“Enchantment” is the first song from the upcoming “Equinox” album. It is also the first symphonic piece that I’ve done in a long time.

Video footage taken while visiting Mt Tamalpais (Marin County, CA), Municipal Rose Garden (San Jose, CA) and the Pulgas Water Temple (Redwood City, CA).

Here’s the backstory…

I had been wanting to do an orchestral/symphonic piece for many years now. Fortunately some of the tools available nowadays makes it possible to create something that sounds pretty compelling in terms of authenticity. 

This song started as a simple chord progression with me humming the melody. Here’s the original sketch:

Once I had decided that I was going to work on this song idea for the concert, I made a full chart with lead melody and chord progressions:

While working on pre-production of the song I watched two very helpful video courses on Groove3:

Creating Realistic MIDI Strings

Creating Epic Cinematic Compositions

The latter being particularly useful as I ended up mirroring a lot of the approach outlined in the course. 

Here are some of my notes that I referenced while bringing the track up:

  • Follow the “Rules of Harmony” (this video by Rick Beato was particularly informative: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuSKULck394)
  • Determine parts per section (e.g. Strings, Horns, Woodwinds, Percussion, misc.)
  • Create new alternate version in Logic per section (to free up CPU resources when using the virtual instruments)
  • Stack multiple virtual instruments per section w/ different articulations to create a fuller sound
  • Quantize, humanize then scale % of quantization applied
  • Use mod wheel to write expression automation
  • Bounce to align (if necessary)