Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Tunestorm 07 revisited...


Since tunestorm doesn't seem to take place, I'm making available my contribution to the tunestorm now. Hope you like it!

Written in lmms, mixed in audacity. This work features some mistakes in recording, pronunciation and mixing. This was my very first digital music project ever. So, despite its shortcomings, I still like it :)

Compose a track II

Gruesome Lullaby

Using headphones, with volume set to moderate, see what you think of this...
  • Music written in LMMS, using fluidR3 sound font.
  • Large number of samples from freesound.org (credits at the end of the movie).

Sunday, September 9, 2012



Modulation is the art of smoothly moving from one musical key to another. Modulation is one of the ways to make your music more interesting. If this sounds intriguing and you know how to read music notes, stay with me.

Three weeks ago, I set out to learn something about modulation. I took notes while doing so, and I'm making those notes available for anyone interested in the subject. The notes so far encompass 257 (!) pages full of modulations between different keys. Each modulation each time is written out in all keys, leading to a catalogue of modulations from any key to any key (well... almost. It's a work in progress). It also contains brief explanations about the underlying principles that make the modulation work. Using those principles, it should be possible to create new modulations yourself.

Most of the material is illustrated in the context of classical music theory (but all the underlying principles illustrated there apply also to jazz/blues/pop/gospel/...), but part III also contains some beginnings of Jazz and Gospel cadenzas.


Sure. The document is available under a CC-BY-NC-SA license. The source code is available on sourceforge. It requires lilypond, lyx and LaTeX to "compile" to .pdf.

You can also download a prebuilt .pdf from the files section.

If you have downloaded and skimmed the book, be sure to comment either here or on the book's forum.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


University of the Philippines singing ambassadors

Today I had the chance to sing a song (well, two actually) with the University of the Philippines singing ambassadors (UPSA) in Leuven, Belgium. I can honestly say that it was a special experience in my life. The rest of the concert was superb, phenomenal - with a convincing display of a great range of musical styles (classical, contemporary classical, broadway (musical including stage play), folklore) and including some stunning renditions of breath-takingly difficult pieces (who wrote that "de profundis"?).

The really humbling part is where they tell you they are not music students (at least not all of them; some I spoke to were training to become an engineer). They practice their art 4 times a week. I'm sure there's no other way to arrive at this incredible level where they sound the way they sound. Having participated in 21 contests around the world, they won 21 first prizes and some other honorary prizes. The result of their regular hard work is simply stunning. Congratulations!!

If you ever have a chance to see them perform, don't hesitate. Too bad they had to leave in a hurry to be in Germany by tomorrow morning 6 o'clock - you can't let the president of Germany wait ;)