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I am starting to feel a bit frustrated
Old 24th July 2019
Here for the gear
Amazing stuff guys! This is what makes a forum worth it.
Old 25th July 2019
Lives for gear
jaxman12's Avatar
They were right in saying that your work is not a good fit for RPG Video Games. Your work is fine, just not for an RPG.
Old 25th July 2019
Originally Posted by danderian View Post
That makes me wonder if being a perfectionist in terms of musical theory (I don't reject it, in fact, I'm involved in a course right now) has to be the rule of thumb.
Well that depends on how much work you want to have and how much money you want to make. Sure I can find albums that are ambient noise in the catalogs I run too. But is there enough of them that even one composer could make a living making all of them year after year? No... And most of the time the people making them for me are extremely skilled and schooled composers.

The key is versatility. If you want to get into this business full time you have to stop thinking about what these different companies can do for you, and start thinking about what you can do for them.

As a freelance composer you never want to say no. Doing a Western film and it pays $50,000? Sure I can do it! Doing an animated kids comedy TV show and it pays $5000 an episode? Sure I can do it! Looking for Dystopian Hybrid Orchestral trailer music? Sure I can do it! Need a romantic singer songwriter ballad with lyrics? sure I can do it!

The more things you have to say "no, I don't do that" or "no, I can't do that" the more money you are turning down. As a composer, and this is true for any sort of contracting work, you are in some respects kind of like a carpenter. Imagine if a carpenter would/could only work on crazy, eccentric, abstract architectural designed structures? How often would that carpenter be working???

If you want to get into writing for films and TV shows, whether it's writing songs or writing orchestral and synth underscores, or writing for music libraries... you have to be versatile. Yes, you should definitely have your forte that you do best. And yes you absolutely should say NO to things you aren't 100% confident that you can do. But if you can only do one thing, you'll only get hired when that one specific thing is needed... which is usually not that often.

I've listened to many soundtracks which are full of noise (not being despective) and do not follow the rules as you mention but they fit well, like someone mentioned here, in independent movies and more artistic stuff.
Very true... but out of the 600 or so "major" films released by Hollywood every year... how many of them have that abstract noise type underscore? Look at or and look at all the films that are coming out in the next 3 or 4 years. It's only a very small percentage that have those abstract atonal type soundtracks.

I'm not sure I can discern a structure on some of those. I'm not looking to be the next John Williams.
That's totally ok. John Williams I would consider advanced. Start with songs and music you've liked to listen to since you were a kid. Maybe AC/DC. Maybe NIN. Maybe Nirvana. Who knows, maybe even NSYNC or Taylor Swift! All of them are relevant because it's about figuring out what THEY did to get something that you liked. As you start to figure it out, and you are looking up the chord progressions and melodies online and trying to program it and trying to find the octave they used for this instrument or that instrument, etc you are training your ears and you are figuring out what about that song you like and maybe things about that song you don't like. Over time those things you like, become "technique" and you can repeat them over and over on your own in your own original compositions...and as you do more and more of this type of thing, it will get easier and you'll get better and quicker at it... and then at some point in a couple years, listening to a John Williams soundtrack and sitting down to start figuring it out won't seem that hard or impossible because you've worked your way up to it.

Having said that, it's part of my current goal to acquire solid theory.
Great! Music is a never ending journey. That is one of the great things about it. You never stop learning. There is always something new, or a new combination influences, that then takes you on a new musical path and journey.

Once you've covered all the music you like... then you can start looking into other types of popular music. A couple years ago I had to do a bunch of "Region Mexican" albums. I had to learn all about Banda, Norteña, Mariachi, Duranguense, Corridos, Bachatas, Rancheros, Sierreños, Grupero, Cumbia, Mariachi Bolero, Costeño, TexMex, etc... I came to have a great respect for those styles and learned a lot. Going into it I didn't like any of that music all that much... but after having to study it and learn who the big names are and what things seem to make people gravitate towards those artists vs no-name artists in the same genres, I started to learn to appreciate it and like it.

And the skills I had to use to learn about all those regional mexican styles are the same skills I used to use to learn how to re-recreate Stevie Wonder songs (like for example, most people don't realize "Superstitious" is actually 3 different clavinet parts playing together, not one part) and The Headhunters and Def Leppard and Miles Davis and Tania Maria and Sting and Peter Gabriel and on and on...

Once you learn how to learn, you can learn anything. Going to school and having a structured curriculum can sometimes (but not always) help speed up the process and give you a push in the right direction. But you don't need it. Most of the greatest musicians we study today, from Robert Johnson to Duke Ellington to Kurt Cobain, etc never had formal training.

so you can use classes or tutorials or books as a way to help you keep moving forward and to help you get past plateaus you might hit. But you don't absolutely need to be enrolled in a music school to learn music. But nevertheless, you still need to learn it one way or another. And then you need to figure out how to apply it.
Old 25th July 2019
Gear Maniac
Dale Turner's Avatar

Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
Analyzing and recreating all the songs you love is creating your own school.
Soooo very well-said!!!!!
Old 3rd August 2019
Here for the gear
Trying to keep this thread alive for others and as well, to grab some good vibes and thoughts.

What do think about my new track "Adoramus" Do you have an idea if it's a good fit for anything?

It's a heavy metal track, with some synths and kind of a gothic mood.

Old 4th August 2019
Lives for gear
jazz4's Avatar

Some things that I’d point out that I do as some potential advice: No matter what kind of music you’re making, you should really approach it as a visual medium instead of a 100% auditory one.

Your music is going to picture, it needs to feel like it has character or the feeling of a story in it. Imagination in my opinion is key to making music for Media - especially if the media doesn’t exist yet and you’re trying to get it licensed.

I don’t think people talk about that enough. They talk about writing chops and theory which is obviously very beneficial but the music has to have a strong identity. It has to feel like it’s emotionally connected to a scene. Whether it’s noise electronica or a piece for orchestra.
Old 4th August 2019
Gear Addict

It's something I struggled with for many years. I was used to just make cool instrumental tracks which can work well in the pop/rock field. There's a distinction I think between being someone who writes from story telling and audio to visuals vs someone who writes tracks.

I became a much better writer when I started studying certain composers and learned how to bring a piece of music for visuals to life.
Old 4th August 2019
Lives for gear
jazz4's Avatar

Originally Posted by Mrx View Post

I became a much better writer when I started studying certain composers and learned how to bring a piece of music for visuals to life.
Absolutely! I always recommend just digesting so much film, game, trailer, ad music and really think about what makes it compelling.

@ danderian

Its not only beneficial to development but you get asked so many times to sound like a certain composer or score. If you’re writing production music, clients will be searching “1950s Comedy” “Stranger Things synth” “mission impossible.”

It helps to know what a client means when they’re asking this and be able to deliver most of them.

If you can capture essences in your music, create visual tracks and impart that quickly, you won’t go too wrong in my opinion. If you have a unique voice, then cool! Keep developing it! Never ending learning as Etch said.
Old 4th August 2019
Here for the gear
Originally Posted by jaxman12 View Post
They were right in saying that your work is not a good fit for RPG Video Games. Your work is fine, just not for an RPG.
Actually, you probably started playing my songs after I removed that short demo from SoundCloud. It is still available at The devs asked for some calm music while the character was traversing a large forest land, they said it was ok but couldn't attach it to the character overall; it was the typical RPG, basic graphics (2D), camera is looking from above. That song is being used now in some visual material in Germany and the India, so I can't complain about it.
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