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Action-Music Course - Lessons 1-3

Eric G

Active Member
That member was me :)

And for those of you who aren't familiar with Mark's work, he wrote THE research paper on John Williams's composition style and his use of variation in themes. I don't think the paper is available for free but its worth paying for it like his courses. If he writes a course based on this, it's an instabuy.

Correction, it should be free if you register.

 
Correction, it should be free if you register.

I just clicked "read paper" (below download PDF) and the whole thing popped up, no registration necessary.

Great read, thanks for sharing!
 

Oakran

New Member
It seems super interesting and I'm seriously considering buying the course.
I did write some action cues inspired by Williams in the past but it was totally random and without any knowledge of octatonic scales whatsoever. I'd be really curious to learn the concrete techniques behind it.
Ultimately we should all strive for this kind of knowledge. The more you know your craft in depth the more you can free yourself from mindless writing/repeating the few basic techniques that you understand well.
 

Eric G

Active Member
It seems super interesting and I'm seriously considering buying the course.
I did write some action cues inspired by Williams in the past but it was totally random and without any knowledge of octatonic scales whatsoever. I'd be really curious to learn the concrete techniques behind it.
Ultimately we should all strive for this kind of knowledge. The more you know your craft in depth the more you can free yourself from mindless writing/repeating the few basic techniques that you understand well.
Right, so have I. But it's all about control and that is what this course is doing for me, allowing me to be in control of my composing in a next-level way. Which also makes it repeatable.
 

Gingerbread

Active Member
Excellent class so far! Very glad I got it!

One question: it seems like the forum isn't working (?). That's an issue for me, mainly since I think that's presumably the only way to check the answers to the Exercise questions. Or is there another way to check the answers?
 
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Ludwig

Ludwig

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Purchased, LOVE IT .
SO well implemented...When can we expect the next module to drop ?
Congrats on an awesome (and highly needed ) course 👏
Thank you! I can't make any firm promises, but I'm aiming for a couple of months, so I hope to have it ready in June.
 
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Ludwig

Ludwig

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Excellent class so far! Very glad I got it!

One question: it seems like the forum isn't working (?). That's an issue for me, mainly since I think that's presumably the only way to check the answers to the Exercise questions. Or is there another way to check the answers?
Thank you as well!

Hmm, why don't you PM me or email me your username and what happens when you try the forum and we'll go from there.
 
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Ludwig

Ludwig

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Excellent class so far! Very glad I got it!

One question: it seems like the forum isn't working (?). That's an issue for me, mainly since I think that's presumably the only way to check the answers to the Exercise questions. Or is there another way to check the answers?
Actually, I think I fixed it now. Give it a go and see if you can enter any thread.
 

DANIELE

I love to make music but I also love to make music
I started the course and I love the teaching method. The teacher is very straight and on point, I'm still at the first lessons but I think I finally found another favorite teacher as well as Alan Mayrands a while ago.

I'm loving this course and I hope to see more in the future, I like so much the fact that in some way it is an advanced course that explain how to use some advanced techniques.
I hope to see something more about melodic themes too. Maybe the use of modal scales focused on well known themes and so on...

Thank you @Ludwig.
 

Zookes

Active Member
Has anyone used this to make something yet...?
Collecting knowledge is OK. Using it is what interests me tho and the example from the website does not seem usable...
 

Eric G

Active Member
Has anyone used this to make something yet...?
Collecting knowledge is OK. Using it is what interests me tho and the example from the website does not seem usable...
Remember there are in total 12 lessons. So I don't expect to create complete JW style works in 3 lessons. Lessons 1-3 are foundational and building blocks with small passages (4-6 bars) and at the end of lesson 3 just start to give you enough to do longer passages (6-8 bars). I am waiting for Lessons 4-6 to start putting together larger passages. For me, I am loving the incremental approach. Frankly, if I could buy a course for a hundred bucks and sound like John Williams in a week, I would be hugely disappointed and have a much lower opinion of JW.

And the examples are not fully orchestrated (the course is named Action Music HARMONY), so you need some instrumentation knowledge and likely some Study Scores to examine JW instrumentation choices in Action-oriented cues. I have the Star Wars, Indiana Jones study scores that help with that.
 
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James Semple

New Member
I'm really enjoying the course so far. After completing lesson 1 I decided to try and quickly create a cue to explore what I've learned.

Imagine music from a family adventure movie. Initially they are creeping around, they discover something shocking, then there's a chase!


Everything in this example is derived from a single octatonic scale (Octatonic scale 1 for those taking the course). I'm using a couple of harmonies derived from Alpha chords towards the end of the piece.

The entire cue was done quite quickly and I used Abbey Road ONE for the whole thing so I could focus on the writing.
 

ProfoundSilence

Senior Member
I loved it, was basically a master class for octonic harmony.

I'll be honest I didn't do any of the practice things, just mostly went through the course at my leisure over a few days. That said, this sketch on just a piano track in my daw - took just under an hour.

On one hand its kind of incoherent - mainly because I didn't work out any real motif/subjects, just kind of winged it as I went.
View attachment actionclass.mp3
 
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Ludwig

Ludwig

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I loved it, was basically a master class for octonic harmony.

I'll be honest I didn't do any of the practice things, just mostly went through the course at my leisure over a few days. That said, this sketch on just a piano track in my daw - took just under an hour.

On one hand its kind of incoherent - mainly because I didn't work out any real motif/subjects, just kind of winged it as I went.
View attachment 49157
Thank you for sharing your piece here! Despite being done in a short time, it's got some pretty cool things going on, especially the use of harmonies from octatonic 2 (Gm, Em) to harmonize the melody, which is kept in octatonic 1. And I do hear a loosely use of motivic material too, with the (014) chord - I hear two in a row at one point, F#-Bb-A, A-C#-C. And you throw in (013) as a nice variation of the chord as well, as in F-G-E. Nice job!
 
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