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> Parts Of A Song
Chokehold
post Dec 14 2008, 01:42 PM
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I wonder if anyone can explain all the parts of a song to me, like how you can recognise a vers, a chorus, a bridge and so on.
Or if anyone knows about a website that explains all the parts of a song?
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Matt23
post Dec 14 2008, 02:41 PM
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Do you mean what all those parts are or how to recognise them in a song?
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Tolek
post Dec 14 2008, 02:57 PM
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Well, a standart song consists of:

Intro
Verse
Chorus
Verse
Chorus
Outro

The intro is used to define the tonality and kind of the song. Sometimes, it is the main riff of the song (just like in "While my guitar gently weeps" where the chord progression of the verse (Am, Am/G, Am/F#, Am/F,...) is played without the vocals).
The verse is a passage where a certain melody is played. Normally, the melody stays the same in every verse while the text changes.
The chorus is the most important part of the song. It is repeated several times, sometimes with small changes. The chorus is the highlight of a song.
The outro leads the song to the end. Very often, the main riff is repeated in a delicate way.

These explanations are very basic. If you want more, just ask me. I'll describe it a bit brieflier.
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OrganisedConfusi...
post Dec 14 2008, 03:03 PM
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There are no rules to this really. Different genres use different styles and some have no defined verse and chorus and others have 2 verses in a row and an interlude before two verses and a chorus outro. It depends and like I said there is no rules. Just do what you feel the song needs.

If you want to conform to silly rules then the chorus is usually the catchier part of the song with the hook.


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Dec 14 2008, 04:57 PM
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Like OC said, there are no strict rules, songwriting is an art, and it can be very subjective both in the presentation and observation part of the communication with the audience. Songwriting is basically about transferring some kind of an idea from composer to audience. When you have lyrics in the song it is pretty straightforward because:

In the verse it is usually about telling a story
In the chorus it is usually about making a point (main message) of the story and repeating it

Now because writing lyrics is an art form of its own, it is quite difficult to make any rules, cause there are so many different styles of writing lyrics and music.

I'm not an expert in music history or literature so can't give you any detailed descriptions really. But what I can tell you and what is important to note is that every style of music has it's own specific structure and form. This is, after all, what separates it from other styles of music. For example in the first blues progressions you had I IV V sequence, repetition of lyrics so the blues musician could have time to "invent" new verse in real time while playing. Often first blues songs were made in "real time". Also there is call-response type of lyrics (because african american people who worked on the farms used these lyrics as a simple form of singing while working, one will "call" and the rest of the people would "response"). This is just one example with the blues music. Every music - classical, jazz, rock, soul, gospel, blues (with all possible subcategories in every of this style) and other forms have these distinctions that separate them from other forms of music.

If you wanna make some songs and research more in this field, I suggest you investigate to field of music you're into in order to learn how to create songs from that style in best possible way. Knowing history of music can help a lot, and I suggest starting with Wiki articles both on GMC and Wikipedia.com

This post has been edited by Ivan Milenkovic: Dec 14 2008, 04:58 PM


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OrganisedConfusi...
post Dec 14 2008, 04:58 PM
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Very well put Ivan. Much better than me laugh.gif


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MickeM
post Dec 14 2008, 05:21 PM
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Since you're in Sweden I suggest you buy the latest Studio (I think it's the issue that's still in stores). There it's very well described how the standard pop song is built up. Many artists use this forumula to the exact and some derive a little bit from it but there's a core forumla. Same for other genres.

One example is that some songs are realeased as dance versions and radio versions, different formats to reach a different audience. Play the dance version on the radio and people will likely change channel, play the radio version on the dance floor and ppl will go to their tables. Rough example.
So sure, the way you build it up is important. Try listening to a lot of songs in their respective genre and put their format on paper, soon enough you should find a pattern I'm sure.


