Writing a tune.

I always thought that writing a tune was something that people just did, but I gather it is not quite that simple. People are afraid of writing music that is the 'same' as that which someone else wrote - which may well be the case. But I would point out that there are only so many notes available and only so many chords, so that virtually anything anybody can write will be near enough the same as something else somewhere else in the world - with the one difference that that particular individual's presentation may be unique. And even if it is not unique, the inventor of that piece presumably feels like he or she wrote it.

So let's stop being so self-effacing and get on and make ourselves a piece of music.

How to go about it?

As far as I know, there are only three ways of writing a tune:

Of course, one can be more inventive than this. One can, for instance, take a tune from an old master and then add one's own chords (which, if you do not know what chords the old master used, could turn out to be the same or completely different) One could also try to work out what chords the old master used by trial and error (once you have made a chord, try to name it in such a way that you can remember it, and in such a way that you can ask somebody else to play it).

Equally, one can take the chords for some well-known old tune and build a new tune around them - which is one of the reasons for putting just a few taster chord sequences on this site that have no title with them.

Try this: play the chords from one of those untitled sequences and sing whatever notes come into your head along with them. If some notes sound bad, try another note next time - and so on until I think you may find you have a tune. Or it might be that you discover where the chords came from, which won't achieve the result you were aiming at, but will show you that you can work out the chords for some things - or, perhaps to be more accurate, you may have worked out how the original writer came up with the tune.

Couple these techniques with a good general knowledge of chords and the circle of fourths (available from this site) and you may be surprised how easy it turns out to be.

Don't be afraid to experiment. If you like the result, it is good even if only good to you.

Good luck.

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