Technical Support FAQ:
Band-in-a-Box® 8 and Earlier for Macintosh

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Please contact support@pgmusic.com if you would like to report any errors that you find on this page, or if you have any suggestions for new FAQ topics.

Last updated:  Tuesday, 13 October 2015

All Topics

  1. No Sound / MIDI Driver Setup
  2. What is MIDI?
  3. How do I enter notation in Band-in-a-Box®?
  4. How do I use OMS or FreeMIDI to connect my external synthesizer to Band-in-a-Box®?
  5. When a manufacturer says a synthesizer/module has 64 voice polyphony, what do they mean?
  6. What is the difference between polyphonic and multitimbral?
  7. How do I create a shortcut (alias) on my desktop to open Band-in-a-Box®?
  8. How do I set up my USB Fastlane under OMS?
  9. If I install a Classic (OS 9) version of Quicktime on my computer that also has OS X, will it affect the OS X version of Quicktime?
  10. How do I start up in Mac OS 9.2 from OS X and vice versa?
  11. How do I set up Band-in-a-Box® to play through Quicktime if I am using OMS or FreeMIDI?
  12. What causes an Error Type 1 and/or Error Type 2?
  13. How do I change from 3/4 to 4/4 time in the middle of my song?
  14. How do I create and use Band-in-a-Box® Styles in 6/8,12/8,9/8 and 5/4 time signatures?
  15. How do I add my personal styles to the Band-in-a-Box® StylePicker list?
  16. How can I make my song endings more natural? Can I hold the last chord in the song and have it fade out?
  17. Is there a fermata (pause) capability or some way to simulate it?
  18. Why do I have jerky playback when I use Quicktime?
  19. How do I get Lyrics to line up in Band in a Box?
  20. I'm trying to change an instrument (patch), but every time I press play, my instrument selection changes.
  21. How do I display 'Swing' notation (triplets) and 'Even feel' notation (sixteenths) in the same song? How do I enter quarter note triplets?
  22. How do I use tag endings?
  23. Can I import and play MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box®?
  24. Who owns the songs that I create with Band-in-a-Box®? Are the songs copyrighted?
  25. How do I rest more than one bar at a time?
  26. How do I create a backup of the MySetup.dk file?
  27. How can I easily raise or lower the velocity (volume) of all notes in the melody track?
  28. Can I enter a melody into Band-in-a-Box® using the computer keyboard?
  29. How can I combine multiple Band-in-a-Box® songs to make a medley, or copy and paste part of one song into another?
  30. I am having trouble recording into Band-in-a-Box® with my Wind Controller.
  31. What are the numbers for in the StyleMaker bars?
  32. How do I get chords to sound on the off-beat, or create syncopation in my music?
  33. Please explain the song structure in Band-in-a-Box®.
  34. How do I access higher bank patches in Band-in-a-Box®? What are MSB and LSB?
  35. How do I make a patch map for my synthesizer?
  36. Can I export my song from Band-in-a-Box® to another MIDI sequencer?
  37. Can Band-in-a-Box® input chords for my melody?
  38. Why don't the Styles that I just installed appear in the StylePicker window?
  39. How do I enter more than 2 chords per bar in Band-in-a-Box®?
  40. How do I enable and disable the lead-in bars or count-in?
  41. Why do I hear the drums playing with a piano patch?
  42. Why does Band-in-a-Box® generate notes below low E (E2) on a bass?
  43. I want to use 2/4 time in my bluegrass song, but it doesn't 'hold'.
  44. How do I set the right key or visually transpose the music for my non-concert instrument?
  45. Why does Band-in-a-Box® keep looping 4 bars over and over?
  46. How can I control Band in a Box from an external start switch?
  47. Can I edit tracks other than the Melody and Soloist in Band-in-a-Box®? Why do the notes I just edited disappear when I press play?
  48. When I run Band-in-a-Box® I get "zzjazz.sty not found" and "Some required files missing" error messages.
  49. The option to turn on fretboard inlays on the guitar doesn't seem to work.
  50. Are Mac and PC versions of Band-in-a-Box® songs compatible?
  51. I am having trouble using FreeMIDI and my Mark of The Unicorn (MOTU) interfaces.
  52. How can I adjust the volume of individual harmony parts?
  53. I accidentally deleted the BBW.LST file or messed it up. How can I fix it?
  54. Why do the drums I record in my drum window sound like another musical instrument when I play them back?
  55. I get a memory error when installing the Band-in-a-Box® MegaPAK.
  56. Program gives a "zzjazz.sty not found" error when running over Mac Manager network.
  57. How do I control the MIDI sounds I hear when I record or play live along with Band-in-a-Box® from my MIDI keyboard?
  58. Why aren't all of the styles in my BBW.LST file listed in the StylePicker?
  59. My Band-in-a-Box® instruments sound like drums.
  60. How do I set up the Roland SD-20 for use with Band-in-a-Box®?
  61. Why is there a delay from my keyboard in Band-in-a-Box® when using QuickTime through OMS?
  62. How do I use the Roland VSC with Band-in-a-Box®?
  63. Can I use Band-in-a-Box® on Mac OS X?
  64. Why am I unable to download updates and other files from your website?
  65. Explain the different file extensions that Band-in-a-Box® uses for song files.
  66. Why do I get the error "Unable to pick guitar pattern" when I try to play a song?
  67. Why do I get an ".ST2 not found" message when I try to generate a solo?
  68. How can I return Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings?
  69. The chord symbols in my song don't show up when I save the song as a MIDI file and import it into another program.
  70. I am having trouble playing the video tutorials.
  71. Why do my Band-in-a-Box® icons appear as generic "document" icons?
  72. How can I clear the "Favorite Songs" and "Favorite Styles" windows?
  73. Why does the Melodist generate notes outside the "Melody Note Range" specified in the Melodist editor?
  74. How do I get a simple metronome or click track in Band-in-a-Box®?
  75. When I launch the program I get the message "Some required files for BIAB are missing or not found"
  76. When I type a chord into the chord sheet, it automatically transposes my chord and displays a different chord than what I typed.
  77. How do I install update patches for Band-in-a-Box®?

1. No Sound / MIDI Driver Setup

If you don't hear anything when you try to play a song in Band-in-a-Box®, here is what to do:

If you are using your computer's internal sounds, make sure that the volume is turned up and not muted. You can check this by going to the Apple menu | Control Panels | Sound.

Check your MIDI Driver Setup. In Band-in-a-Box®, go to the M menu and click on **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime. Here you will select one of the following:

  • QuickTime - if you want to use the internal Macintosh sounds (Quicktime Instruments). You can check if Quicktime Music Synthesizer is installed by going into the Apple menu | Control Panel | QuickTime Settings, and selecting Music from the pull-down menu.

  • OMS - if you are using OMS as your MIDI driver, and connecting an external synth or module (usually via your computer's USB port), or using a software synthesizer such as the Roland VSC. You will need to go to the M Menu | OMS Parameters (Choose Ports) and set the BIAB Input and Output Ports. Click here if you are having trouble setting up OMS.

  • Standard Interface - if you are hooking up an external module or synthesizer via the Printer or Modem port. You would likely only use this if you have older equipment. Make sure that in the M Menu | MIDI Settings, you have the Printer or Modem Port selected, depending on which port you are using.

If you have an external MIDI synthesizer or sound module connected to your computer, make sure your MIDI cables are connected correctly. MIDI cables are generally labelled IN and OUT. Make sure that:

  • MIDI OUT on the synth is connected to MIDI IN on interface.

  • MIDI OUT on the interface is connected to MIDI IN on the synth.

If you are using OMS and are trying to play through Quicktime, check that Quicktime is enabled in your OMS Studio Setup:

  1. Close Band-in-a-Box®

  2. Open your current OMS Studio Setup, which should be located in the OMS Applications folder on your hard drive.

  3. Check to see if there is a red cross through "Quicktime Music". If so, double-click on it, select ON, and press OK.

  4. Save your studio setup (File | Save).

Check to see which version of Quicktime you are using by going to the Apple menu | Control Panels | Quicktime Settings | 'About Quicktime'. If you are using version 5.x, you may experience one of the following symptoms:

  • No sound.

  • Jerky playback or occasional stuttering.

  • Poor quality sound in general.

This problem isn't specific to PG Music software, and can be solved by upgrading to Quicktime 6. Click here for more information.

If your computer has Mac OS X, please read our tutorial on how to run Band-in-a-Box® on OS X.

2. What is MIDI?

MIDI is an acronym for MusicalInstrument Digital Interface. The MIDI specification is maintained by the MIDI Manufacturers Association (MMA). We havewritten a couple of short starter tutorials on MIDI:

There are many other MIDI tutorials on the internet, which you can find using any internet search engine.

3. How do I enter notation in Band-in-a-Box®?

Band-in-a-Box® offers one of the quickest methods of notation input. Remember though, it was never developed to be a dedicated notation software package, so some of the problems you may run into will have to do with that limitation. For typical leadsheets though, this notation is more than adequate.

First, you need to be in editable notation mode. Open the Notation Window, and press the [N] button once to toggle from regular notation mode to editable notation mode.

