Composing A Melody Without Any Instruments or Equipment

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The good news is you can actually compose at least a simple melody as long as you have your music manuscript book and a pencil or pen. As a composer, you may already have known that most composition are based on what they called as scales. The two main types of scales are major and minor scales. Traditional Chinese and some European music use the pentatonic scales. Other types of scales include the whole tone scale and the scale system used by Indian music composers. No matter what piece you are going to compose, the scale is the foundation for it.

The next thing is to decide on which key your composition is to be based on. You may have heard of compositions with titles like Waltz in A major and Nocturne in B flat minor. You may have composed such music yourself. To know exactly the pitch, memorize the sound for middle C from that sound work to the “Do” note that you want. The “Do” is the first note on the scale for the particular key you have chosen. For a key with sharps, the “Do” note is a semitone above the last sharp on the key signature. For a key with flats, you can get the “Do” note by counting down 4 tones. An easier way is the “Do” is actually the name of the key you are basing your composition on. For example, if the key is A major then, the “Do” note is A.

Once, you know your “Do” note, you can decide which note to start with for your composition. The first thing is to start with the “Do” note first and point on the line or space where the “Do” note is with your pen.  From the “Do” note move the pen to the next space and sing out the note for it. Repeat the steps for the remaining spaces and lines until you reach the note you want. Another method is to use what you have learned in your music theory which include Major 3rd and Perfect 4th. If you have memorized how, for example, a perfect 4th sound, you can compose a piece without any musical instruments or software at all.

The trickiest part is to make sure that you melody won’t go out of tune. To avoid your composition for becoming out of tune, make sure that you do not use notes not found in the key you are using.  For example, if it is a C major, don’t use C sharp unless you want create some effects or compose a non-melodic tune.


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