Updated: Nov 6, 2019
Our final brief was to combine a phrase and video clip to create a narrative. The class shared a clip from Big Fish (Burton, 2003), and our phrase was "It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live" (Rowling, 1997).
First Response & Inspiration
Martina and I have only written together once before, but balanced each other easily in our interpretation of the brief - Marti having seen the film and able to provide more context, and myself resonating with the quote.
A Collaborating Process
The video and quote were in direct contrast, encouraging and discouraging dreaming in turn. We decided to use this to create two streams of consciousness experienced by someone less than happy with life - the wish to escape into dreams paired with the guilt of daydreaming life away.
We ran with one of Martina’s first progressions and settled into comfortable roles - Marti mainly focusing on the harmonic, myself the lyric, and both of us the melodic. These roles quickly condensed and we worked separately on the second verse's lyrics (me) and the C section (Martina). This way of writing is useful in tight deadlines, and is the quickest form of collaboration for me personally. However, the strongest point of collaboration is the feedback you provide one another, which is stinted with this approach. The song became a little disjointed as we worked apart, but for the most part I actually enjoy its disjointed nature, as it fits with our two streams of consciousness concept, and splitting the song into a duet enhances this effect.
I knew the issues I had with the song - primarily centred on our C section - and the feedback we received echoed this. Becci suggested the transition into it needs some work, which both Martina and I had identified. I think the entire section would benefit from a more thorough look at instrumentation.
When Martina has recovered from injuring her wrist (!) I look forward to continuing this song, because it is one of the weirdest things I've ever written and that excites me tremendously.
Burton, T. (dir.) (2003) Big Fish. [DVD] Columbia Pictures. 125 mins.
Rowling, J. (1997) Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. London: Bloomsbury