Technical Support FAQ:
Band-in-a-Box® 11 and Earlier for Windows
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Last updated: Sunday, 25 November 2018
Most Common Topics
- No Sound / MIDI Driver Setup
- How to render Band-in-a-Box® songs to WAV/MP3/WMA and burn an audio CD.
- What can I do to improve my sound quality in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why am I unable to download updates and other files from your website?
- Why is there a delay between when I play a note on my MIDI keyboard, and when I hear the note play through my computer speakers?
- Why do I get a font error when I try to view or print notation?
- Why don't the Styles that I just installed appear in the StylePicker window?
- No Sound / MIDI Driver Setup
- What is MIDI?
- Can I use multiple MIDI output devices at the same time?
- How can I tell if my sound card is full duplex?
- My computer locks up completely when I play a song.
- Why do I get a font error when I try to view or print notation?
- After installing a new sound card, Band-in-a-Box® freezes or crashes.
- How do I enter notation in Band-in-a-Box®?
- What causes a "Can't open Wave Device" or "Wave Device is already in use..." error?
- How do I use the 1/8 inch line inputs on my sound card?
- How do I uninstall Band-in-a-Box®?
- How do I connect my computer to an external MIDI synthesizer?
- How do I use SoundFonts on my SoundBlaster sound card?
- When a manufacturer says a synthesizer/module has 64 voice polyphony, what do they mean?
- What is the difference between polyphonic and multitimbral?
- No drivers are listed in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog.
- How do I create a shortcut on my desktop to open Band-in-a-Box®?
- How do I control what I record and what I listen to?
- Can I write music to a CD-RW and get it to play in my home stereo?
- How to render Band-in-a-Box® songs to WAV/MP3/WMA and burn an audio CD.
- Am I missing some of the feature icons in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why do I need to select my MIDI driver twice before my song will play?
- How do I control the reverb and chorus effects on my SoundBlaster Live! ?
- MSGSRV32.exe displays error when booting, naming devcon32.dll.
- Band-in-a-Box® is playing out of tune. Can I correct the tuning of my sound card?
- Why is my playback jerky in Band-in-a-Box®?
- How do I get Lyrics to line up in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why do I get the message 'MIDI device is currently in use by another application' when I launch Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why am I unable to download update patches and other files from your website?
- I am receiving an 'Invalid floating point operation' error while using Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP.
- Error: Device ID has been used that is out of range.
- How do I free up system resources on Windows 98/ME?
- Why is there a delay between when I play a note on my MIDI keyboard, and when I hear the note play through my computer speakers?
- How do I change from 3/4 to 4/4 time in the middle of my song?
- How do I create and use Band-in-a-Box® Styles in 6/8,12/8,9/8 and 5/4 time signatures?
- How do I add my personal styles to the Band-in-a-Box® StylePicker list?
- How do I print harmony parts with Band-in-a-Box®?
- How can I make my song endings more natural? Can I hold the last chord in the song and have it fade out?
- In the Select Soloist dialog, what do the brackets around some of the Soloists mean?
- Is there a fermata (pause) capability or some way to simulate it?
- I get a GPF (General Protection Fault) when I close Band-in-a-Box®.
- I'm trying to change an instrument (patch), but every time I press play, my instrument selection changes.
- How do I display 'Swing' notation (triplets) and 'Even feel' notation (sixteenths) in the same song? How do I enter quarter note triplets?
- Can I make a Band-in-a-Box® style from a MIDI file?
- Can I notate ties and slurs in Band-in-a-Box®?
- How do I use tag endings? Why does the 'tag exists' box sometimes become unchecked automatically?
- Can I import and play MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box®?
- Who owns the songs that I create with Band-in-a-Box®? Are the songs copyrighted?
- How do I rest more than one bar at a time?
- How do I create a backup of the MySetup.dk file?
- How can I easily raise or lower the velocity (volume) of all notes in the melody track?
- Can I enter a melody into Band-in-a-Box® using the computer keyboard?
- How can I associate my songs and styles with Band-in-a-Box®?
- How can I combine multiple Band-in-a-Box® songs to make a medley, or copy and paste part of one song into another?
- Why does the same song sound different in Band-in-a-Box® than when I play it with Windows Media Player?
- What are the different Track Types for in the Notation Window Options dialog?
- I am having trouble recording into Band-in-a-Box® with my Wind Controller.
- What are the numbers for in the StyleMaker bars?
- How do I get chords to sound on the off-beat, or create syncopation in my music?
- Please explain the song structure in Band-in-a-Box®.
- How do I access higher bank patches in Band-in-a-Box®? What are MSB and LSB?
- How do I make a patch map for my synthesizer?
- Do you have an advanced tutorial, or more information on the StyleMaker?
- Can I export my song from Band-in-a-Box® to PowerTracks Pro Audio or another MIDI sequencer?
- Can Band-in-a-Box® input chords for my melody?
- How do I get Band-in-a-Box® to use Long Filenames?
- Why don't the Styles that I just installed appear in the StylePicker window?
- My laptop doesn't have a number keypad. Can I still step-advance through the notes?
- How do I enter more than 2 chords per bar in Band-in-a-Box®?
- How do I enable and disable the lead-in bars or count-in?
- Can I sync Band-in-a-Box® to an external MIDI source?
- Why do I hear the drums playing with a piano patch?
- Why does Band-in-a-Box® generate notes below low E (E2) on a bass?
- Why does my screen saver not come on when I run Band-in-a-Box®?
- Tutorial #2 mentions "L_bomba.mgu" and I can't find it.
- How do I raise or lower the volume of all but one track?
- Why does Band-in-a-Box® lock up on startup?
- Why do I get a "Runtime Error" when I try to run Band-in-a-Box®?
- I want to use 2/4 time in my bluegrass song, but it doesn't 'hold'?
- How do I set the right key or visually transpose the music for my non-concert instrument?
- Why is my recorded audio (wave) track empty?
- Why does Band-in-a-Box® keep looping 4 bars over and over?
- Why do I get a "Corrupt Archive File" error when installing the software?
- What is the difference between using "adjust level of audio (quick)" and "adjust level of wave file (permanent) to change the volume of the audio track?
- How do I force an accidental, for example Eb to a D#, for easier reading?
- How can I control Band-in-a-Box® from an external start switch?
- 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?
- I can't find the 300 MIDI Fakebook songs included with Band-in-a-Box®.
- The option to turn on fretboard inlays on the guitar fretboard doesn't seem to work.
- Are Mac and PC versions of Band-in-a-Box® songs compatible?
- How can I adjust the volume of individual harmony parts?
- How do I change keys in the middle of my Band-in-a-Box® song? Can I display more than one key signature?
- What is the difference between "chord step advance" and "note step advance"?
- I accidentally deleted the BBW.LST file or messed it up. How can I fix it?
- Why is the search field blank in my Band-in-a-Box® Help files?
- Why doesn't Band-in-a-Box® show all of my songs when I click the Song button (Select song by title)?
- I made a style with the StyleMaker that uses the bar mask feature, and some bars don't play or only play drums.
- Why do the drums I record in my drum window sound like another musical instrument when I play them back?
- 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?
- Why aren't all of the styles in my BBW.LST file listed in the StylePicker?
- Can I load an audio (.wav) file into Band-in-a-Box®?
- How can I export my lead sheet as a graphics file when I do not have a printer?
- Nothing happens when I press the [Test WAV] button in the Render to Audio dialog.
- Why do I get a 'Parameter is incorrect' or 'File Problem' error message when trying to open a previously saved song?
- Why am I receiving an Error 502 message when installing my Styles set?
- How do I show or hide the tablature display for the Bass track?
- How do I make a Custom Drum Kit in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why can't I open songs in Band-in-a-Box® over a Windows 2000 network?
- When I try to install the program, I get the message "Setup is not a valid win32 application".
- What can I do to improve my sound quality in Band-in-a-Box®?
- When I try to use the Roland VSC as my output driver, I get the message "...installed properly but currently in use by another program", even though there are no other programs open.
- Why do I get an Error Code 5 when I try to install upgrades or update patches?
- Why do I get the message "Cannot find SHELL.DLL" when I try to launch Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP?
- When I try to launch Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP, I get a 16 bit Windows Subsystem error referring to the file "AUTOEXEC.NT".
- Why does Band-in-a-Box® not launch on my Windows XP computer?
- Why do I get a "CPALETTE.DLL", "BBWDLL7.DLL", or "GP.DLL" error when I try to run Band-in-a-Box®?
- When I try to convert my song to Windows Media format (WMA) I get the message "Windows cannot find 'WM8EUTIL.EXE' ".
- "Could not open file" error when recording audio or trying to open a song with an audio track.
- I am having trouble playing the video tutorials.
- How do I get my chord shortcuts to work?
- When I add a harmony to my MIDI melody track, why are some of the melody notes not harmonized?
- Explain the different file extensions that Band-in-a-Box® uses for song files.
- How do I access all of the patches available in the Roland VSC and VSC-DXi?
- When I open the program, I get error messages such as "Can't find STYLE ZZJAZZ.STY", "No Guitarists will be available. Can't find DEFAULT.GIT", and/or "I/O error 103".
- I get an ISINST30 error when trying to install the program on Windows 95/98/ME.
- When I boot my Windows 95/98/ME computer, I get an MSGSRV32.exe error naming devcon32.dll.
- Why do I get an ".ST2 not found" message when I try to generate a solo?
- How can I return Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings?
- "Can't find winprint.drv" error when trying to print.
- When trying to open or save a song, PG Server appears in the task bar and the program locks up.
- How is pitch bend data transmitted and interpreted by a MIDI synth?
- Can I print out multiple verses or lines of lyrics on the same lead sheet?
- 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.
- Error message: "Your current drum kit has no bass drum note assigned".
- Are earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® compatible with Windows XP?
- When I render a song to wave, why do I not hear my audio track in the rendered wave file?
- When I render a song to wave, why does the rendered wave file play back silently or with only the audio track?
- In the StyleMaker, what is the difference between a drum grid pattern and a live drum pattern?
- My volume, reverb, chorus, and pan settings are not saving with my songs.
- Error message: "Error in MainWav routine, noname file", when trying to save or open a song with an audio track over a network.
- Can I get Band-in-a-Box® to display more realistic guitar tab and correct fingerings in the Fretboard Window?
- Why does the Melodist generate notes outside the "Melody Note Range" specified in the Melodist editor?
- Why do I hear a buzz or hum when my computer is connected to an external speaker system?
- How do I get a simple metronome or click track in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Why are there multiple instances of a single driver showing in my MIDI Driver Setup window?
- Error message when trying to record audio: "Format unsupported. Your sound card is not allowing or set for 44K audio".
- How do I monitor myself while recording audio with an M-Audio sound card?
- Error message: "There is a problem with your sound hardware. To install mixer devices, go to Control Panel, click Printers and Other Hardware, and then click Add Hardware."
- Why is my recorded audio track out of sync with the MIDI accompaniment?
- How can I insert a patch change in a specific chorus or change to a non-General MIDI patch at any bar?
- Is there a way to display my chords in root position in the notation window?
- I get an Access Violation or General Protection Fault when I try to open Band-in-a-Box®.
- When I type a chord into the chord sheet, it automatically transposes my chord and displays a different chord than what I typed.
- I hear handclaps and other strange sounds when I play styles that use the drum brush kit. How do I get brushes to play properly?
- After importing a MIDI file with drums into Band-in-a-Box®, I can see the drum notes in the Notation Window but they do not play.
- Can I record and edit multi-channel MIDI files in Band-in-a-Box®?
- Is there a way to get my songs to play in the order I want using the Jukebox?
- What is the difference between line-based and note-based lyrics?
- I am unable to transpose my Melody track, even if I use the Transpose Melody Only menu option.
- Is there a way to have the tempo of a song increase automatically each time it repeats, or to have the tempo increase every few bars?
- When recording from an external keyboard, some notes are not being recorded, are dropping out, or are being sustained when they shouldn't be.
- The tempo changes in my MIDI file disappear when I import it into Band-in-a-Box®.
- Why do some of my rests disappear from the notation window when I exit editable notation mode?
- When I open the program, I get a message that the Microsoft GS Wavetable is "...installed properly but currently in use by another program".
- When I use the 'Import Melody from MIDI File' feature, it doesn't work. It says that there were 0 Events imported.
- The help file doesn't work on Windows Vista.
- How do I install update patches for Band-in-a-Box®?
1. No Sound / MIDI Driver Setup
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. Can I use multiple MIDI output devices at the same time?
This involves sending specific MIDI channels to specific MIDI ports. If you have Windows 95 or 98 you can use the MIDI Mapper, and we've written a tutorial explaining how to use it:Using Multiple MIDI Output Devices with Windows 95/98.
Unfortunately, Microsoft removed much of the functionality of the MIDI Mapper in later versions of Windows, and Band-in-a-Box® itself cannot output to more than one port at a time. One thing you can do is save your song as a MIDI file and play it with PowerTracks Pro Audio, which does allow you to assign each track to a different MIDI port.
4.How can I tell if my sound card is full duplex?
The majority of modern sound cards are full-duplex for digital audio. This means that the sound card can do two functions at once: play back and record. Single-duplex cards could only do one or the other. A quick test for full duplex is as follows:
Open Windows Sound Recorder, which is located in the Start Menu under Programs | Accessories | Entertainment.
