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What is Band-in-a-Box?

Band-in-a-Box is an intelligent automatic accompaniment program for your multimedia computer. You can hear and play along to many song ideas and go from "nothing" to "something" in a very short period of time with Band-in-a-Box as your “on demand” backup band.

Band-in-a-Box is so easy to use!

Just type in the chords for any song using standard chord symbols (like C, Fm7, or C13b9), choose the style you’d like, and Band-in-a-Box does the rest, automatically generating a complete professional-quality arrangement of piano, bass, drums, guitar, and strings or horns in a wide variety of popular styles.

Band-in-a-Box 12 is designed for PowerPC. Mac Intel users should purchase our latest version, available here.

And that’s not all! Band-in-a-Box 12 features...

  • Odd-Time Signature Supportfor oddtime signatures like 9/8, 11/8, 13/16, 19/16, etc. The count-in and the style plays in the odd-time signature feel, and you can change time signatures during the song. (Note: The notation window still displays/edits these oddtime signatures in 4/4, but the styles all play/sound correctly.)
  • “Count-in” can be Drum Patterns instead of “1-2-1234.” There is an option in Preferences to select count-in type. You can specify to have Band-in-a-Box play two bars of a drum pattern instead of the count-in. You may prefer hearing the drum beat to a simple count-in, since it provides more information about the upcoming groove. If you’re playing with Band-in-a-Box live on a “dance floor,” this setting is a great way to avoid “dead air” between songs, and keep the drumbeat going. Includes options to have “a” or “b” drum fills or patterns play for the two bars.
  • Harmony – Low Root Feature. The Harmony Edit dialog has settings for “low root harmony” which adds a voice that plays the root of the chord. This is useful for a cappella or baritone sax harmonies, where the lowest voice is playing the bass roots. You can set the low-high range. The root played will always be at least one octave from the melody note (assuming it can still be inside the set low/high range). We include many harmonies that are preset to use this low root harmony feature.
  • Transform 4/4 Melody to a Waltz 3/4 (“Strauss-in-a-Box”).You can automatically transform any 4/4 song/melody to a Waltz 3/4 feel. Simply load in any 4/4 song and change the style to a Waltz style. The program will offer to transform the melody so that it works as a Waltz (or choose the added menu item Melody-Edit-Utilities-Transform to 3/4). This function is referred to as “Strauss” in honor of Johann Strauss, the famous Waltz composer. It’s fun and educational to hear and play familiar songs in a Waltz feel. Band-in-a-Box uses intelligent algorithms to transform the melody to the new time signature.
  • Transform “Waltz” Melody to 4/4 (“De-Strauss” the Melody).If you have a song with a 3/4 time signature, you can now instantly hear it as a 4/4 feel. Simply load the Waltz song and then change the style to a 4/4 style. Band-in-a-Box will prompt you to transform the melody to a 4/4 feel and will then change the melody. There’s also a dedicated menu item for this, Melody-Edit-Utilities-Transform to 4/4. Band-in-a-Box uses intelligent algorithms to transform the melody to the new time signature. (Note: If loading from the StylePicker window, you need to have “Prompt w/preview” selected for the prompt option to appear.)
  • Load Previous Style, Load Next Style.This function, (analogous to the Load Next Song function) loads in the previous (or next) style in alphabetical order of the file name.
  • “Chase Volumes” added for playback. For files that include volume change events (Controller 7). Band-in-a-Box will locate the most recent volume control information that is prior to the current location in the song. Band-in-a-Box will then send this volume control information at the start of playback.
  • Option to hear the drum count-in even if the drums are muted or disabled.This feature is great for drummers who play along with Band-in-a- Box and mute the drum track.
  • Mono/Stereo menu optionsare available to easily switch all parts to mono or stereo. Also, if your current settings are mono, the program will offer to convert to stereo when you exit the MIDI Driver selection dialog.
  • Video and Audio Memo support. You can add an audio (MP3) or video (QuickTime) memo to your Band-in-a-Box song. These are prepared outside of the program, but can be associated with the song by using a similar filename to the song. Several of PG Music’s new “101 series” include these audio and video memos. For example, there are video guitar memos that demonstrate “advanced Jazz guitar comping” showing video examples corresponding to the MIDI guitar examples in the Band-in-a-Box song.
  • Soloist “Note-Density” option. You can control the maximum number of notes per quarter note that the soloist will use. For example, you can set a “Rock Guitar” Soloist to use nothing shorter than 16th notes. This will produce less “guitar hero” solos with bursts of 32nd notes, etc. Or you could create a jazz solo that uses only quarter notes or longer to help with your sight-reading or student study. We’ve already modified many of the soloists using this new setting, so your solos will already sound better without you having to change this setting.
  • Maximum Number of Soloists increased to 1,024 (from 256), and new Soloists added. The previous limit of soloists was 256, and we had already defined 253 of them! We’ve now increased this limit to 1,024, and have added new soloists.
  • Bass player plays better “5ths” over some Jazz chords. Band-in-a-Box’s bass player was playing some natural 5ths over some chords like C7 altered or others. Now, after a discussion with some bass players, we’ve improved Band-in-a-Box so that the bass part plays the #5 or b5 correctly on these Jazz chords.

Dedicated menu items added on GM Menu for “Turn Local On”, “Turn Local Off” and “When program quits, turn local on”.

Band-in-a-Box 12 is designed for PowerPC. Mac Intel users should purchase our latest version, available here.

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