Studio Session 4: Intro Music Creation

Studio Session 4: Intro Music Creation

Jade Melody Composing here, and today we will be producing intro music! I love creating this type of song because it requires a lot of creativity. It needs to be entertaining, catchy, and upfront, unlike background music which focuses more on the entertaining and space filling aspects as less attention is paid to it because for that type of project it's sort of like an assist to the main object of attention rather than serving as the main object of attention itself.

To avoid forgetting the tune I have in my head, I started with the lead track. I have experienced losing a great melody before, and it can be frustrating. It's happened before where I didn't write it down on a note pad or sheet music, or didn't put it together in the studio or even record a simple version of it using my phone and whatever instrument I had nearby. Those of you who create music know exactly what I'm talking about because it's probably happened to us all and it is frustrating.

Once I have the lead track down using a piano, I start building the foundation and structure of the song. I use two sounds brought together to start the foundation, a good sounding basic orchestra and a soft spacey kind of choral pad. It comes out the way I wanted it too, very simply made with four different chords. The feeling of a wide-open space using the reverb in the choral track is a great addition!

Next, I create the bass track that is in my head. It's another fairly simple track to create, just a driving bass to help bring about a good steady sounding song structure along with the percussion tracks that come next, though I get fancier on these tracks. I thought about using a crash cymbal or an open hi-hat to keep with the harder driving energy I had in mind for the song, but I find that a closed hi-hat mixed with an occasional open hi-hat brings about a unique sort of percussion that really seems to glue the entire thing together while still keeping the driving energy I was looking for.

At this point, I move towards what I have in mind for the beginning of the song. I let the initial lead piano track make one run through by itself at first, and then I add the orchestral and choral pad tracks to it, but I have them fade in as the piano track plays. With some minor adjustments, this creates a good solid build-up into the full song.

After thinking about it for a short time, I decide to add another track that copies the lead piano track to help give it some more life, a fuller sounding lead. I choose an orchestral sound that will play the same notes as the lead piano, even in the same octave, and I get exactly what I was aiming for. Sometimes doing this works out exactly how you wanted it to, and sometimes it doesn't work out at all, and you've got to experiment with various sounds and instruments and change things up until you get the sound you want or even find something better.

At the end I am going to let all of the instruments stop together, some with a reverb that will help leave the sound of the last notes and chords ringing out and fading helping bring the feeling of a wide open space even to the end portion.

I play around with a few more ideas using a couple of synthesizers, and after some mixing , I end up with a great intro stock music product that I am extremely happy with. This one took a few hours, certainly much faster than normal, but I created most of it in my head, which makes the actual recording process a lot faster if everything comes out the way you want it to. Of course, there was still some time spent for new ideas to the song once I had the instruments in front of me. As usual I let this one sit for a while before doing the full mixing and mastering to make sure it's ready. I always love getting a good track produced!
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