When inputting notation, all you do is place your mouse arrow where you want a note and press mouse button. This will place a dotted whole note at that position. If it is in the second half of the bar, you will get an automatic 1/2 note rest in the first half. You will still get a dotted whole note in the second half of the bar. Don't worry if the first note you enter isn't the type of note you want it to be. The next note you place will determine the value of the first. Remember that the subsequent note placed always determines the value of the previous note. If you want to shorten a previous note, you can select the rest box and place a rest between the notes at the value you want the previous note to be. Notes inserted between other notes will automatically set the value for the previous note as well.

While inserting a note on the staff, holding down the [Shift] key will make the note 1 half-step sharper. Holding down the [Ctrl] key will make the note 1 half-step flatter. Holding down the Command key forces the note to be a natural. To delete a note from the Notation, hold down the delete key and click on the note.

You can change the beat resolution (the number of intervals in one beat) using the 'Resolution' setting in the Notation Window. For example, if you set this to '3', you will be able to enter triplets. If you set it to '4', you will be able to enter sixteenths.

4. How do I use OMS or FreeMIDI to connect my external synthesizer to Band-in-a-Box®?

In order to use Band-in-a-Box® on OS 9 or earlier with an external synthesizer or sound module, you need to use either OMS or FreeMIDI. OMS and FreeMIDI allow communication between your MIDI programs and your hardware devices. Band-in-a-Box® 11 supports both OMS and FreeMIDI, while Band-in-a-Box® 8 and earlier only support OMS. Note that neither OMS or FreeMIDI will work on OS X in Classic mode. You would need to upgrade to the OS X version of Band-in-a-Box® to be able to use an external synth.

OMS can be downloaded from Opcode's website: http://www.opcode.com. If the Opcode website is not available, you will need to search the internet to find OMS from another source. Here are the basic steps for setting up OMS and Band-in-a-Box® to use an external MIDI device connected to the Printer, Modem, or USB port:

  1. Download and install the most recent version of OMS (OMS 2.3.8).

  2. Install the drivers for your MIDI interface according to the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

  3. Restart the computer.

  4. Run the OMS Setup. Go into the Opcode Folder | OMS Applications | OMS Setup.

  5. Go to the File Menu | New Studio Setup. Click OK.

  6. Assuming your MIDI interface is connected to the USB port, leave Modem and Printer both unchecked and click the Search button. You will see a list of devices. Click OK (Notice it appears to search again).

  7. The next screen appears to be similar to the previous except you should be able to select Ports for your interface (You may need to scroll down to see them). Select the appropriate Ports. Click OK.

  8. Save the Studio Setup as My Studio Setup.

  9. Restart your computer.

  10. Launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to the M menu | **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime.

  11. Choose OMS then click [OK].

  12. Click on [Set BIAB Input Devices]. Select the Port that you are using (not the Interface), and click [OK].

  13. Click on [Set BIAB Ouput Ports]. Again, choose the Ports, not the interface. If you want all of the Band-in-a-Box® tracks to play out through the same port (the most common setup), select the port for the Bass track and click [<--Set all ports to this].

Note:

  • If OMS is greyed out in Band-in-a-Box®, either it is not installed on your computer, or you are running Band-in-a-Box® on OS X in Classic mode. OMS will only work if you are running Band-in-a-Box® on OS 9 (or earlier).

  • If you go to set up the Ports in Band-in-a-Box® and the Ports are not listed, you may need to delete My Studio Setup in the Opcode | OMS Applications Folder and redo the setup.

  • If you want to use Quicktime for output, make sure that this is selected in the [Set BIAB Output Ports] dialog, and make sure that Quicktime is not disabled in your studio setup.

5. When a manufacturer says a synthesizer/module has 64 voice polyphony, what do they mean?

The manufacturer is referring to the number of sounds the module can play at the same time. A 64 voice module can play 64 sounds all at the same time. Some synths use more than one sound/voice to create a fuller sound for some patches. The number of partials (combinations of sounds) a patch uses will determine how many voices will be used for a single note. For example, if you press one note on a patch that has 3 sounds in it (like a layer of piano, strings and brass), you would use up 3 voices of your 64 available. Add a Bass track, (1 note, 1 voice) Drums (4 notes in some places) Guitar (3 notes) ..... well, you get the picture. You are using up the available voices as you add layers to your MIDI song. Remember, this is fluid; as notes are released, more voices become available. It is really only an issue when all tracks play all notes all at the same time. A 64 voice module has a fair number of voices to use so running out of sound is not really an issue.

6. What is the difference between polyphonic and multitimbral?

Polyphony refers to the number of notes the unit can play simultaneously. A trumpet is monophonic, while a guitar can have up to 6 note polyphony (six strings). Your synthesizer might be 16, 32, or 64-note polyphonic. Sometimes, in a complex MIDI file, there are more than 64 notes sounding at a time. In this case, a smart synth will use an algorithm to determine which note to suspend playing so that it might continue.

A synthesizer is Multitimbral if it can produce more than one type of sound at a time. This is usually set to the number of channels the unit has. For example, on a 16 channel unit with 64 note polyphony, the synth can play 64 notes at a time, spread out over 16 different instruments.

7. How do I create a shortcut (alias) on my desktop to open Band-in-a-Box®?

Open the Band-in-a-Box® Folder on your hard drive. Click on the file named 'Band-in-a-Box®' to highlight it. Go to the File menu and select Make Alias. The alias should appear in the Band-in-a-Box® Folder, and you can drag it to the desktop.

8. How do I set up my USB Fastlane under OMS?

If you are having difficulties with the recognition of your Fastlane interface in the OMS Studio setup, make sure that you have installed the "USB for OMS only" driver located in the CD provided with the Fastlane Interface. The next time the OMS Driver Search is activated, the USB Fastlane will be recognized.

There is additional USB Fastlane setup information available at MOTU's website: http://www.motu.com

9. If I install a Classic (OS 9) version of Quicktime on my computer that also has OS X, will it affect the OS X version of Quicktime?

Quicktime 4.1.2 and 6.0.3 are two examples of Classic versions of Quicktime. If you are running Band-in-a-Box® 11 or earlier on OS X in Classic mode, you can install a Classic version of Quicktime on your computer, and it shouldn't affect the OS X version of Quicktime that you use with your OS X applications.

10. How do I start up in Mac OS 9.2 from OS X and vice versa?

To start up in OS 9 from OS X:

  1. Go to the Apple menu and click on 'System Preferences'.

  2. Click on Startup Disk and select Mac OS 9 in the Startup Disk dialog.

  3. Click [Restart], then [Save and Restart].

To start up in OS X from OS 9.2:

  1. Go to the Apple menu | Control Panels | Startup Disk.

  2. Select MAC OS X and click [Restart].

11. How do I set up Band-in-a-Box® to play through Quicktime if I am using OMS or FreeMIDI?

First, check to make sure that your Master Volume level is turned up. You can check this by either using the master volume control in Band-in-a-Box®, or by going to the Apple menu | Control Panels | Sound.

If you are using OMS:

  1. In Band-in-a-Box®, go to the M menu and click on **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime. Choose OMS and click [OK].

  2. Click [Set BIAB Input Devices]. Put a checkmark beside the port you are using and press [OK].

  3. Click [Set BIAB Output Ports]. Click on the Bass field and select QuickTime Music. Then click on [<--set all ports to this] and press [OK].

If there is no sound when you play a song:

  1. Close Band-in-a-Box®

  2. Open your current OMS Studio Setup, which should be located in the OMS Applications folder on your hard drive.

  3. Check to see if there is a red cross through "Quicktime Music". If so, double-click on it, select ON, and press OK.

  4. Save your studio setup (File | Save).

If you are using FreeMIDI:

  1. In Band-in-a-Box®, go to the M menu and click on **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime. Choose FreeMIDI and click [OK].

  2. Click [Set BIAB Output Ports]. Click on the Bass field and select QuickTime Music. Then click on [<--set all ports to this] and press [OK].

12. What causes an Error Type 1 and/or Error Type 2?

Type 1 and type 2 errors occur when a segment of memory is inaccessible, reserved or non-existent. These system errors are most likely caused by extension conflict (explained below), insufficient memory, or corruption in an application or an application's support file. If the error occurs in only one application, try trashing the application's preferencesfile. The application will create a new one when launched. A damaged preferences file may cause these errors. You can also try allocating more memory (RAM) to the application. The application must be entirely closed when you do this. Check the Finder to ensure the application is closed.

For OS 8.5 and below:

  1. Select the application file

  2. Go to File | Get Info

  3. Increase the value in the Minimum and Preferred Size text boxes.

OS 8.5.x and above:

  1. Select the application file

  2. Go to File | Get Info | Memory

  3. Increase the value in the Minimum and Preferred Size text boxes.

*Note* Allocating more RAM to one application will leave less RAM for others.

Other possible solutions

  • Rebuild your desktop by pressing the Apple and Option keys simultaneously after the 'About this Macintosh' screen disappears during startup.

  • Zap your PRAM by holding the Apple, Option, P, and R keys simultaneously when your Mac starts up. The screen will blink. When the Mac is done loading, you will have to reset your control panels to your desired settings.

Extension Conflicts.

If the above suggestions do not help in the remedy of the Error type 1 or 2, then it is recommended to disable Extensions 5-10 at a time until the conflicting Extension is isolated to the group of 5 -or- 10, then disable 1 at a time until the conflicting Extension is pin-pointed.

