This week I was asked to produce a string arrangement for a dance track where they had to be very prominent. The brief was to make them sound aggressive and fast right from the introduction. The existing track was structured around four chords: F minor, B flat major, D flat major and B flat minor so there was ample opportunity to add rhythmically vibrant chords which repeated in staccato quavers. The accents gave the strings a dynamic style which will be compatible with the rest of the track. The challenge was to build up subtly throughout the track without peaking too soon but to give cohesion to the verses and chorus by retaining similar material. A string ‘hook’ appeared from the outset which then re-emerged later in the song, along with a counter melody in octaves in the violins which gave the piece added interest. The whole song died away at the end, the client seems pleased with the score and it’s now ready to be recorded by live session musicians.