Composing for an entire band

I'm not the most productive composer there is, but I think the few songs I've managed to complete have actually turned out quite well. I usually write jazz chord melody style songs, or acoustic fingerstyle in open tunings. This allows to take an idea, such as a riff or melody, and really work with it over and over, experimenting with harmonies, bass lines and counter melodies. It usually takes quite some time, but I feel I can let the songs grow naturally, in a way maturing as I work on them.

Lately however, I've been feeling like I want to do something for a band. I'm thinking something along the lines of progg/rock/jazz/fusion instrumental music, quite experimental and far out, yet groovy and accessible. Problem is, when I write, I can never imagine a song without access to the different instruments aside from the guitar in such a way that I get something that feels coherent. I can come up with a riff or melody, but without the context of a bass grove or piano harmony that I want, I feel I can't really work on the part enough for it to really become a piece of music. As of now, I'm just playing around with some phrase for a while, until I get bored with it and move on to something else. When playing a jazz chord melody, I just play the bass line myself, but I can't really lay down a low grove and at the same time play a soaring lead melody high up at the neck.

How do you guys approach writing for several instruments, when all you have to work with is you and your guitar? One reason for my problem might be that I don't have a band. Of course I could try to find one, but that's a bit of the reason I want to write some songs. It's easier to find the right people if you already have somewhat of a vision to show them.
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Comments

  • RolandRoland Frets: 1546
    You could write the parts in something like Musescore, which allows you to score and playback. 

    I have guitars, keyboard, and bass. Rather than constantly changing instruments I find it much more convenient to work out the music on guitar, score or tab the notes for the different instruments, and then listen to the playback.
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  • ClarkyClarky Frets: 2699
    I write for the band in the DAW [Logic Pro]
    then I can hear how all the parts work together
    think of it like creating a sketch
    play every note as if it were your first
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  • What Clarky said. 

    I play my part into the pc. Then play around with arrangements 

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  • DefaultMDefaultM Frets: 1646
    I'm the same. I've got one of the Akai MPD drum things, a keyboard, bass and my guitars. I record a really rough outline of it at home and then send to the rest of the band over whatsapp. Then they get the general idea and come up with their own parts.
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