Arrangement of a song


I was just wondering if any1 could break down the basic arrangement of a HOUSE track....something easy or an easy template to work with. Thanks
if I were asked to do one right now, I'd ask the client to provide an example of what they mean by a basic house track, shove it into Amazing Slowdowner, and transcribe the shape and the chords. Then adapt that shape and harmony scheme ( it may only be one chord) and any significant features.

House Music

This is a hard question because of how many different sub genres there are in house music. They range from minimal 'tracky' pieces that are used by DJ's almost as DJ 'tools' - (basically beats that they can manipulate with effects during a set,) to full on R&B and gospel inspired vocal house music. In the same way Buddy Holly and Metallica can both be considered 'rock' music (at least according to the Rock Hall of Fame,) different styles of house music can sound completely different from one another.

Some characteristics of house music:

a) 4/4 or 'four on the floor' electronic bass drumming. The Roland x0x series of Roland bass drums are very popular, often a 909 kick is layered onto an 808 sub bass drum kick. Bass drums can be everything from a soft electronic heartbeat, to a heavy distorted bang or thump. The bass drum is perhaps the most important element to get 'right' as it formulated the tempo and reference point for DJ sets, a good house music recording accounts for the dance music crowd as it's audience, and professional DJ's as it's performer.

b) Tempos in the 110-130 BPM range.

c) Grooving, funk and jazzy inspired cymbals and percussions, Latin and African percussion are not uncommon. Synth percussion is also very popular, electronic disco toms and percussive synthetic 'hits' are used quite often.

d) R&B, gospel, jazz or blues inspired pianos, vocals, and synthesizers. Burbling, progressive arpeggiated synthesizer sequences are also pretty common.

e) House music samples loops and other elements from itself- as well as other genres and sources. Found sampling is not uncommon, there is a current, popular house music recording that samples from Barak Obama's 'Yes We Can' speech, for example. House music can have sexual or erotic components, or a very uplifting or spiritual feel. Even poetry has been set to house music following in the footsteps of poets like Gil Scott Heron. Dance music culture is often celebrated in house music lyrics and it can reference drug culture.

f) 'Trippy' effects, like flanging, deep unnatural reverbs, pitch effects and filtering effects are all pretty common in house music.

g) Progressive changes, 'tweaks,' or automated changes to synthesizer parameters over time, are common in lead and pad synthesizer sounds, as well as bass sounds. Beginning with acid house the Roland TB-303 Bassline became very popular for the futuristic bass effects that manipulating the knobs on the surface of the unit produced. Many other synthesizers are manipulated in the same way to produce 'trippy,' 'funky,' or 'futuristic.' effects.

h) In a lot of house music the emphasis is on groove and sound design rather than musical composition, although complex melodies and harmonies are not unheard of. House music styles are regional; Detroit, Chicago, New York, Paris and UK House all have stylistic differences, but are also influenced by each other and other regions.

One way you can quickly start to get a feel for house music is to assemble some basic tracks using some of the Apple Loops, whose names allude to 'House' - there are quite a few. Also Ultrabeat has some house kits and patterns, many of Logic's other instruments have patches whose patch-names allude to house music. Also Auto-Filter can produce a lot of the sweeping filter effects found in many house tracks.

Logic can be a very good friend to those making House Music!
Many thanks. This was a great analysis, even if I seldom dabble with House. We gotta change your "Junior Member" status.