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Topic: 6 minutes of fluff

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  1. #1

    6 minutes of fluff

    I am very frustrated with this piece. I think there's something wrong with it, but I'm not sure what, so anything anyone has to offer would really help. I was hoping to have this done closer to the 4th of July, but the process of switching day jobs ate up a lot my time.

    This primarily uses GPO with some ringers from Silver (2nd Flute, 1st Oboe, 2nd Clar, 2nd Bassoon, 3rd Horn, 1st Tpt, 1st Tbn and some perc).

    This started off as a two-fold test, the first being additional practice blending the two libraries. Overall they seemed to play nicely with each other. The other reason was to get the theme out of my head. It's been bugging me for a little over a year, and it just kept cropping up every so often, so I had to get rid of it.

    It's not an incredibly sophisticated concept, so this ended up being more about the technical aspects, like orchestration, and programming, although the mix itself is not as good.

    My working title is Fanfare, but it isn't very fanfare-like; suggestions, comments, criticisms, are welcome. Feel free to slash it to pieces.

    http://www.houseofblackbirds.com/mp3s/VF_080505.mp3

  2. #2

    Thumbs up Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    Very nice piece.
    In term of orchestration you did not a bad job as you say.
    It is a good piece taking all the parts.
    I find particular good when the whole orchestra presents the theme, near the end.
    It seems to hear a real movie soundtrack.
    I like it!!

    Keep up the great works (I've seen your webpage)!

    Best of luck,
    Roberto

  3. #3

    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    everything is relative....

    I wish I could be frustrated with a theme like this! WOW Cool!
    Definately movie material!
    dpDan

  4. #4

    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    This was great!

    I can hear the Jerry Goldsmith influence…



    It sounds completed to me!…..What more could be said or done.?



    Nice piece!

  5. #5

    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    Thank you everyone for listening!

    jsp2, after a few days away from this piece, I think that you are right, there is nothing more to say with this. The theme and presentation simply is what it is. If anything it should be trimmed down! I guess Goldsmith is really who we're talking about in terms of influence. My initial influence for the militant stylings was... cough!Horner (actually for the whole of the piece - I felt the theme was kind of Hornertastic, so why not just go all the way?), whose influence was Goldsmith. I haven't listen to as much Jerry as I should have.

    Roberto - I purposefully wrote it so the expansive theme at the end is the big payoff (the piccolo trumpet is buried a bit in the mix, but boy is it beautiful). The rest is just an intro comprised of pieces of the theme. I have a bad habit of writing introductions that begin innocently enough, and before I know it, it's a hundred measures long! Although there are a few too many suspended cymbal rolls. But when you have two tam-tams and two suspended cymbals, why not use them all? I kind of doubt this is the sort of piece that will be performed. I should have had a choir of bass flutes just because!

    Dan - I can't help but think cinematically. As much as I try to concentrate on absolute themes and structure. Now, if only I can get a movie that would have visuals to command a theme like this!!! Sadly no sprawling vistas, no desolate war-torn fields, no glory and rage carved into the lines of the actors faces. The fanciest it tends to get is a hallway in the director's apartment.

    Whoa! Is that wrong note in the clarinet at 4:19? Who wrote this! They shall pay!!!

    Okay. Time to cut back on the caffeine and get back to work. Thanks again!

  6. #6

    Thumbs up Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    (coming from a not-so-great composer/arranger)
    The intro is a bit on the long side.
    You seem to have the percussion being the basis at the beginning with different solo instruments popping up with the main theme here and there. Not a bad idea. A trick I like to use in a peice that has a lot of percussion if the percussion gets boring listening to (Your percussion is NOT like that at all I really enjoyed it, just thought I'd share a tip) I use melodic instruments in a percussive manner. Like in the strings, the basses being the bass drum, maybe violas agg stacatticimo as the snare, and high shimmering violin trills for cymbals. Just a thought.

    The tutti is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!! Nice lead-up to it, too...just the intro was a bit on the long side. There are simply too many notes. Just cut a few and it'll be perfect.

    But seriously, overall I think the piece was very nice!! Now only if you could make a movie to go with it...

    -Chris

  7. #7
    Senior Member valhalx's Avatar
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    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    First off, this is exceptionally good composing. It does have have a movie flair. But as CP so succinctly put it, too many notes. It starts off great with percussion and winds. Then at 3:13 we start to go somewhere. Condense the first 3 minutes to about 1 and this will be a definate winner. (Don't throw away what you cut, it could come in handy later) Just my take on this wonderful effort.
    Bill
    Never look at the trombones. It only encourages them. Richard Strauss

    My Website
    Beethoven's Eroica
    Antonio Salieri
    The History of Studebaker

  8. #8

    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    Thanks, cp and valhalx! I completely agree. Thanks for taking the time to listen. I will revisit this in a while... I have so many things brewing in my skull! Ever have those times when you feel too inspired, like, I need to quit my job and just write all day! I wish I had an easy escape from the necessity of work. But alas, rent! Alack! Bills! Alas!

    Whenever "they" aren't looking, I pull out the staff paper and make notes.

  9. #9
    Senior Member valhalx's Avatar
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    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    Quote Originally Posted by jmc
    I need to quit my job and just write all day! I wish I had an easy escape from the necessity of work.
    How very true! My whole work day is spent thinking about what I'm working on in GPO.
    Never look at the trombones. It only encourages them. Richard Strauss

    My Website
    Beethoven's Eroica
    Antonio Salieri
    The History of Studebaker

  10. #10

    Re: 6 minutes of fluff

    Hi jmc, I am really impressed with this piece of yours...

    My first thought was "very Copland-esque" in parts (a huge compliment in my book), but it actually goes much farther than that... Your parallel fifth usage especially is really good and clean sounding (around 2:43, 2:44, for example).

    For my ears, only a few little misteps that took me out of the style you were so skillfully establishing. At 1:19, the little cadential turn in the flute (against the underlying harmony at that moment) felt a bit awkward. Also, a couple of cross-relations (perhaps unintended?) at 4:01 (melody raised, against flatted note in bass - sounds "correct" at 4:09), and 4:20.

    THanks also for the raised 11ths at 3:15 -- they always sound very "film-scorish" to me; really effective.

    Great modulations, also, at 3:06, and especially, the big one into the final theme at 4:28 - wow.

    Great cue.

    Steve Main
    Steve Main
    stmain@aol.com
    www.stephenmain.com

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