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Author Topic: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star  (Read 426 times)

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Submission Information:

Series: Super Mario
Game: Super Mario Galaxy
Console: Nintendo Wii
Title: Observatory Dome
Instrumentation Solo Piano
Arranger: LeviR.star
« Last Edit: August 28, 2019, 01:16:55 AM by LeviR.star »
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LeviR.star

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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2019, 01:57:08 AM »

Title is from the European version of the Club Nintendo-exclusive album, Super Mario Galaxy: Original Soundtrack.


Just a few things I'd like to address here, because I failed to get anyone's help on this before I submitted it:

- the first measure was improvised with a two-hand rolled chord. Is the stem supposed to be connected like I have it for this type of rolled chord?
     - also on the first bar, I tried my best to pick out the pitches I heard. This rolled chord is the best idea I had for replicating what was in the original, but I'm all ears if someone else has any ideas to share
- is the caesura positioned correctly in the last bar? I had to make a manual adjustment based off of pictures I could find of its use
- am I crazy, or is the chord in m. 2, 4, 6, and 8 the only one to have a note an octave below the fifth? Are not all of the chords triads?
- I assume either simile or ped. simile will work for m. 4?
- the key signature is complete guesswork. I felt I had not much to base it on, other than the shere number of accidentals in the song
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2019, 12:32:12 AM »

Ayy good to see you expanding your arrangement horizon once again with these... weird synth-y sounds.

Just a few things I'd like to address here, because I failed to get anyone's help on this before I submitted it:

- the first measure was improvised with a two-hand rolled chord. Is the stem supposed to be connected like I have it for this type of rolled chord?
     - also on the first bar, I tried my best to pick out the pitches I heard. This rolled chord is the best idea I had for replicating what was in the original, but I'm all ears if someone else has any ideas to share
- is the caesura positioned correctly in the last bar? I had to make a manual adjustment based off of pictures I could find of its use
- am I crazy, or is the chord in m. 2, 4, 6, and 8 the only one to have a note an octave below the fifth? Are not all of the chords triads?
- I assume either simile or ped. simile will work for m. 4?
- the key signature is complete guesswork. I felt I had not much to base it on, other than the shere number of accidentals in the song
For the intro - it's fine to connect the stem like that if you like for a large rolled chord. But I don't think that's the best way to notate what's going on here. I'd suggest trying something like this since it doesn't all happen in quick succession like your sheet now implies (just a sketch, feel free to interpret it differently)



I think the caesura should be moved more to the right.

The chords you mentioned in m. 2/4/6/8 - I do hear the low Ab in the right hand in those if that's what you mean. I feel like I'm hearing E flats in those chords as well but I may be imagining that.

Yeah, the pedal markings you have are fine. I'd suggest sticking one in the first measure too, though.

Not too sure about the key signature. But it looks reasonable to me.

Also, when rolling a chord at the beginning of a piece it's probably easier to make an invisible pickup measure to make the playback work than adding another hidden staff. (I've seen or done this before several times)
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2019, 01:33:45 AM »

Ayy good to see you expanding your arrangement horizon once again with these... weird synth-y sounds.
For the intro - it's fine to connect the stem like that if you like for a large rolled chord. But I don't think that's the best way to notate what's going on here. I'd suggest trying something like this since it doesn't all happen in quick succession like your sheet now implies (just a sketch, feel free to interpret it differently)



I see what you're saying. I've fixed up a first sketch of my own, what do you think? I think at the moment, something's missing; I may have to re-do it.

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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2019, 02:21:30 AM »

Not bad, but I think it could reflect the thicker sound of the original via more than just single notes.
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2019, 03:19:29 AM »

Here's the food-for-thought Deku presented in my Personal Arrangements thread on modifying the first measure:

Yeah I have a folder full of stuff that I never posted. I'm slowly working my way through it to see what's worth posting and fixing up what isn't.

Anyway, here's the link. The layout still needs a little polishing but I won't really have time until the weekend.

There are probably dozens of ways that you can arrange the opening bar but I think the main things to bear in mind are making something that sounds good and isn't too ridiculous to play. Fancy flourishes can be a bit hard to execute for your average amateur pianist, so they're not always a good idea unless you're careful with how you distribute the notes between the hands. And transcribing exactly what's there won't always help you either. Try doing a rough transcription of the harmony and then messing around at the piano, you'd be amazed at what your fingers might come up with. And maybe consult some similar pieces and see what other composers have done? This track reminds me a little bit of Satie so he might be a good place to start.