*If you have a rather elaborate setup with 100's of extensions, it may be a good idea to reduce the amount of active extensions by using the following method:

  1. Open Extensions Manager by way of Apple | Control Panels | Extensions Manager.

  2. In the Select Set: field, select MAC OS 8.x or 9.x Base

  3. Navigate through the Extensions Folder, and check the appropriate checkboxes for your Interface(s), and OMS or FreeMIDI (You may need to contact the Manufacturer of the Interface for Extensions needed).

Necessary OMS Extensions

  1. USB OMS MIDI Driver

  2. Open Music System

  3. OMS USB Manager

  4. OMS Preferred Device

Necessary FreeMIDI Extensions

  1. FreeMIDI System Extension

  2. FreeMIDI PowerPlug

Band-in-a-Box® and the Roland VSC-88 do not have extensions.

Once the essential extensions are selected for use in Extensions Manager, reboot your computer, and try the procedure again.

13. How do I change from 3/4 to 4/4 time in the middle of my song?

In order to do this, you should start out with a 4/4 style. Using the F5 key (Edit settings for current bar), you can switch between 3/4 and 4/4 at any point in your song. There are other ways to do this, but starting with a 4/4 style instead of a 3/4 style is easier, as dropping a beat is easier than creating one that doesn't exist.

14. How do I create and use Band-in-a-Box® Styles in 6/8,12/8,9/8 and 5/4 time signatures?

Band-in-a-Box®'s StyleMaker creates styles in 3/4 or 4/4 only. However, consider that 6/8, 9/8, & 12/8 styles are justvariations of 3/4 or 4/4 - you can make and use styles in these time signatures to get the same effect.

  • 12/8: Band-in-a-Box® considers 12/8 to be a variation of a 4/4 style (i.e. a 4/4 style with a triplet feel). To make a 12/8 style, just make a 4/4 style in a triplet feel. In other words, one bar of 12/8 is equivalent to one bar of 4/4 in a triplet feel. For an example, choose the "Country 12/8" style from the S menu.

  • 6/8: This is similar to 12/8. Two bars of 6/8 make up one bar of 12/8, so 6/8 is done in 4/4 as well. Think of 6/8 as 2 beats of 4/4 in a triplet feel. For an example of this, go to the S menu, and select the "Irish" style. You can set the number of beats per bar to 2 in the Edit | Settings for Current Bar dialog (F5).

  • 9/8: This is like a waltz (3/4) style in a triplet feel.

  • 5/4, 6/4, 7/4 etc.: Songs in time signatures like 5/4 and 7/4 can be made. Just pick a base time signature of 3/4 or 4/4, then highlight the bars in your song and select the time signature of 5/4 or 7/4 using the Edit | Set Time Sig of Scrap menu item. Note that for time signatures higher than 4/4, each bar of 5/4 etc. will be spread over two or more bars in Band-in-a-Box®. For example, 5/4 alternates between a bar of 3 and a bar of 2.

You can use the Search function in the StylePicker to find styles written for a specific compound time signature.
Note: Styles Set 38 for Band-in-a-Box® ("About Time") has many excellent styles with unusual time signatures such as 5/4, 7/8, 11/8, 14/8, and 19/16. These styles have been written so that, for example, a bar of 5/4 occupies exactly one bar in Band-in-a-Box®, rather than being spread out over two bars. Styles Set 38 requires Band-in-a-Box® Version 11 or higher.

15. How do I add my personal styles to the Band-in-a-Box® StylePicker list?

Band-in-a-Box® styles need to be placed in the 'Styles' folder, within the 'Band-in-a-Box® Folder' on your hard drive, so the program can find them. This does not automatically add them to the list of styles in the StylePicker window, however you can still access them by pressing the .STY button or F9 on your keyboard. If you get a "style not found" message when trying to play a song, this typically means that the style is not in the Styles folder. To add your styles to the list of styles in the StylePicker window, edit the BBW.LST file found in your Band-in-a-Box® folder, and add your new styles group (~), and new style name and info (@). Our own styles installer does this automatically for PG Music Inc. styles. If you edit this file, be sure to make a backup of it, since it may be overwritten when you upgrade Band-in-a-Box® or install a new Styles set.

More information about editing the BBW.LST file:

The Style List is built from a text file called BBW.LST. You should only have to edit this file if you need to change the list of styles, or add styles that you have created. This is the text file that defines the styles that appear in the StylePicker Dialog box in Band-in-a-Box®. You can use a text editor such as SimpleText to edit this file and change the information, add/remove styles etc.

  • Any line beginning with a semicolon ";" is a comment.

  • Lines beginning with ~ indicate a new category like Jazz, Country, or Pop.

  • Lines beginning with @ are a description of a style in the format @ab^c*d,where:

    • a = Style file name eg. zzjazzsw.sty (max. 8 characters + .sty )

    • b = Long Style Name eg. Jazz Swing Style (max. 32 characters)

    • c = Memo

    • d = Examples of songs that can be played in this style. c and d combined can be max. 255 characters. For example, c could be 200 and d could be 50.

Each style description must be on one-line; carriage returns are not allowed in the middle of a style description. Once made, you add the new information to the StylePicker by choosing the Rebuild option inside the StylePicker dialog. This rebuilds the binary file bbw.lsv. You can list a style more than once, for example Pop Ballad might be listed under both the Jazz and Pop Ballad categories. You can make your own categories, like "My Favourites", and add existing styles to them.

Example excerpt from the BBW.LST file:

~Jazz
@ZZJazzSW.STY Jazz Swing Style^This is the "built-in jazz swing style"using bass, drums and piano. Bass plays half notes in 'a' section and walks in 'b' section.*Satin Doll, Sweet Georgia Brown.
@A.STY This is A^ How about this A style Useful for A songs.
@BluHill.sty Blueberry Hill Style^This is Blueberry Hill*Fats Domino songs.
@GARNER.STY Errol Garner Style^This is garner*I'll Remember april.
@GARNER2.STY Errol Garner Style #2^This style is in 2 feel for a and b*Sunny Side of The Street.

16. How can I make my song endings more natural? Can I hold the last chord in the song and have it fade out?

If you want to get a more natural ending on a song, such as a held or sustained chord, here is what to do:

  1. Go to the bar that you want held (the last bar in your composition).

  2. Press ALT-F5 (Edit | Chord Settings) and hold all instruments.

  3. Decide how many bars you want the chord held/sustained for. Type in any chord other than the last held chord (it doesn't matter what chord you use, because it will be rested).

  4. Press ALT-F5 again, and rest all instruments at this bar.

  5. Mark this bar as the last bar in the song

NOTE - This does not work if you are using an automatic 2 bar ending. You can enable/disable the automatic 2 bar ending in the Song Settings dialog (Song | Additional Song Settings)

29. In the Select Soloist dialog, what do the bracketsaround some of the Soloists mean?

The Soloists in brackets are Soloists that are in a different feel than the style you are using. For example, when you're in a swing style, you would see some 'even feel' Soloists in brackets, because they wouldn't be the best Soloist to pick. If you do pick one of the Soloists in brackets, Band-in-a-Box® will do its best to make it sound good. For example, if you pick an even feel soloist in a swing style, Band-in-a-Box® will play it in a swing feel and make other 'humanizing' changes. NOTE: Some Soloists are set to "Auto-load" particular styles that they work best with - this is indicated in the Memo notes for the style.

17. Is there a fermata (pause) capability or some way to simulate it?

You can simulate a fermata by doing the following:

  1. Put the cursor at the chord where you want the fermata and press CTRL-F5 (Edit | Chord Settings). Choose the "hold chord" option (all instruments).

  2. With the cursor still on that chord, press F5 (Edit Settings for Current Bar) and set a % change in tempo to, for example, -15 or -20, etc., depending on the duration you want.

  3. To play the original tempo again, move the cursor to the next bar, press F5 and choose an appropriate % change in tempo (15, 20, etc).

18. Why do I have jerky playback when I use Quicktime?

Check to see which version of Quicktime you are using by going to the Apple menu | Control Panels | Quicktime Settings | 'About Quicktime'. If you are using version 5.x, you may experience one of the following symptoms:

  • No sound.

  • Jerky playback or occasional stuttering.

  • Poor quality sound in general.

There was a problem with the way that Quicktime 5 handled MIDI playback with 3rd Party applications. This problem isn't specific to PG Music Inc. software. The solution is to upgrade to Quicktime 6.0.3, the latest version of Quicktime for OS 8/9. You can download the Quicktime 6.0.3 installer for OS 8.6/9 from here: http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/. Make sure to select OS 8/9 before starting the download.

While we don't normally recommend this, you could also "downgrade" to Quicktime 4.1.2. Follow the instructions below to install Quicktime 4.1.2 on your system:

  1. Download the QuickTime 4.1.2 installer from Apple's website: http://www.apple.com/. To find the download, go to the support page and do a search for "Quicktime 4.1.2".

