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#779013 10/16/23 03:42 AM
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I just discovered a new software for analyzing music - Song Master Pro.

https://aurallysound.com/products/song-master-pro

I find it quite amazing. You only drag or select an audio file into the app and it analyses:

- tempo, time signature, key
- chords
- song structure
- and generate stems (vocal, drum, bass, drums, guitar, piano and the rest)
- stems can be converted into midi (except drums) and the midi can then directly be dragged into a daw other programs.
- tools for pitch, chord, song structure adjustments and more

Demo version has full functionality (limit 15 min usage at a time)

Easiest is to download and test it for youself.

I am very impressed over the very clean, effective and user friendly GUI.

shlind #779015 10/16/23 04:05 AM
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I had a look at a few of the videos including by other providers. It certainly looks to have some impressive features.


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Yes, this does look very impressive! If the audio to MIDI is accurate one could take an audio track, convert it to MIDI, then print either notation, tabs, or both. That would be a way to learn a song, much better than how I ruined a lot of my old vinyl!


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shlind #779024 10/16/23 06:35 AM
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First I have seen of this, but it does approach my workflow for some projects. In fact, much of this feature capability is already present in other packages. For example, creating stems from an mp3 is readily avialable on the web (https://ezstems.com/) and audio to midi really can't be done any better than Melodyne. Right? And getting the chords from an mp3 in EZKeys or EZBass Bandmate is as good as I have seen. And regarding all the section analysis I generally do this by ear in my DAW. But if the demo download is safe and allows full feature assessment, I may give it a try. Thanks for the heads up.

Last edited by MusicStudent; 10/16/23 06:37 AM.

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DrDan #779029 10/16/23 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by MusicStudent
First I have seen of this, but it does approach my workflow for some projects. In fact, much of this feature capability is already present in other packages. For example, creating stems from an mp3 is readily avialable on the web (https://ezstems.com/) and audio to midi really can't be done any better than Melodyne. Right? And getting the chords from an mp3 in EZKeys or EZBass Bandmate is as good as I have seen. And regarding all the section analysis I generally do this by ear in my DAW. But if the demo download is safe and allows full feature assessment, I may give it a try. Thanks for the heads up.
Have you used ezstems? Reading through the instructions for installing Spleeter and Python made my eyes water. I have Song Master Pro and found it very useful. I also have Melodyne Studio, which has its own set of uses. I use the combination to transcribe bass lines and create backing tracks using the original song to play over.

Last edited by TheMaartian; 10/16/23 07:37 AM.

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shlind #779030 10/16/23 07:34 AM
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First impressions

Pros:
Downloaded and installed demo. No issues at all - very simple. Single exe file with no bloat. Looks like it can be removed easily.

Upon opening, I like how it is set up. I dragged an mp3 file from a recent project and it immediately set chords and "Sections" in seconds. I know this is well done because I had already done this in the past and it took me a fair bit of time. So this is a time saving plus.

Cost for Song Master 3.o (not the Pro version) is $60 USD. Don't think I need the pro version features to integrate midi.

Cons.
This program has been around since early 2021. Fact that I never heard of it suggests that it is not too popular.

This content and analysis is useless unless it can be moved from here to my DAW or into other applications like BIAB. For example the chord chart - I see no way of exporting/dragging this out of this application to another! Maybe a function of the free limit demo which does not allow saving?


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Originally Posted by TheMaartian
Have you used ezstems? Reading through the instructions for installing Spleeter and Python made my eyes water. Song Master Pro does a LOT. I have Melodyne Studio, which has its own set of uses.

Opps, Wrong link, sorry. I should have referenced https://studio.moises.ai/library/. This is all web based and free and works like a charm!


