Posts Tagged ‘songs’

A Song Written

September 6, 2018

A Song Written

by Arto Heino (c) 2018

In my current working volume, I have not quite completed my music chapter, besides any personal and family obligations, this delay is the usual problem of simplifying many complex concepts. I will also publish a Song book prior to the next volume, included here is one of those songs.

Song Writing

Is there a a simple methodology to Song Writing?

Yes, by exercising your imagination and highlighting your life experiences by finding your emotional connections to those memories. Now that is as clear as mud, says the guy with a blank sheet of paper and a guitar, eager to write the next classic.

There is three ways to approach this art-form:

1 – Emotional memory

2 – Technical structures

3 – Poetic expression

Emotional Memory

That rush of feeling you get sometimes when you reflect on a turn of events. For example, a blues song writer relies on this for his source material, the subject is usually a fairly well worn experience, such as money problems, relationship difficulties or work related situations.

This capture of a emotional reflection can be painful, happy, sad, euphoric, funny, pleasurable, romantic or even angry. There are no limits to what constitutes a singular or group emotional experience, this all depends on the number of life experiences of the writer.

Technical Structures

These are segments of chordal and rhythmic cadences that exemplify an emotional response within the musician and the listener. They are codified in a multitude of elaborate harmonic structures, which have been used and notated in many genres over the centuries. Modern Jazz uses a many of these passages as either “riffs” or “vamps”, to be used as improvisational tools to create musical coherence.

The tone and instrumentation are also important technical factors when you are constructing the general idiom, for example, folk songs, they are not generally any more than a single voice and one instrument played to compliment the vocal line .

Poetic Expression

This is when the written world of poetry define the content of the musical expression. These are usually exemplified by the unusual word rhymes that a lot of poetry contains. The word combinations can direct the melodic and harmonic outcome in many unusual ways. Not all poems can turn into simple songs, but with enough creativity and adjustment literally every poem is a song waiting to be defined in musical terms.

My Song As An Example

All three approaches are used, regardless of the genre to write any song, saying that, motivation and your inner need are a precursor to any inspiration in song writing.

Written and illustrated by Arto Juhani Heino (c) 2018

Here is one of my songs that I wrote, it uses all three approaches clearly and expresses an emotional release of unrequited love, something that many artists of the romantic genre suffer with an abundance of. As the creator, I own all the copyright and authorship, there are no issues with publishing it on my blog, saying that, I have also broken down many well known hit songs but due to the infringement issues, I will not publish them here, they will forever be my own personal research.

I wrote the chorus as an isolated musical passage that I felt reflected a deep yearning to a loved one, be it any gender or even religious if I replaced “darling” with “Lord”, thus changing the meaning of the song.

The chords were a simple choice, starting at the 5th from the key of C, which is G, yet I chose G6, the reasoning is that it contained an E as a harmony element relating to the E in the next chord, from a 6th tension to a 7th tension. The Fmaj7 has an A as the 3rd which is the melodic note for “you”, which in turn actually goes up in the melody as the Fmaj7 chord go down in the scale, using contrary motion as a way of expressively creating tension. In the end of this first motif, “you” moves down from A back down to G in the melody, which in turn resolves the contrary motion and ends the first passage by the chordal resolution to the tonic C major chord.

The second motif in the chorus is the counter melody, responds to the first part by expressing who the song is directed to. Rather than repeat the last two notes as in the first motif, the melody moves down from the F to the E, leaving an interesting tonic to a 3rd resolution, resulting in a satisfying end to complete the first melodic fragment. The melody is repeated but instead of “love”, I replaced it with “darling”, this term accentuates the endearment and heartfelt stirring of calling to a romantic figure.

The bridge was written much earlier and wasn’t related to the original idea, it was about being shy and not revealing your identity. I used it as it complimented the Chorus by giving a face to the caller, abet a reluctant one. There is a tension that is left unresolved by being anonymous, giving the caller a shy or reserved disposition, someone who could be too fragile to face the reality of their unresolved feelings. The resolution is a minor 5th, (Dm) to a major tonic, being G, which is repeated before resolving to C major in the Verse. These chords carry the questions forward into the Verse.

The first line of Verse one was a revelation of intent of why you were calling, explaining that these feelings are normal and part and parcel of being in love. The two minor chords in the first part soften the emotive and lighten the portrayal. The boldness of the second part of the first passage here is exemplified by the imperative of “must”, implying it is a destiny to be filled, beyond the boundaries of personal desire.

The second line repeats the intent, and the second half of the passage boldly proclaims “forever”. This finality exposes the interesting idea of the human soul and the endless cycles of transmigration that occur in reincarnation, stating that love goes beyond a physical phenomena.

The second bridge, is now tempting fate by asking if the caller should reveal the name of their love interest. This is a desperate attempt to awaken the mutuality that is felt, either imaginary by both or in reality, but not said. These are the romantic notions that are felt by many, but never quite realized.

The second verse moves into the dreaming state of shapes of clouds that spark the imaginations of those who are in love, the end of the first line is a confirmation and acknowledgement that it was linked by fate and that both parties have possibly understood. The second line of the verse in another affirmation.

The “Out”, as an ending leaves the whole cannon in a tension of unrequited love, not showing but admitting love is in possession of your heart, where again the mutuality might not be clear.

I hope you have enjoyed this intimate breakdown of an original song that you have never heard, regards Arto.

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