  2. Go to the Extensions Folder and delete the QuickTime Extensions.

  3. Go to the Preferences Folder and delete the QuickTime Preferences.

  4. Go to the Control Panel and delete the QuickTime Control Panel.

  5. Go to the Control Strip Modules Folder and delete the QuickTime strip.

  6. Folders such as QuickTime Player and QuickTime PictureViewer should also be deleted.

  7. Restart your System.

  8. Install QuickTime 4.1.2.

If you are running Band-in-a-Box® 11 or earlier on a computer with OS X, see our OS X page for moreinformation: http://www.pgmusic.com/tutorial_osx.htm.

19. How do I get Lyrics to line up in Band in a Box?

Currently, only "line-based" lyrics are available in Band-in-a-Box® for Macintosh. The lyric line used for line-based lyrics is only a space to put lyric text. It is in no way tied to notes. If you are having a problem with the way your lyrics are lining up, try going to the Print Options window and deselecting 'clef sign at every line and 'Key signature at every line'. This will stop the notation from getting pushed out of alignment with the lyrics. All bars but the first four should line up correctly after this.

20. I'm trying to change an instrument (patch), but every time I press play, my instrument selection changes.

The instruments that play in Band-in-a-Box® are style specific. This means that the style selects the instruments you hear. When a user changes the instrument for a selected part, that part stays changed only until the song is stopped and played again. When playback is started, the style that you are using sends program change messages that set each track to the default patches for that style.

If you want the patches to stay as you selected them, you need to use File | Save Song with patches... to override the style settings. You can manually type in your instrument choices for the song (note that 0 just means "no change"), or press the [Fill w/ Patches] button to read in all of the current instrument selections. You need to do this after you change the patches to what you want, but before pressing Play again.

An alternative is to edit the style itself using the StyleMaker (User | Edit Existing User Style | [Patch]), and change the default instruments used by the style. By doing this you are changing the way the style will play every time it is selected. You should consider using 'Save As' in the StyleMaker to create a new version of the style before editing it - this way you don't have to worry about modifying the original style. Your new style won't automatically show up in the StylePicker window, but can be accessed using F9 or User | Load Style from disk. If you want to add the new style to the StylePicker list, please see FAQ 15.

21. How do I display 'Swing' notation (triplets) and 'Even feel' notation (sixteenths) in the same song? How do I enter quarter note triplets?

You can switch between Swing and Even feel notation entry by setting the 'Resolution' to either 3 or 4 in the Notation Window Options dialog. For eighth note triplets, enter a note on three consecutive dotted lines. For quarter note triplets, enter a note on every second dotted line. Note that while your music will always *play* the way you input it, you may not always be able to get triplets to *display* exactly how you want.

22. How do I use tag endings?

In Band-in-a-Box®, a tag is a group of bars played after the final chorus of a song. You can find tag settings under Edit | Additional Song Settings). Set the 'Tag exists' field to Yes and then choose the tag starting and ending bars. If you have "Generate 2 bar ending" selected, this will play automatically after the tag. Note that the tag will only work if there is more than one chorus.

23. Can I import and play MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box®?

You can import any part of a MIDI file into the Melody track by using MEL | Import Melody from MIDI file. Usually this feature is used to import only the melody from a MIDI file. If you import more than one instrument to the Melody track this way, you will want to switch the Melody track to a multi-channel track by going to the MEL menu and selecting the 'Track type'. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Choose MEL |Import Melody from MIDI file. If you wanted to import to the Soloist track, you would use SOL | Edit Soloist Track | Import Soloist Part from MIDI File

  2. Select the MIDI file from the open dialog.

  3. If you just want the Melody be sure to select only the channel the Melody is on for importing. Otherwise select all MIDI channels. Click [OK]

  4. A dialog will appear informing you that the file has been imported.

  5. If you imported more than just the melody, you probably will want to set the Melody track to multi-channel, otherwise everything will play using only one instrument. Click MEL | Track Type and set it to Multi-Channel

  6. MUTE all Band-in-a-Box® tracks except for the Melody by clickin on the [M] button, followed by the track. You can now play your MIDI file.

24. Who owns the songs that I create with Band-in-a-Box®? Are the songs copyrighted?

The arrangements made by Band-in-a-Box® are yours, and your songs may be used freely as long as they don't infringe upon the intellectual property rights of others.

25. How do I rest more than one bar at a time?

From the Chord entry grid:

  1. Click on the bar you want to rest and press Option+Z.

  2. Place the chord, select rest type, and the instruments needed to be rested. Click OK.

  3. Highlight all the bars to be rested.

  4. Go to Edit | Copy rests. Press OK.

26. How do I create a backup of the MySetup.dk file?

If you take a long time setting up a default setting for how Band in a Box starts up (MIDI channels, Patch Map, Drum Kit, Combos), it is probably a good idea to make a backup of this file. That way, if it gets overwritten or you return the program to factory settings, you will not need to reset everything again.

  1. Set up your MIDI channels, patch map, drum kit, and combos/favourite instruments, the way you want.

  2. Go to the M menu | Save MIDI Setup/Drum Kit.

  3. Type in a file name other than 'MySetup.dk'. For example, 'Start.dk'

  4. If you ever return the program to factory settings and lose your settings, you can reload your settings by using M | Load MIDI Setup/Drum Kit.

27. How can I easily raise or lower the velocity (volume) of all notes in the melody track?

Choose Mel | Adjust level of Melody, and choose how much you want to increase ALL note velocities on the melody track. You can choose 127, and all notes will be set to maximum velocity (127). For example three notes with velocities 30, 67, and 110 would all be set to 127(maximum). If you choose 10, 10 will be added to all velocities. For example, three notes with velocities 30, 67, and 110 would be set to 40, 77, and 120 respectively.

28. Can I enter a melody into Band-in-a-Box® using the computer keyboard?

Here is a method that you can use to record a melody into Band-in-a-Box® using the computer keyboard:

  1. Go to the Play menu (Song menu on the Macintosh) and make sure 'Wizard Playalong Feature' is enabled.

  2. Start recording.

  3. Choose any key on your computer keyboard (N for example) and strike it in time with the notes of your melody. The idea here is not to get the note pitches right, just the durations.

  4. When you have finished, keep the take. Next, put the Notation Window into editable notation mode. Go through the melody and drag the notes up or down using the mouse, to get the pitches right.

29. How can I combine multiple Band-in-a-Box® songs to make a medley, or copy and paste part of one song into another?

There isn't a single feature in Band-in-a-Box® that will do this automatically, however it can be done in steps. You need to copy the chords separately from the melody, solo, and lyrics.

You can copy the chords from one song to another by simply highlighting the chords in one song, selecting Edit | Copy, then opening the other song and selecting Edit | Paste. Adjust the number of bars per chorus accordingly in the destination song.

You could use the following method to copy the melody/solo/lyrics from one song to another. Say that "song 1" is the file you are copying from, and "song 2" is the file you are copying to (the destination file) and you want to copy the melody:

  1. Open Song 1.

  2. Determine how many bars from the start of the song the part is that you want to copy. If you have "Include 2 bar lead-in in MIDI file" checked in the Edit | Preferences dialog, add 2 bars to account for the lead-in.

  3. Take note of how many bars you want to copy.

  4. Mute all tracks except for the Melody track. To do this, click on the [M] button near the top left-hand side of the screen and click on Bass. Do the same for Piano, Drums, Strings, and Soloist.

  5. Click the .MID button to save the song as a MIDI file. Save it to the clipboard.

  6. Open Song 2 and determine how many bars from the start of the song you want to paste the section.

  7. Go to Mel | Import Melody from clipboard. In the 'Import MIDI file - options' dialog, pay particular attention to the following settings:

    -# bars to offset from start of MIDI file: The number of bars from the start of the song that you found in step 2.
    -How many bars to import?: This is the number you found in step 3.
    -# blank bars to insert at beginning: This is the number of bars you found in Step 6 plus 2 bars if there is a lead-in.
    -'Merge with Existing Data on track': This should be checked unless you want to erase/overwrite any existing notation in the melody track of Song 2.

  8. Press OK.

The other thing you may need to do is set up the part of your destination song that came from song 1 with the same style, patches, tempo, etc., as you had in song 1. The Edit | Bar Settings (F5) dialog will be useful for this.

30. I am having trouble recording into Band-in-a-Box® with my Wind Controller.

When using a wind controller with a computer program, make sure to filter out most of the MIDI information that is sent from the controller. The default settings have an 'avalanche' of MIDI information, which can take up much of the CPU time reading it, or overwhelm the MIDI buffer. Other than that, you should be able to use it as a normal controller. There are Record Filter settings in Band-in-a-Box® that can allow you to choose to ignore much of the MIDI information that gets sent.

31. What are the numbers for in the StyleMaker bars?

The numbers in the style editor have to do with what is referred to as weight, or percentage / randomness of time that this pattern will be played from 1 to 8. If it has a weight of 9, it will always get played if the mask criteria are satisfied. Band-in-a-Box® uses these patterns to generate musical arrangements. Band-in-a-Box® houses 1 and 2 bar patterns and 1 and 2 beat patterns in a style on an instrument-by-instrument and sub-style basis. How often each pattern will get played will be determined first by the number of chords in a bar then by the 1 - 9 value. A 2 bar pattern gets played if there is only 1 chord at the beginning of 2 bars. A 1 beat pattern is chosen if there are more than 2 chords close together in a given bar.