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DrDan #779033 10/16/23 07:58 AM
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I just tried to test ezstems with a song I'm working on: Too Rich For My Blood by Patricia Barber. Song Master Pro did the song analysis pretty quickly and took a couple of minutes to create the 5 stems I asked for. It did a very good job with the stem separation. I tried using ezstems with that song, but was told that the max file size for the free version was 5.2 MB. Too Rich For My Blood is a little over 80 MB for an 8 minute song. So, I wasn't able to do a stem comparison. 5.2 MB is pretty limiting, and if I've got to pay, I might as well use Song Master Pro, which I've already paid for.


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Originally Posted by TheMaartian
I might as well use Song Master Pro, which I've already paid for.

I have done my research and see no way to export the "Chord Chart" or the "Section Breckdown" content. Best would be format editable to allow it to integate into other apps, but I don't even see a pdf printout option in any menus. Can you even export the stems as audio files?

Is any of that available in the paid version?


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shlind #779047 10/16/23 09:39 AM
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Dan, I'm going to buy I bought the pro version and I'll find out if it's limited in the demo version, or not there at all. In my case, I don't need to transfer anything but you are correct, it would save time. EDIT: it can export an edited audio file (pitch, tempo etc.) as FLAC, OGG, or WAV file.

I have no idea why I did not know about the existence of this program. I use Transcribe now, and an iPhone app called Chord AI, for assistance in transcribing songs.

Quick Observations:

Pros:
loads and analyzes a song very quickly

much friendlier user interface than Transcribe, a competitor product.

the interface looks a lot like Studio One.

more accurate for transient (short) chords than Transcribe, possibly because of the next item below

big plus: the ability to specify SNAP TO a measure, beat, eighth note etc.

supports and recognizes more complex chords than some, like minMaj7, 7#11, b13 etc. that some other programs pretend do not exist

has the expected looping, pitch and tempo controls, nothing special but again, easy to find and use

It shows tempo as the song plays, and shows one decimal place! This one relates directly to BIAB. My recording studio goes crazy with files I generate in BIAB because, even if I do not change the tempo, the tempo of an exported file 'wanders' ever so slightly. Remember, BIAB only supports integers for tempo. As I play such a file in Song Master, the metronome marking changes (for example, 153, then 154, then 152, then 154 etc.). No, it won't export this as a tempo map but it is useful info to know about my song.

Upgrade price for Pro is the same overall price whether you get it outright or upgrade; I like straightforward pricing so I don't think I'm missing something or hit a 'gotcha'

and here's one I really love: you can change the time signature. I write sambas, and it analyzed one and gave me a time signature of 4/4 with a tempo of 77; however, my song was written at twice that tempo, 154 bpm, and I want the Song Master display to match my notation, so I changed the time signature to 2/2 and it matches. Very cool; I've never seen another program do this besides BIAB (which Bobflatpicker and I requested as a feature a few years ago).

incredible customer service. I ran into a minor wrinkle registering the paid version. I had used SHOP PAY and it created an automatic login to the Song Master Aurally website account, but did not tell me the password I need to register the software!!! Bad design. I wrote to the customer support and the program creator immediately gave me instructions to reset my password, and I registered.


Cons:
seemed to get confused deciding between full and half-diminished 7th chords, but that might be my audio sample; need to test further

I'm still trying to find a Con about the features. I'll report back again.

The demo times out after 15 minutes; no problem, just start the program again.


Didn't test:
anything to do with MIDI, exporting etc. since this requires a paid version. I'll be back to write more about this.

Last edited by Matt Finley; 10/16/23 11:21 AM. Reason: added more info especially about registering

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DrDan #779098 10/16/23 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by MusicStudent
Originally Posted by TheMaartian
I might as well use Song Master Pro, which I've already paid for.

I have done my research and see no way to export the "Chord Chart" or the "Section Breckdown" content. Best would be format editable to allow it to integate into other apps, but I don't even see a pdf printout option in any menus. Can you even export the stems as audio files?

Is any of that available in the paid version?
I haven't figured out a way to export the chord chart yet. Will have to contact the dev and ask. If not available, then that would be a perfect feature request.

