So you’re writing a tune, you’ve got an idea or two but now you’re stuck!
Here are some ideas to try to help you move your composition forwards.
1. Use The Force
Don’t worry about it. Ideas have a habit of developing all by themselves. Who knows how :) Go and have a cup of tea and come back to it in a bit…
2. Use More Force
Ok, if that didn’t work, try these. Basically, you just pick one of these at random and then TRY it. They’re just prompts to move you from wherever you are now to some *new thing*.
Sometimes it doesn’t matter what the prompt is, you just want to change *something* and then work from there. But you have to apply yourself and mess around for a little bit.
Think of it like a maze and you’re just starting at a different place and you have to work your way out from there. Just like a maze, the result isn’t instant – you still have to work your way out :)
Now what follows is a big list.
You’re going to read it all and then think – ‘That’s nice, I’ll definitely do that in the future.’
You’ll never do it.
Wise up, dummy!
I know you better that you know you.
So here’s my suggestion:
Pick a number between 1 and 66.
Now go to that SINGLE idea and USE IT!
And, if I catch you using another idea, I will insist that you eat whelks for one whole year before bedtime.
Ok, pick a number…
- Add a random chord. G diminished, let’s say.
- Delete some of it.
- Tie something together somehow.
- Repeat the last thing you did.
- Steal an idea.
- Change the dynamic
- What could happen with the drums?
- Go faster
- Surprise the listener
- Keep the feeling the same but change something.
- Add another chord
- What would you do if you had to record this in an hour?
- Make it sound like drinking
- Imagine this is the soundtrack to a film, what’s happening?
- Make a plan
- Anagram – rearrange everything you have so far
- What’s the one thread through the whole?
- What are you wanting to hear?
- Make it sound jagged
- What would be weird?
- What would be nice to improvise on?
- Use an interval
- Record your idea on a phone [quick and easy] sing how you want it to go next
- Make it complex
- Use a rhythm
- Go up a fret
- Layer another idea into your idea
- Think perspective – what’s in the background/foreground?
- What are the elements?
- What was the last book you read?
- Use space to connect things
- Ask the other musicians
- What would Miles say?
- Start on a wrong note
- Play twice as slow.
- Use repetition
- Try a sequence
- Can you displace something?
- Inverrt it
- Make it smaller
- Make it bigger
- Fragment something
- Combine two of these ideas
- Transpose that bit
- What sounds are around you now?
- Start from a different place
- Play chords.
- Play noises.
- Play a semitone away from all the chords.
- Don’t resolve.
- Leave huge gaps.
- Play a conversation.
- Ignore everybody.
- Mix senses
- Make the next bit nothing to do with the last bit
- End all the phrases the same
- Is this bit tension or release?
- Focus on the negative space
- Move your hand
- End all phrases different
- Don’t end ide…
Ok, if you just read the article and didn’t actually apply it to your composition, that’s ok for now. No whelks immediately.
For that you must pay…
You’re charged to add ONE OF YOUR Un-sticker ideas in the comments below…