32. How do I get chords to sound on the off-beat, or create syncopation in my music?

This can be done by pushing the chords when you enter them into the Band-in-a-Box® chordsheet. To push chords, enter one caret (^) to play the chord an eighth note early and two carets (^^) to play it sixteenth note early.

You are allowed to enter 4 chords per bar in Band-in-a-Box®, that is, one on every beat in 4/4 time. If you were 'counting' the timing for the downbeats only, it would of course be 1 - 2 - 3 - 4. If you were counting the timing for the upbeats AND downbeats, it would be 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & (the "&" being the upbeat). You can enter a "^" (caret) sign before any of the chords in the 4 positions of the bar, and have that chord 'pushed', or played on the "&" count (that is, the upbeat). However, if you change the chord on the upbeat, it will play for a duration of a dotted quarter note. You cannot change it to something else on the NEXT downbeat. In other words it won't play an eighth note by itself.

Try this example: Open a new song and set the style to Country 4/4 (it's under the S menu). For the first bar of the song enter these 4 chords: C,C and C,^F (all 4 chords in the first bar, remember the caret before the F chord). In the second bar, enter F,F and F,F. Now use Ctrl-W to get to the notation display and press Play. Click on the B at the bottom right of the menu bar to display the Bass notes. You will see that there are 3 C notes, being 2 quarter notes, one eighth note and then a dotted quarter F note. The second bar has 4 quarter notes of F - the chord changes from C to F after counting 1 & 2 & 3 (that is, it changes on the & or the upbeat after the 3). Because you have used up the 4th beat in the first bar with your ^F designation, you cannot change the chord to anything else on beat 4

33. Please explain the song structure in Band-in-a-Box®.

Band in a Box uses the Jazz convention that a "Chorus" is the whole song. This topic covers the terminology of:

  1. Intro

  2. Verse

  3. Chorus

  4. Bridge

  5. Tag

You'll need to use the "Framing Controls" of Band-in-a-Box®, where you set the chorus begin bar, the chorus end bar, and the number of choruses to repeat.

INTRO
How long an intro is, and what is included, is determined by what is in the 1st number box of the framing section of Band-in-a-Box®. So if your first chorus starts at bar #17, you have from bar #1 to #16 (16 bars) to do what ever you want to with. You could create a standard intro, or with instruments coming on one at a time every 4 bars. You may place part markers, to go from lighter to heavier feels. You may include as many bars as you need to, but this section will only play once.

VERSE/CHORUS Section
"Chorus begins at bar #17" means that everything from bar 17 to the "Chorus ends at" bar (lets choose 48) will play or repeat as many times as you have indicated in "#choruses". In this section it is a good idea to make full use of the part markers, which will give your song a different feel, especially in the bridge.

BRIDGE
Contained within the main framing section of the song, the bridge is usually emphasized with the use of the "B" substyle. To make your song even more interesting, Band-in-a-Box® allows you to do style changes at any bar. Experiment with two styles that are similar, and later with wildly different styles.

THE TAG
The tag can also be used similarly to the intro. You can make it as long as you like. It will fall outside of the "chorus begins at" and "chorus ends at" section, so it will only play once. It could consist of the chords for a bridge, a key change and chorus restatement, then a full ending. Note: A Tag will only be active if there is more than one chorus set to play.

THE 2 BAR ENDING
This automatic feature can be selected if you do not want to create your own ending with held bars/instruments and/or rests. It will add 2 bars, or start 2 bars early to end on the last designated bar if you choose.

34. How do I access higher bank patches in Band-in-a-Box®? What are MSB and LSB?

There are 3 things that control which sound is played:

  1. Patch or Program Change.

  2. Bank MSB, or controller 0.

  3. Bank LSB, or Controller 32.

Each of these can have a value from 0 to 127. When you are only interested in using the General MIDI instruments on your synth, you only need to worry about the Patch or Program Change. MSB and LSB can be left at 0. However, most synths have patches on higher banks beyond the General MIDI set of instruments, and if you want to access these sounds, you will need to use Bank changes.

At one time, no synthesizer had more than 128 sounds. As technology progressed, musicians demanded more sounds. The MIDI Association then developed a new MIDI command called the Bank Select Command. There are two controller messages in the Bank Select command:

  • Continuous Controller 0 (Most Significant Bit or MSB) messages are often abbreviated as CC in manuals (For example: CC0)

  • Continuous Controller 32 (Least Significant Bit or LSB) messages are often abbreviated as CC32 in manuals.

Two separate messages allows you to access up to 16,384 banks, of 128 patches each. This creates locations for 2,097,152 patches. Needless to say, we're not aware of any modules with over a couple of thousand patches (yet), let alone two million.

Some modules/synths require both controller 0 and controller 32 together and some require them one at a time. Refer to your manual for accessing patches on higher banks on your particular synth.

In your synth or module's manual, bank is usually listed first. In Roland manuals, it is in the CC00 (BANK) column. Place this value into the Bank Box. The second column in the table is usually the Program Change column. Also known as the GM or GS patch name, choose this patch number from the instrument pull-down menu. Don't worry if the General MIDI instrument name does not match the name of the patch you are trying to access. Just go by the number if it's not a General MIDI instrument you are trying to access. Controller Number 32 or LSB may be needed as well. Although it is not used very much in the Roland line of synths, it is used extensively in some other synths.

Once you have selected the patch (Instrument menu) and Bank, you should hear the higher bank instrument that you are trying to access.

If you are selecting patches from higher banks very much, you may want to learn about "patch maps".Patch maps allow you to choose any patch on your synth by name, using the 'Select Patch from Higher Bank' dialog (click the [+] button next to the instrument pull-down menu).

Note that if you change the default patches used by the style, you will probably need to use File | Save song with patches and harmony to prevent your chosen patches from reverting back to the defaults when you press Play.

35. How do I make a patch map for my synthesizer?

We include some patch maps (.pat files) with Band-in-a-Box®. Other patch maps are available for download from our website at:http://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm

If you cannot find a patch map for your synth, you may wish to create one. We have written a tutorial on patch map creation.

For more information on how to select patches on higher banks, click here.

36. Can I export my song from Band-in-a-Box® to another MIDI sequencer?

Yes you can. You can create a standard MIDI file from your song, which can be imported into any other program that can read standard MIDI files. Click the .MID button on the main screen of Band-in-a-Box®. This will give you the option to either save the file on disk (this could be anywhere on your hard drive, or a floppy disk) or to the clipboard. If you choose 'file on disk', this will bring up the'File Save' dialog. Choose the location you want the MIDI file saved to and then hit the save button. Note that some older Mac versions of Band-in-a-Box® do not have the option of saving to the clipboard.

37. Can Band-in-a-Box® input chords for my melody?

In Band-in-a-Box® 11 and higher, there is a feature that will interpret chords from MIDI files. You could attempt to have Band-in-a-Box® figure out chords for your melody using this feature. To do this, you would first mute all of the tracks except for the Melody track, press the .MID button and save the file to clipboard, then go to File | Import Chords from MIDI file | [Use Clipboard]. Unfortunately though, a single line melody isn't a very good candidate for this procedure. Band-in-a-Box® needs to have a bit more information in the MIDI file, for example a bass track and some sort of chording track such as piano accompaniment.

One thing you could consider doing is adding some notes to your melody to give Band-in-a-Box® something to work with. Go through your melody and add one or two notes below selected melody notes that you think "sound good" with your melody. After you have done this, save your song as a MIDI file and use File | Import chords from MIDI file as explained above.

38. Why don't the Styles that I just installed appear in the StylePicker window?

The bbw.lst file located in the root Band-in-a-Box® folder defines most of the information in the StylePicker window. This file is updated when we release new Styles so that the StylePicker window will recognize them. Some of the information in the StylePicker window, such as Styles Set # and suggested tempo, is built into the program and requires the current version and latest update patch, although the styles will still work correctly without this information. First, try pressing the [Rebuild] button in the StylePicker window. If that doesn't work, follow the instructions below.

  1. Before you install the Styles Set, it is best to make sure that you have your 'Band-in-a-Box®™Folder' located at the root level of your hard drive. The styles are installed in this folder.

  2. Download and install the latest update patch for your version, available from http://www.pgmusic.com/support_macintoshupdates.htm

  3. Launch Band-in-a-Box®, open the StylePicker window, and press the [Rebuild] button.

If you are still having trouble, or the Style list doesn't seem to be correct, download the most recent bbw.lst file from our website and extract this into your BB folder: http://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm

39. How do I enter more than 2 chords per bar in Band-in-a-Box®?

You can enter a maximum of four chords per bar - two chords per "cell"(first or second half of a bar). To enter two chords in the first or second half of a bar, simply separate the chords by a comma when you type them in. For example, type: Cmaj , Gm >enter<

40. How do I enable and disable the lead-in bars or count-in?

This is set in Edit | Preferences. If you want to hear the count-in, make sure that "Allow Lead in Bars" is checked, along with "Play Lead In even if Intro Present," and "Audible lead in." Also, check that the volume is turned up (64 is the default). Uncheck these options if you don't want to hear the count-in.

