Arranging: Small Ensemble and Horns

Author: Jerry Gates   •   Course Code: OCWPR-231

Log in or sign up to sample this course

Whether you are writing for jingles, soundtracks, or pop songs, knowing how to write/arrange for smaller bands and larger ensembles is crucial to your success. Arranging: Small Ensemble and Horns explores the properties of the trumpet, trombone, and alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones and approaches the techniques and melodic embellishments that will give you a basic understanding of writing/arranging for these horns as a section. In this music arrangement course, you will focus on applying writing processes for two-, three-, four-, and five-part horn combinations; skills that can be applied to both live instrumentation and sampled or synthesized sounds. You really can't write effective sequenced parts without knowing what real players would characteristically play on these instruments. This music arrangement course will provide you with a greater understanding of the possibilities and sounds that the horns as a section can add to your arrangement.

By the end of this course, you will:

  • Learn to identify chord symbols
  • Understand trumpet and trombone instrumentation
  • Understand the instrumentation breakdown of saxophones
  • Write within a given key and transpose to fit a specific instrument (unison writing)
  • Understand and complete an arranging process
  • Understand melodic development
  • Write two-part and three-part soli sections

Lesson 1: Chord Symbol Identification

  • Major Chords
  • Minor Chords
  • Dominant Chords
  • Augmented Chords
  • Diminished Chords
  • Half Diminished Chords

Lesson 2: Rhythm Section Notation Review

  • Drums: 3-Part Notation
  • Drums: Stop-Time Notation
  • Drums: "Kicks Over Time" Notation
  • Bass: Written Out Pitches
  • Bass: Rhythmic Notation with Slashes
  • Bass Activity 2
  • Guitar
  • Guitar: Melodic Lines
  • Guitar: Comping Parts
  • Keyboards: Melody Parts
  • Keyboards: Comping and Solos

Lesson 3: Instrumentation: Trumpet and Trombone

  • Trumpet
  • Trumpet With Concert Pitch Melody
  • Breakdown of Ranges by Area
  • Trumpet Mutes
  • Tenor Slide Trombone
  • Pedal Tones
  • Trombone Range Breakdown
  • Slide Positions

Lesson 4: Instrumentation: Alto, Tenor, and Baritone Saxophones

  • Eb Alto Sax
  • Alto with Concert Pitch Melody
  • Breakdown of Ranges by Area
  • Bb Tenor Sax
  • Tenor With Concert Pitch Melody
  • Breakdown of Ranges by Area
  • Eb Bari Sax
  • Bari Sax With Concert Pitch Melody
  • Breakdown of Ranges by Area

Lesson 5: Unison Writing

  • Writing within a Given Specific Key
  • Transposing to Fit a Specific Instrument
  • Combinations of Horns on Unison Melodies
  • Two Octaves Playing the Melody
  • Three Octaves Playing The Melody

Lesson 6: The Arranging Process and the Midterm Project

  • Considerations Before Writing Pitches
  • The Arranging Process
  • Midterm Project Review

Lesson 7: Melodic Development

  • Eighth-Note Anticipations: Melodic Development
  • Quarter-Note Anticipations
  • Eighth-Note Delayed Attacks
  • Quarter-Note Delayed Attacks

Lesson 8: Melodic Development Continued

  • Straight vs. Swing
  • Sixteenth-Note Anticipations
  • Sixteenth-Note Delayed Attacks

Lesson 9: Harmonization: 2-Part Couplings (Soli Writing)

  • Melodic Couplings: Diatonic Thirds and Sixths
  • Intervals of Fourths and Fifths
  • Seconds and Sevenths
  • Orchestrating the Harmonized Melody

Lesson 10: Three-Part Soli Writing

  • Harmonizing A Diatonic Melody with Triads
  • Diatonic Approach-Chord Harmonization
  • Chromatic Approach Chord Harmonization
  • Applying Triadic Voicings to 4-Part Chords

