Developing a piece of music vs developing a loop

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  • #39322 Reply

    Recently a music library I am with sent a blanket email feeding back to composers to “remember to develop a piece of music, don’t just build on a loop!”.

    I was wondering if anyone wanted to share any strategies on how they develop a piece of background library music, as I would say I am often guilty of “building on a loop”, especially with styles such as science & tech, backstory & cinematic. Perhaps it is as I am a guitarist at heart and work best in ‘riffs’ & verse/chorus structures that developing a cinematic, electronic or backstory track is a little more alien to me.

    Also – what is the difference between building on a loop and developing a piece of music – and is one necessarily better than the other?

    Sorry for the fairly obscure topic, but it’s always interesting to hear how other composers build/develop a library track, especially when very common advice is to “not to take too many right turns” or change mood in a library track.

    #39326 Reply
    Michael Nickolas

    If a library asked me to “develop a piece of music, don’t just build on a loop!” I would definitely listen to a few examples that they feel meets this criteria, in the style you will be providing. No better way to learn what it is they mean.

    #39330 Reply

    I think I roughly know what they mean, but was more interested in how other composers here might interpret it, and how they develop their pieces, as I imagine most library composers start out as a ‘solo’ operation, so it is would be really easy to get stuck in your own ways in terms of how you build a piece of music.

    #39331 Reply
    Art Munson

    @PAMMusic. I don’t remember ever building track on a loop (not sure what your definition of a loop is). I usually start with a typical 8 bar A section. Maybe a B section depending if it enhances the A and build from there. If I need inspiration I go out and listen to some music. In terms of production ideas there is a lot to be learned in today’s music. Lately I have been listening to the hits of 2021.

    #39332 Reply
    Gus Caveda

    I think what they might be referring to are beats which basically are just 8 bar loops streatched out for 3 minutes with certain sections muted to create “verse”, “chorus”, “bridge” etc… You see this a lot in Hip Hop beats that are put up for sale on the web. It doesn’t create much interest and gets boring really fast.
    But like someone already said above, ask for examples of what they mean.

    #39333 Reply

    In the very early days I made a lot of tracks that I think are very much guilty of what they are referring to –
    Just starting with a melodic loop and adding layers basically.

    #39334 Reply

    Since then I have made much more effort to ensure that developing a piece doesn’t just sound like a lot of copying and pasting melodies with different software instruments!

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