In Dorico on mac, F3 should open the mixer, not launch mission control. Fluor fixes that.
Want to make fast progress? Finding cool chord progressions from great music, and internalizing will give you a huge repository of ideas to pull from in your own music.
Defining creative problems is a powerful tool for growth as a composer. You’re probably not doing it right. Here’s how.
Spotting a film is a critical step in being able to score it. Find out how I spot, what I’m looking for, and what tools I use.
Sketching music is something that every composer must do. But there seems to be very little practical information about the process. So I am setting out to explore what it means to sketch music, techniques of sketching music, and why you should be working on sketching.
The composing process is messy, but having a solid understanding of it, can lead to better compositions. Learn about the first stage pre-composition.
Jazz musicians can teach composers a thing or two. Especially highly accomplished jazz musicians, such as Bill Evans. In this article, we take a deep dive into the universal mind of Bill Evans. We’ll learn how he thinks about creating, mastery, and teaching. Read More
Part of the difficulty in teaching composition, is that once you become good at composition, you start to lose touch with the learning process. I have always strove to teach from the view point of someone learning. But recently I’ve been reminded about what it’s like to be a beginner. Over the last few weeks, […]
Sometimes, you just don’t have the motivation to compose. Why? Deep down, you know you want to compose, but you can’t pull yourself away from the latest binge on Netflix. In this article, I’ll dig into intrinsic motivation, what it is, what it isn’t, and what you can actually do to improve your motivation for […]
I often think about what it takes to truly master the subject of composition. It can be frustrating from the standpoint of student, finding yourself writing pieces that you have written before… just in a new way. I remember an instructor pilot of mine, when I was learning to fly helicopters say, “There are guys […]
After working together for over 40 years, John Williams and Steven Spielberg have some incredible insights to making a collaboration go smooth. John Williams describes it as an “Unbuttoned Trust”. Learn the secrets to building this unbuttoned trust, that every film composer and director should know.
So where to begin the study of counterpoint? This is a dilemma that I have faced in the past, and for the most part, has been the biggest stumbling block. In this post, we will examine how Bach learned and taught counterpoint, and how this will become our model for learning as well. Books on […]
Why learn counterpoint? Because counterpoint. In this article, I explain the reason everyone needs to learn, and master the fine art of counterpoint, and how that fits into all facets of composition.
It’s time to go an inch wide and a mile deep. We are starting a series in which we will try to really get to know Mahler… What makes him tick? How did he become great? What are his characteristic style traits and Mahlerisms? Read on to learn about Mahler, the man… the composer.
Failure happens for a reason. And contrary to what you may think, failure can be a good thing. Find out how you can learn to deal with it, and why failure is actually important.
Musical form is a tool that has been used by every great composer from Bach, to Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mahler, and even living composers. But what is musical form, and how does it work? In this episode learn the fundamentals of classical musical form.
Effective modulation is one of the skills that sets apart great composers from amateurs. In the 2nd installment of the Art of Modulation series, learn all about common chord modulation, and what it can do for your composing.
Modulation is a tool that every composer needs to master. Learn about the simplest form of modulation – direct modulation.
Episode 7 of the Art of Composing Podcast. In this episode, we look at creativity – what it is, how to find it, and how to explore your creative boundaries.
Having a mentor can really help catapult your apprenticeship and speed up your process of mastery. But how do you find a mentor? And how do you take advantage of that mentor-protege relationship? Find out in this episode of the Art of Composing Podcast.