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#455126 - 02/01/18 10:55 AM [Beginners Forum] BIAB for live performance?
Monkster Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/01/18
Posts: 4
I'm considering purchasing BIAB to use on stage for live performance. Are there any other musicians out there that are doing just that? I've been doing a solo and duo for many years using midi and running my show from a laptop on stage. The laptop is ancient running Windows 95 and so is the Cakewalk 3.01 program that I use. It worked flawlessly for many years until the computer finally died recently. I can't find an old computer to take it's place because they've all been recycled and Cakewalk 3.01 won't work on newer computers. So it's time to upgrade since Cakewalk is now defunct!

I would like to get away from having to carry all my equipment to every gig because my setup is larger than most full bands. My questions are, does BIAB have good enough sounds to take the place of all my midi modules? Can I run straight out of the laptop to the PA and leave all my midi equipment at home? Are there catalogs of BIAB songs out on the web to access for songs that I don't have programmed already and does BIAB read midi files well? Thanks in advance for any help.

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#455132 - 02/01/18 11:17 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
VideoTrack Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/05/12
Posts: 8312
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Monkster, firstly welcome to the forums.

There are many users who do exactly what you want, using BiaB live on stage.

The RealTracks in BiaB are recordings of real instruments, performed by real musicians, and can give you excellent quality performances.

Some users also create their backing tracks and export as an Audio file (WAV, MP3 etc) and play those live instead of BiaB.

You can definitely send the laptop output to your PA, no question that this will work. You can also use a software synth inside BiaB for handling MIDI tracks. Forte DXi (available from PG Music) is a great way to go with very reasonable sounds and for only about $40.

Consider getting a small USB Audio adapter instead of relying on the 3.5mm stereo socket on the laptop - this is for reliability purposes.

BiaB can read MIDI files, and there are also many existing songs on the web. With native MIDI (not BiaB files), you may need to separate the data onto multiple tracks - RealBand, which comes with BiaB for Windows, can do this easily.

Hope this answers your question in some way.



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#455134 - 02/01/18 11:20 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
jford Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 10627
Loc: Pensacola, Florida
BIAB works well with MIDI; however, the sound you get is only as good as the sound module you use.

Also, unless you are looking to do exact covers (which require MIDI), BIAB also uses RealTracks, which are recorded audio phrases that adapt to your chord progression and sound like real live players because they are and were recorded by top studio session musicians.

Also, be aware the PGMusic offers a 30-day money back guarantee.

There are folks that use BIAB live; however, I would suspect most create either WAV or MP3 renderings of their accompaniment for both simplicity sake and consistency.

BIAB also comes with RealBand, a DAW that incorporates a lot of the BIAB song generation features.

Go listen to the User Showcase and you'll be able to hear some of the great original songs that people have used BIAB and RealBand to create. Browse the forum, and look at the video tutorials and you'll find yourself up to speed very quickly. And we users on the forum are happy to answer your questions.

Good luck.
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#455139 - 02/01/18 11:51 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: VideoTrack]
Monkster Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/01/18
Posts: 4
VideoTrack, Thank you for your reply. I feel more comfortable purchasing the program now and thanks for the tips. I had to cancel some gigs recently from my old laptop crash and really looking forward to getting back to work. BiaB sounds like an amazing program and can't wait to start working with it.

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#455144 - 02/01/18 12:17 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: jford]
Monkster Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/01/18
Posts: 4
jford, you answered one of my questions about sound in your first sentence. Since my laptop has both Realtek and NVIDIA High Definition Audio, I take it that those are the only sounds I will be hearing. Does BiaB come with any VST instruments, or if not, will BiaB be able to link up to them from other vendors?

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#455146 - 02/01/18 12:40 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
jford Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 10627
Loc: Pensacola, Florida
Your RealTek and NVIDIA will be just for audio. For the playback of MIDI into the audio stream, you'll need a softsynth. BIAB comes with a DXi synth called CoyoteWT (WT is short for Wave Table), which is actually just a wrapper for the low res GM MIDI Wavetable that ships with Windows computers (it takes the Microsoft sounds and and presents it to you as a DXi (DirectX synth).

Also for General MIDI (GM), PGMusic also sells the Coyote Forte synth (also a DXi synth) for $40, which definitely sounds better than the CoyoteWT, but still leaves a lot to be desired.

You also get the free Sforzando VSTi synth, along with several SFZ sounds provided by PGMusic, but it's not General MIDI and you'll have to assign instruments on a track by track basis for each song. However, there are tons of free and not so free sounds out there that Sforzando can play.

If you go the VSTi route, you will probably also want to purchase jBridge from PGMusic (I think it's $10), as that will let you run 64-bit VSTi's and VST effects in the 32-bit BIAB environment.

