010 Making My Own Music – Revolution Fan Podcast Theme

Making My Own Music

In this episode, I talk about a classical song for orchestra that I composed in August 2012 called “Revolution Fan Podcast Theme.” This will be used as the theme song for the Revolution Fan Podcast starting soon about the new NBC show “Revolution.”

I started reading a comment from Bill Sullivan about the Untitled Pop Rock Song 1 from episode 9. I talked about how I would like to re-mix a couple of my pieces like Fusion and Funk (for solo piano). When they are complete I will post them in the Songs section.

I re-mixed the Logan Ow song, and published it here for download. I used new drum samples from Steven Slate Drums (the Essentials version I picked up for $20 – thanks to Jon Tidey for tweeting and blogging about this no-brainer purchase.).

I talked about how in the past I did not think about recording music and recording podcasts together when I purchased gear. I did use my Shure SM57 for both. In order to have an in-studio co-host for the upcoming Revolution Fan Podcast, I needed to buy another microphone. I bought a Shure SM58 which I can use for podcasts and also use for singing vocals.

I then talked about the Revolution Fan Podcast Theme. I decided to compose my own theme song for the Revolution Fan Podcast that also I would be able to talk about in this episode.  It is only about 2 minutes, so I played it, talked about it, and played it again.

The song is in B minor. It has an A-B-A form. The A section includes all instruments but features the violins. The B section consists of a unison melody that starts with the cellos, but has joins and drops as the melody goes through the violas, 2nd violins, and 1st violins.

Orchestras use all 4 categories of musical instruments: strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion. I used 17 parts. 1st violin section, 2nd violin section, viola section, cello section, bass section, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, 3 trumpets on 1 channel, French horn section, 3 trombones on 1 channel, tuba, timpani, snare drum, bass drum, and crash cymbals. Larger orchestras have additional parts, but I wanted to keep this simple.

I talked about the 4 categories, and what I did for each section. I played the A section with just strings, then just woodwinds, just brass, and then just percussion. I talked about how I panned different parts from the left or the center or to the right. I talked about how I did not fully quantize the parts, so they are a little bit out of time, but it maybe makes it sound more human and less like a computer.

For the French horns, I had them play a counter-melody to the strings that is high in their register. I got this idea from The Turn of a Friendly Card, Part 2 by the Alan Parsons Project. I played a clip at the end of the song where the French horns and/or the trombones play very high.

The chord progression of the A section is Bm, A, Gmaj7. There are other tonal notes passing through so there are minor 9th and major 9th with #11s like I talked about in episode 7.

I talked about how the new podcast may keep me a little busy, but I will try to create composing songs and creating these podcasts. I’ll try to get another episode out in the next 4 weeks.

I’ve been thinking about using Creative Commons license. I’ve been inspired by Wil Wheaton’s podcasts where he announces his “Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share-Alike license” at the end of each episode. I believe this would allow anyone to use clips from my podcasts or use my songs, as long as the attribute it to me, don’t use it to make money, and they have the same license. I’m not sure though, I have to look into it some more.

Please leave feedback in the comments section below, or send me email at  tom@makingmyownmusic.com. You can also call and leave voicemail  feedback at 631-213-5023.

You can play the podcast using the play button at the top of the post, or right-click on the “Download” link to save it to your computer.

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