In the Mixer tab, after you Generate Stems, you can select Save Stems. As a test, I used the same song "Too Rich For My Blood". It's an 8 minute song that took about 3 minutes to generate the stems. Clicking on the Save Stems button automatically created a folder under the SongMaster/Stems folder with the artist name and then the song title and saved the stems in .WAV format. They play just fine in any media player. Here's the folder address that was created on my system:

C:\Users\johna\Documents\SongMaster\Stems\Patricia Barber\09 Too Rich for My Blood.stems


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shlind #779113 10/17/23 05:43 AM
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I had a nice exchange with the developer.

We talked about exporting a tempo map (although Song Master has one decimal place in the tempo display, so that wouldn’t work into BIAB at present since BIAB supports only integers for the tempo).

He asked what format an exported chord chart should be if he added that feature. I told him I would get back to him, because I didn’t remember if BIAB accepts chord charts or that’s something I read in the Wishlist.

Help me out. Is there a way besides using Music XML to import chords into BIAB? Read a PDF? An ASCII (text) file? A comma delimited spreadsheet? And remember, Music XML is great for chord info but has no meaning with just audio.

And I don’t want to get into another argument with PG Music about BIAB ‘reading’ the chords from MIDI. MIDI has no chord into. BIAB interprets the chords from MIDI but that’s not the point here since what we want is the ability to import what a different program thinks the chords are.


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Originally Posted by Matt Finley
I had a nice exchange with the developer.
...
He asked what format an exported chord chart should be if he added that feature. I told him I would get back to him, because I didn’t remember if BIAB accepts chord charts or that’s something I read in the Wishlist.
...
I was thinking about this. I'm not aware of a standard exchange protocol for chord charts. If the primary purpose of this is for BiaB users get chords identified by SongMaster in an existing music file and then get them into BiaB as easily as possible, maybe something along the lines of a text file (easier to create than a PDF or Music XML file) structured like a BiaB song sheet (assumes 4 bars per line):

Key: Xx
Tempo: nnn
Bar:Beat:Chord, Bar:Beat:Chord, etc.

Example: a 12 bar blues in C

Key: C
Tempo: 80
Time Sig: 4/4
1:1:C, 2:1:C, 3:1:C, 4:1:C
5:1:F, 6:1:F, 7:1:C, 8:1:C
9:1:G, 10:1:F, 11:1:C, 12:1:G

For a bar with a chord on beats 2, 3 or 4, you would just note the beat in the second digit.

More likely, you could also do something like the following, where only chord changes are noted (again, the same 12 bar blues progression)

Key:C
Tempo: 80
Time Sig: 4/4
1:1:C
5:1:F, 7:1:C
9:1:G, 10:1:F, 11:1:C, 12:1:G

This is less cluttered and makes it obvious which bars in BiaB need chord entries.

I would open the chord.txt file in one window next to the BiaB window and manually enter the chords in BiaB.

One question is: what is the bar:beat resolution for chord change detection in SongMaster. Four beats per bar for a 3/4 or 4/4 time sig? Two beats for a 2/2? Eight for a 6/8? Or is it higher than that, like 8 for a 4/4 time sig. Versus BiaB pushes and microchords.

You could also use the text file to enter chords into any DAW that has a chord track, like Studio One. I would still like the idea of 4 bars per line to limit the width of the text file window and avoid any potential need to scroll horizontally.

Thoughts?

Last edited by TheMaartian; 10/17/23 07:30 AM.

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shlind #779125 10/17/23 07:31 AM
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At the very minimum... Copy Chord Names (Text file by Section Parts) to the Clipboard.


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Originally Posted by Matt Finley
And I don’t want to get into another argument with PG Music about BIAB ‘reading’ the chords from MIDI. MIDI has no chord into. BIAB interprets the chords from MIDI but that’s not the point here since what we want is the ability to import what a different program thinks the chords are.

