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Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows® Upgrade Manual

Chapter 1: Introduction

Congratulations on your purchase of Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows®!

This documentation covers the new features in Band-in-a-Box 2018.  The Help menu has a link to the full manual.

Band-in-a-Box 2018 for Windows is here!

We’ve been busy and added over 50 new features and an amazing collection of new content, including RealTracks, MIDI SuperTracks, Instrumental Studies, Loops, Artist Performances, Amplitube presets and associated styles, 12-Key RealTracks, and Hi-Q Guitar Notation!  We’ve added 202 new RealTracks, double the 101 that we’ve often released in the past!  Now introducing Video RealTracks (40 available in Country, Pop, and Jazz), which work just like RealTracks, but also include videos of the musician’s performance!  We’ve also made a new Xtra Styles PAK 4 with 160 new Xtra Styles.  (Xtra Styles are styles based on previously released RealTracks).  There are over 200 new RealStyles for our new RealTracks including Americana, Klezmer, Top-40, Jazz Strings Pads, Vocals (oohs and aahs), New Crooner “Shout” BigBand styles, and more!  We have a Bonus 49-PAK with 40 additional new unreleased RealTracks on top of the 202 above, so in total an amazing 242 new RealTracks are available!  The Bonus 49-PAK also includes Video RealTracks Set 1 and 2, 32 new MIDI SuperTracks, 108 new Instrumental Studies, 52 Loops, and 8 Artist Performances.

Band-in-a-Box 2018 Features and Additions

There are over 50 exciting new features in Band-in-a-Box 2018!  We’re introducing “Video RealTracks,” which work like RealTracks, but also include videos of the musician’s performance.  You can make a video of a single musician or a band video, optionally with a chord sheet or notation, and you can even add own videos to the final mix.  We’ve added a new audio driver system (Windows Audio Session) that has ultra-low latency (< 25 ms on a typical Windows PC).  This means that audio operations like playing or sending out information via MIDI happen with no noticeable delay.  The Audio Chord Wizard has been redesigned and is now built into Band-in-a-Box.  The Audio Harmonies feature has been enhanced with Audio Transcription, which converts a monophonic audio track to MIDI (notation), Fix Tuning to fix an out-of-tune audio recording, and more.  We’ve redesigned the BB folder so it is “clean” with only a few files needed and other files organized in folders.  You can save the Notation window to a video in sync with the audio track playback.  We’ve added notation support for time signatures like 12/8, 6/8, and 9/8.  The Toolbar has been enhanced with skins and more customization.  You can open or save ABC notation files, which are very common song files on the internet with chords and melody.  Songs can now be saved as MP3 files in high resolution.  M4A song saving has been enhanced and is faster.  The popular Song Titles Browser is enhanced with more songs (now 10,000), filters, and the ability to show titles that work with a specific style.  StylePicker enhancements include a mixer-like control allowing clear display and style customization.  The RealDrums Picker has been enhanced with the option to find similar RealDrums.  The Audio Edit window is redesigned with new a GUI and features.  And many more!

