It is Easy for Amateur to Compose Music Nowadays.
-Technologies can make almost everyone a creator.
Hello, my name is Yuxiang HUANG, a student from department of Bioinformatics, major of Life Sciences in Ritsumeikan University. I will tell you about how easy it is for amateurs to compose music nowadays. As I introduced before, I am a student major in Life Sciences, which is unrelated with music. I had never thought I can compose before I tried using software to helps myself to compose music. In this movie, I will show you technologies such as Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) which can make almost everyone a creator.
Nowadays, technology changes our life more colorful and more convenient. We can gather information very quickly, we can listen to music wherever we are. The Internet makes us connect with each other easily which can make someone become famous overnight. And it also can make us a creator. Because we can take a photo rapidly if we want, even editing a movie can be simple. And what I want to talk about is composition.
Becoming a creator seems very difficult, a great talent is thought to be needed. For example, composers such as Ludwig van Beethoven, Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin or Johann Sebastian Bach. Of course, they are all talents, who I respect very much. In middle ages, computers had not been developed. Naturally, there is no software to assist them to compose music. Thus, they must imagine sound in their brain.
But now, even an amateur can do similar things the talents have done, by using technological assistance. The software I used is called Digital Audio Workstation. There are also many kinds of this. Some are free, the others are paid, but all of them have their own feature. For example, a free software “GarageBand” developed by Apple for Mac OS. What’s more, the professional version of “GarageBand” is Logic Pro which is paid but has ample sound source. There are also a lot of other professional software developed by other companies. Such as, hardware options supporting Avid Technology’s “Pro Tools”, Image-Line’s “FL Studio” which has life time free updates, and Yamaha Audio included Cubase developed by Steinberg, etc.
Music nowadays has formulated chord progressions. There are also many kinds of chord progressions which stand the test of time, such as one of the most popular chord progression, canon chords which also Johann Sebastian Bach habitual used, and I chose the same for this tutorial video. I will use the most simply one “Canon in C Chords” shows following, in order to explain easily in the movie.
For example, here maybe you don’t know which note configure in the C major chord, just search it on the internet. Many sites can give us the answer. Furthermore, the information like the most popular chord progression in different genre can be easily found on the internet, so that you can pick your favorite. It is important for a creator to make use of gathering information and inspiration.
Next is rhythm. Almost all music has rhythm, even when some music doesn’t have a percussion part. Rhythm shows a strong, regular repeated pattern of music (Oxford Dictionary). To determine the rhythm, we should determine the tempo of the music first. Even the same music, with a different tempo will change the atmosphere of the song. Percussion part can highlight the rhythm in music. Also, there are some instruments like bass which can link the chord progression to rhythm.
Finally, I will tell about the most creative part of a song, melody! Melody is the part we can get a copyright. However, it is the simplest part, we just need to create the melody from our inspiration. And it shouldn’t be limited. Melody may contain one's own emotion, and different life experience can make creators create a unique one.
I will show you how to put a melody in digital audio workstation in the video.
Summary of Composition.
In the video, with just a few simple steps, the musical score of the background music was finished. What’s more, the digital sound software can play it for you.
In addition, what I want to show is not only that it is not difficult to compose a music by software, but also other creative activities such as painting, designing or movie editing can be certainly simpler with technology assistance. For everyone to be a creator nowadays, the most important thing is not our talent we are born with, but the determination we have. Times changed, and I believe the era where everyone can become a creator is coming.
↑ Movie is here. ↑
Major of Life Sciences
Department of Bioinformatics