No argument here, BIAB creates MIDI Markers where the chord "names" are embedded in the midi file. Scaler does the exact same thing. When a midi file from BIAB or Scaler is dropped into Reaper a prompt is posted asking if you want to insert the Midi Markers into the Reaper file as Chord Markers. Unfortunately, only Reaper appears to recognize this feature. However, as you mentioned BIAB does not read these midi markers for its input. But Song Master Pro could do this for us Reaper folks. grin

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Last edited by MusicStudent; 10/17/23 08:02 AM.

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shlind #779142 10/17/23 11:52 AM
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OK, here we go. Dan, I think what you are seeing as chord names in Reaper (or any 'chord track' in other DAWs) is just like in BIAB, the interpretation of what chord it is when reading the MIDI file. Simply put, chord names are not embedded in a MIDI file. The MIDI standard does not contain it. This is even true of MIDI 2.0, and I couldn't believe they didn't add that function. If any music program is including chord names along with MIDI, it must save that file as a different extension than MIDI. As there is no standard for doing that, we get all these programs with their proprietary and incompatible formats.

To my knowledge, only Music XML standard at present does contain the actual name of the chord in the text, or at least the info that you can read the exact chord name if you understand the code. The problem with how that works, and it would be the same problem with Song Master, is that a chord might be assigned the wrong name during the Export as Music XML process. I can demonstrate, for example, how BIAB calls a 7(#11) a 9(#11) when exported. 7Alt is another example where you have to flip a coin and decide whether it will be exported with a # or b 5 and/or a # or b 9. And even in BIAB's MIDI Chord Detection, there are as many as four alternatives to a chord's name when given the notes that make it up.


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Originally Posted by Matt Finley
OK, here we go. Dan, I think what you are seeing as chord names in Reaper (or any 'chord track' in other DAWs) is just like in BIAB, the interpretation of what chord it is when reading the MIDI file.

No way. It is not an interpretation! Just like from Scaler. Reaper is only pasting the contents, not reading the notes.

Oh, is that what you ment for argueing? Certainly don't want to do that. grin


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Ok, that’s good info. So if you changed the name of a chord in that track in Reaper, and made it a chord name that was not at all what the MIDI notes spell, that would work?


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Originally Posted by Matt Finley
So if you changed the name of a chord in that track in Reaper, and made it a chord name that was not at all what the MIDI notes spell, that would work?

Yes! Both BIAB and Scaler add midi markers to the output midi file which contain the chord name they have assigned (i have no idea how they do this, but they do). Reaper knows how to insert these midi markers into its own "project markers" when the midi is inputted. The markers serve only as text labels on top of each bar.


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DrDan #779182 10/17/23 07:10 PM
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OK, good. We are halfway there (without even arguing; I don't think I've ever argued with you). Then how is this chord info transferred into any other program? It won't go as a MIDI file. I'm assuming it is exported as a file type used by Reaper. Is that correct? If so, we've circled around to make my point. If it works some other way, I would love to learn how.


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Convenient Ways to Listen to Band-in-a-Box® Songs Created by Program Users!

The User Showcase Forum is an excellent place to share your Band-in-a-Box® songs and listen to songs other program users are creating!

There are other places you can listen to these songs too! Visit our User Showcase page to sort by genre, artist (forum name), song title, and date - each listing will direct you to the forum post for that song.

If you'd rather listen to these songs in one place, head to our Band-in-a-Box® Radio, where you'll have the option to select the genre playlist for your listening pleasure. This page has SoundCloud built in, so it won't redirect you. We've also added the link to the Artists SoundCloud page here, and a link to their forum post.

We hope you find some inspiration from this amazing collection of User Showcase Songs!

Congratulations to the 2023 User Showcase Award Winners!

We've just announced the 2023 User Showcase Award Winners!

There are 45 winners, each receiving a Band-in-a-Box 2024 UltraPAK! Read the official announcement to see if you've won.

Our User Showcase Forum receives more than 50 posts per day, with people sharing their Band-in-a-Box songs and providing feedback for other songs posted.

Thank you to everyone who has contributed!

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