Press the round button to start recording. Then open a second instance of Sound Recorder. Bring up a wave file to play. The wave file must be at the same frequency as the one you recorded. To check the frequency, go to File | Properties of the SoundRecorder. The frequency will be listed next to 'Audio format'.
If the wave file plays while the recording is still going, the sound card is full duplex.
5. My computer locks up completely when I play a song.
The symptoms are usually apparent if the machine is running perfectly, but locks up immediately when you play a song, or when you hit a key on your external keyboard/controller. This is most likely an IRQ or DMA conflict. Right-click on My Computer and select Properties. Click on the Hardware tab (Windows XP), and then click on Device Manager. Look for any yellow andblack exclamation marks. If you see any, there may be a conflict, and you may need to have a system tech look at your computer setup. We have an article that explains IRQ conflicts:How do I resolve IRQ conflicts? As well, you should check on the sound card or MIDI interface manufacturer's website for any driver updates.
6. Why do I get a font error when I try to view or printnotation?
Follow the instructions below if you get one of the following error messages when you try to open the notation or lead sheet window:
"PGMusic Font is not installed. Make sure PGMUS.TTF is in your Windows System directory."
"PGJazz Font is not installed. Make sure PGJazz_.TTF is in your Windows System directory."
If you have a 64-bit version of Windows XP
Download and install the PG Music font update. You should restart your computer before and after installing the update to ensure that it works properly.
If you are running Band-in-a-Box® 12 or earlier on Windows 2000 or XP:
Download and install the latest update patch for your version of Band-in-a-Box®. Update patches for Band-in-a-Box®.
Download and install the Band-in-a-Box® Font Update for Versions 12 and earlier. Important: You need to restart your computer before and after installing the font update, or else it will not work properly.
If you have Windows 95/98/ME, or you have Windows 2000/XP but the suggestions above did not fix problem:
The fonts may not be installed on your computer at all. This may be the case if Band-in-a-Box® was copied/moved from one machine to another, you installed an upgrade without installing the previous full version, or system security software running on your computer (such as an anti-virus or firewall program) prevented the fonts from being installed properly. The solution is to reinstall Band-in-a-Box® from the original CD(s). If you suspect that the issue may have been caused by an anti-virus or firewall program, disable these programs while reinstalling. It isn't necessary to uninstall/remove Band-in-a-Box® first; simply install into your existing Band-in-a-Box® folder. You need to start with a full "Pro" version or "MegaPAK", then install subsequent regular upgrades. After you have done that, you should install the latest update patch available for your version. If you have a 64-bit version of Windows, or you are using Version 12 or earlier on Windows 2000/XP, you may need to install the font update.
- Windows 95, 98, and ME users: There is a limit to the number of True Type font files that Windows can support. The limit is somwhere around 700 on these operating systems, but can be more or less depending on how many characters there are in the font filenames. Go to the Windows/Fonts folder and at the bottom left hand corner there will be a list of the number of items in this folder. If it is near the limit, you may have to remove some of the fonts. You should not remove standard fonts installed by Windows, and it would be a good idea to make backups of the fonts before proceeding with this. The extra fonts would have come from some other program that you installed on your computer.
If you have followed the instructions above and are still getting a font error (this would be an unusual situation):
Reboot your computer.
Locate and delete all of the PG*.ttf and PG*.fot files in the \Windows\System, and \Windows\System32 folders (\WINNT\System and \WINNT\System32 on Windows 2000\NT).
Reinstall Band-in-a-Box®, starting with a full "Pro" version or "MegaPAK".
Downlad the latest update patch for your version.
Install the font update, if necessary.
7. After installing a new sound card, Band-in-a-Box® freezes or crashes.
Band-in-a-Box® may be looking for your old sound card, but cannot find it. Try the following: With Band-in-a-Box® closed, open the Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb) and delete a file called 'intrface.bbw'. Launch the application, select your MIDI drivers, and perform a test to see if the problem is solved
You may not have removed the old sound card drivers. To check this, right-click on My Computer and select 'Properties'. Click on Device Manager (on Windows 2000/XP, click on the Hardware tab first), and look under Sound, video and game controllers.
The new sound card drivers may not be installed properly, or there may be an IRQ conflict. Look in the Device Manager for any yellow and black exclamation marks. If you see any, there may be a conflict, and you may need to have a system tech look at your computer setup. We have an article that explains IRQ conflicts:How do I resolve IRQ conflicts? You should tryreinstalling the sound card. Use the most updated drivers available from the manufacturer.
8. How do I enter notation in Band-in-a-Box®?
Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTracks Pro Audio offer one of the quickest methods of notation input. Remember though, they were 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 the left 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.
If you are in 'staff edit' mode, you can change the duration of a note by clicking on it with the right mouse button and then dragging the cursor to the desired end location. Click the [N] button twice to toggle into staff edit (or 'piano roll') mode.
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 [Alt] key forces the note to be a natural. To delete a note from the Notation, hold down the delete key and left-mouse click on the note. Or you could right mouse click on the note (to edit it), then press the Delete button.
You can change the beat resolution (the number of intervals in one beat) by right-clicking in the time indicator bar above the beat that you want to change. This will allow you to enter triplets in an even feel style, or sixteenth notes in a triplet feel style. The time indicator bar is the narrow space containing the black cursor that moves across the screen as your song is playing.
9.What causes a "Can't open Wave Device" or "Wave Device is already in use..." error?
There are a number of reasons why you might get this error. The device may be in use by another application, or you might have a "DMA Conflict" or "MCI DeviceConflict"
Here are some suggestions:
Make sure all other programs are closed. If this doesn't help, try rebooting your computer.
Download and install the latest update patch for Band-in-a-Box®.
A common cause of this problem is in conjunction with a Virtual Synth such as the Roland VSC. Since all software synthesizers rely on the digital audio portion of the sound card, playing MIDI and digital audio together can sometimes be a problem.
Go to the Control Panel | Multimedia -or- Sounds and Audio Devices | Audio. Select the same audio playback device as is showing in the recording preferences. Click the MIDI tab (Windows XP: Look in the MIDI Playback area) and select your sound card's synth, rather than the VSC88/3 (or other software synth). This will give a lesser quality for Windows playback but the VSC can be selected internally by the software rather than allowing Windows to be the default.
In Band-in-a-Box®, de-select the VSC from the MIDI Driver Setup, and select a non-software synth for MIDI playback.
Download and install the latest drivers available for your sound card. You should be able to download the latest drivers from the card manufacturer's website, usually in either the "Support" or "Downloads" section.
Video cards can be a major cause of DMA Conflicts. Many video cards can monopolize the bus and interfere with DMA operations. One of the first things you should do is make sure you have the latest drivers for your card. Many new drivers provide applets, which allow you to disable or modify certain settings for the card. If there is an option for PCI bus retries and/or DMA bus mastering or a similar option, you should try disabling these.
If you are still having problems or your video driver does not have theabove options, you can try reducing graphics hardware acceleration.
Windows 95/98/ME: Go to Start | Settings |Control Panel | System | Performance | Graphics. Windows XP: Start | Control Panel | Display | Advanced | Troubleshoot
Move the hardware acceleration slider to the left one notch and click OK. You will need to restart Windows.
If the problem remains, repeat the above process until the problem issolved or the slider is all the way to the left. If this did not solve your problem, you should probably reset the slider to the highest setting (to the right).
10. How do I use the 1/8 inch line inputs on my sound card?
The mic and/or line inputs on many sound cards are miniature stereo 1/8" jacks. Both left and right channels appear in this configuration, sharing ground (3 connections). To use these inputs, you will likely need a stereo 1/8" male-to-two mono (whatever matches your input source) adapter. On most mixers, this will mean two 1/4" male plugs, on some mixers and most home tape decks, this would mean an "RCA" audio connector. Your local electronics store is a good source for any of these adapters.
11. How do I uninstall Band-in-a-Box®?
To delete/remove/un-install Band-in-a-Box® 11 or earlier, simply delete the Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb) after backing up the song files you wish to keep.
12. How do I connect my computer to an external MIDI synthesizer?
There are a few different ways you can connect your external MIDI synth or module. These days, you will probably use either a USB interface or the Joystick port on your sound card.
USB: There are many MIDI interfaces available that connect to this port on your computer. MIDI In and Out cables connect from the interface to your synth, and you may have to purchase the cables separately.
Sound card (Joystick port): The joystick port (game port) on your sound card has a built-in MIDI interface. The cable that connects to the joystick port is commonly called a Universal MIDI Sound Card Connector. Some sound cards have MIDI in and out ports so you don't need to use the joystick port. In either case, MIDI cables connect to your synth's MIDI In and Out.
MPU-401 or other internal MIDI Interface: An interface (computer card) with MIDI In(s) and MIDI Out(s). This is a small interface card that plugs into a slot inside your computer. MIDI cables are still required to connect to your external module.
Serial or Printer: There are various MIDI interfaces that can connect from these types of existing computer data ports, although the USB port is used much more frequently these days.
Some MIDI interfaces and cables can be purchased directly from PG Music Inc.:Hardware Products.
13. How do I use SoundFonts on my SoundBlaster sound card?
We've written an article on the subject. Click Here for more details.
14. When a manufacturer says a synthesizer/module has 64voice 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.
15. What is the difference between polyphonic andmultitimbral?
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.
16. No drivers are listed in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog.
First, close Band-in-a-Box® and try deleting a file called 'intrface.bbw' from the C;\bb folder. This will restore the program's factory settings. When you next launch Band-in-a-Box®, the MIDI Driver Setup dialog should come up automatically. If there are still no drivers there, this suggests that (for whatever reason) there are no MIDI drivers installed on your computer. You can verify this by checking the Windows Control Panel. On Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000: Go to Start | Settings | Control Panel | Multimedia -or- Sounds and Multimedia | MIDI. On Windows XP: Go to Start | Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices | Audio, and look under MIDI Playback.
You will likely need to re-install your sound card drivers. If you are not sure exactly how to do this, you will need to contact the sound card manufacturer. Drivers can normally be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.
Note: If you won't be recording MIDI from an external synth it is usually ok if you don't have a MIDI Input driver, as long as you do have a MIDI Output driver.
17. How do I create a shortcut on my desktop to open Band-in-a-Box®?
Locate and open the Band-in-a-Box® folder on your hard drive, usually c:\bb. Find the file BBW.EXE. Right-click on this file and select Send To | Desktop (Create Shortcut). You will now have a shortcut icon on your desktop to launch Band-in-a-Box®. You can name the shortcut whatever you want by clicking once on the icon and pressing F2 on your keyboard.
18. How do I control what I record and what I listen to?
This is controlled by the Windows sound card mixer - the Record Control and Play (or 'Volume') Control panels. To open the Play Control, double-click on the speaker icon in your taskbar, usually at the bottom of your computer screen in the right-hand corner, or go to Start | Programs | Accessories | Entertainment | Volume Control. The Play Control is for OUTPUT; it allows you to choose what outputs you listen to and how loud they are.
To open the Record Control window, click on Options | Properties to open the Properties window, select the 'Recording' radio button, and press OK. The Record Control window is for INPUT; it allows you to choose what you record. For example, if you were recording audio using the line-in on your sound card, you would select 'line-in' as your recording input.
In the Properties window, you can choose which audio device you wish to control (the "Mixer device"). Normally you don't need to change this. You can also select which volume controls you want displayed in the Record/Play Control panels.
You can also open the Windows sound card mixer directly from Band-in-a-Box®. One way of opening it from Band-in-a-Box® is to click on the [Set Recording Properties] button in the Record Audio dialog. Another is to go to the Audio menu and select Playback Mixer or Recording Mixer. If you are running Band-in-a-Box® 9 or earlier on Windows XP, you won't be able to open the mixer directly from within Band-in-a-Box®.
Another way that you control audio recording and playback is by choosing your audio input and output drivers. If you only have one sound card you don't normally need to worry about this. You choose your audio drivers in the Windows Control Panel: Multimedia (Win 98/ME), Sounds and Multimedia (Win 2000), or Sounds and Audio Devices (Win XP), in the Audio section.
Note that starting with Band-in-a-Box® 2005, it is possible to select your audio drivers from within the program.
Whenever you launch the Windows sound card mixer, it always opens showing the mixer panel for the currently selected audio driver in the Windows Control Panel.
If you get an error message when you try to open the sound card mixer or nothing happens when you try to open it (and you are not running Band-in-a-Box® 9 or earlier on Windows XP), this means that the selected audio driver doesn't have an associated Record or Play Control window. In this case, the audio device will usually have a separate control/mixer console that you can access from the Control Panel. You will need to check with your sound card documentation if you are not sure where to find it.
19. Can I write music to a CD-RW and get it to play in my home stereo?
Older CD players, and many newer CD players are unable to read CD-RW media. In general, only use CD-R's when creating an audio CD.
20. How to render Band-in-a-Box® songs to WAV/MP3/WMA and burn an audio CD.
The process of converting a MIDI file or Band-in-a-Box® song to an audio file is referred to as "Rendering".
If you are looking for the quickest solution, try using the DXi-Direct Render. The easiest way to render songs to wave is usually to use the VSC-DXi and Direct Render your song. This option is only available in Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher. Here is how you do it:
Make sure you have the VSC-DXi (included with Band-in-a-Box®) installed, and the latest update patch for Band-in-a-Box®.
Load the song you want to render and click on the DXi Synth button in the Band-in-a-Box® toolbar. In the DirectX window, select the VSC-DXi in the top pull-down.
Press the .WAV button to open the Render to Audio File dialog.