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Chokehold
post Dec 14 2008, 05:32 PM
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Thanks alot everyone, will try your tipses smile.gif


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Pedja Simovic
post Dec 14 2008, 07:37 PM
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Popular music form is mostly what Tolek described you. It consist of Intro Verse Chorus Outro type of thing just placed on different spots.

More evolved songs and sophisticated have Interlude section. Interlude section is setting up the song to get back to Chorus and its not related to Verse or Chorus whatsoever. It is also known as Arrangers chorus!

Then of course, you have Solo section which is pretty standard and happens after couple of Verses and Chorus.
Again there is no strict rules as each artist and songwriting team with arrangers have to some extent different idea what to use.


Great exercise you can do is take pen and paper, put your favorite song that you can listen to any time of the day and work out the Arrangement of that song.
We also say Sketch out the arrangement.

It should look something like

Intro (8 bars)
Verse (8 bars repeated twice)
Chorus (8 bars)
etc

You could go deeper into it and write next to each part whats actually happening !
For instance

Intro (8 bars long, 2 bars drum intro followed by 2 bars when bass enters, 2 bars of guitar entering and last 2 bars horn section kicks in) !

This is very useful and informative , and I believe it can give you idea what you can perhaps use in your Arrangements in future.

We used to do this at Berklee , I remember analyzing Incognito songs as they have a bit more evolved arrangement structure.


My advice - start with very simple stuff, like 12 bar blues ! After switch to absolute hits in the music (multi billion $ songs that everybody knows) and then go for advanced stuff that has more evolved things in it .

Hope that helps smile.gif


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Chokehold
post Dec 14 2008, 07:43 PM
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QUOTE (Pedja Simovic @ Dec 14 2008, 07:37 PM) *
Popular music form is mostly what Tolek described you. It consist of Intro Verse Chorus Outro type of thing just placed on different spots.

More evolved songs and sophisticated have Interlude section. Interlude section is setting up the song to get back to Chorus and its not related to Verse or Chorus whatsoever. It is also known as Arrangers chorus!

Then of course, you have Solo section which is pretty standard and happens after couple of Verses and Chorus.
Again there is no strict rules as each artist and songwriting team with arrangers have to some extent different idea what to use.


Great exercise you can do is take pen and paper, put your favorite song that you can listen to any time of the day and work out the Arrangement of that song.
We also say Sketch out the arrangement.

It should look something like

Intro (8 bars)
Verse (8 bars repeated twice)
Chorus (8 bars)
etc

You could go deeper into it and write next to each part whats actually happening !
For instance

Intro (8 bars long, 2 bars drum intro followed by 2 bars when bass enters, 2 bars of guitar entering and last 2 bars horn section kicks in) !

This is very useful and informative , and I believe it can give you idea what you can perhaps use in your Arrangements in future.

We used to do this at Berklee , I remember analyzing Incognito songs as they have a bit more evolved arrangement structure.


My advice - start with very simple stuff, like 12 bar blues ! After switch to absolute hits in the music (multi billion $ songs that everybody knows) and then go for advanced stuff that has more evolved things in it .

Hope that helps smile.gif



wow, that was great smile.gif thanks alot i will try to start with simpler stuff and so on, i think you gave me all i needed there. thanks biggrin.gif


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Nemanja Filipovi...
post Dec 14 2008, 07:47 PM
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One rule,no rules.
You have standard parts of a song(Intro,Verse,Bridge....etc).But If you feel the order of them should not be in the standard format,then you should do as you feel.
Verse is more quiet part(by deffiniton),but manny songs are in reverse and they are smash hits(The Unforgiven for examplle).


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Pedja Simovic
post Dec 14 2008, 08:37 PM
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QUOTE (Chokehold @ Dec 14 2008, 07:43 PM) *
wow, that was great smile.gif thanks alot i will try to start with simpler stuff and so on, i think you gave me all i needed there. thanks biggrin.gif


smile.gif You welcome man , glad I could help out. Let me know if you have any questions. I will try to find something for you and post it in this thread wink.gif


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