to what I usually make.

The "I'm bored" way: Jus sit and play around with synths and sounds. May or may not be a song, but I might make something that I'll use in the future.

One last thing. It happens that I look up tutorials for specific features in the DAW I will be using, and from that I usually create a little something in order to practice with it. That can sometimes lead to a new song as well :p


wat

alternativesolution
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 10:08 AM Reply

At 4/18/13 10:00 AM, Mawnz wrote: Sometimes I melody just pops up in my head, and from there I just draw the notes in whatever I have nearby. That may not always lead to a new song, but it's something I can get back to in the future otherwise.
Other times I just sit by the piano and improvise, figures out a chord progression that sounds good and take it from there the same way as above.

What I like to do, apart from the other two ways, is to take a song I like (new or old), and try to create something similar. Like having the same basic idea for the overall feel and structure of the song, but, for example, adding melodies and instruments that are closer to what I usually make.

The "I'm bored" way: Jus sit and play around with synths and sounds. May or may not be a song, but I might make something that I'll use in the future.

One last thing. It happens that I look up tutorials for specific features in the DAW I will be using, and from that I usually create a little something in order to practice with it. That can sometimes lead to a new song as well :p

All of this. Yes, just all of this.

And whenever I'm lacking inspiration, I just turn to my instruments and come up with something random, and then it usually turns out all right from there. Otherwise I don't really start off with anything in particular.
When i was a complete newbie though, I began with percussion. Always. Then that changed to bass....and now to the point of nothing in particular.

You do come up with good thread discussions, so it's all cool :P

------->>> Post a random word

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SourJovis
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 10:24 AM Reply

First I look at what purpose the song has, or what purpose I give it. What theme, what mood it has to evoke, etc. Then something just comes to mind. If not I work very methodical until inspiration starts to kick in. First what key, then rhythm, after that what structure the song has, then chord progression, then melody, instruments, riffs, counter melodies, harmony melodies, sound fx and whatever more makes a song a song. At the end when I think it's good enough I fine tune the mix. Enhance it a little or a lot in the mastering phase.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 10:30 AM Reply

Not that my opinion should count, but...

For me it's always the chords I start with. The melodies are the hardest part, but if I can get the right chords I can at least have somewhere to go from. It's an odd sort of thing, cuz I can change the chords or add to them whenever, but there has to be some there for me to do any "writing" or for any ideas to pop up.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 12:52 PM Reply

I usually start with the pads/textures/atmosphere to my tracks, put a drum line in, put a bass line in, put a lead (or two) in and then add whatever sound effects from Omnisphere that I want from there.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 01:24 PM Reply

The first thing I usually do is start with the chords. Once I have the chords set up I start to build up the baseline, then the supporting part, then the percussion. Depending on what I had in mind, the melody can sometimes be the last thing I include because I want the background to be developed enough to stand on it's own. Every now and then though I will think up a melody and try to build the elements around it, but that's kind of rare from me.

I'm an improv type of guy, so a lot of my ideas come out of just screwing around on the keyboard. Most of the time, have no clear genre in mind. I just try to create a song that works. When I play a video game though, I can become inspired and then I can better narrow down my ideas due to trying to capture the likeness of that specific sound or mood.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 01:27 PM Reply

First I always think about I want to write, what genre, how I want it to sound, and details like that. Then I usually find various chord progressions that would suit what I thought about earlier. Then I grab an instrument to lay various melodies. Once I have a general idea of how it's going to sound, I have the core of the song, I write the rest. When recording it's usually the other way round, I start with the rest and record the melodies last.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 01:52 PM Reply

Melody first, chord progression first, or rhythm first. All are noble first steps on the road to creating a sweet tune.

I tend to write a melody first when I'm working with electronic music. Live music I will work with chords first, and if it is lyrical, I add chords and melody at the same time as I'm writing.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 07:44 PM Reply

Almost always chords and progressions. Sometimes riffs, but i find that my more riff based songs get boring pretty fast, unless they have lyrics...at least that's how I feel.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 07:50 PM Reply

I usually start with a melody or a drum beat. If found myself making melodies more first than drums, though. After the melody, everything will sort of just evolve from there.

Melody > Drums > Intro > Breakdown + Build > Make Basses > Drop > Outro > MixDown (EQing, Modulations, Fx, etc.) > Mastering

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 09:13 PM Reply

Chords. Chords chords chords.
I'm a chord nut so it's only natural that I focus on that first. when I find and work around with a nice progression, that's when i start melody making. you can't build on a melody without a decent progression, that's what i say. after that I start messing around with form and stuff...

I almost always use the same type of ensemble, with a few changes depending on the style and what I might call for.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 10:55 PM Reply

At 4/18/13 09:36 AM, LazyBucks wrote: How about you? How do you start a song and what are some of your creative processes?
^.^

I put a cat on the keyboard and hit record. Then I harmonize that melodic motif and go from there.