Press the [DXi-Direct Render] button.
21. Am I missing some of the feature icons in Band-in-a-Box®?
There are a few icons on the right side of the Band-in-a-Box® screen that will only appear in Band-in-a-Box® Versions 10, 11, and 12 at a screen resolution of 1024X768 or higher. If you are using Band-in-a-Box® Versions 8 or 9, the icons will display at 800X600 if you are using small fonts. To set your screen resolution, right-click on your desktop, select Properties, and click on the Settings tab. You may need to restart your computer for the new settings to take effect.
Note: It is not necessary for you to change your screen resolution to be able to access the "missing" features - the icons are just there for convenience. You can access all of the features from items in the main menu.
22. Why do I need to select my MIDI driver twice before my song will play?
There was a bug in Band-in-a-Box® Version 9 that required you to select your MIDI driver more than once in some cases. This was fixed in 9.0d. Update patches can be downloaded from https://www.pgmusic.com/support_windowsupdates.htm.
23. How do I control the reverb and chorus effects on my SoundBlaster Live! ?
The MIDI reverb and chorus effects won't work in Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTracks Pro Audio unless the sound card software is set up properly. The exact steps vary with different drivers, but the concept is the same.
Open up the SB Live! "Environmental Audio" window. You need to create a new environment and name it whatever you like (Naming it with a ! at the front of the name will put it at the top of the selection list, making it much easier and faster to find in the future).
Set the reverb and chorus sliders to a reasonable point. We find that 50% settings emulate the old AWE cards fairly well. Set them where they sound good to you. Remember that you will be able to control each effect from zero to the master input setting you pick now from within PowerTracks Pro Audio and Band-in-a-Box®. Check to be sure that the reverb and chorus are controlled by controllers 91 and 93 (the default for the card, but check it to be sure. You will see the numbers in the same window).
Pick the tab at the top that brings up a page that has the various sound sources listed that environmental audio can affect. The object here is to pick each one other than MIDI, and tell the software to NOT apply the chosen environment to that one. This would include your CD audio, wave files, everything on the list but MIDI. Don't worry if MIDI does not appear on this list, it depends on which version of the Live drivers you have. Turn everything else to OFF, one at a time.
Close the environmental audio window, saving the settings, and start upPowerTracks Pro Audio or Band-in-a-Box®. The reverb and chorus controls from within PowerTracks Pro Audio or Band-in-a-Box® will now work.
24. MSGSRV32.exe displays error when booting, naming devcon32.dll.
Devcon32.dll is a driver for the Creative SoundBlaster Live! Sound Card. You must disable the card, and then re-install the Creative Labs SoundBlaster Live! software.
Start your computer in safe mode. Often you do this by pressing the F8 key while your computer is starting.
Click on Start | Settings | Control Panel | System.
Select the Device Manager tab.
Double-click on Sound, Video and Game Controllers.
Double-click on Creative SB Live!...
In the General tab, check the Disable box and Uncheck the 'Exists' box.
Click OK to save changes.
Restart the machine.
Windows should restart normally. You should reinstall the sound card using the latest drivers available from Creative. If you get in trouble, contact Creative tech support.
25. Band-in-a-Box® is playing out of tune. Can I correct the tuning of my sound card?
Tuning depends on the sound source. If you are using a sound card/synth that can be tuned,(Roland VSC, Creative SoundBlaster, and others), you may be able to tune it using the Master Tuning feature in Band-in-a-Box®, under the GM menu. If this does not work, see your sound card/synth manufacturer for support. If you are using a synth module or keyboard, see the manual for tuning info.
26.Why is my playback jerky in Band-in-a-Box®?
Stuttering can occur if your machine is doing something else and hogging the CPU, like writing a big file to the hard drive or checking a Net connection, or if other programs are working in the background. Anti-virus programs are sometimes the culprit. Troubleshoot this by closing as many background programs as possible.
On Windows 2000/XP, look for icons in your task bar next to the computer clock, and close/exit/disable these programs. You can also troubleshoot by using the Selective Startup feature. Go to Start | Run, type msconfig, and press OK. Click on 'Selective Startup', and uncheck 'Startup items'. Press [Apply] and restart the computer. Note: Windows 2000 doesn't have the system configuration utility.
On Windows 98/ME:
Hold down Ctrl and ALT on your keyboard, and press DEL once. This brings up the Close Program window.
Click on any item listed in this window except for "Explorer" or "Systray" and press [End Task]. If another window pops up saying that the program is not responding, press [End Task] again.
Repeat steps 1 and 2 for each item listed in the Close Program window, EXCEPT for "Explorer" and "Systray".
Note: Pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del twice in a row will restart your computer. If you restart your computer accidentally during this process, most of the background programs will likely be loaded again. You can configure which programs load at startup in the Windows System Configuration Utility (go to Start | Run, and typing "msconfig").
An improperly installed MIDI interface or sound card could also be the problem. Reinstall the sound card/interface, using the latest drivers available from the manufacturer. After you do this, reset Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings by deleting the 'intrface.bbw' file from the C:\bb folder.
Another issue might be that the PCI bus is being locked out by the video driver. This can be caused by accelerated video drivers taking over the system for 50ms or more. The solution is to disable accelerated video. On Windows 98/ME, go to Start | Settings | Control Panel | Display | Settings | Advanced | Performance. On Windows 2000/XP, go to Control Panel | Display | Settings | Advanced | Troubleshoot. Turn the Hardware Acceleration slider to none.
With Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier, jerky playback on Windows 2000/XP is often due to one of the following:
Too many windows open while in Playback.
Too much mouse movement.
Firewalls and/or Virus checkers.
If you have either a firewall or a virus checker running on your system, disabling it (while using Band-in-a-Box®) may fix the problem. Windows XP comes equipped with an Internet Connection Firewall. To check if it is enabled:
Go to Start | Control Panel | Network Connections.
Click to select your internet connection.
In the Network Tasks panel click on 'Change the settings of this connection.'
Click on the Advanced tab.
Windows XP and 2000 have a "normal" set priority for NTVDM.EXE (NT Virtual DOS Machine) that can be increased for better performance of 16-bit applications.
AFter you start Band-in-a-Box®, press Ctrl+Alt+Delete
Click the Processes Tab
Right-click on ntvdm.exe
Point to 'Set Priority', and select 'High' or 'Realtime'
27. How do I get Lyrics to line up in Band-in-a-Box®?
In Band-in-a-Box® Versions 8 and earlier, only "line-based" lyrics are available. 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. Note that changing the number of bars displayed in Band-in-a-Box® after the lyrics are inputted will skew them out of position. Band-in-a-Box® 9 and later have a "Note-based lyrics" feature which allows you to associate lyrics with notes, so lining up lyrics isn't an issue.
28. Why do I get the message 'MIDI device is currently in use by another application' when I launch Band-in-a-Box®?
This is usually because another program is already using the MIDI driver. A single MIDI driver can generally not be used by more than one application at the same time. The simplest solution is to close this program, then to relaunch your PG Music software. In Band-in-a-Box®, there is an option to also select an Alternate MIDI Driver to use. In the Options Menu, click on 'Use/Set Alternate MIDI Output Driver'. Choose another driver, then click [OK - Use Alternate Driver].
You may also be able to find third party applications through an internet search that allow multiple applications on your computer to use the same MIDI driver.
29. Why am I unable to download update patches and other files from your website?
Please see this sales FAQ topic.
30. I am receiving an 'Invalid floating point operation' error while using Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP.
We found that this seemed to occur at random for a small number of people, mainly on laptops running Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier on Windows 2000 and XP. Here are three possible solutions that we found:
If you are using battery power for your laptop, try using AC instead.
Certain printer drivers can trigger an 'invalid floating point operation' error. This is a known problem with some of the newer HP printer drivers (PCL 6). Downloading the latest HP printer drivers may solve the problem. If it does not, you could try reverting to a PCL 5 printer driver such as the HP 4 LaserJet.
If you are running Windows XP, right-click on the shortcut that you use to open Band-in-a-Box®, and left-click on 'Properties'. Click the compatibility tab and put a checkmark beside 'Run in 256 colors' within the Display Settings area. Click [Apply] and [OK] and then launch Band-in-a-Box®.
If the problem persists, you may need to upgrade to the latest version of Band-in-a-Box® for a permanent solution. The latest version has been rebuilt as a 32-bit application, and you will not have this problem.
31. Error: Device ID has been used that is out of range.
Your Audio playback may not be setup up correctly. On Windows 95/98/ME/2000, go to Start | Settings | Control Panel | Multimedia -or- Sounds and Multimedia | Audio. On Windows XP, go to Start | Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices (if you don't see a 'Sounds and audio devices' icon, switch to Classic view) | Audio. Look at the Preferred device setting under the Playback or Sound Playback section and make sure that this setting corresponds with your sound card manufacturer's recommendation.
Your sound card drivers may not be installed properly on your computer. On Windows 95/98/ME, you can check this by going to Start | Settings | Control Panel | System | Device Manager, and looking under Sound Video, and Game Controllers. On Windows 2000/XP, go to Start | Control Panel | System (if you do not see a System icon, switch to Classic View) | Hardware | Device Manager | Sound, Video, and Game Controllers.
If the problem persists, you will probably have to reinstall your sound card, or contact the sound card manufacturer. Be sure to use the latest drivers available from the manufacturer.
32. How do I free up system resources on Windows 98/ME?
How to check for low system resources:
Right-click on My Computer, and right-click on Properties.
Select the Performance Tab.
If System resources are under 40% free, there may be problems.
Reboot your system to free up system resources, and/or:
Close windows that are not in use.
Close programs not needed that load when you start Windows. To determine what programs are running, press CTRL+ALT+DELETE, and make a note of all the programs listed. Note that Explorer is the Windows operating system and Systray is the system tray located on the right-side of the taskbar. You should not [End Task] these two programs. Determine which programs must run all of the time, and then quit the remaining programs. To quit a program, press CTRL+ALT+DELETE, select the program you want to quit, and then click [End Task]. Note that your computer is likely configured to load a number of these programs at startup, so that if you restart your computer after doing this, the programs will "come back". You can configure which programs get loaded at startup in the Windows System Configuration Utility (go to Start | Run, and type msconfig).
Clear your Clipboard. When you copy a large amount of information to the clipboard, it will remain until something else is copied onto it. To clear out a large data amount that you have copied and pasted, copy a couple of lines of text to the clipboard.
Don't use large bitmaps for wallpaper. Use a small bitmap and tile, or stretch it.
If you run an application that uses system resources every time it runs, try to keep it open instead of closing and reopening it many times during the day.
Disable your screen saver.
Avoid installing fonts that aren't needed.
33. Why is there a delay between when I play a note on my MIDI keyboard, and when I hear the note play through my computer speakers?
You are most likely using a software synthesizer such as the Microsoft GS Wavetable or the Roland VSC as your MIDI output device. One characteristic of a software synth is that it takes some time for it to express the MIDI data it receives as sound. In other words, there is a delay between when a note is sent by Band-in-a-Box® (and other MIDI software) and when you hear the note played. This delay is called latency, and is normally a fraction of a second.
In Band-in-a-Box®, the Driver Latency setting in the Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup dialog is used to delay the notation and chord highlighting so that it is synchronized with the music during playback. However, note that this is only a visual setting; it doesn't change the actual latency of the driver. There will still be a delay between when you strike a key on your keyboard and when you hear the note played.
For recording or playing live from an external MIDI synth, the solution is to use a MIDI Output Driver with no noticeable latency. This could be the built-in MIDI synth on your computer's internal sound card, or your external MIDI keyboard or sound module. If you prefer the sound quality of the soft synth, you can record using a no-latency driver, and switch back to the soft synth for playback when you have finished recording.
Here is some more information about the Roland VSC and Microsoft GS Wavetable.
Roland VSC (Virtual Sound Canvas)
This information is only applicable to the stand-alone version of the VSC, not the VSC-DXi plugin.
The Roland VSC is a software synthesizer based on the sounds from the Roland Sound Canvas hardware sound modules. The VSC's latency, or "Response Time", is adjustable. By default, the Roland VSC has a response time of about 430 to 450 ms (a little less than half a second). This is a safe setting, and will avoid audio drop-outs and glitches even on older and slow computers. If you select the Roland VSC as your MIDI Output Driver and press OK in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog, Band-in-a-Box® will automatically offer to set the latency to 430 ms.
On most modern computers, you can reduce the VSC's latency by a fair bit without experiencing any problems. Depending on how fast your computer is, you may be able to reduce this to about 100 ms or less. This is still not ideal for live playing, but is much better than 430 ms. Follow these steps:
Open the VSC. You can do this by clicking on the VSC icon in your task bar and selecting 'VSC Panel', or by going to Start | Programs | Virtual Sound Canvas 3.2...
Click on the [Setup] button to open the VSC Settings Window.
Click on the Performance tab.
Move the Response Time slider to the left. Try setting it at about 100 ms to start with.
Go back to Band-in-a-Box® and try playing a song. If there are no playback problems, you can move the Response Time slider another notch to the left. 68 ms is often the minimum.
The next step is to go to the Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup dialog and set the Driver Latency setting to the same value as the VSC's Response Time. When you exit the MIDI Driver Setup dialog, Band-in-a-Box® may ask you if you want to set the driver latency to 430 ms. If so, answer "No".
If you have trouble reducing the VSC latency below 100 ms, the following adjustments in the VSC settings window may improve performance without sacrificing sound quality. See the VSC help file if you want more information on each setting:
Click on the Performance tab and uncheck delay and TVF.
