Jurassic Park Cover

Here is my submission for the Jurassic Park Cover Contest (OneDrive link).

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AthV_8hBKsg8dDqbsbYoup-O-e0?e=IfrBeA

I enjoyed creating this cover as I had a chance to experiment with rhythms, harmonies and instrumentation. I hope you enjoy it.

Jen

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Hi Jen, I like your transitions and your tempo, you captured the theme and sound real well. Especially like your percussion with the strings. I am not experienced in this style but you did a great job in a difficult genre. Maybe exploring some different libraries for more texture and a fuller sound but the composition and arrangement is great.

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When I submitted my cover entry for Jurassic Park (link – [https://1drv.ms/u/s!AthV_8hBKsg8dDqbsbYoup-O-e0?e=IfrBeA%206]), I did not include a detailed explanation of my creative process. I found it very interesting to read about everyone else’s process, so here are my thoughts and choices in deciding how to score my cover piece for Jurassic Park.

When I learned that the song for this contest would be Jurassic Park by John Williams, admittedly, I was hesitant to include an entry. How could I attempt to alter a song from a talented composer like John Williams let alone the theme for Jurassic Park that has such rich harmonies and masterful orchestrations? After convincing myself to just “try” it, I decided that my song needed to have some contrast to the original–different genre, different instruments, new rhythms, but, of course, the recognizable theme intact.

For past several weeks, I have been listening to a lot of alternative rock songs from the 80’s (e.g., Depeche Mode, New Order, Erasure), songs with heavy synthesized sounds and fast tempo ranges (140 bpm to 150 bpm). This gave me some ideas about how I would compose my cover. For my composition, I chose the key of G, meter of 4/4 and selected the beginning tempo of 140 bpm, which is increased at the mid-point to 150 bpm.

Introduction: When creating the idea for the opening bars, I imaged that we were audience members, not in a concert hall, but in a stadium, and the rock band is on stage. The first notes are played on lead guitar. The simple melody is in quarter notes, then it is repeated, but with eighth notes. Now the audience’s ears perk up, noticing the change in the rhythm.

On to the next few bars, and there is a gentle continuation of the recognizable melody. Each instrument in the ensemble plays the motif, starting from low to high pitch, as if asking a question (picture human voice pitch rising from beginning to end when asking a question). It’s a mystery building. I wanted the listener to ask, “Where is this going?”

Main Theme: The main theme begins with a loud, pulsing kick drum to set a fast, high-energy tempo for this section. The strings, electric guitar, bass and snyths call out the main theme with the pounding drums. The piccolo, flutes, clarinet and oboes soon join the theme. This is the most dramatic part in the “movie.” The audience is on the edge of their seats here, holding their breath. We see them being chased by dinosaurs and our heroes running for their lives. Will they escape? Will this end badly? The instruments are describing the intensity of this scene in vivid detail.

The tense moment pauses as all instruments drop out, except the flutes and strings. Now what? What is going to happen next? The music continues the story. There is indecision and hesitancy.

The music changes. There is a sudden shift of the rhythm, which blurs the driving pulse of the 4/4 meter moving into a new meter, possibly. Something is definitely happening. We see in our mind’s eye that the heroes are hiding and waiting. Have they escaped the dinosaurs? Are they safe? The tempo suggests a calmer feeling, maybe the danger is behind them, or is it?

Theme #2: In the next section, we hear the return of the 4/4 meter in the drums. The dinosaurs are back, and the chase continues. The music uses the motif, which is handed off from one instrument to the next, darting around to add to the uncertainty in the scene, as if teasing the listener. Is this the end of our heroes?

No, it’s not the end, but only the beginning. The strings begin the driving ostinato, which hurls the piece into the full intensity of the battle between us and the dinosaurs. Every instrument is signaling, “This is it, the crucial moment. It’s now or never.” We hear each instrument playing its part–the theme, the harmonies, the ostinatos, the full drums. Then without any warning, it all abruptly stops; silence, and we hold our breath for that moment. Waiting.

Outro: Finally, a sigh of relief as we hear the winds and violin playing the theme softly again with a slower rhythm. Peace has come. The delicate sound of the harp arpeggio returns us to a happier place, and the wind instruments are in agreement. It’s serenity.

We know the end is near, but we hesitate, cautious. The flute and piccolo return slowly with a gentle, pianissimo dynamic. Are we safe or is this just another tease of a happy ending? No, it truly is the end. A peaceful ending as we are returning back home. We then arrive back to G major, from where we started. Everyone is safe and sound, heading home.

Instrument list:
Piccolo
Flute
Angel Choir
Clarinets
Oboe
Violins
Violas
Cello
Double Bass
Vintage Bass
Fingerstyle Electric Bass
Hybrid Guitar Piano
British Combo Synth Lead
Ethereal Guitar
12 String Guitar
Pads: Cold & Warm, Low Pad and Glass Bells
Harp
Piano
Bluebird Kit Drums
Stereo Drum Kit

Libraries:
ES2
Alchemy
Spitfire BBC Symphony
Sampler

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Hey Jen,

Really interesting composition. Loved how you took the semitone idea and just ran with it. There’s so much you’ve done to develop the idea, this should be very inspiring for people listening to your piece.

I have a few constructive points that may help you in your next composition too.

  • I really enjoyed each section as I’ve said but it would have been even better if there were transitions between most of them. As right now they all feel a little disjunct. So you could include passages that link them, or create longer passages that swell into each section perhaps? These are just a few ideas to create some cohesion in the sections.

  • the mix needs a bit of work, but it’s mostly good! :smiley: your melodic writing and counterpoint is strong, there’s lots of musicality where parts are bouncing off eachother which I love, but there’s not really a strong baseline. A solid, rhythmic baseline can help drive a piece, and could even be another way you could link passages. The 2 most important parts of a composition are baseline and melody, which is a good thing to keep in mind.

Other than that i very much enjoyed your piece :smiley: It’s great to hear your approach and thought process too. Very inspiring!

I hope my ramblings help you in the future! Solid composition!

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Interesting. I love when versions go further.
I really felt your sentence “Where is this going?”
As a feedback I could add that when trying to sound like electropop, quatizing notes is important to keep the electronic feeling.
Good job

Geoffrey,
Thank you for listening to my cover. I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts and suggestions. As I continue to learn about composition and mixing techniques, I welcome insights and ideas, like yours, on how to improve my skills.
Thanks again!
Have a wonderful day.
Jen

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Your welcome Jen. I’m here anytime you orcanyonecelsexwouldlike tips or support with their music :slight_smile: always happy to help, as others were there to help me when I first started :slight_smile:

Hope you shave a great day too!

Vincente,

Thank you for taking the time to listening to my cover and reading my description of my creative process. I appreciate your suggestion how to improve my composition. It helps to hear the perspective of fellow musicians in order to learn and grow. Thank you.

Have a wonderful day.
Jen

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I voted for you just because of your wonderful description and the amount of work you had with this composition. I think it is also a part of the contest to appreciate the work of the composer.
Keep it up
Sincerely yours,
Seventearsofhope

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