Gary Fok




Share of My Experience in Composing

Although I am not a professional composer, I would like to share some of my experience in writing songs and music with you.

Writing the Melody
Everyone has his/her own music irrespective of age and how much music knowledge he/she has obtained, but feelings are the main drives on creating the melody. Happy songs are always vivid and bright while sad songs are often slow and sentimental.

There is no universal model or formula for writing the melody. While one may create a new and fresh melody by himself/herself, one may modify the notes of an exisitng music or songs. However, we may take time to refine or further modify the notes in order to achieve a harmonic melody.

Putting down the melody on paper may be as simple as writing down the notes of do, re, me, fa, so, la, te, do, but grouping the notes into phrasing may require some basic music knowledge. On the other hand, one may simply record his/her voice in a sound recorder.

Writing the Lyrics
Due to the flatness of its intonations, it is difficult to make Cantonese into lyrics. Sicne the Chinese lyrics of old hymns are often mismatch with the melody lines, these songs are not easy to sing and we may have to spend a lot of time to learn.

The critical steps to begin with are to understand the theme and to familarize the melody. Imaginations and the word power are of course the important elements in creating the lyrics. Making reference to the lyrics of other songs as well as reading poems are helpful in completing this task.

Arranging the Music
A good arrangement can beautify a music while a bad arrangement can ruin a good melody.

We may play a music with a single music instrument, e.g. piano, guitar, voilin. In contrary, making a sophisticated arrangement is highly technical and professonal duty which requires thorough knowledges of the characteristics of different kinds of music instrutments and the familarization of different styles of arrangements. Also, it takes a lot of time for making the appropriate mix of music instrutments. It is really a difficult job for me.



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