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Interludes: Three for August

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License and ©2012 Gregory Weaver.

I’ve decided to birth a new post prefix – “Interludes” – which will represent blips of ideas that may or may not make it to “draft” status for the purpose of this blog.  I have a ton of ideas jotted down, but I don’t necessarily want to focus on completely fleshing them out right now.  That being said, I don’t want it to seem like I’m not producing anything relevant by not posting!  And, of course, I love sharing what I write with you, my readers and listeners, and leaving you with nothing for relatively long stretches of time just kind of, for lack of a better word, sucks (for us both!).  By the way, if you like a particular tune and want to hear more, the best way to get me to keep working on it faster than anything else is simply to comment—keep that in mind!

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The first up out of my piddling is “Streets of L.A.”:

“Streets of L.A.” (SoundCloud)

When starting something new with no immediate ideas floating around, I trend towards messing around with a particular instrument.  Typically that instrument is of the orchestral variety, but on the day I wrote this tune I wanted to go for something different.  I thought to make something electronic and played around with a bunch of synth pads first—clearly, I didn’t stick to that road.  Instead, I wound up wanting to play with an electric bass and came up with the bass line that you hear.

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Gumshoes (Draft 1.0)

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License and ©2012 Gregory Weaver.


Last post I indicated that I was planning to write a tune to a picture.  I actually had planned to do such a thing for, I don’t know, a couple years, probably, but never really got around to it.  The drafts that you’ve heard on this site so far have come from general ideas; for example, “Theme for the Woods” was originally based off a flute lick I heard in my head and for “Monday’s Theme” I was thinking about life on a farm.  Using a picture grounded me a lot more, and you’ll read why below.  Here’s the picture off which I’ve been writing:

The picture depicts my girlfriend Jen, Mog, and me as the authorities in sleuthing.  It was drawn by none other than the [Score.] logo artist, Natalie Parisi, who drew it for me because I was one of the first five to solve the first puzzle on her mystery/puzzle blog, Clavis Cryptica.

I decided to use this one for my first picture-to-audio project because, one, it was recently done; two, I like it; and three, because it threw me into an unfamiliar genre.  Out of all of the compositions I’ve ever done – and I’m not just talking about ones done for this site – I’ve never been focused on ‘mystery.’  In fact, I’m not sure that I’m even that close to the music of many puzzle games.  Tetris notwithstanding, the only audio that comes immediately to mind is Professor Layton and the Curious Village.  My tune has a similar vibe to the beginning of “Professor Layton’s Theme,” I guess, but it certainly isn’t half as killin’.  Who wrote it…?  Tomohito Nishiura.  I’m going to have to check out more of that guy’s stuff, holy cow.  And in case you want to compare that live version to the in-game, here it is.

And then, here is mine in all its Finale/Garritan sample glory:

Not even close on the scale of killin’!  But I like the direction that my tune is headed, so I’ll keep it for now.

Originally titled “Sleuths” (and changed because that’s the title of Natalie’s picture, not to mention gumshoes is a pretty cool word), I first started writing by fiddling around with the Steinway in Logic.  It didn’t take very long, as I recall, to come up with the first fourteen measures of the right-hand part (before the woodwinds and viola come in).  In fact, the evidence is in my Logic file; it’s essentially those measures out of time with corrections embedded within.

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