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LEARN TO COMPOSE MUSIC

Information for learning to write songs and improving writing and improvising abilities.

 

Suggested Articles

Recommended Reading

 

 

Sources of Ideas for Compositions NEW!

Fresh ways to find musical ideas.

 

Learning to Compose NEW!

A short guide to learning how to write pieces of music.

 

Contrapuntal Variation as a Composition Tool

How to use basic techniques from fugues and canons to improve any compositions.

 

Alfred Blatter’s Instrumentation/Orchestration is a good introduction and reference tool covering in detail all the main instruments.  Included are descriptions of the instruments, their ranges, how to write for each, and how to approach various ensembles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

All Composition Articles

 

 

 

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Composition Basics

 

Learning to Compose NEW!

A short guide to learning how to write pieces of music.

 

Songwriting Structure NEW!

Ways to use elements such as verse, chorus, hook, and bridge to shape a piece of music.

 

Helpful Texts

Information on instrumentation, composition, and other works.

 

Composers’ Tools

 

Music as Tradition, “Transcendence,” or Both NEW!

How does a piece of music establish meaning?  In many cases, the composer builds on familiarity, and then either transcends that familiarity, penetrates it further, or both.

 

Composing at or away from an Instrument NEW!

Many great composers have preferred composing at the piano, while others prefer composing solely from mind to paper, and some use a combination of both.  Each method has benefits.

 

Sources of Ideas for Compositions NEW!

Whether you are experiencing writer’s block, or you just want to find fresh sources of inspiration, this article presents a variety of ways to find musical ideas.

 

Contrapuntal Variation as a Composition Tool

How to use basic techniques from fugues and canons to improve any compositions.

 

Improvisation Techniques

Thoughts on ways to learn to improvise or increase skill

 

Composition Techniques

Tools for how to write a song.

 

“The Same But Different”

This article discusses a useful approach to composing music.

 

Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm

Ideas for maintaining coherence in a composition.

 

The Business of Composing

 

Working with a Music Attorney NEW!

The lawyer’s role in management, promotion, record and publishing deals, and how to select a good attorney.

 

Obtaining Insurance Coverage as a Composer or Musician NEW!

Why good insurance is very important for musicians during a medical or other emergency, and how to find musician’s insurance.

 

Famous Composers

A list of some of the well-known classical composers throughout history.

 

 

Related Articles in History, Theory, and Piano

 

It helps in composition to have a strong understanding of music throughout history, different styles, theory underpinnings, and piano basics.  The articles below from other sections may spark ideas for compositions or provide other insights.

 

Introduction to Classical Music

Information on the evolution of classical music, including some of the great works from each period.

 

Sea Shanties

An introduction to the folk or work music sung on ships at sea.

 

Part Writing

The main rules for part writing, also called voice leading.

 

How to Practice Arpeggios

Ideas for learning and practicing arpeggios, which help in learning harmony, developing technique, and improvisation.

 

Dances and Classical Music

A review of the major dances that developed and became popular in each period of music history.

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