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Author Topic: New to the forum. My first ever composition!  (Read 8968 times)
Bagelz
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« on: January 22, 2010, 06:06:39 PM »

Hi everyone, i just stumbled across this site a few weeks ago and it's awesome. It's the only forum i've found on the internet that focuses on game music!
I have been thinking for the last few months that I'd be really interested in a career in video games. However, I don't really like programming. I tried my hand at 3d modelling too just recently, but i found it to be a really hard and somewhat frustrating experience, and even though i know it's tough starting out with that, i am not still quite convinced that I have the artistic talent to excel at it.
But it really seems to me like the coolest job in video games is the composers. I realize most studios don't really hire full time composers and most composers are freelance, but still i am really interested in it. I am a huge fan of lots of video game soundtracks. I have a strong background in classical music, i studied the cello for a long time, so I thought hey why not try my hand at composing? I've only ever composed rock music before, so this is my first try at classical music it was a lot of fun
Here is my song:
http://soundclick.com/share?songid=8656825

i'm wondering if i can get some feedback on it. in terms of both the composition, orchestration, but also the mixing and production of it?
I used reason 4 entirely for this track, i realize that if i really want to get serious about classical composition I may have to buy some better samples or programs...
but as far as the production goes any feedback would be great. I have no idea what i'm doing, the only thing i did was pan the instruments to the sides they would be in an orchestra, and I have no other effects, no reverb or anything, should i be using any effects on this?
i'm looking for any kind of constructive criticism or feedback, i don't care if it's harsh i can take it Smiley

The song was definately influenced a bit by the warcraft 2 soundtrack and everquest 2 soundtrack, as well as random as it may sound, the composer vivaldi, in terms of the call and response feel it has. I was basically trying to make an epic sounding song that would fit well in some kind of fantasy game, an rpg or an mmorpg perhaps.

well, thanks everyone, i hope to contribute to this forum regularly and look forwards to getting to know you.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2010, 06:09:14 PM by Bagelz » Logged
Melda
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« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2010, 11:31:34 PM »

Hello,

This is the only game music forum I know of, but unfortunately it's a bit slow at the moment. That's largely because Jason and I are both busy with work and can't commit as much time to maintaining discussions here.

But I know there are people here who are still interested in discussing what you are asking.

I just wanted to let you know there are people around on the forums here, but that things are a bit slow at the moment so don't be discouraged if it takes a while to get some replies. Smiley
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sacrenouille
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« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2010, 07:44:59 AM »

Composer for video games might be a different job position according to where you live. Where are you from ?

btw, nice composition, allthough serious video game companies lust for state-of-the-art music experience, so this sounds too much "midi like" for that, so you will have to work on increasing the realism of your tracks (or hire a real orchestra Smiley). But you start with a great advantage since you can compose and don't have to learn music from scratch.
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Tom Servo
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« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2010, 07:33:12 PM »

Hi Bagelz,

I just listened to your stuff, and I have to agree with Sacrenouille. The instrument samples you are using are going to prevent your music from getting the best possible reception by someone listening to it. I like the compositional ideas, and you have some really nice counterpoint lines and there's a lot to be proud of from a composition standpoint, but from an arranging and "production" standpoint you'll want to try to focus on getting a more realistic sound. It's not easy, and it's an ongoing process to get better and better at it, but it's worth it if you are serious about using MIDI for orchestral mockups or recordings. Here's a good analogy as to why this important... cuz I used to think "Won't people be able to tell that I'm writing good music even if the instruments don't sound that great?" ... but imagine this... if you were a screenwriter and wrote a brilliant screenplay for a film ... then you start making the movie and hire actors to deliver these brilliant lines you've written ... but the problem is your actors either mumble all the time or have an extreme accent that it is very difficult to understand the script you wrote. People would watch the movie and think, "Well, I heard a word here and there - but it was hard to understand - I think there were some good parts, but I'm not sure..." 

It's the same with music... you craft these melodies and these harmonies and you want it to sound amazing... but the instruments are the ones telling the story... so make sure you are using the best storytellers possible. Yes it will cost more (just like hiring a great actor costs more), but it's worth it.

I have lamented about this many times, but unfortunately composers no longer just sit at a piano with pencil and paper and write music... we are required to use computers to bring our music to life more often than not... so it's a skill we need to develop. We need to be composers, arrangers, engineers, mixers, producers, etc.

I don't say all this to discourage you, but rather to let you know the reality of composing orchestral music using MIDI and computers. You should feel encouraged by the fact that you can compose and you have good musical ideas. Taking some time to polish your production skills will really make your music shine and attract a lot of interest. And also be encouraged that everyone starts in a similar boat... no one is born with midi production skills. We are all trying to master it.

Best of luck!
-jeff
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After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." -Aldous Huxley
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Bagelz
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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2010, 12:34:42 PM »

thanks for the feedback guys! i know it's been awhile since this thread but i appreciate the comments and i completely agree with what you guys said, and the actors analogy is great. i totally agree that the production side of it is just as important, as the actual composing side. i sort of lost interest in composing but i want to start doing it again, so i may be around here more often  Smiley
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 12:51:42 PM by Bagelz » Logged
dannthr
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« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2010, 11:04:44 AM »

MIDI production is a skill unto itself--in fact, I've been hired just for that purpose alone.

Making your way into composition and production as a job will be extremely daunting.  There will be a period of time that will be like a trial, not like a court trial, but something more like a Herculean Trial.  Most people will not survive this trial because they will be disheartened by the extreme challenge, but the industry likes it that way.  They want to know you're serious about this business before they even bat an eye in your direction.

So, it's important to UNDERSTAND that this isn't going to be easy and you not only have to want to do this bad enough to take it, but you have to demand it.

Jeff's analogy is very kind.  As musicians, we can understand what's happening in your piece and it is a great piece, but as mentioned earlier, most composers are freelance.  What that means is that they are hired to provide the full product.

Product is the key word here as it is what a producer creates.  That means that PRODUCTion is HIGHLY important in creating a distinction between yourself and your competition (and believe me, there are MANY competitors all clamouring for the same work).

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