Additional New Content Available for Band-in-a-Box 2018

- 40 New Video RealTracks
- 202 more RealTracks
- 32 New MIDI SuperTracks
- 108 New Instrumental Studies
- 8 New Artist Performances
- 52 New Loops
- 40 Amplitube presets and 37 associated styles
- 2018 Bonus 49-PAK
- New Xtra Styles PAK 4
40 New Video RealTracks
We have a new and exciting category of RealTracks - Video RealTracks!  Have you ever listened to your favorite RealTracks guitar solo or RealDrums drum fill and wondered exactly how the player did it?  Now, you can see actual footage of the musician playing along with your song!  And that’s not all.  You can also stack these videos in several configurations to create a video of a full band!
Video RealTracks are available in six sets:
- Video RealTracks Set 1: Pop Ballad Band - Guitar (Brent Mason), Bass (Byron House), Drums (Shannon Forrest), Piano (Mike Rojas), and Pedal Steel (Eddy Dunlap)
- Video RealTracks Set 2: Country TrainBeat Band - Guitar (Brent Mason), Bass (Byron House), Drums (Shannon Forrest), Piano (Mike Rojas), and Pedal Steel (Eddy Dunlap)
- Video RealTracks Set 3: Jazz Guitar with Oliver Gannon
- Video RealTracks Set 4: Pop, and Country Drums with Shannon Forrest
- Video RealTracks Set 5: Gypsy Jazz Guitar, and Blues Piano with Quinn Bachand, and Mike Rojas
- Video RealTracks Set 6: Celtic Guitar with Quinn Bachand
202 more RealTracks with great new Pop, Rock, World, Jazz, Blues, Latin, Country, Americana, and Celtic styles.  These include:
- 74 Country, Americana and Celtic RealTracks (Sets 278-285)
This collection features an array of newly requested styles and additions to classic sets, as well as a Band-in-a-Box “first” Background Vocals (10 RealTracks)!  Our new Vocal Oohs & Aahs set features a 3-part vocal arrangement with 2 male voices and 1 female voice, each doubled for a total of a 6-voice ensemble.  Americana has been one of the biggest user requests, and we’ve added twenty Americana grooves, with acoustic bass, amazing electric guitar from Brent Mason and Colin Linden, vintage electric piano, and sweet fiddle.  There are also Country Singer-Songwriter RealTracks, with more acoustic guitars by Brent Mason and Colin Linden.  We also have new 12-key Country guitars, pedal steel, bass, and piano.  There are six new harmonica styles from “Jelly-Roll” Johnson, which sound fantastic over classic country grooves.  And we have new “Canadiana” RealTracks complete with old time guitar, banjo, and foot stomps.  Eleven new Celtic Piano & Harp styles, featuring Scottish pianist Dave Milligan, will fit perfectly with Celtic ensembles from previous years.
- 68 Pop, Rock and World RealTracks (Sets 286-293)
RealTracks Sets 286-293 feature amazing new Pop, Rock, Klezmer, and European styles!  Five new Pop & Rock guitars from Brent Mason and Joe Robinson range from funky to folky with both acoustic rhythm and electric soloist styles.  The extremely popular Band-in-a-Box Pop Songwriter toolkit now has eleven new acoustic songwriter guitar styles from Brent Mason, Colin Linden, Quinn Bachand, and Fintan O’Brien.  Seven new soulful Southern Pop Drums styles from top session drummer Land Richards have been added.  Accent these new drums with eight new Pop Percussion Singles, including congas, cowbell, tambourine, shaker, woodblocks, and afuche-cabasa.  The Fretless Bass, Pop Keys & Punk Drums set boasts a versatile line of fretless electric bass, acoustic piano, organ, and hard-edged drum styles.  Eight Modern Dancehall RealTracks are a Modern-Pop must-have, featuring percussive synth basses, pads, and electronic drums.  A set of spirited Klezmer styles feature world-champion accordionist Cory Pesaturo accompanied by Neil Swainson on acoustic bass and Quinn Bachand on guitar, with matching RealDrums by Terry Clarke. Cory also features alongside Neil and Quinn with fourteen new French, Italian, and Swedish World Styles.

- 60 Jazz, Blues, and Latin RealTracks (Sets 294-300)
We’ve added to our extremely popular “Crooner” Big Band styles with exciting new “Shout” Soloist RealTracks.  A “Shout” Soloist is a big Band arrangement where all the instruments are playing harmonized solos!  These tracks feature an 11-part arrangement of trumpets, saxophones, and flute that can be used as an ensemble or selected as groups of individual soloists.  We also have other great new jazz styles in the “Jazz Potpourri” set, including new 12-key Bossa and Waltz Guitar, Jazz Ballad Strings, Soul Jazz Piano from Mike Rojas (CMA Musician of the Year), as well as a variety of Jazz Percussion Singles such as bongos, congas, and triangle.  The new Modern Jazz set includes four Neil Swainson acoustic modern jazz basses and six corresponding modern jazz drum styles from the legendary Terry Clarke.  New additions to our Smooth Jazz & Fusion catalogue include acoustic basses, Latin & Slow 16ths electric piano from Jeff Lorber, brushes drums, and lush mark tree fills.  Building upon the traditional Latin RealTracks from last year, we have seven new Mariachi styles!  The set features a 6/8 style and a waltz, with the authentic instrumentation of Guitar, Vihuela, Guitarron (7).  Three new Rootsy Blues guitars and pianos are included from Brent Mason, Colin Linden, and Mike Rojas.  Seven Smokin’ Fast Jazz Basses allow for smooth, fluent bass tempos up to 350 bpm!
32 New MIDI SuperTracks
We have 32 new MIDI SuperTracks with Killer Accordion (15), Country and Folk Piano (9), and Celtic Piano (8).  Because these are MIDI, you can pick whatever patches or synths you want to generate the sound, giving you complete control over the final product!