Although really, half the time I do start with random notes and see where that takes me.
LazyBucks
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 18th, 2013 @ 11:44 PM Reply

At 4/18/13 10:55 PM, HalcyonicFalconX wrote:
At 4/18/13 09:36 AM, LazyBucks wrote: How about you? How do you start a song and what are some of your creative processes?
^.^
I put a cat on the keyboard and hit record. Then I harmonize that melodic motif and go from there.

Now I know all your secrets! Mwhahahahah!

*Runs out to buy a cat*

DJM4C
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 12:20 AM Reply

Find a song to emulate, or become inspired from. That usually gets me going.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 12:40 AM Reply

Goosebumps.

Whatever makes my hair stand up on end ... I wait for that moment and then go from there.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 12:49 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 12:40 AM, LeoMDK wrote: Goosebumps.

Whatever makes my hair stand up on end ... I wait for that moment and then go from there.

(very often, that doesn't come from anything I've written, but a concept/image/memory instead) ... then it's a matter of throwing stuff against the wall and seeing what sticks ... could be anything: chords, melody, rhythmic motive, a lyric, instrumentation ... whatever manages to connect to the goosebumps.)


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:03 AM Reply

I don't know about you guys but when I start a song, I start with the intro.


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Troisnyx
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:06 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:03 AM, Step wrote: I don't know about you guys but when I start a song, I start with the intro.

That's one thing I don't necessarily do (oftentimes my ideas come in the middle first).


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:07 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:03 AM, Step wrote: I don't know about you guys but when I start a song, I start with the intro.

Why would you start with the intro, and not a key part of the song?

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:13 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:07 AM, Buoy wrote: Why would you start with the intro, and not a key part of the song?

Sometimes I have a melody in my head from beforehand after doodling on my piano or MIDI keyboard, but even then I simply can't make a song unless I make it from beginning to end in that order. So if I have an awesome melody in my head but I can't nail the intro leading up to it, then the melody is wasted.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:42 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:13 AM, Step wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:07 AM, Buoy wrote: Why would you start with the intro, and not a key part of the song?
Sometimes I have a melody in my head from beforehand after doodling on my piano or MIDI keyboard, but even then I simply can't make a song unless I make it from beginning to end in that order. So if I have an awesome melody in my head but I can't nail the intro leading up to it, then the melody is wasted.

So you sometimes start with a melody. Or do you just not record it if you aren't done with everything leading up to it?

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:51 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:42 AM, Buoy wrote: Or do you just not record it if you aren't done with everything leading up to it?

Nope, I keep it in my head and I'll only write it down if I've done everything leading up to it.


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la-yinn
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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 04:59 AM Reply

I'll fuck about with making basic drum loops, processing them until they either sound interesting or destroyed. If the latter, rinse and repeat.

Add a few small SFX, have some sub for gauging power and maybe a lil melody line to see how it all fits; then go ballistic adding anything and everything.

Very standard workflow in my case.


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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 05:12 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 04:51 AM, Step wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:42 AM, Buoy wrote: Or do you just not record it if you aren't done with everything leading up to it?
Nope, I keep it in my head and I'll only write it down if I've done everything leading up to it.

lol dumbass

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 08:47 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 05:12 AM, Buoy wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:51 AM, Step wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:42 AM, Buoy wrote: Or do you just not record it if you aren't done with everything leading up to it?
Nope, I keep it in my head and I'll only write it down if I've done everything leading up to it.
lol dumbass

BAD BUOY!

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 09:05 AM Reply

It kind of varies with me, but I usually start with a chord progression/bassline, then build off of there by doodling in the piano roll in FL. The process is a bit time consuming due to my lack of a midi keyboard, but I manage. When I start my project, I normally start with a piano, using a very simplistic melody over the chord progression I made, then I start adding more instruments, making the melody a bit more complex as I progress in the project, tweaking things as needed.

I usually also have a set "feel" I want the track to give, be it with the key signature or the way the melody plays over the bassline.

I normally don't try to do this, but my songs almost always end up with a trance-y feel to them, but I do try to start with a neutral genre and let my mind take over from there, ending up with trance, as it's what my mind tends to want. But lately, I am trying to venture into new genres and make tracks specifically in the new genre, House being my main attempt atm.

It's kind of hard to describe my process, but in a sense, I start with the feel, make the chord progression, then turn my focus almost solely to creating the melody and making it great. Everything else just follows suit and isn't as much of a focus in my mind.

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Response to Aspect of a song do you start with? Apr. 19th, 2013 @ 09:55 AM Reply

At 4/19/13 08:47 AM, MrSaint wrote:
At 4/19/13 05:12 AM, Buoy wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:51 AM, Step wrote:
At 4/19/13 04:42 AM, Buoy wrote: Or do you just not record it if you aren't done with everything leading up to it?
Nope, I keep it in my head and I'll only write it down if I've done everything leading up to it.
lol dumbass
BAD BUOY!

*ba-dum tsh*


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