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Showing posts from January, 2014

Tonal Chance Music?

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I've been toying with an idea in my head for a long time now, and have started to put it into conception:  How could I write aleatoric music that sounds tonal? When I thought about it, the answer was quite obvious:  if I control the possible elements that are going into the piece, I will control the tonality of the piece.  Not only that, I could 'write' a composition with largely chance elements involved, but sculpt them in such a way to make something that may even sound melodious, and might even have classical forms in it.

To this end, I've started putting together some different ideas for a 3-movement piano sonata that will be written as a chance piece.  I will strive to incorporate the appropriate form by controlling elements in each section.  For my first attempt, I am going to use two different chance mediums:  rolling of dice and a chess game.

For rhythms, I will use dice to determine which of several sets of measures to use for different sections in the piece.…

Viola Scale Book and Other Free Resources

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After working with the BYU-Idaho Help Desk, we got our computer back up and running, and I have now put some of the promised free resources on to the blog. In addition, I have created the first edition of a Viola and a Violin Scale Exercise book which are now available at a discounted rate for purchase through lulu.com!

Violin Scale Exercise Book 2


Viola Scale Exercise Book 2


Some of the additions:  more scale and arpeggio stuff and more songs for the Violin section.  There are some sight reading exercises (pre-cursors to what will eventually be a sight-reading book), Frere Jacques, and my child-friendly "What Would You Do With a Tired Sailor?" (What would you do with a tired sailor?  Put him in the long-boat until he's woken.)  There's also a worksheet section which will probably expand soon, but we'll see if I have time to do it.

In addition, I'm starting to build up a few things on the Viola section.  A few songs, etc.  Most of my students have been violin,…

Free Educational Resources Section

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I've spent some time updating the education section of my blog, and will soon be putting up a lot of different resources, some for my private students, but generally free to use for the public.  Here's the link to this updated new section:  Educational Materials.

I had a new student start taking lessons a little bit ago, and she was a little bit older and more able to use technology, and I thought about putting up some scales and other things that she could download and use so she wouldn't need to go out and buy a scale book or other things.  I realized that this could be a useful resource to put up for all of my students and for other teachers and their students also.  I started changing and moving things around on my blog to get the new pages set up, and I now I have the beginnings of my education section.
Some things that will be included: -A section on each page for free resources that I have created for use with my students -Other extremely useful resources from outs…

Updates to Composition List!

I've recently taken some time to update my composition list to include some neat new stuff.  This includes more mp3's of music, more information on the origins of the compositions, and some new organization to help stuff look a little neater and cleaner.

Work will probably continue on it for the next few months as I put more of the stuff I wrote before college and add some new pages to help with the overall layout.  Come take a look and let me know what you think!

3 Works

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I've started putting work back into three different compositions that have been on hold for a bit.


The oldest is the string quartet I started back in 2009, of which I only have the first movement fully written.  I've started and restarted the lyrical movement (not even 100% sure if it will be the 2nd or 3rd movement yet, although I've been leaning towards 3rd lately).  I've been debating the form of the movement also.  DaCapo Aria seems most likely, although I've also thought about Theme and Variations, and also about no form in particular, more through-composed.  As work progresses, I'll feel this movement out and will see what feels most appropriate.

The next work is the 2nd movement of my Piano Sonata in A Minor.  This second movement I wanted to start in F Major so I could use the B-flat to A motive from the first movement at the beginning to help tie this movement in with the 1st.  With the first movement, I wanted to depict grief and fear.  With the 2nd, m…

Delving into different styles: music for video games

I've been doing some work exploring different styles to add to my video game music section.  The results can be seen on that page, but I wanted to highlight one piece I just finished.

I wanted to make a catchy tune that gamers could enjoy listening to and wasn't too repetitive.  I also wanted to write the piece so it has an ending, but so that it could also loop if a game programmer decided that that's what they would like for it to do.  The result is this:

I tried to go by instinct and the small smattering of knowledge I have of rock/jazz stuff, but I think the result is nice, and I feel something that could be listened to a lot but not get too annoying.  Overall, I feel it was a success.  It was nice too, since I've been a bit burnt out since I finished the Overture to the Missal Suite (that, and working 2 jobs and teaching students has worn me out a bit too).  It was just nice to finish something, and do something fun with composing, especially something lower stres…