41. Why do I hear the drums playing with a piano patch?

Check under the M Menu | MIDI Settings and make sure that the drum channel corresponds to what your synth uses. You may need to check the documentation for your synth. You could also load a synth kit, if there is one for your particular synth, by going to M | Load MIDI Setup/Drum Kit. When you select a synth from this menu and press [OK], Band-in-a-Box® will load a .DK file that matches your synth. This file will set up the GM patches, drum kit, and channels to what they should be for that synth. While this is not normally necessary for most modern synths, it may be necessary for some older and non-General MIDI synths. Additional .DK files can be downloaded from our website at http://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm

If you have a Yamaha synth, try going to M | MIDI Settings and deselecting "Allow patch changes".

42. Why does Band-in-a-Box® generate notes below low E (E2) on a bass?

You can set the lowest bass note in the Edit | Preferences(2) dialog. If you have set your lowest bass note to E2, which is the default setting, Band-in-a-Box® will not play any bass notes below E2, with one exception: Band-in-a-Box® occasionally produces a short low bass note (usually an octave below the root) to simulate a muted bass note on the third triplet of a walking bass line. These short notes don't get displayed in notation, but do get played.

43. I want to use 2/4 time in my bluegrass song, but it doesn't 'hold'.

We suggest you use 4/4 for that song. Bluegras1.STY is a 4/4 style, and Bluegrass music is in general 4/4. Almost any 2/4 song can be done in 4/4 and sound the same. (for example, Ragtime works as well in 2/4 as 4/4). The quality of the arrangement you get out of Band-in-a-Box® will be way better, as will the solos it generates. If this song must use 2/4, just press F5 at bar 1, and type '2' beside '# beats per bar'. You'll see a little red square around the bar numbers after exiting to indicate that you've successfully changed settings at those bars. You could also use Edit | Set Time Sig of scrap (after highlighting the bars in your song).

44. How do I set the right key or visually transpose the music for my non-concert instrument?

The key transpose box on the main screen of Band-in-a-Box® sets MIDI music you hear and the Notation key for viewing and printing at the same time. The 'Transpose' setting in the Notation Window Options dialog affects only the viewable and printable notes, while leaving the MIDI playback in the original key. This allows you to view proper notation for non-concert instruments, such as a tenor sax. Open the Notation Window and press the [OPT] button to open the Notation Window Options dialog. Beside 'Transpose', type in the number of semitones that you want the notation to be transposed. For example, if you have a trumpet, set it to +2.

45. Why does Band-in-a-Box® keep looping 4 bars over and over?

Most likely, you have enabled the Loop Screen feature in the Notation Window. Open the Notation Window and un-check L.Scrn.

46. How can I control Band in a Box from an external start switch?

To cause Band-in-a-Box® to wait to play until a MIDI key is received, go to Edit | Preferences and select 'Pause Play untill MIDI (or Key)'. This could be your computer keyboard, an external MIDI keyboard, or even a wind controller or guitar synth.

47. Can I edit tracks other than the Melody and Soloist in Band-in-a-Box®? Why do the notes I just edited disappear when I press play?

The only tracks that are completely editable are the Soloist and Melody tracks. The reason is that the program automatically generates the accompaniment parts for you (Bass, Piano, Drums, Guitar, and Strings). For more advanced editing of the other tracks, we recommend exporting your Band-in-a-Box® song as a MIDI file, then importing the file into a dedicated MIDI sequencer.

One way you could edit a particular part (for example bass) in Band-in-a-Box®, would be to copy the part that you want to edit to the Soloist or Melody tracks, if one of those tracks is unused. You would then mute the original bass track or rest the bass throughout your song, and set the Melody or Soloist track to a bass instrument. To copy the track over, mute all of the tracks except the one you want to edit, save your song as a MIDI file, then import it into the Soloist or Melody tracks using the 'Import Melody/Soloist from MIDI File' command.

48. When I run Band-in-a-Box® I get "zzjazz.sty not found" and "Some required files missing" error messages.

Most likely, you are trying to run the Band-in-a-Box® application from outside of its folder. There are a couple of reasons why this may have happened. You may have dragged the Band-in-a-Box® application to your desktop, attempting to make a shortcut to open Band-in-a-Box®. This will not work. Drag the Band-in-a-Box® application back into the Band-in-a-Box® Folder, and make a shortcut by going to File | Make Alias. Another possibility is that you installed an update patch or upgrade, and your Band-in-a-Box® Folder was not located on the root level of your hard drive prior to doing this. In this case, the installer would have created a new Band-in-a-Box® Folder on your hard drive, with only those files required by the update or upgrade. If you tried to launch Band-in-a-Box® from this folder, it would give you missing file errors. The best solution is to copy your Band-in-a-Box® Folder to your hard drive, make sure that it is named "Band-in-a-Box® ™ Folder", *then* install the upgrade or update.

49. The option to turn on fretboard inlays on the guitar doesn't seem to work.

The guitar inlays are only supposed to show if you disable "Show Aeolian Position" and "Show Phrygian Position" in the 'Guitar Settings' dialog.

50. Are Mac and PC versions of Band-in-a-Box® songs compatible?

Yes, Band-in-a-Box® songs are compatible between platforms, although you may have a problem if you try to use the newest styles with older versions of Band-in-a-Box®. There have been changes made to the way Band-in-a-Box® uses styles in the later releases. If both users are using the newest versions of Band-in-a-Box® for each platform there shouldn't be a problem. The Mac user will need to make sure the Band-in-a-Box® filename extension (mysong.xxx) uses capital letters, (e.g. mysong.MGU) in the name. Use a PC formatted disk, which can be read by both Mac and PC.

51. I am having trouble using FreeMIDI and my Mark of The Unicorn (MOTU) interfaces.

One of the most common solutions is to set FreeMIDI's preferences to [Allow Other Applications] in order to release the port for use by other applications such as OMS.

52. How can I adjust the volume of individual harmony parts?

In the 'Select Melody/Thru Harmony' dialog, select the harmony that you want to use and press the [Edit] button to open the 'Harmony Maker' dialog. This will allow you to edit the current harmony. You can adjust the Velocity boost ("V.Boost") for each voice. This allows you to increase or decrease the relative velocity (loudness) of each voice, to make the voice stand out more or less in the harmony.

53. I accidentally deleted the BBW.LST file or messed it up. How can I fix it?

We have the latest bbw.lst file available for download from our website:http://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm

This file contains the styles descriptions for all of the latest styles from PG Music Inc. After you download the file, extract it into your main Band-in-a-Box® folder. You should back up your previous version, especially if you have edited/added entries to the file.

54. Why do the drums I record in my drum window sound like another musical instrument when I play them back?

All recording in Band-in-a-Box® is placed on the Melody (or Soloist) track. Even when instruments in the Drum window are played and recorded, they get placed on the Melody track. If you need to add drums this way to a Band-in-a-Box® song, you need to change the channel on the Melody track to channel 10, the drum channel.

You can do this by going to the M menu | MIDI Settings, and setting the Melody channel to 10. One alternative is, after recording the drums, swap the Melody and Soloist tracks and change the Soloist channel to 10. You can swap tracks by clicking on MEL | Swap Melody and Soloist. This way you can free up the Melody track for something else.

55. I get a memory error when installing the Band-in-a-Box® MegaPAK.

If you are getting an error such as "There is not enough memory to perform this installation," you will need to do the following. This is caused by the application not being assigned enough memory.

  1. Insert the CD.

  2. Double-Click on the Band-in-a-Box® CD Icon.

  3. Copy the BB MegaPAK to the Desktop by dragging the file there.

  4. Once copied, click on the BB MegaPAK Icon on your desktop once just to select it.

  5. Hold down the Apple Key and the I at the same time.

  6. Where it says "Show: General Information," switch that to "Memory."

  7. Change the Preferred Size to 1000k, then change the Minimum Size to 1000k.

  8. Close the Info screen.

  9. Double click on the BB MegaPAK on the Desktop.

  10. Drag the BB 8 MegaPAK (within the Installer) to the Hard Drive.

56. Program gives a "zzjazz.sty not found" error when running over Mac Manager network.

This is resolved by putting the Band-in-a-Box® folder on the server in the "Macintosh Manger" folder, then creating an alias to the application in that folder on the client station's desktop.

57. How do I control the MIDI sounds I hear when I record or play live along with Band-in-a-Box® from my MIDI keyboard?

What you play on a MIDI keyboard gets routed back to your sound card/synth on the THRU track, using the channel and instrument selected for the THRU track in Band in a Box. What you record, you hear while recording on the instrument selected for the THRU track in Band-in-a-Box®. When you play back what you have recorded, it gets played on the melody track. This is the track that affects which instrument you hear your tune in. If you add a Melody harmony, it will be triggered by the Melody track. If you add a Thru harmony, it will be triggered by what you play on your synth/keyboard on the THRU track channel/instrument.

58. Why aren't all of the styles in my BBW.LST file listed in the StylePicker?

BBW.LST contains a list of all possible styles, not just the ones that you have. If the style is found in the Band-in-a-Box® folder, it will be listed in the StylePicker window. You may need to press the [Re-build] button in the StylePicker window if you have installed new styles.

59. My Band-in-a-Box® instruments sound like drums.

This may be caused by a Virtual Drummer program. For a quick remedy, uninstall the Virtual Drummer from the HD, and be sure to delete the files for the Virtual Drummer from the Control Strip Modules Folder as well (Macintosh HD | System Folder | Control Strip Module).

