Project Two Evaluation

Overall, I think this project went great! I enjoyed project two because we had full creative freedom over what we made, and this allowed me to produce things that I was certainly proud of in both Sibelius and Logic. As well as the practical side, I also enjoyed learning about the modern history of music and researching things that we were learning to gain a wider depth and understanding of things like temp scores, library music, and the actual purpose of composing and arranging. I could have done certain things differently in my compositions and portfolio, however, with the time I had, I think this project was very successful as I managed to finish everything to a high-quality standard. In this project’s portfolio, I feel like my vocabulary has improved tremendously since project one and I am also very proud of this!

In my written work, I completed all of the essential context and research tasks to make sure I would get the grades I am striving for, and to widen my understanding of music in general. The writing is just as important as the practical work as it shows a good understanding of why the project is necessary and gives context behind composing and arranging songs. We were given some optional context and research tasks to broaden our horizons and get to the ‘excellent’ mark on the grade matrix. I did optional tasks like researching compositions in nature documentaries, however, I wish I could have done more of these tasks but I ran out of time. I also did evaluations of my practical work every week, giving myself strengths and weaknesses, and also targets that I want to achieve for the week after.

In Sibelius, I successfully produced a full-length score, which I then exported to a PDF and made it into a listenable song. I recorded my progression with the composition every week so I could look back on the targets I wanted to achieve and apply them to my work so it is the best I could possibly make. I did this composition independently and had full creative freedom on how I wanted it to sound, even from the first plan, but I did get some help from the tutors from time to time as I had never used this software before and sometimes needed help embedding things like articulation and dynamics. I also synced it to the Temporal Distortion video, but we did have some problems uploading it to youtube!

As well as producing a composition on Sibelius, we also made a song using another software; Logic. I found this more engaging than writing the score on Sibelius as I prefer the music I was making on Logic. Also, the song I made on Logic was less theory-based and we did not have to think as much about what specific key we were in or the articulation as we were using electronic instruments like drum machine and synth sound packs. As well as producing our own song, I also quote enjoyed mixing a groups recording of a cover as I had heard of the term ‘mixing’ but never really knew what it entailed in production, and as we went over how to make the recording sound more professional. I am also happy we covered mixing as I then went to apply it to my Logic composition.

Learning about music through the decades actually really fascinating as I learnt so much and it gave us a great insight as to how much the music industry has changed over the past 70 years in terms of technology, the actual music and even other things like entertainment and how world events/politics changed music as we know it. I presented some write-ups here in Powerpoint’s ad I said I wanted to do more of these in my initial targets for this project and making them feels more interactive than just writing on a plain document. Knowing context is important because, without the music from these decades, we would not have the music we listen to today, as genres like blues, jazz, rock and grunge have inspired things now, even if it doesn’t really sound like it!

In my targets for this project, I said I wanted to improve my music theory knowledge and apply this to my compositions, in which I did well in Sibelius. Before this project, I struggled reading music, especially pitched notes (not rhythms as such) but now I am much better, not perfect but I have definitely seen an improvement in how I read notation and understand what it is implying to play. I write notes during every theory session which I can go over and read if I need to. These notes are on this portfolio so they are also easy to access when I don’t have the notes on me and so people reading this know what we have learnt and that I understood the topics. I also decided that I want to take a grade five music theory exam next year, as this is important to get into conservatories and to be able to study music in different forms at university.

As I really enjoyed this project, especially the work on Logic, I think creating a piece of music with this software is a strong contender for my final project. I found that I picked up using Logic really quickly and would love to look more into how it works and become more professional with it. However, before I decide on this, I want to see how project three turns out first! I am not as interested in production as I am with live music and performing, however, it’s definitely still up there with potential jobs I would love to do for a career in music, as I feel that being an electronic producer and using software like Logic also combines different things like using recording studios, being a promoter either for yourself or others or even working as a live sound technician.