Monday, July 26, 2010

Music Composition

Today we spent a day figuring out how to incorporate our own instrumental tracks into the show. Ethan and Jacory both have drum experience, and my strongest self identified art form is both classical and jazz flute. There isn’t all that much to do with two drums and a flute that feature both, and don’t divide into melody and back up track. We realized then that we didn’t need to make a song, we needed a beat, a rhythm. We started by picking a topic we wanted to portray. Individuality is something that comes up all the time in our discussions, and it plays a big part in out final performance, so we decided to start by trying to represent this. To demonstrate this musically we thought it would be best to play strong beats, separated from one another; we had the flute play off beat while the drums stuck to the beat. This gave a strong sense of solitude. This wasn’t enough though, to even create a simple beat, something else had to happen. Individuals often collide, occasionally creating conflict. To show this, on the fourth beat of every measure, the drums would leave their steady beat and roll. The flute trilled, ending the trill on the higher note. The flute played the whole phrase high, creating tension, but leaving a pattern rising added to the musical tension, and conflict. The phrase as a whole felt tense, it felt like it was escalating. To where? Even we didn’t know, we would leave that to whatever dance or story was put over it.

The second beat we did we built off the first one. We first brought it down two octaves in the flute part, to relieve some of the tension. Instead of the offbeat pulse we added syncopation, and then we just went with our gut sense. We changed the note patterns, and the drum beat, but if you know what you’re looking for it’s still apparent the beats are related.

Both of the loops were just one measure repeated; one would think that they could be easily overlooked, but the sound that we created definitely plays subtle role in the emotion of the piece done over it.

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