60. How do I set up the Roland SD-20 for use with Band-in-a-Box®?

Using the SD-20 Drivers CD provided, install either the OMS or FreeMIDI drivers. If you have Band-in-a-Box® 8 or earlier, you will need to use OMS. If you have Band-in-a-Box® 11, you can use either OMS or FreeMIDI.

Setup for OMS:

  1. Open the OMS folder from the SD-20 Drivers folder. Open the folder pertaining to your connection (Serial or USB). Install the driver.

  2. Open the Settings folder and copy the OMS settings pertaining to your connection (SD-20 Modem, SD-20 Printer, or SD-20 USB Port). Paste the settings to your hard drive.

  3. Once copied to the hard drive, double-click the SD-20 settings and select File | Make Current.

  4. Restart your computer.

  5. Launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to the M menu | **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime. Select OMS.

  6. If you have a Keyboard connected to the Input of the SD-20, click on [Set BIAB input Devices] and check only the SD-20 MIDI IN. Click [OK].

  7. Click on [Set BIAB Outport Ports]. From the Select Output Ports/Instruments dialog, click on the Bass Instrument Tab. Select SD-20 Port A or Port B, then click [<--set all ports to this]. Click [OK]

  8. Select CANVAS.DK from the M menu.

  9. Band-in-a-Box® is now ready for use with the Roland SD-20.

Setup for FreeMIDI:

  1. Open the FreeMIDI folder from the SD-20 Drivers folder. Open the folder pertaining to your connection (Serial or USB). Install the driver.

  2. Open the Settings folder and copy the FreeMIDI settings pertaining to your connection (SD-20 Modem, SD-20 Printer, or SD-20 USB Port). Paste the settings to your hard drive.

  3. Configure FreeMIDI to use the SD-20 Settings.

  4. Restart your computer.

  5. Launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to the M menu | **Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime. Select FreeMIDI.

  6. In the Select Output Ports/Instruments dialog, click on the Bass Instrument Tab. Select SD-20 Port A or Port B, then click [<--set all ports to this]. Click [OK].

  7. Select CANVAS.DK from the M menu.

  8. Band-in-a-Box® is now ready for use with the Roland SD-20.

61. Why is there a delay from my keyboard in Band-in-a-Box® when using QuickTime through OMS?

You may be able to resolve this problem by turning off Virtual Memory and/or RAM Disk from Apple | Control Panels | Memory.

You should also make sure that you have the latest version of Quicktime for your operating system. Quicktime updates can be downloaded from http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/.

62. How do I use the Roland VSC with Band-in-a-Box®?

  1. Insert the VSC CD ROM into your CD ROM Drive.

  2. Double-Click on the VSC-88 Icon on your Desktop.

  3. Double-Click on the VSC Installer Icon, not the VSC Install Files.

  4. A dialog box should appear. Click the Install VSC-88 button.

  5. Read the License Agreement and click Yes to continue with the installation.

  6. Select the location where you want to install the VSC to, then click the Save button.

  7. Once the VSC is installed, it will tell you when it is complete. Click the OK button.

OMS (Open Music System)is required to use the VSC-88 with our programs.

  1. OMS can be downloaded from http://www.opcode.com. If the Opcode website is not available, you will need to search the internet to find OMS from another source.

  2. Once OMS is downloaded, double click on the Install OMS 2.3.8 icon.

  3. Press the Continue button to proceed with the installation.

  4. Select Easy Install and the location where you want it installed to.

  5. Click the Install button to continue.

  6. Once the installation is complete, it will prompt you to Restart your computer.

  7. When your system has restarted, it should open the OMS Applications folder automatically. If not, go into your Hard Drive, then into the Opcode folder, then open the OMS Applications folder.

  8. Double click on the OMS Setup Icon. You may be prompted to turn Apple Talk off. Click the 'Turn It Off' button to do so.

  9. Go to the File Menu | New Studio Setup. Click OK to continue.

  10. Select external Ports if applicable, then click the search button.

  11. After the search is completed, there should be an IAC Driver listed, as well as any other devices installed on your system. Click OK to continue (You may have to do thistwice).

  12. A prompt will now appear. Click Save to save your Studio Setup as My Studio Setup.

  13. You can now quit the OMS Setup using the File | Quit command.

  14. Restart your computer.

Virtual Memory You will need to turn Virtual Memory off before using the VSC.

  1. Go to the Apple Menu | Control Panels | Memory.

  2. Turn Virtual Memory off.

  3. Restart your computer.

OMS Preferred Device

  1. Go into the Apple Menu | Control Panels | OMS Preferred Device.

  2. Select IAC Bus #1.

  3. Click the OK button.

Setting up the VSC

  1. Launch the VSC. To do this, go to your Hard Disk | VSC-88 for Mac. Click on the VSC-88 icon.

  2. Go to the MIDI Menu | Driver Setting.

  3. Choose Use OMS and click the OK button.

Setting up Band-in-a-Box®

  1. Launch Band-in-a-Box®.

  2. Go to the M menu and choose Select MIDI Driver or QuickTime.

  3. Select OMS (Opcode) Click the OK button.

  4. Click on 'Set Band-in-a-Box® Input Devices'. Make sure that the IAC Bus #1 is NOT selected, then click OK.

  5. Click on 'Set Band-in-a-Box® Output Ports'.

  6. For the Bass instrument Select IAC Bus #1.

  7. Click on the '<-- set all ports to this' button, then click OK.

The VSC should now work with your system. Remember that you will need the VSC application running, or you will not get any sound from Band-in-a-Box®.

63. Can I use Band-in-a-Box® on Mac OS X?

Band-a-Box 11 and earlier are not native OS X applications. They should run under OS X in the Classic environment, but you will be limited to using Quicktime Instruments for playback, and you will likely experience other problems. Please see our tutorial explaining how to run Band-in-a-Box® 11 and earlier on OS X for more information.

If your computer has OS X, we recommend upgrading to Band-in-a-Box® for OS X. Click here for information about Band-in-a-Box® for OS X.

64. Why am I unable to download updates and other files from your website?

If you are having trouble downloading a demo or product that you have purchased, please click here to read our Sales FAQ topic.

Band-in-a-Box® for Macintosh update patches can be downloaded from here.
RealDrums and RealTracks for Macintosh updates can be downloaded from here.

Depending on your web browser and settings, the file may be automatically downloaded to a folder on your computer without prompting you for a location to save the file. The default for the Safari web browser is normally the 'Downloads' folder in your Home folder. For example, if your User account is 'MyUserName', then the download will be placed in \Users\MyUserName\Downloads. In Safari, you can change this setting if you want, by going to Safari | Preferences | General ('save downloaded files to'). In Firefox, the setting is in Firefox | Preferences ('Save files to').

If the download doesn't seem to work when you click on it, try control-clicking on the link and selecting 'download linked file' or 'download link to disk'. In Safari, go to the Window menu and click on Downloads to take a look at currently downloading files.

The updates are provided as .zip files. Mac OS 10.3 and later have the built-in ability to extract .zip files - you just need to double-click on them. If that is not working for you, control-click on the file, point to 'Open With', and select 'BOMArchive Helper' or 'Archive Utility'. Once extracted, the installer package should be found in the same location as the .zip file - double-click on this package and follow the on-screen instructions to install the update.

Additional tips for downloading can be found in our Sales FAQ topic, or contact us if you need further assistance.

65. Explain the different file extensions that Band-in-a-Box® uses for song files.

Band-in-a-Box® song files end in a ?G? file extension.

  • If the song has a melody, the extension begins with an 'M'. If the song doesn't have a melody, it begins with an 'S'.

  • The second letter of the extension is always a G.

  • The third letter refers to the style that the song uses. 1-9 and A-N refer to the original "built-in" styles (for example, ZZJAZZ.STY, ZZWALTZ.STY) and U refers to a "User" style (actually, any other style).

Example 1: MySongTitle.MGU

  • The M tells us that the song has a melody.

  • The G is always present in song names telling us that it is a song.

  • The U tells us that the style is a user style.

Example 2: MySongTitle.SG1

  • The S tells us that the song doesn't have a melody.

  • The G is always present in song names telling us that it is a song.

  • The 1 indicates that the song uses Style #1, which is Jazz Swing (ZZJAZZ).

The song files are quite small. This means that you can store hundreds or thousands of songs without using up too much of your hard drive space.

66. Why do I get the error "Unable to pick guitar pattern" when I try to play a song?

You may be using a style that requires a more recent version of Band-in-a-Box®. If you are using Version 11, you should be able to resolve the problem by installing the 11.0a3 update patch, available from: http://www.pgmusic.com/support_macintoshupdates.htm. If you are using an earlier version of Band-in-a-Box®, you would need to upgrade your version of Band-in-a-Box® to be able to use that style.

67. Why do I get an ".ST2 not found" message when I try to generate a solo?

Band-in-a-Box® may give you the following message when you attempt to generate a solo using the Soloist feature: "xxx.ST2 not found. Cannot write Solo. ST2 files are 'Soloist' files. They must reside in your (home directory)".

