what music arrangers do

6 Interesting Things That Explains What Music Arrangers Do

Everyone loves to listen to music. We all have our favorite song, but the vast majority of listeners do not understand what music arrangers do.

Ever since I left employment and ventured into the world of freelancing, I’ve been having a hard time explaining to people what my day job is.

The conversation would go something like this.

Person: “What do you do for a living?”

Me: “Oh, I’m a music arranger and a producer.”

Person: (Raises his or her eyebrow) 

 “What on earth is that?”

Understanding What Music Arrangers Do

A musical arranger, simply put, is someone who enhances the musical ideas of a song. He reimagines everything from a musical perspective and adjusts the elements that shape the beauty of a song.

We can begin to understand what music arrangers do by taking a look at the following.

Setting The Music Format Of A Song

A music arranger can change the flow of a song as he sees fit. Today’s songs follow a particular format.

A common example would be:

Intro – Verse 1 – Refrain – Chorus – Verse 2 – Refrain 2 – Chorus 2 – Bridge – Final Chorus – Coda.

A music arranger improves the structure of a song. He can tell you to omit the intro and go straight to the chorus.He may tell you to do just one chorus, or make the chorus your intro.

He can actually juggle all the parts of a song as he sees fit. 

Hence, arranging.

Deciding On What Chord Progression To Use

Deciding what chords to use is also part of an arranger’s job. He determines the chord progression of your music.

Some songs work with a simple chord progression, while others have a more exciting sound.It’s the musical arranger who is in charge of determining this technical aspect of a song or music.

There are arrangers who prefer to keep it simple by using very minimal number of chords.

Then there are those who likes to explore the various interesting sounds of chord progressions.

Use of Instruments and the flow of the music

Your favorite song on the radio may only have one instrument. It can also be a full band or an entire symphonic orchestra.

A good example is the hit song “More Than Words” by Extreme.

The guitar is doing all the orchestration of the song. 

It is also worth noticing that the chord progression of the guitar in the song “More Than Words” is absolutely stunning.

A musical arrangement can also have a full band performance.

A good example would be songs from bands like Journey, Guns and Roses, Air Supply and the list goes on and on.

Changing the melody, rhythm, and tempo

In most cases, arrangers do not change the tune of a song or a composition. 

Arrangers have tremendous freedom of re-imagining a given melody or tune of a song. They can alter a specific part of the melody if they feel the need to.

An arranger may speed up or slow down the tempo and change portions of the rhythm of a music. This is an integral part of what music arrangers do.

Enhancing The Vocals and Adding Harmonies

The single most crucial element of a song is the lead vocals. The vocals convey the message of the song.

An arranger can alter the parts of a vocal performance.

He may want to ask the vocalist to belt out a specific line in the chorus or sing softly at the coda.

The addition of vocal harmonies is also dependent upon the arranger. Vocal harmonies take many forms.

A duet, trio, quartet or an entire choir ensemble.

Making the vocal line attractive to the listener is an arranger’s job.

Finding The Right Key Signature, Styles, and Genre

A singer should always sing in a comfortable range and within the limits of his or her vocal prowess. 

That’s where an arranger is very helpful – determining the right key signature for a singer.

An arranger is especially helpful if a singer is competing. The arranger matches the music to the singer’s vocal range and singing style.

I wrote an article discussing how singers should prepare for a competition. Go visit the 8 Essential Steps To Prepare For A Singing Competition.

As I mentioned before, a song can start out as a lullaby and end up being a rock material.

Any song can have any genre or style of singing all thanks to your musical arranger.

The Music Arranger

Everything you’ve read so far is the technical aspect of an arranger’s job.

Think of your musical arranger as your house interior designer. An interior designer’s job is to make designs look pleasing to the eyes. Your musical arranger’s job is to make a song pleasing to the ears.

You can also learn more about the role of a music arranger from this article.

Amazing Acappella Version Kilometro Sarah Geronimo 2019

General Santos Philippines – talents from the city of Champions posted their original a cappella arrangement of Kilometro Sarah Geronimo. It is truly an amazing Acappella version of Sarah G’s Kilometro!

