Composing Experimental Electronic Music (with Rahul Nadkarni)
This workshop is an introduction to composing electronic music. This workshop will cover techniques of composition that can be used to generate ideas for a piece of musical work. In this class, we will study historical techniques of composing with an emphasis on 20th Century composers.
This workshop assumes that you are already proficient in DAW's and that you would like to expand on your knowledge of technical skills with a bit more conceptual understanding and knowledge about composing something with or without structure.
At the end of this class, you should have finished atleast 10 tracks incorporating the basic ideas of composition.
Day 01 - Learning to Listen
Listening is an active experience. It is not passive. we learn how to listen to elements of a composition.
Listen to 4 songs of your choice.
Breaking down a song into: TEXTURE, HARMONY, MELODY, RYTHM, TEMPO.
Assignment: Write about Cage and your reaction to 4'33'' .
Assignment: Pick 4 songs and break it down into its constituent TEXTURE,HARMONY, MELODY, RYTHM and TEMPO
Day 02 - A catalog of sounds
Reading 01: Listening as Activism: The “Sonic Meditations” of Pauline Oliveros"
Software for People: Collected Essays 1962-1980.
“I sit quietly with my alarm clock, close my eyes and open my ears. At this point the curtain rises and the performance begins. My very surroundings seem to come alive, each sound revealing the personality of its creator. There are several sounds, which become fixed in my ear like some “basso ostinato”: the continuous whirrings of factory machinery in the distance and the hollow sound of plopping water in a nearby fountain. This background of sound is interrupted by the piercing motif of a bird. A sudden breath of air sweeps across the deck. The pages of my book respond with quick snapping sounds. The door at the entrance squeaks and moans on the same pitch like an old rocking chair then closes with a thud. I can hear the drapery from an opened window rustling against the coarse plastered walls, while the drawing cord syncopates against the window pane”.
Ear Piece (1998) by Pauline Oliveros (1998)
1) Are you listening now?
2) Are you listening to what you are now hearing?
3) Are you hearing while you listen?
4) Are you listening while you are hearing?
5) Do you remember the last sound you heard before this question?
6) What will you hear in the near future?
7) Can you hear now and also listen to your memory of an old sound?
8) What causes you to listen?
9) Do you hear yourself in your daily life?
10) Do you have healthy ears?
11) If you could hear any sound you want, what would it be?
12) Are you listening to sounds now or just hearing them?
13) What sound is most meaningful to you? © Copyright 1998 Deep Listening Publications
Watching 01: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fmkK0HAgDjE
Watching 02: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBaaI7kf9uw
Apply Volume envelopes to Sounds in your DAW.
Automate Volume envelopes in Reaper.
Assignment: Record 2 files on your phone. Each file should contain a different texture.Put these files in a google folder called Assignments and put the link here. Make sure the link is accessible to everyone.
Assignment: Import a track to reaper. Apply the volume envelope. Make different permutations and combinations and export 6 tracks in total. Each track should be atleast 3 minutes long. Put this in folder and paste the link here. Make sure the link is accesible to everyone.
Assignment: Write 2 paragraphs on your reading of Pauline Oliveros. Make sure 1 paragraph has a personal reflection of your thoughts on listening to any one of her pieces.
Day 03 - More Listening and Making
We Learn to Sample Sound and use a Sampler.
We learn to use MIDI input to control the Sampler.
Assignment#1: Research MIDI and write 2 short paragraphs.
Assignment#2: Listen to each others tracks and comment in 1 paragraph.
Assignment#3: Make 6 tracks using the Sampler and the 2 sounds you have recorded.
Listening: Chris Watson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJBAd4pmuFk
Reading: Interview with Chris Watson.
Day 04 - More Making with Constrains
Please Make sure you Label your files in the following format: NameofComposition_YourName_ExpComposition_2021 and the folder NameofSeries_YourName_Expcomposition2021
Introducing Space with Pan.
Learn: Add the Pan Envelope, Automate it in Reaper
Reading:An Introduction to Listening, Peter Szendy
Day 05 - History Lessons: Sampling
Today, we focus on studying and understanding the history of 'sampling'.
A History of Sampling w/ Chris Read (WhoSampled) at Point Blank London
Early Documentary about Sampling (1988)
Research Assignment#1: Find out more about Toshiya Tsunoda. Listen to atleast 2 pieces and write 2 essays with atleast 2 paragraphs on each of the pieces.
Research Assignment#2: Find out more about Francisco lópez. Listen to atleast 2 pieces and write 2 essays with atleast 2 paragraphs on each of the pieces.
Reading: John Oswald: Borrowing.
Day 06: Melody
A melody is a tone or a series of tones moving through different frequencies.
Note on Assignments
In the wiki,
1. Please make sure you have atleast two lines of description of the Assignment before or after the Link. 2. Make a Folder in your Google Drive. Make this Folder public and put the files in specific directories based on your assignments.
Melody's can fall, rise and do other things.What?
Day 07: Texture
A collection of Tones.
Day 08: Rhythm
Rhythm is etymologically related to River.
It Flows in a direction.
Think of footsteps.
Rhythm can be regular or iregular.
The ticking of a clock.
The ticking of a clock = modernity.
1 = something.
2 = something else.
3 = a clap.
4 = finger snap.
1234. 1324. 1342
2341 2341 2143
Electronic Music Composition