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Common Composition Techniques

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Keeping it simple

Simple is not the same as being familiar with a particular style. Many composers assume that because they are familiar with another composer's style that the music is straightforward. The reverse is usually the case.

Also see here (composing standards)...

Specific techniques

Thinking Big


If you have the chance, look at the film The Green Mile, but note that this is a somewhat disturbing film and contains several scenes that some may find upsetting. While you're watching it, consider, as well as the content of the film, it's structure - how the story is made, and how it works.

Also listen to some music and try to understand the techniques used. Compare classical types with popular or jazz techiques. You don't have to come to any conclusions yet (or ever), just think about it.

Main Text

Main text (not usually available until after the lecture).