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Re: Trouble Thinking of Loops Beyond the Initial Loop
"I keep coming up with pretty good/interesting loops (guitar and drum
backing) with my RC-50. But, I can't seem to develop a corresponding
to the initial loop structure (following a somewhat standard song
structure).Any ideas to help the creative juices flowing from this
group of musicians?"
Human beings process information through their senses which,essentially,
just process differences
or changes in the environment. Our senses pick up contrast in light,
color, sound, pressure, smell, etc.
We are pattern oriented so making simple contrasting changes in the form
a pattern can lead to
really effective musical sections of a tune.
Much can be accomplished in composition and arrangement by looking at
As an example:
>From West African music we get the notion of CALL and RESPONCE
try this technique with a song by:
Play a measure A (CALL)
Play a second measure that contrasts it either rhythymically, harmonically
or timbrally B (RESPONSE)
repeat A (CALL)
Now play a variation of B, again, making the variation distinct either
rhythmically, harmonically or timbrally C (2nd RESPONSE)
Now play with the structure of these three measures
ABAC ABCB etc. or string them together and very
forms in groups of four to make a meta-form
AAAB = a
AAAC = b
AABC = c
now play abac...............abcb.........................you get the
sometimes you can merely rearrange the timbre or instrumentation of a
of music to get interesting simple results:
Have the rhythm of the bass guitar and the rhythm of the drums switch
positions and take on each other's roles from
section to section.
Many, many electronic dance tunes ONLY switch timbres during their
sections; completely eschewing harmonic
changes or key changes.
Harmonically, try modulating up or down with a groove you are using to
create a new section
or, Modally, base the next section by using one of the notes that
the tonic or 5th from the first section as
the new 'tonic' of the next section but confine yourself to using only the
notes in the key of the first section.
Keep playing this game until you come up with results you like.
It's amazing how little you can vary from one section of a composition to
another as long as you self conciously
create strong contrasts in any category of rhythm, harmony, timbre,
dynamics or even density of note choices.
Lastly, if you search these words BRIAN ENO OBLIQUE STRATEGIES at
They'll lead you to a website that gives you the ability to print out a
series of cards that you can
print out called OBLIQUE STRATEGY CARDS. Invented by the amazing
multi-media artist, producer, BRIAN ENO,
their whole purpose is to stimulate creativity when you are on the horns
a dilemma or
just not feeling like you are creating interesting choices. You shuffle
the deck, pick a card and force yourself
to do whatever the card does. This is a brilliant strategy for
stimulating new creativity when you are stuck.
Good luck and document what works for you.