Lesson 11: Three-Part Soli Writing (Continued)

  • Tension Substitution
  • Omit 2, 3, or 4 Technique
  • Harmonization with Diatonic Major and Minor Triads
  • Special-Case Voicings

Lesson 12: Background Lines

  • Voice Leading Background Lines
  • Common Tones in Background Lines
  • Creating Complex Background Lines
  • Final Project

Jerry Gates

Author & Instructor

Educator, composer, arranger, and bassist Jerry Gates has been a music industry professional for over thirty - five years. His television and radio credits include Bank of America, Log Cabin maple syrup, Scope mouthwash, Marlboro cigarettes, and music preparation for "The Dennis Miller Show," jazz great Bill Holman, and film composers Jack Smalley and Richard Band. As a professor at Berklee College of Music, he teaches Contemporary Arranging Techniques, Directed Studies in Arranging, Contemporary Twelve-Tone Composition, Orchestration, Writing and Production in the Studio, and Music Preparation courses. His latest music can be found at https://soundcloud.com/jerrygatescomp.

Jerry's most recently completed projects include orchestrating, conducting and producing a string session for the soon to be released Middle Eastern television series titled, "Sultana." The main composer for this series is Hassan El Shafei. He composed the electronic score for a retrospective on Florida's poet laureate, the late Edmund Skellings titled, "Ed Skellings – In His Own Words." Additionally, he composed, directed and produced music for Nestle's "Wonk Your Room" online promotion campaign. As an author, Jerry has written a book entitled "All Twelve—Dodecaphonic Sources For Contemporary Composition" and is currently writing an arranging book for Berklee Press and Hal Leonard tentatively titled, "Arranging for Horns."

He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Berklee College of Music, a Master of Music/Composition degree from the Hartt School, and graduated from both the Television/Film Scoring and Composing/Arranging certificate programs at the former Grove School of Music in Los Angeles, CA.

Prerequisites

Completion of Arranging 1: Rhythm Section or equivalent knowledge and experience is required. Recommended experience in a DAW of choice.

  • Ability to write scores and record for the rhythm section
  • Basic understanding of music and music theory including intervals, chords, major and minor scales, and key signatures
  • Ability to read both treble and bass clef notation

Required Textbooks

None required


Software Requirements

  • You can produce scores in Finale (full version) or Sibelius and submit them as PDF, JPG, GIF, or pasted into DOC files. Note that Finale Notepad, PrintMusic, and Finale Guitar are not sufficient for use in the course. You can handwrite scores, scan them, and submit them as PDF, JPG, GIF, or DOC files.

Mac Users

  • OS X 10.9 Mavericks or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Windows Users

  • Windows 7 or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Hardware Requirements

  • If you are going to create scores by hand, you will need a scanner to put them in electronic format (see Software Requirements above for acceptable formats)
  • 2 GB RAM (4 GB recommended)
  • 500 MB hard drive space
  • Speakers or headphone
  • Webcam
  • Internet connection with at least 4 Mbps download speed (http://www.speedtest.net to verify or download the Speedtest by Ookla app from your mobile app store)

Comments

Got a question? Contact our Academic Advisors by phone at 1-866-BERKLEE (U.S.), 1-617-747-2146 (INT'L), or by email at advisors@online.berklee.edu. We can also answer basic questions in the comments below. Please note that all comments are public.




  • Level
  • Duration
    12 weeks
  • 3-Credit Tuition
    $1,479
  • or
  • Non-Credit Tuition
    $1,229

Contact an Academic Advisor

Mon-Thu, 9AM-8PM ET
Fri, 9AM-5PM ET
Call or Text Us at

US: 1-866-BERKLEE
Int'l: +1-617-747-2146


Create a Free Account

Request Information

Create an account to download our catalog, get our newsletter, and more.

Stay Informed About This Course

Create an account to download our free course catalog, and receive updates about this course.

  Secure form. Berklee Online will not sell or rent your email address to third parties.
Our privacy policy