4 Steps to Become an Effective Music Composer

“Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”  –Mark Twain

The Composer’s Code

Weekend warrior composers are under the belief that their music scores just happen. They sit down and wait for the masterpiece to show up. In a rare glimpse of the world of a composer,  this rarely happens. We can name those special composers on one hand. The rest of us struggle to write, complete and produce a quality piece of music for a deadline.  These are 4 steps that music composers do daily:

1. Work Regular Hours

Composers show up to work a 9-5 or later, like everyone else. Surprised? Their musical compositions do not just happen. They have a product to create and a deadline to deliver.

 2.  Dressed at their desk for a full day.

Working at a home studio does not mean working in pajamas. There is a shift in your mind when you show up to work in your studio dressed. The plus side is every day can be casual Friday!

3. Limit Distractions

It is enough to combat your own procrastinations. Have a clean studio, turn off email notifications, and your phone. If you had employees you would want them to concentrate only on the job while they are at work. Hold yourself to the same standard.

4. Create Your Routine 

When you step in your studio you are ready to work. Turn on your studio.Have all your tools and research materials ready. Pour a cup of coffee and start your day.

These 4 steps will speed up your process and make you productive and more successful.

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Philip DiTullio is the Joseph Schillinger scholar of our times noted by the Artist Recording Collective. He has spent 10 years completely immersed in the Schillinger System of Musical Compositions establishing pathways, where none had been previously found. He brings his students a unique way around composition and sound. His philosophy is teaching the logic of music, which crosses all genres. He has forged his own musical journey and invites his students to explore their own adventure


2 thoughts on “4 Steps to Become an Effective Music Composer”

  1. I started to study permutation on my own in the 70s between road gigs. I had herd of Schillinger while I was at Mannes prior to the merge with New School. I used graph paper but had no idea that this was employed by Schillinger. I also used my fingers (digital analysis).
    I think that I will enjoy the company here. On the horizontal axsis (event line or whatever is the proper term within the system) I used circular motion to prioritize identities. …so
    bca & cab = abc and the reverse cba = bac & acb (6 different shapes/motions derived from 2)
    I looked back to ab/ba and on to further distinguish the shapes derived from 4 &5 different notes or things, their 24 & 120 characters and how they are contiguously form themselves from the addition of a single note or thing. Basically forward and backward, down to up, up to down cuts everything in half and makes it easier to keep in mind. This is the most that I’ve tried to define it in years so forgive my self styled approach. Thanks for reading.

  2. We have a great group here. The weekly Skype Speaking Schillinger group has been around for over 10 years now.
    We call the horizontal axis the Pitch Axis and the shapes and motions that move toward or away from the axis provides us with movement that can dictate tension and release of the melody.
    These permutation techniques cut down the time of finding the perfect choices for your melody.
    Did they teach you at Mannes about graphing music?

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