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#36691 - 09/17/09 10:28 AM Using BIAB for basic rhythm exercises
laowai Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 2
I just downloaded the demo of BIAB and am very impressed.

I am a beginner student of jazz piano. Right now I'm using ABRSM's "Jazz Piano From Scratch" book + CD. The book has lots of great exercises for building basic skills. For some of the rhythm exercises, the book suggests using a drum machine or a partner, but I think BIAB should work great.

Right now I'm trying to set up BIAB to do a "call and response" or "trading fours" rhythm exercise in which the drums would play an improvised rhythm for two measures and then leave a gap, also of two measures, for me to fill in a response. This is different from the "trading fours" function in Soloist since it only involves rhythm, no melody. Here's the solution I've come it with so far --

1. I set the style for DRUMSOLJ which is just drums.

2. I filled in the following repeating pattern of chords: C C | C. C. | C C | C. C.| etc. (that is, 2 measures of computer-generated drumming followed by a 2 measure silent break).

3. I lowered the tempo down to around 70-80 BPM for starters.

This solution is working pretty well. The drums play a random improvised solo for 2 measures then leave me a space to either practice echoing the question or create my own answer. However, it still needs tweaking. Here are the two problems that I haven't solved yet:

1. The default BIAB setting seems to allow the drums to only loosely follow the play/break/play structure. That is, every so often the drums "bleed" into the third measure or start early in the fourth measure. This may be more realistic and desirable later, but for right now I'd like to figure out a way to get the drums to strictly play only during the first 2 measures and then go silent for the entire next two measures.

2. With surprising frequency (especially if I alternate the call/responses every measure rather than every 2 measures, viz C C. | C C. | etc) the computer generated drums will only hit a single cymbal crash for the entire "solo." Is there any way to tweak the settings to ensure that the drums always play at least, say, 2 strokes?

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

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#36692 - 09/17/09 12:51 PM Re: Using BIAB for basic rhythm exercises [Re: laowai]
Mac Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 38502
Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Your problems may be because you are attempting to do this with RealDrums. That may be a bit complicated for the RealDrums generator.

Try using MIDI drums instead. Not as real sounding, but plenty to learn there and there are a LOT more styles available. MIDI should follow those Rest commands to the letter.


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#36693 - 09/17/09 02:53 PM Re: Using BIAB for basic rhythm exercises [Re: Mac]
laowai Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 2
Thanks Mac! I switched to the MIDI drums and that seems to work. The MIDI drums follow the rests very cleanly >90% of the time. They still hit an occasional beat in the middle of the break for some reason, but it's not enough to throw me off (the RealDrums would sometimes play right through the rest!) Also, the MIDI drums seem to be automatically playing a greater variety of riffs.

Thanks again!

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#36694 - 09/25/09 07:43 AM Re: Using BIAB for basic rhythm exercises [Re: laowai]
PeterGannon Offline
PG Music Staff

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 11322
laowai,

There's a dedicated feature for this in BB. It is called Break Bars. Edit-Prefs-Display gets you there.

You set the program to play for N bars, and then break for M bars. In your example, you would set N=2 and M=2.

This works on all songs, until you turn the break feature off. It is intended for musical practice, where you need to keep time when the band drops out, and can see when the break ends if you've sped up or slowed down.
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PG Music Inc.

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#36695 - 10/01/09 07:55 AM Re: Using BIAB for basic rhythm exercises [Re: PeterGannon]
pghboemike Offline
Expert

Registered: 07/13/02
Posts: 1355
Quote:

It is called Break Bars. Edit-Prefs-Display gets you there.




fyi

in biab 2009.5 this feature is available via Edit-Prefs-arange and checking the insert breaks checkbox
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