Tip #70 – Crafting with Asymmetrical Timelined Phrases

Take a look at the example below and figure out of there are any patterns:

You may have noticed that the middle staff if a 2-bar phrase that is repeated over and over again. Also, you may have realized that the staff at the bottom is a 1-bar figure played like an ostinato.

Everything looks even enough in the typical grouping you would expect for any composition until we look at the top staff. Surprisingly, it is at 5-bar phrase that doesn’t match-up as neatly as the other grouping.

These different lengths of repeated phrases within a structure create an asymmetric timeline for when everything will repeat and land back in sync.

Experiment with different phrase lengths that don’t match exactly with one another. Also, you can use some cool phasing techniques to develop lines!

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