Click on the Performance tab and turn the load limit up to 90%.
Click on the Sound Set tab and select 'Secure Memory at all times'.
Click on the Receive Events tab and uncheck any that you do not use (ie - delay, expression...) on all channels.
Click on the Device tab, and set 'Direct Sound' to off.
For best results, close as many background programs as possible.
Microsoft GS Wavetable
The Microsoft GS Wavetable is a software synthesizer included with Windows. The sounds are somewhat similar to the Roland VSC, but they are lower quality sounds, and there are fewer of them. The latency of the GS Wavetable varies between different computers - it is usually between 50 and 100 ms. As far as we are aware, there is no way to reduce the latency on any particular computer. Unfortunately, many new computers don't include a sound card with a built-in MIDI synthesizer, so choosing a "no-latency" MIDI output driver for recording may not be an option. In an increasing number of cases the GS Wavetable is the only MIDI output driver choice, aside from purchasing a sound card or using an external synth/sound module for output.
34. How do I change from 3/4 to 4/4 time in the middle of my song?
You need to set the overall style of your song to a 4/4 style, since Band-in-a-Box® finds it easier to drop a beat than to create one that doesn't exist. Using the F5 key (Edit settings for current bar), you can switch between 3/4 and 4/4 at any point in your song. Ideally, you would be able to start your song in 3/4 by using F5 at bar 1, however changing styles at bar 1 will cause Band-in-a-Box® to set your overall style to the 3/4 style. If you need your song to start out in 3/4, try the following work-around:
Set your overall style to the 4/4 style.
Using F5 at bar 3, change the style to the 3/4 style.
Rest bars 1 and 2 by typing in any chord in bar 1 followed by a period (for example, Cmaj.). Your song will now begin on bar 3 in the 3/4 style.
If you want a count-in, you can enter this into bars 1 and 2. In the Notation window, switch to the Soloist track (you could use the Melody track instead) and toggle into editable notation mode. Enter the note Db3 on beats one and three in bar 1, and all four beats in bar 2. Right click on all six notes and change the channel of each of them to channel 10 (the drum channel). Db3 is the side stick on the drum channel.
Go to Soloist | Track Type, and select 'Multi-channel'.
Go to Opt. | Preferences | Count-in/Met. and disable the audible lead-in. Now when you play your song, you will hear a count-in in bars 1 and 2, before your song starts on bar 3.
35. 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 Styles menu | Choose from 24 'Built-in' Styles.
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 Styles menu | Choose from 24 'Built-in' Styles, 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 for the song, select the time signature of 5/4 or 7/4 from the Edit | Set Time Signature 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.
36. 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 Band-in-a-Box® root directory (C:\BB) 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 using File | Load User Style (F9). If you get a "style not found" message when trying to play a song, this typically means that the style is not in the root directory. 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 WordPad 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.lsw (the equivalent file is bbw.lsv in Band-in-a-Box® 9-11, and bbw.lsb inBand-in-a-Box® 8 and earlier). 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:
@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.
37. How do I print harmony parts with Band-in-a-Box®?
You first need to 'convert the harmony' to the Melody track (or Soloist track if you are using a Soloist/Thru harmony). This will write the harmony permanently to the track so that you can see the notation. To do this, you can go to the Harmony menu and select Convert harmony to .. Track. In Band-in-a-Box® versions 12 and higher, there is a feature that allows you to display and print individual harmony parts. Here are the basic steps. After you have chosen the MIDI harmony you wish to use:
Open the Lead Sheet window and click the OPT button to open the Lead Sheet Options dialog.
Press the [Convert Harmony to Track] button.
Choose the harmony part you would like to view/print, from the 'Show Harmony Voice' pull-down menu.
Press the [Print] button in the Lead Sheet window to print out that part.
Band-in-a-Box® 11 and earlier do not have the ability to print individual harmony voices separately, however one thing you could do would be to save your song as a MIDI file (making sure that 'MIDI File Harmony on Separate Tracks' is checked in the MIDI File Options dialog), then import the MIDI file into PowerTracks Pro Audio and print it each track separately from that program.
38.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:
Go to the bar that you want held (the last bar in your composition).
Press ALT-F5 (Edit | Chord Settings) and hold all instruments.
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).
Press ALT-F5 again, and rest all instruments at this bar.
Mark this bar as the last bar in the song
NOTE 1 - 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 (CTRL-N or Edit | Settings (For This Song))
Note 2 - You can only do this if your song has a single chorus OR your song has more than one chorus and you have specified a Tag ending. If you have multiple choruses without a tag ending, you can't hold the last bar of the song because the hold will be played each chorus.
NOTE 3 - The Piano Roll window added in Band-in-a-Box® 2005 provides a way of fading out all of the tracks in the last few bars of your song, or adding other dynamics. Click here for more information.
39. In the Select Soloist dialog, what do the brackets around 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.
40. Is there a fermata (pause) capability or some way to simulate it?
You can simulate a fermata by doing the following:
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).
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.
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).
41. I get a GPF (General Protection Fault) when I close Band-in-a-Box®.
Your MIDI input driver may have a problem in which it isn't shutting off the input. You can try turning off your external module or synth before exiting the program.
It may also be due to a conflict with certain pointing devices, or other programs on your system. If you are running Windows 95/98/ME, try the following:
Terminate all programs that you can see running.
Hold down CTRL and ALT on your keyboard, and press the Delete key once. This brings up the Windows Task Manager.
Highlight each program one at a time and press End Task. This will terminate the application. Note: Restarting your computer will bring most of these applications back.
If you get a "Program Not Responding" window, press End Task.
Repeat steps 2-4 on all programs except 'Systray' or 'Explorer'.
Open and close Band-in-a-Box®, to see if this solved the problem.
If the problem is solved, restart your machine and repeat the stepsabove, only run Band-in-a-Box® and shut it down each time you end a task, to see which program is causing the shut-down conflict. Then you can determine if you want to remove it from Windows Start-Up. In the past, we have found that the offending program was typically MSWheel, Point32, Intellipoint, or some other pointing device.
If this does not work, try returning Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings by doing the following:
With Band-in-a-Box® closed, open the Band-in-a-Box® folder on your hard drive (usually c:\bb).
Locate the file "intrface.bbw", and delete this file. You may wish to make a back-up of the file first. This way, you can restore your programpreferences if this doesn't solve the problem.
Now launch Band-in-a-Box®. When you do this, you should be prompted to select your MIDI drivers. This message confirms that you properly set Band-in-a-Box® to the factorydefaults.
It would also be a good idea to make sure your device drivers (sound card, video card, etc.) are all up-to-date. Drivers can normally be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.
42. 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 and harmony 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 Current Style | [.PAT]), 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 File | Load User Style.
If you want to add the new style to the StylePicker list, please see FAQ 36.
If you are having trouble saving Volume, Reverb, Chorus, and Pan settings with your songs, please see FAQ 139.
43. 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 toggle between Swing and Even feel notation by enabling/disabling 'Triplet Resolution' in the Notation Window Options dialog. Alternatively, you can change the resolution for any beat individually by doing the following:
In the Notation Window, activate 'editable notation mode' by pressing the [N] button once. You should see groups of vertical dashed lines.
Right-click on the time indicator line above the beat that you want to change. This will bring up the Beat Resolution dialog. The time indicator line is the narrow horizontal space above the lyric entry area; it contains a little black cursor that shows the current position of your song.
In the Beat Resolution dialog, set the number of beats to 3 if you are in an even feel style and want triplets, or 4 if you are in a triplet style and want sixteenths.
Assuming that you are in triplet resolution, you can insert an eighth note triplet by placing notes on three consecutive dashed lines. For quarter note triplets, place a note on every second dashed 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. This a limitation of the Band-in-a-Box® notation display.
If you find that a quarter note triplet you have entered does not display with the proper triplet notation (ie 3 quarter notes with a '3' over top of them), note that:
In the Notation Window Options dialog, the "Tick Offset" setting can be used to adjust how the notes are displayed. Try setting this to zero; this may allow your triplet to be displayed properly.
Quarter note triplet display will not work as well if you are using an even feel style and are changing an individual beat to triplet feel. It works better if the overall feel of the style is a triplet feel.
Quarter note triplets will never display properly if they span beats 2 and 3 in any measure.
44. Can I make a Band-in-a-Box® style from a MIDI file?
In Band-in-a-Box® version 12 or higher, you can make a Band-in-a-Box® style from a MIDI file automatically by using the Style Wizard (Styles | Style Wizard). In Band-in-a-Box® version 11 or earlier, you can do this manually as follows:
Manually type the chords that are used in the midi file you want to create a style from, into the Band-in-a-Box® chord grid. **THIS IS A MUST**
Import one instrument, (eg Bass) from the MIDI file into the Melody track.
Choose Melody | Map chord to C7, and choose that it is the Bass Track. You will now have all the bass notes mapped to a C7 chord.
Now in the StyleMaker, start importing bass patterns from the Melody track, using the Import from Melody Track option. There is an option that lets you import multiple patterns at a time so you can grab most of the track with one command.
If you want to get fancy, make custom patterns for 8-beat and 4-beat patterns. Otherwise put them all on the 8-beat line.
Repeat the steps for piano/guitar/strings.
Drums can also be imported as live patterns or converted to grid style patterns.
45. Can I notate ties and slurs in Band-in-a-Box®?
Ties extend the duration of a single note. Band-in-a-Box® will automatically calculate ties for you, based on standard notation rules and the durations of each note. To change the duration of a note, right-click on the note in editable notation mode to edit the note parameters manually, or extend the duration of the note visually in 'staff roll' mode. To get into staff roll mode, click the button in the Notation Window toolbar (in Band-in-a-Box® 2006 and higher) or click the [N] button twice from regular notation mode (in Band-in-a-Box® 2005 and earlier). Then, right-click on the note head and hold the mouse button down while dragging to the right the desired distance.
To delete a tie, you can either insert a rest at the point that you want the tie to end (by checking the 'rest' box and clicking at the desired location), or reduce the duration of the note.
What if you have two existing notes that you want to be tied together? In this case, you would simply delete the second note and extend the duration of the first.
Slurs are notes of different pitches that are played legato, without separation. The slur symbol is a curved line, similar to the tie symbol, except that it connects two notes of different pitches. The two notes are both played, unlike a tied note. To accomplish a slur in Band-in-a-Box®, change the duration of the note so that it just overlaps with the following note. Band-in-a-Box® 2005 and earlier do not support the entry of slur symbols. Version 2006 and higher DO support the entry of slur symbols. To insert a slur, right-click on the note in editable notation mode, point to 'Notation Symbols', and select 'Slur'. This will open the Notation Event dialog which allows you to define the properties of your slur.
46. How do I use tag endings? Why does the 'tag exists' box sometimes become unchecked automatically?
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 | Settings (for this song). Set the 'Tag exists' field to Yes and then choose the tag starting and ending bars. If you have "Generate 2 bar ending" selected, the ending will play automatically after the tag.
Note that the tag will only work if there is more than one chorus. If you placed a checkmark in the 'tag exists' box in the song settings dialog, and it became unchecked, this means that your song is set to have only one chorus. In this case a tag is irrelevant because it would simply be the last bars in your chorus.
47. Can I import and play MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box®?
Yes, Band-in-a-Box® will import and play entire MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box®. However, Band-in-a-Box® isn't a dedicated MIDI file sequencer. If your goal is to import a MIDI file and view/edit each instrument on a separate track in its original form, you would be better off using PowerTracks Pro Audio. Band-in-a-Box® is mainly intended to be used as an intelligent arranger and the ways that you normally use MIDI files with Band-in-a-Box® reflect this.
If you have Band-in-a-Box® 11 or later, you can use File | Import Chords from MIDI. Band-in-a-Box® will interpret the chords from your MIDI file and write these in the Chord Sheet window, and will also import one or more instruments (usually the Melody and Solo) to the Melody and/or Soloist tracks. Once you do this, you have the chord symbols and Melody, and you can select a style that you want to use to create an accompaniment.
You can import any part of a MIDI file (or the entire MIDI file) into the Melody track by using Melody | 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 Melody menu and selecting the 'Track type'. Here are the basic steps:
Choose Melody | Import Melody from MIDI file. If you wanted to import to the Soloist track, you would use Soloist | Edit Soloist Track | Import to Soloist Part from MIDI File
Select the MIDI file from the open dialog.
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]
A dialog will appear informing you that the file has been imported.
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 Melody | Track Type and set it to Multi-Channel
Using the mouse right-click, MUTE all Band-in-a-Box® tracks except for the Melody, and you can now play your MIDI file.
Note: Starting with Band-in-a-Box® 12, you can use the Style Wizard (Styles | Style Wizard) to create a complete Band-in-a-Box® style based on your MIDI file, and starting with Band-in-a-Box® 2004, you can open and play an entire MIDI file simply by pressing the F7 key.
48. 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.
49. How do I rest more than one bar at a time?
From the Chord entry grid:
Click on the bar you want to rest and press Alt+F5.
Place the chord, select rest type, and the instruments needed to be rested. Click OK.
Highlight all the bars to be rested.
Go to Edit | Copy rests. Press OK.
50. 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.
Set up your MIDI channels, patch map, drum kit, and combos/favourite instruments, the way you want.
Go to Opt. | Utilites | Save Alternate Drum/Patch File.