For VSTi's, you might want to explore VSTi offerings from IK-Multimedia (SampleTank) or Native Instruments (Kontakt). Those aren't cheap, but the sounds are much better, and again they are note General MIDI, so you would have to assign the sounds on a track by track basis for each song.

And of course, the RealTracks/RealDrums are just audio files, so they will play fine on your computer sound card.

Let us know what you are thinking and we can definitely go into more detail.
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HP Win10Pro-64, 8GB
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H/W-Behringer U-Phoria UMC404HD, Casio Kbds
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#455167 - 02/01/18 02:33 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
Bunyip Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/14/18
Posts: 18
Loc: Brisbane Australia
I recently bought BIAB specifically to create backing tracks to use live.

I save the songs as mp3 and load them on my ipad through iTunes. It helps having a mac pc but it is possible to use Windows to do this.

I use Onsong on my ipad to trigger the backing tracks which sync with the chord charts on Onsong.

I use a Line 6 Sonic Port from my ipad to a digital mixer, then to the PA.

This works really well and as I become more proficient in using BIAB I think I will get more refined backing tracks. The sounds in the basic BIAB that I have are good enough to begin with.

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#455173 - 02/01/18 03:27 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: jford]
Monkster Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/01/18
Posts: 4
jford, Thanks for all the ideas. I need to order BiaB and get my feet wet!

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#455191 - 02/01/18 04:40 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
VideoTrack Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/05/12
Posts: 8312
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
As a tip, go for the best package that you can afford. Certainly try to go better than the Pro pack which is essentially an entry level product. The larger packages contain significantly more features and options, and you'll get greater benefit especially if you intend to use to create backing tracks for performing with.
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#455216 - 02/01/18 11:34 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
lambada Offline
Expert

Registered: 12/18/06
Posts: 1189
Loc: Hong Kong
You need to think very carefully about using BIAB for live work. I do and I love it, but I don't have exact backings. I accept (and now like) the fact that my covers sound unique. If you are managing to get what you want with what you have, just upgrade to a midi player or a new computer and carry on. Alternatively you could probably get away with Karaoke files or minus 1 files. BIAB is a great product, but it's primarily a songwriting tool. You'll love it regardless, even if not just for writing backing tracks, but remember it's a steep learning curve as well.


Edited by lambada (02/02/18 12:12 AM)
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#455231 - 02/02/18 03:05 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
Rustyspoon Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/02/18
Posts: 1
Hey Monkster, or maybe other folks who might be interested... there was a giveaway of Cakewalk Sonar home. I know that Sonar went belly up, but Sonar home was just updated a couple of month before the announcement. As it is, it should last for many years.
Anyway, promotion is real, no need to buy anythng. Couple of friends got it there recently. Here is the link:

http://forum.cakewalk.com/m/tm.aspx?m=3718858&p=1

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#455260 - 02/02/18 07:06 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: lambada]
90 dB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/20/10
Posts: 4720
Loc: Florida
Originally Posted By: lambada
You need to think very carefully about using BIAB for live work. I do and I love it, but I don't have exact backings. I accept (and now like) the fact that my covers sound unique. If you are managing to get what you want with what you have, just upgrade to a midi player or a new computer and carry on. Alternatively you could probably get away with Karaoke files or minus 1 files. BIAB is a great product, but it's primarily a songwriting tool. You'll love it regardless, even if not just for writing backing tracks, but remember it's a steep learning curve as well.






I could not disagree more. BIAB/RealTracks/Drums excel on covers.


Regards,

Bob
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Dyslectics Untie!


https://90dbband.bandcamp.com/

https://soundcloud.com/90-db



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#455279 - 02/02/18 10:00 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: 90 dB]
VideoTrack Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/05/12
Posts: 8312
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
I agree with Bob. BiaB can provide you with unique and really excellent covers.
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#455280 - 02/02/18 10:03 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
Charlie Fogle Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 4527
Loc: South Carolina
Along with listening to songs in the User Showcase, to get an idea how a cover tune sounds that was created in solely in BIAB, I previously posted two covers on YouTube and provided links to the songs over in the 'I heard it on YouTube' forum.

Here's Listen to the Music


and "Cherish" by the Association

It was requested I leave out the lead soloist instrument in Cherish and the artist plays that instrument live during the performance.


