For the next five songs in my portfolio, I moved away from songs in the vein of American Standards and instead focused on works that are more contemporary in sound and lyrics. The five original songs I notated this week are Teardrop, Change My Mind, I Already Know, Diesel, and Teenage Soul. While these songs are easier to play and notate harmonically, the new challenge of translating parts I play on the guitar and bass guitar arose. Rearranging was not without its benefits; transcribing songs in different instruments than they were originally written allowed me to take an important critical look at the first round of writing I had done in the past. With this extra step of translation, I was able to revise chord progressions and even lyrics to create ultimately a stronger song.
At this point, I am finished with my first week of creating my portfolio of original compositions. Although in my abstract, I expressed my desire to notate 16 original compositions, I realize now that I will probably have fewer than sixteen compositions in my portfolio at the end of two weeks. While creating my piano vocal sheets for my original compositions (the first one a song called “Someone Doesn’t Love Me”), I have realized that it is more difficult than I had thought to transcribe the nuances that I naturally sing and play. In order to reach the level of perfection I desired in my transcriptions, I spent a day on each song, resulting in 5 fully notated songs at the end of last week. These songs are, “Someone Doesn’t Love Me”, “I Just Don’t Love You Anymore”, “What Broken Hearts Do”, “Back Again”, and “I Know Your Type”. At this rate I will have 10 notated original compositions in my portfolio! It is also important to note that this week I am moving into the more contemporary pop side of my compositions, as last week I transcribed my older sounding compositions!
Music has always had the extraordinary ability to bring people together. A song or instrumental piece can tell a story or describe a feeling in ways that normal speech cannot, allowing individuals to attach their identity to a song. However, in order for a song to reach a large audience or culture that may identify with it, the composer of the song must be able to communicate their work with other musicians. Although teaching another a song by ear may be a sufficient way to share one’s work, creating a lead sheet, or a transcript of music, is often clearer and more precise about the writer’s vision.