Type in a file name other than 'MySetup.dk'. For example, 'Start.dk'
If you ever return the program to factory settings and lose your settings, you can reload your settings by using Opt. | Utilities | Load Alternate Drum/Patch File.
51. How can I easily raise or lower the velocity (volume) of all notes in the melody track?
Choose Melody | 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.
52. 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:
Go to the Play menu and make sure 'Wizard Playalong Feature' is enabled.
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.
When you have finished, keep the take. Next, put the Notation Window into editable notation mode. From here, you can step forward or backward note by note using the keypad "Ins" and "Del" keys. While doing so, you can use the up-down arrow keys to change the pitch each note. This method works great for non-keyboardists, and is also useful for adjusting existing melodies.
53. How can I associate my songs and styles with Band-in-a-Box®?
Starting with Band-in-a-Box® 11, you can do this by going to File | File Utilites | Associate File types with Explorer.
You can create file associations for any file type with any program, by right-mouse clicking (while holding down theSHIFT key) the file you want to have automatically open with the program (e.g., a .MID file), and select OPEN WITH... in the pop-up menu. Then, scroll down until you find the program name (you may have to press the OTHER button and find the program manually). Ensure that the "ALWAYS OPEN WITH THIS PROGRAM" checkbox is enabled - this will create a file association for that file type.
54. 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.
There are two ways you could 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:
First Method - Copy and paste notation into song 2. This doesn't copy lyrics
In Song 1, open the Notation Window (Melody track), and toggle into editable notation mode by pressing the [N] button.
Find the start of the section that you want to copy and highlight a small region (it doesn't matter how much) starting at that location.
Hold down the shift key on your keyboard, and click on the end of the section that you want to copy. This will highlight the section (Note: in Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and earlier you need to click and drag to highlight a region of the Notation Window).
Go to Edit | Copy, make sure that the settings in the Copy dialog are correct, and press OK.
Load Song 2, open the notation window, and position yourself at the location you want to start pasting at.
Go to Edit | Paste, make sure the settings in the Paste dialog are correct, and press OK.
Second Method - Save as MIDI file and import into song 2. This does copy lyrics.
Open Song 1.
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 Opt. | Preferences | MIDI File Options dialog, add 2 bars to account for the lead-in.
Take note of how many bars you want to copy.
Mute all tracks except for the Melody track. To do this, right-click on Bass, Piano, Drums, Strings, and Soloist in the instrument panel.
Click the .MID button to save the song as a MIDI file. Save it to the clipboard.
Open Song 2 and determine how many bars from the start of the song you want to paste the section.
Go to Melody | Edit Melody Track | 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.
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 | Settings for current bar (F5) dialog will be useful for this.
55. Why does the same song sound different in Band-in-a-Box® than when I play it with Windows Media Player?
You may be experiencing one of the following:
If you saved your Band-in-a-Box® song as a MIDI file that you are playing in Windows Media Player, WMP is probably using a different MIDI driver than in Band-in-a-Box®. WMP will use the Windows default in the Control Panel | Multimedia -or- Sounds and Audio Devices. In Band-in-a-Box®, you choose your MIDI Driver from Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup.
If you imported a MIDI file into Band-in-a-Box®, you may be either using a different driver (as explained above), or you are hearing the MIDI file along with an unwanted Band-in-a-Box® style. Disable the style, choose a blank style, or mute all of the tracks except the melody. Also, you may need to set the Melody track to be Multi-channel.
If you saved your song as a MIDI file, you may not have saved the songs from Band-in-a-Box® with Patches & Harmony prior to doing this, so the patches are different then you expected.
56. What are the different Track Types for in the Notation Window Options dialog?
Setting the Melody-Track Type to Multi-channel just means that the channels on the Melody trackwon't get re-channelled to the Melody channel. It's used if you want to load a whole MIDI file to the Melody track, and play it as is with all of the channels. It will play at whatever volume change was last sent on the channel in question. If you have 'tab' enabled in the Notation Window Options dialog, setting the track type to 'Guitar' will display guitar tab in place of the Bass clef.
57. 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.
58. 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.
59. 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 on the Styles drop down menu | Choose from 24 Built-in Styles). 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
60. 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:
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. These controls are found just below the song title window on the main screen. The defaults for a new song are -x
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 at the beginning of your song.
"Chorus begins at bar #17" means that everything from bar 17 to the "Chorus ends at" bar (let's 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.
Contained within the main framing section of the song between the chorus begin and chorus end bar, 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 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, and it will only play once at the end of your song, after the choruses have been played. It could consist of the chords for a bridge, a key change and chorus restatement, then a full ending. To set up the tag ending, click the [S] button found just to the right of the framing controls to bring up the Song Settings window. Place a checkmark in the Tag Exists box and then specify how you want the tag to be played by typing the bar numbers in the 'Tag jump after', 'Tag begin at', and 'Tag ends after' boxes. In our example, say we set those to 40, 49, and 56. This means that the song would play through two chorus, play the third chorus up to bar 40, then jump to bar 49 and play through to bar 56. Note: A Tag will only work if there is more than one chorus set to play. If your song only has one chorus, the a tag isn't needed.
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 to the song and auto-create an ending for you. You can toggle the 2-bar ending on/off in the Song Settings window just underneath the Tag settings.
In summary, the entire song that we have set up in the examples above would play the following way: 1-48, 17-48, 17-40, 49-56, and if we have turned the two bar ending on, bars 57-58 would be the ending.
Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher also have options to use repeats, 1st/2nd endings, and codas in your song. The Repeats/1st-2nd endings/codas feature is mainly used if you need to create printed charts that show those symbols. Click here for more information about this.
61. 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:
Patch or Program Change.
Bank MSB, or controller 0.
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), Bank (MSB) and Bank (LSB), 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.
62. 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:https://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm
If you cannot find a patch map for your synth, you may wish to create one. We've written a tutorial on patch map creation.
For more information on how to select patches on higher banks, click here.
63. Do you have an advanced tutorial, or more information on the StyleMaker?
We have written an advanced tutorial on the StyleMaker.
The Band-in-a-Box® help files have detailed information, and we have also made an in-depth StyleMaker video on CD-ROM, titled "Secrets of the StyleMaker". This is part of the Band-in-a-Box® Video Tutorial PAK, which is included with the MegaPAK. It can also be purchased separately.
64. Can I export my song from Band-in-a-Box® to PowerTracks Pro Audio or 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 standard Windows 'Save' dialog. Choose the location you want the MIDI file saved to and then hit the save button. Close Band-in-a-Box® and open PowerTracks. Go to the File | Open. Browse to the location you saved your file to. Select the file, then hit the 'Open' button.
If you choose to save your MIDI file to the Clipboard, click the Clipboard button, then close Band-in-a-Box®. Open PowerTracks. Use the File | Open from Clipboard command.
If you had recorded an audio track (for example, vocals) with your Band-in-a-Box® song, Band-in-a-Box® would have saved this recording as a wave file with the same name, and in the same folder, as your Band-in-a-Box® song. PowerTracks will offer to import the wave file if it finds this wave file in the same folder as your MIDI file (if you had 'saved the MIDI file to disk'). You can also import your wave file by using the File | Wave files | Import Wave file command in PowerTracks.
65. Can Band-in-a-Box® input chords for my melody?
Band-in-a-Box® 2007 (and higher) can do this, using the Reharmonist (under the Window menu). This feature is able to generate chord progressions based ONLY on your melody, and the genre of music you select. Earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® did not have this feature.
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.
66. How do I get Band-in-a-Box® to use Long Filenames?
Band-in-a-Box® 10 and earlier (Windows)
Band-in-a-Box® 10 and earlier use DOS Long File Name (LFN) support. This does not work on Windows NT/2000/XP. You would need to upgrade your version of Band-in-a-Box® if you want to use Long Filenames (more than 8 characters + 3 character file extension) on Windows NT/2000/XP.
Band-in-a-Box® 11 (Windows)
If you are running Band-in-a-Box® 11, go to Opt. | Preferences(2) and set the "Display Filenames" to "Long Filenames - Standard." Note: if you are running Band-in-a-Box® on Windows NT4, you cannot use Long filenames at all.
If you are still having trouble, make sure that you haven't inadvertently disabled Long filenames in Windows: Right click 'My Computer'and select 'Properties'. Click on the Perfomance tab | File system | Troubleshooting. In the Troubleshooting dialog, make sure that the second checkbox ("Disable Long File Name Preservation for Old Programs") is unchecked.
67. Why don't the Styles that I just installed appear in the StylePicker window?
The BBW.LST file located in your main Band-in-a-Box® folder defines the list of PG Music styles in the StylePicker window. This file is updated when we release new styles so that the StylePicker window will recognize them. Update patches for any version of Band-in-a-Box® install the latest BBW.LST released with that version.
If your new styles do not show up in the StylePicker window, first try pressing the [Rebuild] button at the bottom of that window. If they still do not show up, here is what to do:
Make sure you have installed the styles to your Band-in-a-Box® folder. This is usually C:\bb. Styles not installed to this folder will not be recognized by the StylePicker.
Download and install the latest update patch for your version of Band-in-a-Box® from our Band-in-a-Box® for Windows Updates page. This will install the latest BBW.LST released with that version.
Launch Band-in-a-Box®, open the StylePicker window, and press the [Rebuild] button. This will force Band-in-a-Box® to scan for new styles in the Band-in-a-Box® folder. (Note: Rebuild is done automatically in more recent versions of Band-in-a-Box® after you install new styles, but it doesn't hurt to do it manually as well).
Check that 'Show all styles' is selected in the pull-down menus at the bottom of the StylePicker window (i.e. make sure you aren't filtering the StylePicker to only show certain styles).
The only reason that PG Music styles would not show up after you have done the four things above is if you purchased and installed a Styles Set that was released during a later version of Band-in-a-Box® than the version you have. In this case:
If you have Band-in-a-Box® 2008, download and install the latest update patch available.
If you have Band-in-a-Box® 2007, download this bbw.lst file. Install this to your Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb).
If you have Band-in-a-Box® 2006 or earlier, download this bbw.lst file. Install this to your Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb).
More information: Because of StylePicker improvements in 2008, the most current bbw.lst file (style description file) cannot be used with 2007 and earlier versions. These small downloads will install a bbw.lst file for Band-in-a-Box® 2007 or earlier that will recognize the styles released with later versions of Band-in-a-Box®. You would only need to download one of these files if you have an older version of Band-in-a-Box® (2007 or earlier) and purchased a newer styles set.
If you do this, you may see some question marks in the StylePicker. This is normal, as some of the information in the StylePicker (such as Styles Set #, suggested tempo, and feel) is built into the Band-in-a-Box® program (not in BBW.LST). For example, if you have Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and purchased a Styles Set that was released during Band-in-a-Box® 2007, the styles will show up and work properly but there will be question marks where the Styles Set # would normally appear. Also, the Load Song Demo button will be inactive for those styles. You can instead load the song demos by opening the song files directly from any of the \bb\stylesxx folders.
Note: This FAQ topic is concerned with PG Music styles. You might have other styles from third parties, or styles that you have made; the BBW.LST file won't automatically recognize these styles, however they can be added to the StylePicker by creating one or more *.LS3 files. Band-in-a-Box® 2008 and higher will search for styles in the bb folder that aren't in BBW.LST; it will automatically create an *.LS3 file and add the styles to the 'Other Styles' category. Band-in-a-Box® 2007 and earlier don't have this feature.
68. My laptop doesn't have a number keypad. Can I still step-advance through the notes?
You can still step through your song note-by-note by using the Shift+Arrow Keys.
Band-in-a-Box® 2004 has now added a feature that allows you to use the regular keypad instead of the number keypad (numpad) for some hotkeys. You can enable this in Opt. | Preferences.
69. 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>
70. How do I enable and disable the lead-in bars or count-in?
This is set in Opt. | 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.
71. Can I sync Band-in-a-Box® to an external MIDI source?
This cannot be done at present. You would need to save the Band-in-a-Box® song as a MIDI file and then load it into Power Tracks Pro Audio or another MIDI sequencer to achieve this. Band-in-a-Box® is able to send a simple start/stop message - this setting is found in Opt. | MIDI Channels, Options.
72. Why do I hear the drums playing with a piano patch?
This is usually because your drum track is set to a non-drum channel. Most synths/sound cards use channel 10 as the drum channel. On the drum channel, each patch corresponds to a different drum kit, and each MIDI note corresponds to a different drum sound (for example, snare, bass drum, etc.). Very old synths might use channel 16 or another channel. Another possibility is that in the case of some Yamaha synths, you may need to disallow patch and/or bank changes.
Check under Opt. | MIDI Channels, Options 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 look under the Synthesizer / sound module menu in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog to see if your synth is listed there. 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 https://www.pgmusic.com/support_miscellaneous.htm
If you have a Yamaha synth, try going to Opt. | MIDI channels, Options and deselecting "Allow patch changes".
73. Why does Band-in-a-Box® generate notes below low E (E2) on a bass?
You can set the lowest bass note in the Opt. | 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.
74. Why does my screen saver not come on when I run Band-in-a-Box®?
We disabled the screen saver, because Band-in-a-Box® is a program that you tend to look at without using the keyboard and mouse (i.e. reading notation), so having the screen saver kick in would probably be annoying.
75. Tutorial #2 mentions "L_bomba.mgu" and I can't find it.
LaBamba has been removed to avoid trademark issues. You should still be able to complete the tutorial and build the song.