Edited by Charlie Fogle (02/03/18 08:22 AM)
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#455302 - 02/02/18 12:16 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
90 dB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/20/10
Posts: 4720
Loc: Florida
Here is an example of what BIAB can do;



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kctbm65HXu8&feature=youtu.be



Regards,

Bob
_________________________
Dyslectics Untie!


https://90dbband.bandcamp.com/

https://soundcloud.com/90-db



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#461003 - 03/07/18 10:54 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Bunyip]
SteelScott Offline
Newbie

Registered: 03/27/16
Posts: 2
Loc: Gold Country CA
How is it working out for you, I travel so much I can't work up a band. I use windows and am figuring out a way to play my backing tracks without fiddling with a laptop. Good luck out there

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#461098 - 03/08/18 04:49 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: SteelScott]
Teunis Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/16
Posts: 255
Loc: Gold Coast, Queensland, Austra...
I think using BIAB to generate backing tracks is fairly simple and using RealTracks one can quickly achieve the sound of a "real" backing band. I prefer using wav files or more recently MP3s. It gives me the chance to mix the way I want and get the levels even. Using an usb sound card it is easy to plug my guitar in and have predetermined levels. I prefer the use of BIAB generated tracks to downloaded karaoke type tracks as I can get them to sound more like a live band behind me. I do my own guitar work, breaks etc. The BIAB band behind me has a couple of guitars, bass and drums sometimes with piano, or pedal steel, banjo, mandolin or fiddle not too much at any one time.

That's the way I like it (no egos to contend with and no arguments either).

Tony
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#489251 - 09/04/18 03:13 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: 90 dB]
Will Josef Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 09/02/18
Posts: 32
Wonderful cover. I'm impressed!

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#489312 - 09/05/18 06:37 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Will Josef]
90 dB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/20/10
Posts: 4720
Loc: Florida
Originally Posted By: Will Josef
Wonderful cover. I'm impressed!




Thank you.


Regards,


Bob
_________________________
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https://90dbband.bandcamp.com/

https://soundcloud.com/90-db



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#489553 - 09/06/18 01:30 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
WendyM Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/29/16
Posts: 178
Loc: UK
FWIW I create singing backing tracks in BB, don about a dozen so far,and once I am happy I freeze the tracks and balance it all in the mixer and then export it as a wav.These all get put in my andrex (joke) tablet and I create a playlist in the Player in there and bobsharunkle.
Works for me anyway,but then again Im still a beginner.
Wendy
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#491146 - 09/15/18 06:49 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
OldRoy Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/15/18
Posts: 1
I've been using BiaB through DOS, win XP and now Win 10 and have done 5 years of singing to and with my assisted living friends. I appreciate having immediate custom key and tempo changes available when running it live. Getting older means more computer mistakes so I still feel a beginner. I just ran into a lockup as described below.

My midi output driver, microsoft GS wavetable synth,is fully installed but not available. It is classified as "being used by another program" I tried a reboot a forced closing, by task manager, of the unresponsive BIAB file then another reboot to no avail.
I have no alternative synth and wonder how I can restore operation.I am due to be entertaining friends tomorrow!

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#491415 - 09/17/18 12:59 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
jazzmammal Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/08/05
Posts: 6556
Loc: Redondo Beach, Ca.
I just depends on what songs you're doing and how picky you are. Some songs do not have identifying musical hooks in them, like folk styles for example. Lots of strumming guitars with a bass. Dreams by Fleetwood Mac is an example of that. No problem. But take Charlies cover of Listen To The Music by the Doobies. That intro guitar rhythm lick is not from Biab. Either Charlie himself or someone else played that.

If you're the guitarist and will be playing that intro yourself no problem but a midi file will have that intro already programmed in. However, don't expect Biab to produce those song specific hooks. Satisfaction is another common one. Satisfaction without that iconic guitar part really isn't Satisfaction is it? How about the organ part in Gimme Some Lovin by Spencer Davis? Unless you're the keyboardist, you'll need a midi file for that one.

Without those hooks you don't have a song but if you're doing three chord country strumming tunes and you can finger pick along yourself, easy peasy.

I would not simply endorse using Biab for covers, too many unknowns. True backing tracks are not called cover tracks, they're backing tracks for a performer who's playing those parts themselves. In that context Biab is great.

Bob
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#491421 - 09/17/18 01:07 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: BIAB for live performance? [Re: Monkster]
jazzmammal Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/08/05
Posts: 6556
Loc: Redondo Beach, Ca.
Hi Roy, you just jumped into the middle of a thread (conversation) on the usefullness of using Biab live. That's a different topic than your problem and you should have started a new thread.

Without more details it's hard to come up with an exact answer but try this inside Biab: Options>Return To Factory Settings and let it reset itself. You'll have to go into your midi drivers window and reselect the Coyote Wavetable. This is assuming you're using a recent version of Biab.

Always post which version you have. Otherwise, we're shooting in the dark.

Bob
_________________________
Biab/RB latest build, Win 10 64 bit, Intel 4770, 256 Gig SSD, 16 Gigs Ram, Roland Sonic Cell, Kurzweil PC3, Hammond SK1, Korg PA1XPro, Garritan JABB, Hypercanvas, Sampletank 3, more.

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