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Blog: Songs of Place

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Songs of Place is a research project displayed in two halves by songwriter, music researcher and workshop leader Sam Hodgson.

Part One is an analysis of the techniques that songwriters use to create music about place and is in the form of an academic MA thesis. This online exhibition, Songs of Place, is Part Two. It is a response to those findings in the form of five new pieces of original music, written by the author. The five songs follow the cloth trail, starting in the streams of the mighty Marsden Moor and flowing through the old Piece Hall, into the churches, down the canal and out at the mills. Several other artistic contributions are include, such as songs, stories, poems, photos, and drawings.

The project includes an electronic response to the sounds of Bates Mill (Huddersfield), which features the following songwriting techniques:

  • Sampling sounds from the mill and using those sounds to form the basis of the rhythm tack and harmonic centre.
  • Interviewing one of the owners of the mill and using their words and phrases to create lyrical content.
  • Personifying the Huddersfield woollen cloth industry and it’s mills by comparing it to old age.
  • Using organisation and discipline when arranging sound files and creating music but then allowing for freedom, flow-state and intuition when it came to the creation of melody and lyrics.

For further information on this, as well as other aspects of the project please visit the Songs of Place blog. Songs of Place is a work in progress, so please keep an eye on the blog for changes and updates.

Website: songsofplace.blogspot.com

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