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Making up a song on the spot.

GUEST,bernieandred 29 Sep 11 - 03:18 AM
GUEST,999 29 Sep 11 - 03:23 AM
Bainbo 29 Sep 11 - 03:30 AM
GUEST,mg 29 Sep 11 - 03:44 AM
Bert 29 Sep 11 - 10:58 AM
terrier 29 Sep 11 - 11:36 AM
Tattie Bogle 29 Sep 11 - 12:07 PM
Big Al Whittle 29 Sep 11 - 12:20 PM
Tattie Bogle 02 Oct 11 - 05:56 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 02 Oct 11 - 06:01 PM
Deckman 02 Oct 11 - 06:11 PM
EBarnacle 02 Oct 11 - 09:17 PM
gnu 02 Oct 11 - 10:15 PM
Allan C. 03 Oct 11 - 05:50 AM
GUEST,SteveG 03 Oct 11 - 05:42 PM
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Subject: Making up a song on the spot.
From: GUEST,bernieandred
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 03:18 AM

I worked with a magician a while ago. He would ask the audience members for a "person" an "activity" & a "product or thing" & then make up a simple song from it. (A bit like Improv comedy/Theatre sports).He always used the same tune, but I can't remember which it was. Obviously there are any number of trad. tunes which would work. Anybody have any ideas, I'd like to try it in our show.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: GUEST,999
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 03:23 AM

How complicated must it be?


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Bainbo
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 03:30 AM

The tune that's known in Britain as Villikins And His Dinah and in the U.S. as something else, though I can't remember what, is versatlie and has been endlessly adapted. You'll recognise it when you hear it.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 03:44 AM

Wayne Brady has an incredible ability to do this, and they are not simple songs...they sound like real songs..give him any topic and any style and he instantly comes up with something..don't know how he does it. mg


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Bert
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 10:58 AM

Can't do it. The fastest I ever wrote a song was two hours.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: terrier
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 11:36 AM

Parodies are pretty simple, but to write a meaningful song from scratch I just find impossible. I wish there were some simple magic to invoke the muse. Maybe your magician friend knew lots of songs and was making up instant parodies using words suggested by the audience.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 12:07 PM

A friend of mine does it very well: it often happens spontaneously in sessions when he's there, using tunes such as "Johnny Lad" or "She'll be coming round the mountain".


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 12:20 PM

Start with a talking blues, then try it to calypso. Try writing verses of the Wild Rover about your friends (then in walked the vicar, the post man, the barmaid, ....). You can develop the facility - but real songwriting. That'll take as much time as you've got.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 05:56 PM

After the defeat of Scotland by England in the Rugby World Cup yesterday, I found myself putting a few different words to "Caledonia".


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 06:01 PM

BTW, calypsonians do this all the time. I want to do it myself too, having problems. Maybe later after my exams :). I rhink you need a good knowledge of poetry/rhyme and the ability to think on your feet. But you probably already know that.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Deckman
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 06:11 PM

VODKA HELPS!


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: EBarnacle
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 09:17 PM

Practice about any subject: The water's wet and I am lonely... [to the tune of The Water is Wide"] sung and improvised in the shower, for example.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: gnu
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 10:15 PM

Some have the knack... Amos is one who seems to be adept at it, although it's not "immediate" within this forum. It takes him time to type. >;-)


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: Allan C.
Date: 03 Oct 11 - 05:50 AM

Only when forced ...

I was singing an unfamiliar song at a wedding. I had learned it at the bride's request - or at least I thought I had! I invented the last two verses out of whole cloth! BTW, few noticed; none cared.


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Subject: RE: Making up a song on the spot.
From: GUEST,SteveG
Date: 03 Oct 11 - 05:42 PM

Improvising and adding verses to existing songs was once a strong part of oral tradition. In fact in some oral traditions prior to widespread literacy ballad singers, we are told, used to remake songs every time they sang them using well used formulae and the basic plot.

Of course shanty singing is a good example of this improvisation.

The ubiquitous tune and chorus of the 18thc was 'Derry Down', that Derry Down that is used for 'The Deadnaught' and 'King John and the Abbot of Canterbury' and many thousands of other texts.

Bawdy singarounds often produce improvised verses particularly with catalogue songs like 'Sing us another one do'(Limericks) and 'The Four and twenty virgins'.

In fact we used to run a bawdy late-night session at Whitby festival. One night Johnny Handle was stood at the bar listening in for a couple of hours without contributing but getting well sozzled. We were just about to end the proceedings when Johnny lurched into the middle and launched into a song which he must have been making up on the spot as each verse was about a different person in the room. Needless to say it was well within keeping with the night's theme.


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