Hey everyone! Today’s post will be another cover that’s not arranged in a usual style – my Hello World’s OST, “Yesterday” arrangement.

Introduction

If you read the description, you’d have seen that the arrangement is an amalgamation of 2 songs – the theme song “Yesterday”, and the shorter OST “直実告白、両想いに” (I shall henceforth refer to this song as the “other song” since there’s no official English translation for it). You can listen to both songs here:

To be frank, I originally didn’t notice that both OSTs were on the same theme, since the day I arranged it was the day I just finished watching the movie and binging the movie soundtrack album that night. It was only around my second time listening to the entire album where I noticed “wait… something about this song feels familiar-OH WAIT IT’S THAT THEME”. So… there you have it 🙂

The post is going to be short, as there isn’t anything really special about the arrangement process, no techniques hidden inside, but the creativity part that I hope to be able to write in this post is the thought process of merging the 2 songs together.

The Thought Process

Jumping into “Yesterday”, it’s hard to imagine how the song would sound like if the tempo was slowed down, the upbeat style was changed to something more melodramatic, and have the overall vibe of the piece be a 180-degree change.

Hence, the first step to arranging Yesterday in an acoustic way is to not listen to Yesterday first, but the other song. That would give you a “template” of how the song would sound like.

Transcription of the other song, with the melody raised an octave higher.
Transcription of the other song, with the melody raised an octave higher.

The idea behind the style is relatively simple.

  1. Strip away all the countermelodies, ad-libs and other layers, and use a simple melody and accompaniment.
  2. Single note broken arpeggios do the job really well in keeping the piece simple and peaceful vibe of the song.

Application – Imitation is flattery

Once we figure out the fundamental idea behind the song, all that’s left to do is to apply it on the other parts of “Yesterday” – namely the intro and everything that’s not included in the other song.

Intro to “Yesterday” with the rewritten style.
Intro to “Yesterday” with the rewritten style.

The notes highlighted in green is present in the original music, brought to a different world to give a different feeling to the overall piece.

The second half of the chorus through the end.
The second half of the chorus through the end.

After the first chorus, we bring the energy up again as we’re nearing the end, hence bringing it to a climax with grander chords spread across more octaves. From bars 41 onwards, we use those little notes as an echo to end, contrary to its original purpose, closing out the song.

Conclusion

This post may be slightly harder to understand since it requires one to shift your own perspective and look at the song from a different angle. Some may probably say that its really risky to do so, since you may accidentally wreck the whole song’s purpose, say for example taking a really serious and grave song with deep meaning and rearranging it to some happy song which completely destroys the piece. I do agree with this though, and I mean, sure, one should be allowed to interpret music in their own way however they like it, though one should also be careful to not overdo it and smear the meaning of the song.

Anyways, hope you’ve learnt something from this post on re-arranging songs to different styles! It’s not the first time I did it like this actually, as you can see from my acoustic cover of Minami’s “Kawaki wo Ameku”.

The final arrangement of the Hello World theme song, Yesterday, can be found here, with download links to sheets for interested parties!

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them down below and I’ll reply to them whenever I can! See you in the next post!


YXY Piano Covers | Nayu

Anime pianist in training!

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