COMPOSER COMPETITIONS ARE BACK!

Hi everyone! It has been a couple of months since the last round of friendly Composer Competitions was hosted by Cody Tedrick on Facebook, the short hiatus was enough to get everyone hungry to make some music and start competing again. To recap on what the competitions are, let’s explore the requirements further and take a look at the winning submissions to date.

REQUIREMENTS

The guidelines to the competitions are set by the winner of every round, for the first round, our hospitable FB page administrator, Cody Tedrick (a formidable opponent in the competitions and a talented composer from the US) set the requirements.

THE FIRST CHALLENGE

He suggested that the music be for a Sci-Fi Space Action/Thriller video game’s Menu-screen. The music could have any instrumentation and was to be under 2 minutes in length.


THEME: Menu Music
GENRE: Space Action Thriller
KEY: F minor
TEMPO: 120bpm
LENGTH: 2 minutes MAX


With the guidelines set, a group of composers, including myself set about creating some music that would fulfil the requirements Cody had given. There were some very strong works in the submissions and Ted Kocher’s piece, “Approaching Facility” had a convincing win. Ted Kocher is a GRAMMY nominated music professional based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Here is Ted’s piece from the First Challenge.

The memorable Piano melody and synth rhythms, combined with the emotional building of the Strings and Brass, really gave this piece what it needed to take the Gold Medal for the first round.

Here is my submission to the first round.

THE SECOND CHALLENGE

With Ted taking the win for the first round, he had a free reign for the guidelines for the Second Challenge.


Ted Kocher’s Challenge:

Heres the story to compose to:

A Jeep chase through the jungle, enemies starting close behind you, then falling out of sight. Just when you think you are safe, the enemy’s approach you from a place you didn’t expect!
The ending should tell us the story of how the chase ends!

KEY: G (minor or major..or both!)
TIME SIGNATURE: 7/4
TEMPO: 150bpm


The US-based composer, Tim Girard, won the second challenge for his entry, “Jungle Jeep Chase”. For more info on Tim, check out his WordPress site or my previous Blog-Post about the Second Challenge. Here is Tim’s winning entry for the Second Challenge.

Tim’s use of the Orchestra, with exciting Strings, bold Brass and tribal Percussion really made this submission shine, along with syncopated Orchestral-Stabs at the climatic finish, well done, Tim!

Here is my submission for the second challenge.

THE THIRD CHALLENGE

Tim set the requirements for the Third Challenge and this was the challenge that your humble-blogging-host won! Here were the guidelines that Tim set for us.


Tim Gerard’s challenge:

A final boss battle between a hero/heroine and his/her polar opposite (think Link vs. Dark/Shadow Link, Flash vs. Reverse Flash/Zoom, Spider-Man vs. Venom, etc.). The villain’s theme should be recognizable as a twisted, “dark mirror” version of the hero’s/heroine’s theme.

TIME: 2 minutes

NO RESTRAINTS ON THE FOLLOWING:
Key
Tempo
Genre

Lots of freedom in this challenge! Good luck!


Like millions of people worldwide, I have grown up with the Zelda franchise, playing almost every game in the series, a love affair that was spawned in the 80’s with the original NES version. Playing so many hours of a certain genre would inevitably have an influence on my compositional style and my winning submission, “In The Belly Of The Beast” is a testament to that. For and in-depth look at how this piece was composed then check out my previous Blog-Post about how I made it so.

THE FOURTH CHALLENGE

After winning the Third Challenge, I had the privilege of setting the guidelines for the fourth round of the FB Composer Competitions. It was getting close to Christmas at this time so I thought I would celebrate the festive season with a North Pole themed comp.


Sam McLean’s Challenge Requirements:

It is getting close to Christmas so let’s celebrate by composing a piece that makes us feel like we are in the snow!

Any style and instrumentation is welcome and it can be happy or sad, it just needs to sound like it is snowing! You can take the perspective of The Abominable Snowman, Santa, The Grinch or any other fictional or non fictional character that lives in the cold, you can even take the perspective of an animal!

Key – D major/minor
Time Signature – 3/4
Tempo – 160 bpm
Time Limit – 2 min


It is a great feeling when you set some guidelines and people respond creatively with some good quality work, work that may never have been composed without the inspiration. For the Fourth Challenge, Canadian Composer, Arranger and Producer, James Mulvale gave a submission, “Happiest Christmas” that cleverly captured the essence of the snow, with an innocence that made any worry or woe dissipate, the feeling you want around the festive season. Here is James’ submission.

I gave a submission for this one as well and tried to capture the innocence and joy that James did (the crowd had spoken though and James’ piece won, with good cause too. Well done James!). Here is my submission for the Fourth Challenge.

The Fourth Challenge was the last competition that I had entered, so I will now take you through the winners of the Competition to date.


The Fifth Challenge – James Mulvale, “Fingers And Toes”

The Sixth Challenge – Cody Tedrick, “Pass Me A Beer”

The Seventh Challenge – Dave Ramey, “Entry Into Chaos”

WHY NOT JOIN IN ON THE FUN?

The latest challenge has now started, so why not join in on the fun and “have a go”. If you would like to join the Facebook group then CLICK HERE and we will see (hear) you at the next challenge!

THEME: you are behind enemy lines, using the night’s darkness to move undetected through a labyrinth of corridors. Time is of the essence…

COMPOSITION: create a song using the provided guidelines that could work in this video game scenario – think of splinter cell or the Ghillie Suit missions in Call Of Duty. The music can be minimal, or it can be at the forefront, it’s up to you.

KEY: Gminor
TIME SIGNATURE: 4/4
TEMPO: any
LENGTH: 2 minutes MAX

Thanks for reading and stay creative! 🙂

 

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