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Writing Arrangements
#3032044 10/04/20 03:43 PM
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I'm wondering if any of you arrange music for piano often and if y'all have specific methods of doing it (eg. notation programs, chords or melody first, etc.) and any tips or tricks. I've been arranging piano covers for a while using Musescore and wanted to hear how other people do it :))


Leona - high school piano student
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmothUPuf8sdY6FRc2m4oQw
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Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3032142 10/04/20 09:23 PM
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I arrange jazz standards by starting with the lead sheet and chord symbols and then reharmonize the changes (only a little) and then score it for two hands using various voicing techniques.

I'll add an intro and ending to finish it off.

I work in Musescore.


Bill
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Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3032201 10/05/20 02:28 AM
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My arrangement process goes in the following order:

Find the appropriate lead sheet, with or without chord symbols;
Find a suitable key;
Establish which style - swing,bop ,ballad,salsa,modal,pop,fusion; everything that follows depends on it;
Find harmony, which includes chord expansion, reharmonization, and passing chords;
Set the form - number of choruses , location of climaxes ;
Selecting several two-handed piano textures and planning to use them in a piece;
Creation introduction and ending.

I work with Sibelius Ultimate.

Re: Writing Arrangements
Nahum #3032238 10/05/20 06:05 AM
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Wow your methods are so cool! I don't use lead sheets because I arrange popular music, and also I don't know the names of any chords, I just go by ear. For my process, I just listen for the chords first I have perfect pitch, then decide on whether I want to change the key or not. After I have the basic chords, I put in the melody. Sometimes I change the form (eg. if I want to do a key change or make the intro or outro longer or something). The last thing I do is change up the texture in the basic chords by adding rhythm and the texture in the melody by doing chords, octaves, etc.


Leona - high school piano student
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmothUPuf8sdY6FRc2m4oQw
Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3032252 10/05/20 06:54 AM
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Hi Leona

As you've only recently joined the forum you might not realise that both Nahum and Bill are, or were, professional musicians. You may be as well of course!

Cheers


Simon

Vox Continental 73, Casio PX-S3000
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Play what you enjoy listening to, listen to what you enjoy playing!




Re: Writing Arrangements
Simon_b #3032272 10/05/20 08:40 AM
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Ah ok - thanks for letting me know - I'm not professional, I'm still in high school, but I play classical piano competitively.


Leona - high school piano student
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmothUPuf8sdY6FRc2m4oQw
Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3032506 10/06/20 01:59 AM
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Hi Leona

It doesn't matter what level you're at, they are both very helpful guys, but they are primarily Jazz players.

So you may wish to check out Pianist Corner, which is for classical Pianists. This forum is for non-classical. Though the topic you've raised could be relevant to either. If you search in the forums you'll probably find a previous thread on the topic you've raised, which may have a lot more useful info.

Cheers


Simon

Vox Continental 73, Casio PX-S3000
Yanagisawa AW01 (alto Sax)
Yamaha YTS-475 (tenor Sax)

DipMus(Open)


Play what you enjoy listening to, listen to what you enjoy playing!




Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3032539 10/06/20 05:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Leona 💜
also I don't know the names of any chords, I just go by ear.

Originally Posted by Leona 💜
I play classical piano competitively.

I see a contradiction here.

If you , Leona , refer to the Pop Piano book, it has everything you need to know from chords; and most importantly - a large set of textures for popular music; exactly what you need.

Last edited by Nahum; 10/06/20 05:15 AM.
Re: Writing Arrangements
Nahum #3032551 10/06/20 06:54 AM
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Thanks for the tip. To clarify, my main thing is classical but on the side I arrange popular music. Also, I don't pay to much attention to theory/chords/etc. when playing classical music, I know major/minor triads and and sevenths and that's it so far smile


Leona - high school piano student
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmothUPuf8sdY6FRc2m4oQw
Re: Writing Arrangements
Leona 💜 #3033069 10/07/20 10:57 AM
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Definitely a MuseScore user. I can play around with a score like transposing it to another Key to match a performance and change a few notes around to hear what the piece sounds like before & after.


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