And here's a closer look at his version of the first measure:



I also loaded up the Erik Satie Wikipedia article here to possibly use as reference.

Now, with this example by Deku here, I definitely don't want to copy it note by note. That said, I like what his idea presents and I'd prefer to do something similar, but the problem is that it would make this sheet more his than mine. What are you thinking, guys? Any ideas on how I can make mine better without necessarily stealing his idea? My ear has gotten better over the years, but Deku is much better at transcribing/arranging with his amount of experience, and this is just one of the many examples. I couldn't do what he's done even if I tried.

Thoughts?
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2019, 12:36:29 AM »

but the problem is that it would make this sheet more his than mine.

I don't think that's necessarily true.  If you just copy/pasted what he'd written into your arrangement then yes I'd agree with you, but having a look at how someone else arranged a piece and then using it as inspiration to make your own arrangement is totally fine and lots of good arrangers do it here.  Now that you know the sort of thing you'd like to aim for, have a mess around at the piano and see if you can write something down and I'm sure it'll be fine, and also it'll be your own even if it was inspired by what someone else did.

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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2019, 03:15:20 AM »

Okay, after an hour or two of work on the first measure, I think I've come up with something that might work. I tried my best to take inspiration from, but not come up with something not completely derivative of Deku's version, while still trying to stay true to the transcription side. But I figured that this is just one of those piano-arranging situations where nothing is by any means "right" or "accurate", so anything goes, right? I'm not entirely proud of this sheet, and if I could go back I might have submitted a different sheet, but I'm grateful for this learning situation, and all of you arrangers involved in helping me grow and understand.

Now, my only main question left concerns the accidentals. Do they look alright as they are?
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2019, 01:11:45 AM »

My thoughts:

I think you have the style down! But there are a couple of things that strike me as a bit odd.

First, the contour of the 16th notes: The original has a largely sweeping upward sound; while some notes come out of order, the general trajectory is up, starting on Bb and ending with some high sustained pitches. What you wrote with the first few sixteenth notes descends (C Ab G) as much as it ascends, resulting in quite a different feel. Another thing is the Ab-G-Ab chromatic sequence, which has a "confined" vibe instead of a "sweeping" one. (Hope that makes sense, I'm probably not putting this into words the best way.) If you look at the things that Deku and I suggested, the runs contain largely upward motion without small intervals between notes.

Second, the notes in the sustained chords: Again this doesn't sound bad, but very... different from the original to me; I'll try to put it into words again. The sustained notes in the original to me sound (roughly) like F, Ab, C, Eb, G - stacks of thirds. What you wrote is very heavily reliant on fourth intervals, making it sound way more "open" - not unlike something from Breath of the Wild. While it's a great sound, I'm not sure how well it reflects the denser sound of the sustained notes in the original. Again, I know we're not trying to match the original exactly here, but stylistically I think we can mess around with the piano notes to get something that sounds just as good but is more similar to the original.

It's up to you what to do with it, but I think we could some tweaks to keep the style but still reflect the original a bit better.

Also, another thing that needs improvement is the distribution of parts among the staff. Of course this comes after we finalize what notes to include but what's currently written isn't optimized for two hands well (the left hand part is awkward).

Hope that helps a bit, I don't mean to harshly criticize what you wrote.

(Also yes, accidentals look fine)
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2019, 07:33:35 PM »

Currently working on this sheet with Latios over Discord.
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2019, 02:41:49 AM »

After making a transition to college over the course of about half a week, I was able to come up with something slightly more like what Latios had in mind. I haven't been able to show him this latest draft, so I have posted it here. How does this look?
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2019, 11:03:12 PM »

Notes and key signature look good to me.  The main thing I notice is that in the first bar I think it'd be better to split it up between the staves like this:
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That way it more clearly matches with how the hands should play it I think.

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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2019, 11:25:17 PM »

I actually agree with Levi's way of writing it; you don't have to worry about repeating notes with one hand and the transition to the half note chord I think is easier with less physical overlap between hands.

(Also approving this)
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #13 on: August 28, 2019, 01:00:27 AM »

Ok! As long as having the last chord with a fermata instead of another improvised bar of synth is alright, I've got no other questions here.
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Re: [Wii] Super Mario Galaxy - "Observatory Dome" by LeviR.star
« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2019, 12:11:35 AM »

Fair, I'll just accept this then.
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