Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Pops Composer Schutte's Method

Noted by an actual composer:

This from an interview with Dan Schutte at the "Grapevine" blog..

My songwriting process can be different for different pieces. Sometimes it begins with a melody. Often it will begin with a single line of text that I use to begin to create a melody. As the music will often run beyond the snippet of text that I have, I then have to fill in the rest of the lyrics. As a piece comes together I will play and sing it many times over looking for places that don’t feel quite right. This is where, I suspect, the creative intuition enters the process in discerning when something is just right or not. I will often have to work at certain places in the music or lyrics until I discover what feels right.

Comments Chironomo:

Of course there is nothing unusual about this process of song-writing... it's how all pop music is written! Melody first, lyrics invented to fit the melody

Wasn't that the point?


Dr. Stephen Darlington said...

I just read your comment and I'm not quite sure what your point is. Most composers of a contemporary style begin music composition this way. I teach music composition at Christ Church, Oxford and we here are facinated with this style of music that has taken hold with such success. I read the same article and know some of Mr. Schutte's music to be quite profound. From my point of view, it would not be considered of a pop genre by any means.

Dad29 said...

First off, hymnody is different from musica sacra. Hymnody may well begin with melody, thus being more 'songwriting.'

But for the Ordinary of the Mass and for many motets, the RC methodology is to begin with the text. Ratzinger commented extensively on this in a lecture delivered to the 8th Int'l Church Music Congress, (Rome, 11/1985).

Of course, one may also utilize Chant motifs as a melodic source.

Dad29 said...

Well, Dr. Darlington, a friend of mine sent you an email about this post.

When you respond to him, we'll know if you really ARE Dr. D., or just some California-ISP user who pretends a bit.