.ST2 files are Soloist databases. Each of the Soloists are set up to use one of the .ST2 files for solo generation, and if the .ST2 file is not present in the 'Soloist' folder within your Band-in-a-Box® Folder, then Band-in-a-Box® will give you the message above. The list of Soloists that you see in the 'Select Soloist' dialog is defined by the Default.SOL file (Default_OSX.SOL if you are running Version 12 on OS X). This file contains descriptions for all of the Soloists that are available for Band-in-a-Box® at the time of the release of the version you have; it isn't necessarily a list of only the Soloists that you have.

Here are some specific reasons that Band-in-a-Box® might be giving you the error message:

  • Band-in-a-Box® Pro and regular upgrades only include a basic set of Soloist databases (Soloist set 1), while the Band-in-a-Box® MegaPAK and MegaPAK upgrades include all Soloist databases that are currently available, with the exception of the Artist Soloist Series (Andy Laverne and Jeff Lorber Soloists). If you purchased the "Pro" package and you are trying to select a Soloist that is not included in the Pro, you will get an "ST2 not found" error.

  • Soloists sets can also be purchased individually. If you have purchased and installed an individual Soloist set and you get this error when trying to use one of the new Soloists, then you most likely didn't install the Soloist Set properly. Soloist Sets and other Band-in-a-Box® add-ons automatically install to a 'Band-in-a-Box® ™ Folder' at the root level of your hard drive. Before installing the Soloist Set, make sure that this is where your Band-in-a-Box® Folder is located. If you prefer to have it somewhere else on your hard drive (for example, in the Applications folder), you can move it back there after you have installed the Soloist set.

  • There are some Soloists that have recently been upgraded to use a more advanced and realistic sounding Soloist database not available in the Pro version. If you get a message saying something like "Wynt.ST2 not found" when you try to select a Soloist that you think *used to be available to you* in a previous version, do the following to set the Soloist back to its default database:

    1. In the 'Select Soloist' dialog, choose the Soloist of interest and press the [Edit Soloist Maker] button.

    2. Underneath where it says 'Choose ST2 database', click the [Default] button.

    3. Press OK. You should now be able to generate a Solo using this particular Soloist.

    Note: You should make a backup of the default.SOL file after making edits in the Soloist Maker. That way, if you need to reinstall Band-in-a-Box® at some point you won't lose all of your edits. If you are running Version 12 on OS X, the file is "Default_OSX.SOL".

68. How can I return Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings?

Band-in-a-Box® uses the following files for configuration. If you want to restore Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings, you can delete or rename these files. The next time you launch Band-in-a-Box® new configuration files will be created. This can help solve or troubleshoot odd and unexplainable problems you are having with the program. Important: You must have Band-in-a-Box® closed when you do this.

We recommend renaming the files (rather than deleting them) or saving a copy of them somewhere else on your hard drive so that you have a backup of your old configuration. For example, you could rename MySetup.dk to MySetup.old. Later, if you find that you need to restore your previous settings, you can delete the new MySetup.dk file that Band-in-a-Box® will have created, and rename MySetup.old to MySetup.dk.

  • MYSETUP.DK. This file contains the settings in the following dialogs:
    M | MIDI Settings (MIDI channels, patches, volumes, reverb, chorus, bank)
    M | Make General MIDI Patch Map
    M | Set Favourite Patches/Combos
    M | Edit Drum Kit

  • Band-in-a-Box® Preferences. This file contains information about your selected MIDI driver and input/output ports.

  • Intrface.BBW. This file contains most of the other current settings, such as settings in the Edit | Preferences dialog, and your song and style favourite lists.

Note that the menu item M | Return to Factory Settings accomplishes the same thing as deleting Band-in-a-Box® Preferences. This may solve your problem but it isn't a complete reset.

69. The chord symbols in my song don't show up when I save the song as a MIDI file and import it into another program.

The standard MIDI file specification doesn't include a universal way to embed this type of information, so the chord names are stored in the MIDI file from Band-in-a-Box® as 'manufacturer specific' MIDI META-events. The chord symbols will show up in all PG Music Inc. programs that display notation. Note that if you load a .MID file that contains these META events into a non-PG Music Inc. program/sequencer, and re-save the file, the META event (i.e. Chords) will not be saved into the new file.

70. I am having trouble playing the video tutorials.

Symptoms:

  • Quicktime gives you an error message when you try to play the video

  • Quicktime opens and plays the file, but there is no sound.

  • Quicktime opens and plays the file, but there is no video.

If you downloaded one of the .AVI files from our website, you should be able to play the file with Quicktime. For most of our recent videos, we used the TechSmith Ensharpen video encoder. The EnSharpen Decoder must be installed on your computer to play the videos properly. This file is available for download from http://www.techsmith.com/codecs.asp.

You should also install this codec if you are having trouble playing the videos included on your Band-in-a-Box® or Video Tutorial PAK CDs.

Note: Some of the videos on our website are only available in streaming format, and can only be played with Windows Media Player.

71. Why do my Band-in-a-Box® icons appear as generic "document" icons?

Symptoms: You are running OS 9 or earlier (or OS X in Classic Mode), and...

  • Desktop icons look like generic document icons rather than custom icons.

  • You get an error message saying that the application that created the file cannot be found.

This most likely means that you need to rebuild your desktop. Apple has an article explaining how to do this at: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2344?viewlocale=en_US. If that link doesn't work for you, you should be able to find the article by going to the Apple Support page and performing a search using the keywords "rebuild desktop icon"

72. How can I clear the "Favorite Songs" and "Favorite Styles" windows?

There currently isn't a command in Band-in-a-Box® to do this, but you can accomplish it by closing Band-in-a-Box® and deleting the file Intrface.bbw from your Band-in-a-Box® folder. This file contains the favourite song and style lists, as well as some other global Band-in-a-Box® settings. You may want to keep a backup of the Intrface.bbw file in case you find that you need to restore your previous settings.

73. Why does the Melodist generate notes outside the "Melody Note Range" specified in the Melodist editor?

Band-in-a-Box® will use notes outside of the specified range (within about an octave) so that a more natural melody line can be created. The intention is not to get Band-in-a-Box® to stick precisely to the specified range. If you want, you can manually edit any of the notes that are created by the Melodist.

74. How do I get a simple metronome or click track in Band-in-a-Box®?

Go to Edit | Preferences to access the count-in and metronome settings. If you want a metronome during recording, select the appropriate box. If you want to record melodies without any accompaniment, you can use one of the blank styles: BLANK.STY (even 4/4), BLANK34.STY (even 3/4), BLANKSW.STY (swing 4/4), or BLANK3SW.STY (swing 3/4).

Alternatively, download this "click-track" style. This style has a rim shot on each beat with beat one accented, and no guitar, bass, strings, or piano. You should place this style in the Styles folder in your Band-in-a-Box® Folder, and it can be accessed by pressing F9 (Load User Style).

75. When I launch the program I get the message "Some required files for BIAB are missing or not found"

This error occurs when (for whatever reason) there are files missing from the folder that the Band-in-a-Box® application file is located in. By default, all Band-in-a-Box® files, including the application file "Band-in-a-Box®" are installed to a folder at the root level of your hard drive called "Band-in-a-Box®™ Folder".

One possibility is that you moved the Band-in-a-Box® application file from your Band-in-a-Box® Folder to another location on your hard drive (say, to the desktop). If you want to make an alias (shortcut) on your desktop to open the program, copy the Band-in-a-Box® application file back to the Band-in-a-Box®™ Folder, select this file, go to the File menu, and select 'Make Alias' - then drag the alias to the desktop.

Another possibility is that you somehow deleted/removed some files from the Band-in-a-Box® Folder. In this case, the Band-in-a-Box® application is still located in the correct folder, but there are important files missing. You will probably need to reinstall Band-in-a-Box® if you did this.

One more possibility is that after you originally installed Band-in-a-Box®, you moved the entire Band-in-a-Box® Folder to a different location on your hard drive, or renamed it. Later, you may have installed an update for Band-in-a-Box®. Updates don't install all of the required Band-in-a-Box® files, however they DO install automatically to the 'Band-in-a-Box®™ Folder' on the root level of your hard drive. So, now you would have a Band-in-a-Box® Folder located in, say Hard Drive | Applications, and another Band-in-a-Box® Folder located on your Hard Drive root. The one located on your hard drive root is the one installed by the update patch and is incomplete. It will contain the Band-in-a-Box® application file (the updates include this file), but it won't have other required files. Delete the incomplete folder, move your complete Band-in-a-Box®™ Folder to your hard drive root, then reinstall the update patch.

76. When I type a chord into the chord sheet, it automatically transposes my chord and displays a different chord than what I typed.

If, for example, you type Cmaj7 and Band-in-a-Box® inserts an Emaj7 chord instead, this means you have the 'visual transpose' set to something other than 0. This setting is usually used for non-concert instruments. You can correct the problem by going to the Notation Window Options dialog and setting 'transpose' to 0.

77. How do I install update patches for Band-in-a-Box®?

Update patches can be downloaded from http://www.pgmusic.com/support_macintoshupdates.htm.

Update patches for Band-in-a-Box® 8 and earlier are supplied as a single 'Band-in-a-Box®' application file that can replace the older file of the same name in the Band-in-a-Box® folder. After downloading and extracting the file, simply copy it into your existing Band-in-a-Box® folder, replacing the existing file.

After installing the update patch, launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to the Apple menu | About Band-in-a-Box® to make sure that it installed correctly.

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