76. How do I raise or lower the volume of all but one track?
If you hold down the ALT or CTRL key while increasing the volume of a selected track, all of the other tracks will decrease in volume, and vice versa.
77. Why does Band-in-a-Box® lock up on startup?
This can sometimes be resolved by deleting the file intrface.bbw from your BB folder. To do this you would:
Open the Band-in-a-Box® folder on your hard drive (usually c:\bb)
Find and delete the file 'intrface.bbw'.
Close all windows and go back to your desktop
Try to run Band-in-a-Box®.
Note that this will return many of the Band-in-a-Box® settings to their factory defaults. If this doesn't solve the problem, there may be a problem with the way one of your MIDI devices is installed. Try reinstalling the drivers for your sound card or MIDI interface.
78. Why do I get a "Runtime Error" when I try to run Band-in-a-Box®?
Earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® sometimes failed to draw properly when starting on some systems. This sometimes resulted in a "Runtime Error 202". Trying to start the program again will usually solve the problem. You can just ignore the error.
79. 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 Signature.
80. 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' settings in the Notation Window Options dialog affect 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. There are also some presets that you can select from the pull-down menu that may work for your instrument.
81. Why is my recorded audio (wave) track empty?
Most likely, your Windows Recording Control is not set up properly. To set it up properly, follow these steps:
Go to Audio | Record Audio
In the 'Record Audio' dialog, press the [Set Recording Properties] button. This should bring up the Windows Record Control Panel.
Select or mute the device(s) you wish or don't wish to record from. ie: If you want to record from the Line in only, make certain just Line in is selected, or all the other devices are muted.
It's also possible that you don't have the correct audio driver selected. Band-in-a-Box® 11 and earlier use the audio driver that you have selected as the Windows default. On Windows 95/98/ME/2000, go to Start | Settings | Control Panel | Multimedia -or- Sounds and Multimedia | Audio. On Windows XP, go to Start | Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices | Audio. Make sure that the correct audio device is selected for audio recording. You will need to restart Band-in-a-Box® if you change the audio driver in Windows.
See FAQ 18 for more information on selecting your sound card and setting up the Record Control panel.
82. 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 LoopScn.
83. Why do I get a "Corrupt Archive File" error when installing the software?
This error doesn't necessarily mean that there is something wrong with the files on the CD.
You may be almost out of hard disk space. To check how much hard disk space you have remaining, double-click on My Computer. Right Click on your target hard disk, and select 'Properties' from the sub-menu. There will be a chart display with how much disk space is remaining. If you are very low on disk space, you will need to clear off some space before trying to reinstall the program. In general, you will need twice the recommended free disk space to allow the installer to proceed. You can use the Disk Cleanup and Disk Defragmenter utilities, located in Start | Programs | Accessories | System Tools, to remove temporary and unneeded files.
You may have too many files in the C:\Windows\Temp folder. Delete the contents of this folder and try the installation again.
Your disc may be damaged. If so, contact us about obtaining a replacement.
84. What is the difference between using "adjust level of audio (quick)" and "adjust level of wave file (permanent) to change the volume of the audio track?
These commands are found under the Audio menu | Edit Audio. The "quick audio adjust" just accesses the same setting that you get using the speaker icon (i.e. the soundcard's volume level). It doesn't affect the actual wave file. The permanent level adjust (in dB) actually affects the wave file itself.
If you set the quick adjust to zero and rendered your song to wave, the WAV file would still get rendered with a normal volume, but if you reduced the dB of it using the other command, it would be quiet.
85. How do I force an accidental, for example Eb to a D#, for easier reading?
Open the Notation Window and click the [N] button one time to get into editable notation mode. Right-click on the note that you want to change to bring up the 'Note Edit' dialog. This dialog allows you to edit specific parameters of any note, such as the time it begins, the duration, pitch, and volume (velocity). You can also use the 'Force Accidental' menu to select if you want the note to be displayed as a sharp or flat.
The main things that determine which accidental is used for any note are: The key of the song, the chord being played at that time, and whether you have 'Use chord scale for enharmonics' enabled or disabled in the Notation Window Options dialog..
86. How can I control Band-in-a-Box® from an external startswitch?
To cause Band-in-a-Box® to wait to play until a MIDI key is received, go to Opt | Preferences and select 'Pause Play untill MIDI or Key received'. This could be your computer keyboard, an external MIDI keyboard, or even a wind controller or guitar synth.
87. 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 for this 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 PowerTracks Pro Audio, or another 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. In Band-in-a-Box® 2004 or later (Windows), there is a specific command to copy tracks (Edit | Copy/Move Tracks). In Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier (Windows and Macintosh), you can 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.
88. I can't find the 300 MIDI Fakebook songs included with Band-in-a-Box®.
The MIDI Fakebook consists of 200 Classical songs, 50 Bluegrass songs, and 50 traditional and original Jazz, Rock, & Pop songs.
The MIDI Fakebook songs are installed to your Band-in-a-Box® folder, usually C:\BB, and are accessed through File | Open (BB song). The 'Clasfake' folder contains the 200 Classical songs and the 'Bgfake' folder contains the 50 Bluegrass songs. If you installed the Band-in-a-Box® MegaPAK, the 50 Jazz/Pop/Rock songs are located in the root C:\BB folder. If you installed the MIDI Fakebook separately, they are located in the '50songs' folder. If you would like to see a list of song titles, open any one of the songs using File | Open (BB song), then press the [Song...] button.
89. The option to turn on fretboard inlays on the guitar fretboard 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.
90. 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.
91. 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.
92. How do I change keys in the middle of my Band-in-a-Box® song? Can I display more than one key signature?
To transpose to a new key in the middle of a song, you can use the Edit | TransposeFrom...to Dialog. It is not currently possible to have more than one key signature displayed in your song. When you transpose part of your song, the notation will show up with the correct notes and accidentals, but not with the new key signature.
93. What is the difference between "chord step advance" and "note step advance"?
When you step-advance through your song using the Ins and Del keys on the number keypad, Band-in-a-Box® will highlight either a single note or a group of notes depending on how close together the notes are. This is the "chord step advance" feature. You can tell Band-in-a-Box® how close the notes have to be to each other to be considered a chord; this is done in the 'Other Notation Options' dialog. Open the Notation Window Options dialog and press [More...]. For example, a high value for 'Chord separation' will force Band-in-a-Box® to consider a widely spaced group of notes to be a single chord. This setting can also be used to clean up the notation and get it to display the way you want. You can step through individual notes as well by using the "note step advance" feature. This is done using Shift+Arrow keys.
94. 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:https://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 c:\bb directory. You should back up your previous version, especially if you have edited/added entries to the file.
95. Why is the search field blank in my Band-in-a-Box® Help files?
This should only apply to older versions of Band-in-a-Box®. You should start by getting the latest update patch for your version. Then, do the following:
Close Band-in-a-Box® and delete the file "BBW.FTS" from the Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually c:\bb).
Open Band-in-a-Box® and click the SEARCH tab from the help file.
Choose "Maximize Search Capabilities" and press "next".
Your search panel should now show up properly.
96. Why doesn't Band-in-a-Box® show all of my songs when I click the Song button (Select song by title)?
The 'Select Song by Title' dialog shows all of the songs in the current directory. In other words, if you go to File | Open.. and open any song from the folder C:\BB\MySongs, when you press the [Song] button, Band-in-a-Box® will show you a list of all songs in the 'MySongs' folder. If you want to view all of the songs in a different folder, use File | Open.. to open a song from a different location.
If the Select Song window is not displaying all of the songs, try pressing the [Rebuild] button. If that doesn't work, delete the file 'Songlisttemp4.bin' (Band-in-a-Box® 2004 or higher) or 'Songlist.doc' (Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier) from the folder that you are having trouble with. This will re-generate the Song list for you.
97. I made a style with the StyleMaker that uses the bar mask feature, and some bars don't play or only play drums.
You should always have a 'generic' pattern as the first pattern of an instrument in a style. By generic, we mean a pattern with no masks on it, that will work for any chord. You've likely only created patterns with masks on them (for example, only play on a m7 chord, etc) and the style can't find any patterns to play in certain situations.
98. 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 Opt. | MIDI Channels, Options, 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 Melody | Swap Melody and Soloist. This way you can free up the Melody track for something else.
99. 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 betriggered 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.
100. 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.
101. Can I load an audio (.wav) file into Band-in-a-Box®?
This isn't directly supported in Band-in-a-Box®, but you could 'trick' Band-in-a-Box® into doing it as follows:
Make sure the file you want to import is a 44K WAV file. With Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier, it must be a Mono .WAV file (not a stereo file)
In Band-in-a-Box®, call a song MySong.MGU, then record a blank wav file using the microphone button. You'll then have a file called MySong.WAV.
Exit Band-in-a-Box®, and substitute your WAV file for the MySong.WAV file.
Note: The original WAV file would need to have been recorded at a constant tempo, and you'd need to set that tempo in Band-in-a-Box® - otherwise the Band-in-a-Box® generated tracks will not line up with your wave file.
102. How can I export my lead sheet as a graphics file when I do not have a printer?
If you are using Band-in-a-Box® 11 or higher, you can simply select Print, press the [Print Preview] button, then Save As your preferred graphics file. If you are using an earlier version of Band-in-a-Box®, it won't let you use the Print Preview window. Create a generic/text only print by doing the following:
Bring up the Printers folder by going to: Start | Settings | Printers (Win 98). Double click on 'Add Printer'.
In the Add Printer Wizard and click Next.
Select 'Local Printer'and click Next.
Select Generic in the 'Manufacturers:' list and click Next.
Select 'FILE:' in the 'Available ports:' field and click Next.
Specify a Printer name and select 'Yes' for Windows to use this printer as the default printer. Click Next.
Select 'No' for the Print test page and click Next.
Now you can use the Print Preview in the Print Options dialog.
103. Nothing happens when I press the [Test WAV] button in the Render to Audio dialog.
If nothing at all happens when you press the [Test WAV] button, this means that Band-in-a-Box® is unable to find Windows Media Player on your computer. You should be able to resolve the problem by downloading and installing the latest version of Windows Media Player from Microsoft's website. If the problem persists, exit Band-in-a-Box® and test the rendered wave files manually with your preferred media player.
If Windows Media Player does come up and looks like it's playing, but you don't hear anything, you should see our tutorial on rendering songs to wave with Band-in-a-Box®.
104. Why do I get a 'Parameter is incorrect' or 'File Problem' error message when trying to open a previously saved song?
If you are using Band-in-a-Box® 12 or earlier under Windows XP, you will get on of these error messages if your file is saved greater than about four folders deep from the root level of your Hard drive. Note that saving in a folder created on the desktop on Windows XP may be problematic, because the location of the desktop data is C:\Documents and Settings\*User name*\Desktop\FolderName (As opposed to C:\Windows\Desktop\FolderName as in previous versions of Windows). One solution is to save your song to the root hard drive (ie C:\), or in the Band-in-a-Box® folder (C:\BB).
105. Why am I receiving an Error 502 message when installing my Styles Set?
This is usually caused by a Firewall or Virus checker. Disable any Firewalls or Virus checkers that you have running on your system, then try the installation again.
106. How do I show or hide the tablature display for the Bass track?
Band-in-a-Box® 12 added support for bass tab. To print out bass tab with Band-in-a-Box® 11 or earlier, you must transfer the Bass track to the Melody track. To do this:
Go to Opt. | MIDI Channels, Options. Make note of theMIDI channel that the Bass is using.
Press the [.MID] button on the main screen, and then press [Clipboard] to save your song as a standard MIDI file to the clipboard.
From the Melody Menu, select [Import Melody from clipboard].
In the 'Import MIDI File' dialog, click [None] to clear all of the Channel checkboxes. Then select the bass channel and click [OK]
Go to Melody | Track Type and select 'Guitar'.
You now have the Bass part on the Melody track with Tablature. You might need to transpose it up an octave from the Notation Window Options dialog.
Note: Tablature is based on the fret position that you click on in the guitar fretboard window. If you wanted Tablature based on, say, 3rd position, you would click on fret 3.
107. How do I make a Custom Drum Kit in Band-in-a-Box®?
You can define a Custom Drum Kit in the StyleMaker by way of Style | Define Custom Drum Kit. Once in the Define Custom Drum Kit window...
Check 'Enable Custom Drum Kit'.
Select the drum part to change in the left hand field (0-17).
Select the drum in the drop-down list (Click [Preview] to audition the drum sound).
When pleased with the Custom Drum Kit, select [Save As..] to save it for future use (When saved, your Custom Kit will have a *.CDU extension).
To revert to the Standard Drum Kit, uncheck the Custom Drum Kit checkbox
108. Why can't I open songs in Band-in-a-Box® over a Windows 2000 network?
If you are not logged on as an Administrator, you will need to contact your Network Administrator to increase the permissions for the following directories:
C:\bb (the Band-in-a-Box® directory)
C:\temp (if applicable)
Any other local or Network directories used for file storage will need to have their permissions increased also.
109. When I try to install the program, I get the message "Setup is not a valid win32 application".
If you are trying to install a program that you downloaded, you might get this error if the download did not finish properly or the file is corrupt for some reason. Delete the file that you downloaded, restart the computer, and try downloading it again.
If you get the error when trying to install a program from a CD, your computer may be having trouble reading the CD.
First, try rebooting your computer and closing all running applications.
Examine the disc for large scratches and warping. If the disc is dirty, use a disc cleaning kit or wipe the disc surface with a soft, lint-free cotton cloth. Wipe from the center to outer edge of the disc, not in circles.
