music

My Compositions

Although I never had any formal musical training, I had the feeling that there was some music inside that wanted to get out. When personal computers started to become available, I kept hoping that there would be a way to use a computer to compose and play music.

As digital technology advanced, the MIDI (Musical Industry Digital Interface) was developed. This allowed electronic keyboards and other digital instruments to control sound modules. By digitizing sound samples from real instruments and storing the samples in sound modules, and then connecting them to a keyboard, it became possible to play sounds of a grand piano, or pipe organ, or violins, or any instrument, from a keyboard. The next step was to integrate the digital instruments to computers.

My second personal computer (in 1980) was an Atari 800. It had some built in sound capability, and I was able to make it play primitive melodies. The arrival of the Amiga computer, however, took the possibility of using a personal computer to compose and play music to a new level.

By now the convergance digital music and computers is complete. Every computer has built in sound modules that can reproduce basic digital instrument sounds. There are external sound modules that produce very high quality musical instrument sounds. Computer software for music falls into two categories, sequencing software and scoring software. The sequencing software can record what is played on a keyboard or other instrument and create files that can then be edited or played back. Scoring software is what is used for composing music. Just like Bach or Brahms wrote notes on paper for musicians to play on their instruments, a computer composer can input notes into scoring software and have the computer play the music through the electronic sound modules.

I have messed around with a number of programs over the years, and the software has grown from being able to play lines of music on crude digital synthesizers, to software that can reproduce nearly every aspect of musical notation and performance styles. The program I am using these days is called Sibelius. Although what I am able to do is pretty crude, Sibilius is being used by serious professional composers.

I have created and recorded a few scores and then I have added pictures and made music videos that are now on YouTube. You can find links to some of my efforts here.

When the Summer Flowers are Blooming

Toadstools

My Little Waltz

The Seasons At Woodhaven (features several selections)

Organ Prelude

Organ Recessional

Hymn to Fall

please send comments to the webmaster
webmaster