Last November 27, 2014, Philippine’s Princess of Popular Music released her song Kilometro in her album perfectly imperfect. Her album won the coveted award – ALBUM OF THE YEAR for the 28th Awit Awards held last December 9, 2015.

Amazing Acappella Version Kilometro Sarah Geronimo

The group’s name is Southern Rhapsodies. All of them are members of the General Santos Youth Choir. They are mostly seen performing for city events and festivals. Also worth mentioning, three of their members are winners and finalists of the General Santos City Pop Idol Program.

The man behind this arrangement is Fernan Globen Talonding a.k.a Bem of Bem Orchestrator Productions. He is a musical arranger from the southern part of the Philippines.

Support your local musicians because our top stars in radio and tv started as a local musician. Share this truly amazing acappella version of Sarah G’s Kilometro.

Beauty and the Beast by 2 Gensan Singers

Two GenSan Singers Sing Beauty and the Beast

Gensan Singers Sing Beauty and the Beast. Gensan Pop Idol has been is the biggest singing competition in the city of General Santos. Sponsored by the local government and headed by the Youth Affairs Development Program.

Director Elmer D. Cequiña founded this singing competition. Since then, it has discovered many talented singers of the city. More importantly, it has brought talents in national and international competitions. It is a yearly summer singing competition under the GenSan Summer Youth Festival.

Jay Zuyco sings the part of Peabo Bryson. Lyka Estrella sings the part of Celine Dion. We based this arrangement from the original soundtrack. As a result, we now have this amazing version.

The Beautiful and The Ugly

It’s a story that defies conventional standards of attraction and relationship. A beautiful maiden falling in love with a hideous creature. A former prince cursed because of his attitude. Love is his only way out.

A 1991 animated musical film fantasy by Walt Disney based on a french fairy tale of the same name. Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont wrote the story. She was not credited in the english version but in the french version.

The Original Sountrack

Released on October 24, 1991, the song was a sensational hit until today. It defined the childhood of many. It also aired in many radio stations back in the day and now Hollywood has produced a new movie and a new version of the soundtrack.

Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson sang the original soundtrack. I personally liked it even until today. Both singers were at the peaked of their careers during the release of this hit.

In this cover, two (2) Gensan Singers sing Beauty and the Beast. Bem Orchestrator Productions Produced the Music Video. Music Production by Fernan Globen S. Talonding. You can subscribe to Gensan Artist to see more amazing videos like this.

Kaibigang Kaibigan by Kuerdas Gensan

Kaibigang Kaibigan by Kuerdas Gensan 2019

They are considered to be the leading reggae band of South Cotabato – Kuerdas Gensan. The group has just released their newest single, Kaibigang Kaibigan by Kuerdas Gensan – Official Music Video. The song is about someone who dearly loves a friend but that friend could not love her back.

Kuerdas Gensan – Leading Reggae Band of South Cotabato

More or less 15 years of music making and advocating reggae music, Kuerdas Gensan is at a bright spot in their career. It didn’t come easy for the group though. Jayson Ugbaniel also known as “Angkol Onyok” the band leader, had it rough over the years. Looking for members to stay behind and actually be part of the team was a challenging task.

It was only recently that the group finally found the faces that stuck with the name Kuerdas Gensan.

Now, Kuerdas is a local icon when it comes to reggae music. If you happen to attend one of their performances, then you would know how well they can command their crowd to jam and dance with them. Their experience as stage performers shines through that their music connects with the audience in a way that no other local band can.

So, without a shadow of a doubt, this group is actually the leading reggae band of South Cotabato.

Kaibigang Kaibigan by Kuerdas Gensan

Kaibigang Kaibigan Official Music Video

Angkol Onyok” is not just the band leader but also the composer of most of the band’s music. It doesn’t come as a surprise anymore to know that he wrote this new work of art – Kaibigang Kaibigan

Music production involved the entire band in partnership with Bem Orchestrator Productions for the recording of the song Kaibigang Kaibigan by Kuerdas Gensan.

The video production was provided by Zoe Motion Pixel. Director of Photography and Video Editing by Eric Emit.