If possible, try the CD in another drive. If it works in another drive, the original drive may not be reading it properly.
If it appears that your CD is damaged, you may contact us about obtaining a replacement CD.
110. What can I do to improve my sound quality in Band-in-a-Box®?
First of all, it's important to understand that Band-in-a-Box® itself doesn't actually generate the sounds you hear. Band-in-a-Box® writes the musical arrangements as a series of MIDI messages, and then sends the MIDI information to your soundcard or synthesizer to be played. MIDI is a standard developed in the early eighties to allow electronic instruments made by different manufacturers to communicate using a common language. The information that MIDI sends is simply an instruction to a device to perform acertain event. For example, if Band-in-a-Box® plays a middle C, it sends a message to your sound card that says 'turn on middle C'. When Band-in-a-Box® releases the note, i tsends a message to the sound card that says 'turn off middle C'. So, the sounds that you hear are really generated by your sound card or MIDI module from instructions received by Band-in-a-Box®.
You choose what device Band-in-a-Box® sends MIDI information to by selecting your MIDI Output Driver in the Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup dialog. The sound you get from different MIDI devices can vary quite dramatically. Here are some ideas for how to improve your sound quality:
Use a Wavetable synthesizer, rather than the FM synthesizer on your sound card. Two ways that MIDI synthesizers generate sounds are FM (Frequency Modulation) Synthesis and Wavetable Synthesis. FM synthesizers are usually only found in older sound cards and some laptops. In general, FM synthesis produces an unrealistic, "computer-like" sound, since the sounds are entirely artificial. On the other hand, Wavetable Synthesis uses digitally stored sound samples of real instruments, so this produces a much more realistic sound.
Use a Software Synthesizer, such as the Roland VSC rather than your sound card's built-in synthesizer. We include the Roland VSC-3 with Band-in-a-Box®. A software synthesizer gives you high quality sounds without having to use an externalsound source. Software synthesizers are especially useful if your computer doesn't have a dedicated sound card. Click here for sound samples, and more information about the Roland VSC.
Use a DXi Synthesizer. Many new software synthesizers are being released as DXi plug-ins. Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher are compatible with the DXi standard. Examples of DXi synths are the Roland VSC-3 DXi, and the Roland HyperCanvas. Many DXi synths soundextremely realistic, and some offer the ability to customize the sounds. Check our Products Page for DXi synths that are currently available for purchase from PG Music Inc.
Use an external MIDI sound module / synthesizer. There are a large number and variety of MIDI modules on the market thatyou can connect to your computer via a MIDI interface. Sound quality and price varies widely, but in general, this will give you higher quality sounds than your sound card or a soft synth. Click here for a list of sound modules and MIDI interfaces that are currently available from PG Music Inc.
Use SoundFonts. If you have a sound card that supports soundfonts, such as a SoundBlaster Live! or SoundBlaster Audigy,you may want to investigate this technology. Soundfonts are sampled sounds that you can load into your sound card inthe form of single instruments or entire MIDI banks. There are many free and commercial soundfonts available for download from the internet. Check your sound card documentation for more information. There is also a SoundFont Tutorial on our FAQ page with more information.
Of course, you will also benefit from a good amplified speaker system, rather than using the speakers that came with your computer.
111. When I try to use the Roland VSC as my output driver, I get the message "...installed properly but currently in use by another program", even though there are no other programs open.
These instructions apply to Windows 2000/XP. Other possible symptoms are:
"Audio Conversion cannot be started" error message when you attempt to Direct Render your song to a wave file using the VSC.
When you open the VSC as a stand alone application (Start menu | Programs | Virtual Sound Canvas...), you may get the error "MIDI device or the audio device to be used for VSC's audio output cannot be opened. Playback unavailable at this time"
There are a few possible solutions. You should be able to resolve the problem by following one or more of the suggestions below.
Select something other than the VSC as your default MIDI driver in Windows
On Windows XP, go to Start | Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices | Audio tab. On Windows 2000, go to Start | Settings | Control Panel | Sounds and Multimedia | Audio.
Select something other than the Roland VSC for default audio and MIDI playback.
Restart your computer.
Make sure vscvol and vsc32cnf are enabled at startup.
Go to the Start menu | Run, type "msconfig" and press OK. This should open the System Configuration Utility. Note: Windows 2000 doesn't have the system configuration utility.
Click on the Startup tab and make sure there are checkmarks beside 'vscvol' and 'vsc32cnf'.
Press [Apply], then [OK], and restart your computer.
Reinstall the VSC
Uninstall the Roland VSC using the Add/Remove Programs utility.
Right-click on My Computer and select 'Properties'.
Click on the Hardware tab and press the [Device Manager] button.
Expand 'Sound, Video and Game Controllers' and look for 'Virtual Sound Canvas'. If you see it listed there, right-click on it and select 'uninstall'. Restart your computer.
Reinstall the Roland VSC. If you get a message saying that the VSC has not passed Windows Logo Testing, you can "Continue Anyways". You should be prompted to restart your computer again after the VSC has been installed.
Go back to 'Sound Video and Game Controllers' in the Device Manager.
Right-click on the Virtual Sound Canvas 3.2 and select 'Properties'. Make sure that Device Usage is set to "Use this device (enable)".
Change your audio output device settings in the VSC
Click once on the VSC icon in your task bar, point to 'VSC Settings Window' and click on 'Device'. Or: Go to Start | Programs | Virtual Sound Canvas 3.2 | Virtual Sound Canvas 3.2 to open the VSC panel, then click on the [Setup] button and choose the Device tab.
If the audio output device is listed as "Selecting Automatically" choose your sound card's audio driver specifically. If that doesn't work, try choosing a different audio output device if available. Press [Apply], then [OK] before trying each selection. You can also try toggling DirectSound to "On" or "Off", as this may improve compatibility with your system.
Remove old and duplicate MIDI entries from the registry
Proceed with this if the suggestions above didn't solve the problem.
There is a limit to the number of MIDI devices that you can have installed. When you install MIDI devices, windows creates a registry entry, starting with "midi" and up to "midi9". Additional MIDI devices are not recognized by Windows. This can be a problem, since new entries may be created when you reinstall MIDI devices or move a hardware device from one port to another. As well, some MIDI device uninstallers do not remove their registry entries. Even if you have not exceeded the limit, the VSC seems to have trouble if there are duplicate or old MIDI entries in the registry.
First, you should make sure that you have uninstalled any old MIDI devices that you are not using - for example, an old USB interface that you used at some point in the past but are no longer using. If this doesn't help, any old or duplicate entries for midi to midi9 can be removed from the registry. If you aren't comfortable editing the registry, you should get a computer tech to do it for you, since making mistakes can prevent your computer from operating correctly.
Go to Start | Run, type "regedit" (without the quotes), and press OK. In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following location:
When you click on the Drivers32 folder you should see the midi, midi1, midi2... entries on the right side of the window. Look for and delete any duplicates. If you recognize one that may refer to an old MIDI device that is no longer installed on your system, you can remove that entry as well. If you are unsure, you should probably leave it alone.
Use the VSC-DXi version, rather than the stand-alone VSC
If you are still having trouble with the VSC, we might suggest that you use the VSC-DXi instead. Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher support DXi plugins, and the VSC-DXi would have been included with your Band-in-a-Box® purchase. The DXi version has the same set of sounds as the stand-alone version, but is used a little differently with Band-in-a-Box®. To use the VSC-DXi, you need to first install it on your computer. To choose the VSC-DXi as your MIDI output device in Band-in-a-Box®, go to Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup and place a checkmark in the "Use DXi Synth" checkbox. When the DirectX window opens up, choose the VSC-DXi as your plugin. Close the DirectX window, and you should be back in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog. By default, Band-in-a-Box® will set the Driver Latency to around 2000 milliseconds. This is a high setting, but is safe even on older computers. With most computers, you should be able to choose a Driver Latency of around 200 ms or lower. You can experiment with the Driver Latency until you hear audio glitches. A lower latency will give you a quicker response time.
If you were used to using the "Direct Render to wave" feature of the VSC, you will find that the "DXi Direct Render" feature in Band-in-a-Box® will give you the same results. It is also a quicker and easier method of rendering your songs to wave.
112. Why do I get an Error Code 5 when I try to install upgrades or update patches?
The complete error message is: "An error occurred while trying to replace the existing file: DeleteFile Failed; code 5. Access is Denied". It also refers to a specific file in the error message box.
This happens if a file that the installer is trying to replace happens to be in use by the computer. Usually this happens because you have Band-in-a-Box® open while you are trying to install the upgrade. It could also happen if one of the PG Music font files is still in memory after closing Band-in-a-Box®.
Close Band-in-a-Box® and try installing the update again. If Band-in-a-Box® is closed and you are still getting this error, reboot your computer and run the installer after rebooting.
113. Why do I get the message "Cannot find SHELL.DLL" when I try to launch Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP?
This problem isn't specific to PG Music Inc. software, and may occur when you try to run any 16-bit Windows application on Windows 2000 or XP. This would apply to Band-in-a-Box® 12 or earlier, PowerTracks Pro Audio 7 or earlier, and some other PG Music software.
The error indicates that the system file "shell.dll" is missing or damaged. You may be able to resolve the problem by copying "shell.dll" from the 'Windows\System' folder to the 'Windows\System32' folder ('WINNT\System' and 'WINNT\System32' on Windows 2000). If the problem persists, you should contact Microsoft or search for a solution on an internet support forum. We also recommend downloading the most recent virus definitions for your anti-virus software and performing a full system scan.
114. When I try to launch Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 2000/XP, I get a 16 bit Windows Subsystem error referring to the file "AUTOEXEC.NT".
The complete error message is usually: "C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\AUTOEXEC.NT. The system file is not suitable for running MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows applications. Choose 'Close' to terminate the application."
This problem isn't specific to PG Music Inc. software, and may occur when you try to run any 16-bit Windows application on Windows 2000 or XP. This would apply to Band-in-a-Box® 12 or earlier, PowerTracks Pro Audio 7 or earlier, and some other PG Music software.
The error usually indicates that the system file "AUTOEXEC.NT" is missing or damaged. You may be able to resolve the problem by copying "AUTOEXEC.NT" from the '\Windows\repair' folder to the '\Windows\System32' folder (On Windows 2000, copy from 'WINNT\repair' to 'WINNT\System32'). Another solution would be to upgrade to the latest versions of Band-in-a-Box® and/or PowerTracks.
115. Why does Band-in-a-Box® not launch on my Windows XP computer?
Symptoms: When you try to run Band-in-a-Box®, either nothing happens, or you get the splash screen briefly but Band-in-a-Box® never opens.
This only applies to older 16-bit versions of our software (Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier, PowerTracks Pro Audio 7 and earlier, and some other PG Music applications). Current versions of Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTracks Pro audio would not have this problem. This problem seems to occur on a small percentage of Windows XP systems, but we are not sure exactly what causes it. There may be missing or damaged system files or a conflict with other software on your computer. Some of the suggestions below would apply to troubleshooting problems with any 16-bit Windows application on Windows XP. Try to launch the program after each suggestion. If it fails to load, restart your computer before moving on to the next suggestion.
As a work-around, try double-clicking on any Band-in-a-Box® song or MIDI file to open Band-in-a-Box®. If the file isn't associated with Band-in-a-Box®, right-click on the file, select 'Open with', and choose Band-in-a-Box®. If Band-in-a-Box® doesn't appear in the list, click 'Browse', and locate the file bbw.exe in your Band-in-a-Box® folder.
Reboot your computer. When you are back at the desktop, close as many programs as you can. You can look in the task bar beside your computer clock; if you see any icons there, it indicates there are other programs running on your computer. Close/Exit/Disable as many of these as possible. You can also look in the Task Manager to find out what is running on your computer. Press CTRL-ALT-DEL to open the Task Manager window. (Note: many of the running processes are necessary for your computer to function properly).
Reinstall Band-in-a-Box®. Make sure that you are logged on as an administrator when you do this. We might suggest to install Band-in-a-Box® to a folder such as C:\BBTEST. This ensures it is a fresh install, so it allows you to troubleshoot the problem more effectively.
In some cases, the background service in Windows XP may be activated for the optimization of ASIO drivers. To fix this:
Right-click on My Computer, and left-click on 'Properties'.
Select the Advanced tab and click on [Settings] in the Performance area.
click on the Advanced tab.
In the Processor Scheduling area, select Programs.
Click on [Apply] and then on [OK].
Try running the program in a separate memory space:
Right-click on the shortcut that you use to open the program and select 'Properties'.
Click on [Advanced].
Put a checkmark beside 'Run in Separate Memory Space'.
Press OK and Apply.
Try running the program in compatibility modes:
Right-click on the shortcut that you use to open the program and select 'Properties'.
Click on the Compatibility tab.
Select 'Run this program in compatibility mode for': Windows 98.
You can also try setting the display settings to "Run in 256 colours".
If this problem only started recently, it may have begun when you installed certain software, or made certain changes to the Windows Operating System. You can try either uninstalling the latest software you installed on your computer, or perform a "System Restore" to a trouble-free time on your computer. See the Windows Help Files more more information on the System Restore feature in Windows XP.
Make sure you have the latest drivers for your sound card and MIDI interface. Driver updates can normally be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.
