This weeks task was to create a composition but using an instrument that we are not familiar with. I had the option to use a recorder or a banjulele. I tried to compose with both instruments and roughly got somethings down for each one. But I found it hard to make a structure of a melody that sounded good with the instruments. but I looked at some things that I could do, like I listened to the ‘Legend of Zelda’ soundtrack and tried to base my ideas into a game soundtrack type melody.
Our task for the week was to influence our composition on oblique strategies. We were given three to choose from, and the three were:
– Where is the edge?
– Get dirty
– Discipline self-indulgence
I chose Get Dirty because I feel like the word dirty can refer to grungy, dirty sounding things. However, because I didn’t feel that making a dirty sound like that would show off my abilities, I decided to do a funk track to refer to Get Dirty.
This is because it reminded me of ‘You Sexy Thing’ by Hot Chocolate which led me to want to write a funk track. I got inspiration from the layout of ‘POW’ by Larry Graham roughly, but for the chorus I used a chord structure I made previously which I liked.
To improve on the song I need to be able to add more things to the structure and the song such as other instrumental parts. At the end of the song, I made it go into a strummed out bass chord with tapping involved in the pattern to create an outro, although I feel it could be used more throughout the song as well.
The slap technique involves slapping using the octave G and A. Then it goes to the lower A and then plays a pattern of C, D G or A each time with just thumb slaps. However, every 4th time around that whole pattern I then play a hammer-on F/F octave slap. For the chorus I use octave slaps influenced by Flea, the bassist from Red Hot Chili Peppers. I use A, C, G, F#, E, C, G, G but for the first G and F# I hammer-on slap. The composition then goes back to the verse section and the chorus again. A whole new part of the song comes in after that which involves the ‘peaceful chords’. I call them the ‘peaceful chords’ because the song goes from being funky and slappy to being smoother and calmer. I start with a EMaj bar chord and then move to the Emin chord. But I then do some tapping over a EMaj chord and then tap over G, then A chords to end the song.
youtube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BznI6_nXxKw
Our task for the week is was to pick a section of the number pi selecting a part from this link: http://www-history.mcs.st-and.ac.uk/HistTopics/1000_places.html
To create a song, we had to incorporate the section of numbers we chose. The numbers in my selection were: 1314162 and I decided to incorporate the numbers by using them as intervals. To start I chose the root note of A and changed notes at each intervals. I decided to create a walking bass line for the piece and the chords ran through A, C#, A, D, A, F#, B. I chose to do the walking bass line in 3/4 instead of 4/4 just because I haven’t done a 3/4 walking bass line before so I wanted to try something new. But now I’ve created it sounds too major when I want it to sound more minor, and its something I want to build on to create a full song with because I like the chords I used. But I got inspiration of the walking bass line from the walking bass line I did for ‘Autumn Leaves’.
Our task for the half term was to try and complete one of our song ideas using one of the tasks we’ve done. I started the task based on my Seven Deadly Sins task where I based my song on the aftermath of wrath. I already had a small finger tapping part from the task but I added to the piece by coming up with an intro part using the same ideas as the verse I made for the task. The pace of the intro is slow and calm. The verse is the same as before but the verse goes into a chorus part.
The chorus includes one chord progression which was influenced by The Smashing Pumpkins’ style of playing in their choruses. I also included a kind of pre-verse to get out of the chorus with which I was influenced by Diamond Head. This is because I got the idea from one of their songs where a certain riff is played in 4/4, before going into a random, odd time signature played with the same riff, to get into the next section in the song. The pre-verse I made is in 5/4 which changes back to the 4/4 verse. But I plan for the song to get fully recorded where there’s even a solo included in the song. The structure of the song is: Intro, Verse, Chorus, Pre-verse, Verse x2, Chorus, Pre-Chorus, Verse x2/End. But I feel that it still needs more work done to the track, because I want to add more instruments such as guitar, drums and perhaps rhythm guitar, although this may be unnecessary as I have a secondary bass part. I may also opt to add vocals to the piece but I am still undecided.
Intro includes: tapping E then G for the root notes then playing G(pull-off), D(pull-off), F# slide to E.
Then tapping D then A for the root notes second time round, while playing G(pull-off), D(pull-off), F# slide to G (second time round plays F# slide to E).
The whole intro is played twice through before playing the verse.
Verse includes: the same tapping root notes to start E and G with E, D then hammering on and pulling off higher up the neck. The root notes then chance to D and D octave while the high tapping plays the same D octave but on a different string, this gives more of a drone effect. The next root notes are A and E while the high tapping plays A slide to G on the A string. After that two chords are played on the bass that last for a minim each. The first chord consists of a G, C, E while the second consists of a G and a D. I think it gives the song a nice texture of playing. The verse is played 1x the first time and then after that the verses play 2x.
Bridge includes: The bridge adds onto the chords at the end section of the verse without the G, D chord. Instead it moves to A, D, F# which leads onto B, E, G. the sequence goes twice through from B, E, G. This gives the song more of a breakdown between the chorus and the verse.
Chorus includes: The chorus is finger picked instead of tapping because i wanted it to be more grungy through the chorus after having calm tapping. The chords in the chorus rotate through two sequences. The chords in the chorus include, E, B, C, A, G, E, B, D, C# and is played over 4 bars twice through.
Pre-verse includes: The pre-verse included a 5/4 pattern to break up the finger picking and the tapping. Each note is a quaver long except the last note which is a crochet beat. The notes consist of E, B, D, C#, A, B, C, F and is played 4 times before moving into the verse again.
But I’ve also added a second bass part to the piece. I decided to put another bass piece in for more texture other than just mainly tapping. This part involves more root note based bass lines, but on the chorus and pre-verse it plays notes high up the neck to make it noticeably different to the chorus and the pre-verse. This bass doesn’t play during the intro for effect. This is because a bass on its own at the start will set the atmosphere of the song. The bass line starts just playing at the end chords of the verse section (G, C, E and G, D) but then comes in fully after being played twice round.
Second Bass verse includes: Once the bass fully comes in after being played twice round the verse, it starts on the E and walks up the neck with F# moving to G. It then moves onto the D string and plays a B and a C but playing the D inbetween these notes. Then for when the main bass plays the chords, the second bass plays G and the perfect 4th (C) then moves down to D and the perfect 4th (G).
Second bass bridge: When the main bass plays the chords in the bridge, the 2nd bass plays just single root notes of F#, E and D. But after the bridge is played the first time, it changes to playing the perfect 5th of each note and also adds a slide up and down from the higher octave up a tone as well as the root notes (this part is tapped out). I think this gives it more feel instead of just chords because it adds more onto the bridge to make it significant to the song.
Second bass chorus includes: The chorus for the second bass is played high up the neck. It starts with fingerpicking the 19th fret (E) and the perfect 5th (B) as stab notes. Next, there’s a rest and then when the main bass plays the C, the second bass plays C and perfect 5 and then moves onto the B and the perfect 5h. But for when the main bass plays D and C# the second bass plays D and C# high up playing the perfect 5th as well.
Second bass pre-verse includes: this part is also played high up playing just three droned notes. These notes are E (19th fret), B (21st fret D string) and F (22nd fret G string). Because it is in 5/4 the notes only play individually on the 1st, 3rd and 4th beat.
The second bass plays the same structure as the main bass just different things are playing over them for each bass.
First bass youtube link:
Second bass youtube link: