|How do you know when a song is finished or needs no more changes?
I don't know. My compositions need more changes,yeah. But,I have a music ready.
When I'm happy with it, and have had a good response from playing it to family and close friends, and hearing their feedback...
Lots of recordings that I've made have gone unfinished. There have been times when I've made big changes to the whole thing, though. Sometimes a friend will tell me that it's as good as it's likely to get, and sometimes I'm gullible enough to take their word for it. There's always room for improvement...
|That is a really good question as it goes to the compositional process as well. I've been working with a young composer recently, helping him improve his skills as a composer, and one of the things that I've said to him regarding a piece is that "it is as long as it needs to be". When you are writing a piece you have a sense (especially if you have sketched - or planned - the overall structure of the work) of the general scope of the piece, including the length. A piece "speaks to me" as I'm writing, it tells me how long it "needs" to be - which is much easier to assess when using a program like Finale which can play the piece and let you hear each element of the piece as it has been entered. Just recently I finished a short minimalist piece (an experiment) that, about halfway through, I estimated would come out at between 3:20-3:45 - well, it came out at exactly 3:44. To say that it is a matter of intuition makes it sound less important an issue, but it really is an issue where intuition comes into play.
As we compose we "feel" the needs of the composition, what the piece will need in order to fulfill its journey to completion. In the case of the length of a piece it "reveals" itself in the same way you realize a short story - or long story- or novel is complete: when everything has been dealt with, when all of the themes (the characters) have had their "stories" resolved, and the plot (the "form") has been resolved, then the piece can end.
As for the need for changes, that is something that is much more difficult. It is very hard to not "over edit" or "over revise" a piece in the pursuit of musical perfection. However, once you accept that there is no such thing as a "perfect" composition, the happier you will be as a composer. I listen to the completed work and make sure all of the performance data has been entered and it's ready as a "performance score", and then it's done. So long as there aren't any glaring "wrong notes", the piece is done.
You just know. It's one of those inexplicable things. Either that, or I end up going "right, that'll bloody do!" I'm quite keen on Duchamp's idea of the "definitively unfinished".
This, once again, applies to my paintings and to my musical creations. I just know when things are finished from my perspective, I do not have an outside producer but will often consult with Alexandra to see what she thinks.
When I hate it...
When I've had enough and the more I try the worse it gets. I produce as I go so it's never a lot of mix time. Or if someone happens by and says that's great or if they say that's shit then it's Done!
I know when a song needs changes when it doesn't flow, or make sense in a particular area. I know that a song is finished when I every emotion I wanted to induce is recognizable, and the conclusion hits home.
When a song is done, it feels right. Its a feeling of accomplishment or first holding your newborn child
I just knew it..hmm maybe if i played it like 3 times in a row and felt good about it.
When I feel uncomfortable. If you wait for perfection, your song will never be finished.
After everyone who are in my close professional circle feel it is ready.
Well Usually I will go over the song a million and one times. I am a perfectionist and I like to be able to record the song the way I see it or it wont be right. I like the words to be able to be heard and not all jumbled up and rushed. When I am satisfied with it than I know its finish.
When nothing about it niggles at you.
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