108 New Instrumental Studies
We introduced the idea of “Instrumental Studies” two years ago with guitar, and last year we added additional Instrumental Studies with piano, bass, guitar, and sax.  This year we added new Instrumental Studies with electric guitar!
New Artist Performances Set 8: Traditional songs sung by Béatrix Méthé.
With Artist Performance Set 8, you’ll be delighted to hear eight well-known folk songs, sung in beautiful harmony by professional singer Béatrix Méthé.  These songs date back hundreds of years, and are popular all over the world.  You’re sure to recognize more than a few, with origins spanning America, Ireland, Canada, and France.  Each song has a handpicked Band-in-a-Box style, with the lyrics and singing professionally transcribed, so you can use the notation window, tempo stretching, and all the other Band-in-a-Box features to make sure you’re well versed in each song.  In addition to the melody, each song has one or two harmony parts sung by Béatrix!  We hope you will enjoy listening and learning each of these timeless songs.
52 New Loops - Percussion FX (22), “Classic Beats” Rock/Pop (10), “Classic Beats” Jazz (10), and “Classic Beats” Country (10).
40 Amplitube presets and 37 associated styles
It’s been a few years since we offered a new collection of Amplitube presets and styles, so we thought we would treat you to something special.  Volume 2 of our Amplitube presets and styles will give you all kinds of killer guitar tones, from clean and mellow jazz sounds to screaming rock leads and even an acoustic bass enhancer.  We threw in some pedal steel presets that you can use with DI pedal steel RealTracks too.  You’ll also find some vintage tones that incorporate some of your favorite effects like spring reverb and tape delay.  And of course, we’ve included 37 RealStyles to accompany the 40 new Amplitube presets so that you can easily hear the new sounds at work.
Our “2018 Bonus 49-PAK” contains great additional content!
- Video RealTracks Set 1: Pop Ballad Band - Guitar (Brent Mason), Bass (Byron House), Drums (Shannon Forrest), Piano (Mike Rojas), and Pedal Steel (Eddy Dunlap)
- Video RealTracks Set 2: Country TrainBeat Band - Guitar (Brent Mason), Bass (Byron House), Drums (Shannon Forrest), Piano (Mike Rojas), Pedal Steel (Eddy Dunlap)
- 40 additional unreleased RealTracks - The Band-in-a-Box 2018 Bonus RealTracks collection features an exciting variety of RealTracks and RealDrums, including Singer-Songwriter styles, Klezmer styles, World Accordion, Latin Percussion, and more Drum Kit & Percussion styles!  The Klezmer RealTracks make up twelve RealTracks/RealDrums, with Neil Swainson acoustic bass, Cory Pesaturo (world champion accordionist), Quinn Bachand guitars, and jazz legend Terry Clarke on drums.  We add to our already huge collection of singer-songwriter styles with guitars by Brent Mason, Quinn Bachand, and Fintan O’Brien, as well as piano by Mike Rojas.  In addition, we have cool new percussion styles, most notably Washboard Bluegrass!  And more RealDrums from top studio musicians Terry Clarke, and Land Richard.
Xtra Styles PAKs
- Xtra Styles PAK 4 (Released December 2017) - This brings you great Country, Rock/Pop, and Jazz RealStyles with the addition of the first ever “Folk and Beyond.”  This amazing collection encompasses everything from modern trends in music to classic reimaginings and eclectic genre combinations.  Many of the great RealTracks from the 2017 release have been used in new and unique ways that are beyond their original scope.  All these styles are meticulously mixed and thoughtfully arranged to save you time!
- Xtra Styles PAK 3 (Released June 2017) - 160 RealStyles for Jazz, Rock-Pop, Country, and Americana.
- Xtra Styles PAK 2 (Released December 2016) - 161 RealStyles for Jazz, Country, Rock-Pop, and Bluegrass & World.
- Xtra Styles PAK 1 (Released August 2017) - 164 RealStyles for Jazz, Country, Rock-Pop, and Singer/Songwriter.

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