Today I finished my first piano piece. Around 4:30, I officially drew in the double bar; however, I think some of the chords are still going to change. I thought that I would feel a bit more closure at the end of this composition exercise, but surprisingly, I just felt like I needed to write more music. While trying to compose in the past week, I somehow got stuck in the key of C-minor and couldn’t figure out how to get out of it. It should have been a simple fix, but a notation error made it impossible for me to figure out. This is one of the few times in my life where stepping away from the larger picture and honing in on each minute detail actually helped me. In essence, I had to “see the forest for the trees.”
So if it didn’t give me a sense of closure, what did composing do? I guess if I had to pinpoint something, it did help me deal with some emotions, as did my general piano practice. That being said, if a friend of mine hadn’t been around and available, I might still be huddled in a corner of the piano studio, drooling on myself and mumbling about dead people and left-hand harmonization. My next logical step then is to figure out where to go with composing from here. The music is in me, but I have absolutely no clue how to get it out. I have joked over the past few weeks about how I can only compose one note at a time (and each note takes me about an hour, at that)…but there is some truth to that. Where other people I know compose in a rounded out linear fashion (meaning that they can just play a bunch of chords they like and it turns into a piece within minutes), I literally think of one note at a time in the melody portion and then have major issues putting an accompaniment with that. I’m not sure what that says about my personal life, other than I have issues with support (which is very much true).
Maybe then, I need to look at composition more like going hiking: I need a general idea about the terrain, but if I’m only thinking about one step at a time and where each foot is being placed, I don’t get to enjoy the beauty of the hike. And really, is there anything more important than taking in the beauty and seeing what comes of it? If I’m always focusing on one note at a time, I’ll never get to enjoy the process of composing…and didn’t I start this because of the process in the first place?