Hi there good folks,
Over the last couple of years I have become increasingly fascinated with aspects of music production--not so much in the sense of mixing and mastering, which I admittedly know next to nothing about--but with using MIDI, constructing various pad sounds, and also by using wacky effects that are applied to audio to make fascinating textures (In fact there are some incredible things that are being done nowadays using traditional effects, such as delays, filters, and noise gates, in extremely creative ways.
For instance, in the track Labor Day Pt. II, posted here
, I morphed the sound of the drums using effect automation with radical EQ changes for the transition that takes place at about 3:40-3:45 to give them that trashy hollow gritty sound. The see-sawing pulsing high pitched sound, which can first be heard at 0:45 and then later comes to a sort of keening crescendo in the outro and then pumps into the last bar, is actually an instance of the male vocal ooh tracks using various modular effects from Native Instruments' Molekular. I also slowed down that pulsing vocal track by a few milliseconds in Reaper so that it plays at a wee bit of a slower rate, which, over the length of the track, causes the back-and-forth motion to increasingly "stray" from the main track to give it a sense of instability. Then I used a different Molukular preset, which I set to the song's native key, which resampled a tiny sliver of a the 1track female Aah vocal you can hear throughout the song to create that fragmented swirl you can hear in the background if you listen really closely from 4:03 to 4:05--it's there for barely a couple of seconds but I think it adds something. Now as I mentioned before, I am terrible at mixing and mastering, and there's SO much more I need to learn about that, and the track overall sounds pretty [*****], but I want to illustrate just a bit of what can be done with audio effects that, until recently, had no idea was even possible and I thought all the really "cool stuff" was done with MIDI and cutting edge synth engines.
As for MIDI, well that subject of comes up in these forums a lot, and I learned a tremendous amount about the subject here. After watching dozens of YouTube tutorials and experimenting with it over the last year, I've learned that one can make the MIDI tracks that sound so dull in BiaB sound like pumping modern dance tracks. (BTW, the fact that BiaB/RB MIDI tracks sound so dull is not in any way a limitation or shortcoming on part of PGM. In fact, I like the "stripped down" sounds from Cayote and SFZ Player, because it presents me with a clear un-colored canvas to work with and proceed from). I've learned about non-playing notes that you can insert into your piano roll to function as key-switches, about arpeggiators, and so much more.
Anyway, recently I've posted on YT a handful of videos regarding features I've particularly enjoyed in BiaB, and a couple of "hacks" (I usually hate that term, but whatever) to force tab in BiaB, and to create more natural sounding string/horn/vocal sections. I've really enjoyed making these videos, and got some lovely feedback from forum members, many of whom I learned so many other things from. Furthermore, I've found that when preparing for the videos, I stumble on other little things and end up learning more about the program myself.
Towards the end of my last video, regarding MiniHost Modular, (thanks again for turning me on to this, Pipeline!), I mentioned the possibility of making a series of videos based on what you can do with it, and figured that I'd just make a whole series that covers a wide range of topics primarily focused on MIDI, but also plugins, VSTis, automation, LFOs, ADSR envelopes, and how they could be applied to various parameters, synced to your host, be it BiaB, RB, or any DAW for that matter.
As music is only hobby for me at this point in life unfortunately, and I don’t really have a huge amount of free time, while I would love to make these videos, I also want to be sure that I'm not wasting my time, and that there is actually a fair amount of interest before I devote any significant amount of time to it.
So here’s the deal. If this post gets 25 replies with screenshots that look just like mine, I will start a series covering the topics I've discussed above within the BiaB/RB environment (to the extent possible).
In the attached screenshot you will see an image of a single instance of MiniHost Modular (which I will hereinafter refer to as MhM), with the following signal chain:
As you'll see, there is an initial MIDI in to Blue Arp (Blue) > MIDI out from Blue Arp to Helm (Blue both in and out) > Audio out from Helm to Guitar Pro 5 (GP5) (Blue in, Yellow out) > Audio out from GP5 (Yellow out).
Note that there is an instance of MT Power Drum Kit (MT PDK) which is not attached to anything. Also note that each one of these plugins is free, except that GP5 is a demo version, which has some limitations, but that's fine for our purposes.
P.S. my YT channel is not monetized, so this is not about money. For some reason I enjoy explaining things, and think this will be a great opportunity for me to push myself to learn even more in preparation, as I do not for a second consider myself an expert, or even a particularly adept in these matters. Indeed, I don't think that I know a lot more about these topics than most the forum members, or even a little more than some of the members. However, from many of the posts, I can tell I know a little bit more than a handful of the members, and that's who I will be making these videos for.
All the best,