this, for me is what the OP looked like, by a great big sign using bolded red letters.yevster wrote:to dismiss a form for being "conventional" without first having mastered it
Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.
- 680 posts since 1 Dec, 2004
yevster wrote:It's always tempting and comfortable to use a familiar structure, both as a thread onto which to place beads of melody, and as a way to avoid alienating a potential listener with an unfamiliar form.
Still, there have been some daring and respectable "violations" of the form. Keane's Atlantic is probably the most incredible example. There is a definite hook in the end, but it's as if the entire song is a verse building up to a single chorus. It's unusual but effective.
The worst thing, IMHO, is to dismiss a form for being "conventional" without first having mastered it. if have written a fair share of catchy, memorable songs in the conventional form, by all means, move on and explore. If you haven't, perhaps it's best to master the wisdom of the ages before trying to overthrow it.
I agree with the basic recommendation here (you shouldn't dismiss "conventional" structures) but not for the same reasons.
You don't use familiar structures to "avoid alienating a potential listener with an unfamiliar form". You simply chose to use a chorus because your song benefits from it and it sounds better that way.
Likewise, whenever you're NOT using choruses or other similar structures, you're not doing a "daring and respectable violation" of the form, you're simply not using that structure (or you're modifying it), presumably because it makes your song sound better.
It's also not true that you have to "master" conventional music and then "graduate" to experimental stuff - you don't learn the wisdom of the ages to overthrow it, you learn the wisdom of the ages because it's full of really efficient techniques that can be applied to your music to make it sound better (because techniques that don't sound good rarely become conventional!).