See the Microsoft Knowledge Base for more information on troubleshooting problems with 16-bit applications. For example:
Article 285909 - How to troubleshoot program compatibility issues in Windows XP
Article 314495 - How to troubleshoot 16-bit Windows Programs in Windows XP
Update your version of the program to the latest version available from PG Music Inc. There are demos of the current versions of Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTracks Pro Audio available for download from our website.
116. Why do I get a "CPALETTE.DLL", "BBWDLL7.DLL", or "GP.DLL" error when I try to run Band-in-a-Box®?
Complete error message: "Cannot find CPALETTE.DLL", or "Cannot find GP.DLL. Windows needs this file to run..."
You may have installed a Band-in-a-Box® upgrade without installing the previous full version first, or you may have installed the upgrade into the wrong folder. Since the upgrades don't install all of the files required to run Band-in-a-Box®, you need to make sure to install them to your existing Band-in-a-Box® folder. By default, the Band-in-a-Box® folder is C:\BB. If you are not sure where you have Band-in-a-Box® installed, you can check by right-clicking on the shortcut that you use to open Band-in-a-Box® and selecting 'Properties'. If you are reinstalling Band-in-a-Box®, you will need to install starting with a full Pro version or MegaPAK.
You may also get this error message after installing an update patch if you chose the wrong destination directory for the patch. To resolve the problem, reinstall the update patch making sure to specify the correct destination directory.
117. When I try to convert my song to Windows Media format (WMA) I get the message "Windows cannot find 'WM8EUTIL.EXE' ".
Earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® use Windows Media Encoder 8 to convert .WAV to .WMA (Windows Media Audio) files. Microsoft has removed all available Windows Media Encoder 8 downloads from their site, however you should still be able to find the utility with a search on the internet. After you install the WM8 utility, you will be able to use Band-in-a-Box® to convert your WAV files to WMA directly.
An alternative is to save your song as a .WAV file and use a different WMA encoder. For example, you could download the Windows Media Player Encoder 9 (or higher) series from Microsoft's website and use this as a stand-alone application to convert your files to .WMA.
Another alternative is to upgrade your version of Band-in-a-Box® to the latest version, which has an updated and improved WMA rendering feature.
118. "Could not open file" error when recording audio or trying to open a song with an audio track.
On Windows 2000 and XP, this usually has to do with where you have your song saved on your hard drive. Band-in-a-Box® will give this error message if the directory path is too long, or if one of the folders in the directory path has a period in it. For example, saving files in a folder on the Desktop or in the My Documents folder can be problematic, because the directory path would look something like this: 'C:\Documents and Settings\*UserName*\My Documents\*Folder*\' or 'C:\Documents and Settings\*UserName*\Desktop\*Folder*\'. To avoid this problem, save your songs closer to the root level of your hard drive. For example, you could save your songs in the Band-in-a-Box® folder (C:\BB\*MySongs*\).
119. I am having trouble playing the video tutorials.
If you hear sound but don't actually see the video while it is playing, or if you get an error message when you try to play it, you most likely don't have the TSCC codec installed on your computer. Most of our recent videos use the TechSmith Screen Capture Codec. Click here to download the TSCC codec.
If you are still having trouble playing the videos for any reason, we suggest reinstalling Windows Media Player. This is easiest done by downloading and installing the most recent version of Windows Media Player for your operating system.
Note that If you have downloaded the video from our website, you will need to extract the file with a program such as WinZip. A trial version of WinZip can be downloaded from http://www.winzip.com. Windows XP has a built-in utility for extracting files. You should then be able to then play the file in Windows Media Player. If the video doesn't run automatically when you double-click on it, open Windows Media Player (Start | Programs | Accessories | Entertainment | Windows Media Player), and use the File | Open command to open the file.
120. How do I get my chord shortcuts to work?
You can create custom keyboard shortcuts to use when entering chords. For example, if you input the chord Maj9#11 frequently, you could set the single letter 'g' to be used as a shortcut to make it easier for you to enter this chord. You can use a file called "SHORTCUT.TXT" to specify your chord shortcuts:
Create a text file using Notepad, or in Band-in-a-Box® go to Opt. | Utilities | Edit Chord Shortcuts File.
Type the shortcuts you wish to use into this text file, with one shortcut per line. For example:
Save this file as SHORTCUT.TXT in the Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb). Make sure you correctly spell "SHORTCUT" if you created the file yourself, or it won't work.
Either (1) go to Opt. | Utilities | Refresh Chord Shortcuts, or (2) close and re-open Band-in-a-Box®. This will allow Band-in-a-Box® to recognize your new shortcut.
Now if you type CG into the Chord Sheet window, Band-in-a-Box® will automatically enter a CMaj9#11.
121. When I add a harmony to my MIDI melody track, why are some of the melody notes not harmonized?
There are a couple of possibilities.
You may have added or recorded pitch bend data to the Melody track. The harmony routines are set to "not harmonize" when pitch bend data follows, since they would need to be bending those harmony notes as well. Modulation Wheel would have a similar effect. You can look in the event list window to see if these controllers are present. You can use the Record Filter in the Record Melody dialog if you wish to prevent specific MIDI messages from being recorded.
Some of the notes may have a very short duration. Band-in-a-Box® will only harmonize notes that are greater than a certain duration. You can set your own threshold:
Go to Harmony | Melody Harmony (Select).
Select the harmony of interest.
Click the [Edit] button.
Click the [More] button.
Adjust the "No Harmony if duration is less than" setting.
Note that this will modify the harmony permanently unless you change it back or reinstall Band-in-a-Box®. You can copy the harmony to one of the "empty" harmony slots and make your modifications there if you wish. That way you don't have to worry about modifying the factory harmonies. You should make a backup of the DEFAULT.HAR file located in the BB folder if you do this. That way, if the file is overwritten, you don't lose your custom harmonies.
122. 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).
Another song file you may encounter is MGX. This refers to songs that contain an entire MIDI file on the Melody track. For example, if you had used File | Open MIDI file (Band-in-a-Box® 2004 or later), or the MIDI file Style Wizard (Band-in-a-Box® 12 and later).
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.
123. How do I access all of the patches available in the Roland VSC and VSC-DXi?
The Roland VSC has two modes.
GM2 mode gives you access to the 256 GM2 patches.
GS Mode gives you access to around 900 patches. This is the same sound set as in the SC88Pro Sound Canvas.
To choose the mode that you want to use, launch the VSC controller window and press either the GS or GM2 mode button (stand-alone version), or press the [Setup] button (DXi plugin version). To see a list of instruments included in GS and GM2 mode, click the [Help] button in the VSC, then click on 'Instrument List'.
Click here to download Roland VSC patch maps for Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTracks Pro Audio. The following two files are included:
Patches.ini: This is for PowerTracks Pro Audio. Rename the existing patches.ini file in your PT folder to patches.old (this keeps a backup of it), then copy the downloaded patches.ini to the PT folder. You will then be able to choose any patch on the VSC using the Select Patch dialog in PowerTracks. There are two patch lists - one for GM2 mode and one for GS mode.
Roland_VSC_(GSMode).PAT: This is for Band-in-a-Box®. Copy this file to your BB folder. You will then be able to select any patch on the VSC by doing one of the following:
If you have the VSC set to GM2 mode: In Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup, under the GM2 Support menu, select 'General MIDI 2 support'. This will allow you to choose any of the 256 GM2 patches by simply using the Instrument pull-down menu or GM2 button on the main screen of Band-in-a-Box®. (.PAT file not needed for this)
If you have the VSC set to GS mode: In Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup, under the GM2 support menu, select 'Roland GS'. To select one of the 900 patches supported in GS mode, click the [+] button or go to Opt. | Utilities | Choose patch from higher bank and choose the Roland_VSC (GS Mode).PAT file.
124. When I open the program, I get error messages such as "Can't find STYLE ZZJAZZ.STY", "No Guitarists will be available. Can't find DEFAULT.GIT", and/or "I/O error 103".
There are important files missing from your Band-in-a-Box® folder. This usually occurs if you don't install a Band-in-a-Box® upgrade into your existing Band-in-a-Box® folder. To resolve this problem, first find out where you have your previous version installed. By default, Band-in-a-Box® is installed in the BB folder on your hard drive, although it's possible you installed it somewhere else, or moved/renamed the folder. Wherever you have the previous installed, you want to install the Band-in-a-Box® upgrade into that folder. If you are installing Band-in-a-Box® on a new computer, you will need to start with a full "Pro" version or MegaPAK, then install the upgrade(s) over that.
125. I get an ISINST30 error when trying to install the program on Windows 95/98/ME.
This occurs because of an incompatibility with the InstallShield installer and a currently running program. This should only occur with older versions of our software (for example, some PowerTracks Pro Audio 5 and older Pianist Performance installers). You can use one of the following methods to work around the problem:
Press CTRL+ALT+DEL once. This should open the Close Program window.
Select all programs (except systray and explorer) one at a time and press [End Task].
Certain programs may display "Program not responding". Is so, just click the [End Task] button in the pop-up dialog.
Try to install the program.
Restart your computer.
Copy the CD contents into a directory on your hard drive.
Restart your computer in safe mode (Usually done by pressing F8 repeatedly as you reboot your computer).
Run the Install Program from the temporary directory you created on the hard drive.
Re-start your computer.
Delete the temporary CD directory you installed the product from.
Restart your computer while pressing F8 repeatedly.
Choose "Safe Mode with CD-ROM Support". (This choice may not exist on all systems.)
Install the program from the CD.
126. When I boot my Windows 95/98/ME computer, I get an MSGSRV32.exe error naming devcon32.dll.
Devcon32.dll is a driver for the Creative SoundBlaster Live! sound card. This problem is often encountered when you have the Roland VSC installed on your computer and you are using older SoundBlaster Live! drivers. You should be able to resolve the problem by uninstalling and reinstalling the sound card, using the latest drivers available from Creative. Download the most recent driver updates for your card from Creative's website.
Note: If Windows won't load, you can start your computer in safe mode. This is normally done by pressing F8 repeatedly while booting your computer.
If you are having trouble resolving this problem, we recommend contacting Creative for support or uninstalling the Roland VSC from your computer.
127. 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 your root Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\BB), 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. 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.
In Band-in-a-Box® 2007, the list is filtered to only show Soloists that are available (installed), but if you check the "show N/A" box, Band-in-a-Box® will show ALL soloists, even ones that aren't available.
Here are some specific reasons that Band-in-a-Box® might be giving you the error message, or a Soloist is showing up as N/A in Band-in-a-Box® 2007:
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 into the correct directory. They must be installed in your root Band-in-a-Box® directory. The solution is to reinstall the Soloist set, making sure to select the correct destination directory. If you are not sure where you have Band-in-a-Box® installed, right-click on the shortcut you use to open Band-in-a-Box®, select 'Properties', and look in the 'Target' field.
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:
In the 'Select Soloist' dialog, choose the Soloist of interest and press the Soloist Maker [Edit] button.
Underneath where it says 'Choose ST2 database', click the [Default] button.
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.
128. How can I return Band-in-a-Box® to the factory settings?
Band-in-a-Box® 11 and earlier use the files listed below 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. The files are found in the root Band-in-a-Box® folder, usually C:\bb, and can easily be found by sorting the files in the bb folder by 'date modified'.
Important: You must have Band-in-a-Box® closed when you do this, or else it won't work.
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 intrface.bbw to intrface.old. Later, if you find that you need to restore your previous settings, you can delete the new intrface.bbw file that Band-in-a-Box® will have created, and rename intrface.old to intrface.bbw
An alternative way of restoring all factory defaults, is to simply reinstall Band-in-a-Box® to a new folder. One way of doing this is to rename your current Band-in-a-Box® folder to '\bb_old', then reinstall the program to the default '\bb' folder. Note that reinstalling Band-in-a-Box® to the SAME folder will not return the program to factory settings, because Band-in-a-Box® doesn't change the configuration files when you reinstall it.
intrface.bbw. This file contains most of the global Band-in-a-Box® settings in the Opt. | Preferences dialogs, and a list of the most recently accessed song and style files.
MySetup.DK. This file contains the settings in the following dialogs.:
Opt.| MIDI Channels,options (default MIDI channels, patches, volumes, reverb, chorus, bank)
Opt. | Utilities | Make a Patch Map (Basic)
Opt. | Utilities | Make a Drum Kit
Opt. | Utilities | Make a Patch Map (Advanced)
Opt. | Utilities | Choose Favourite Instruments
The two files above contain most of your program settings; it is usually only necessary to delete those two files. Other settings files include:
DEFAULT.ALI. This file contains the information in the Styles | Style Aliases dialog.
$Drumz.cfg. This file contains your Drum Window settings.
$MIDIMON.cfg. This file contains your MIDI Monitor settings.
Tuner.cfg. This file contains your Guitar Tuner settings.
F32I.BIN. This file stores the song and style Favorites window setups.
SONGLIST.DOC. You will find this file in any folder that you created a song list for (ie, when you press the [Song] button in Band-in-a-Box®). It contains a description of the song files in that folder.
There is also a menu item within Band-in-a-Box® to return many settings to their factory defaults (Opt. | Return to Factory Settings). This is an easy way to do it if you aren't concerned about keeping a backup of your current settings. This will not return ALL settings to factory like deleting the files listed above will.
An easy way to find the configuration files in the bb folder is by sorting the files by 'date modified'. The configuration files will usually be the most recently modified, so will appear at the top.
Some of the files listed above will not necessarily be present. For example, if you haven't ever used the guitar tuner, you will not find Tuner.cfg in the bb folder.
129. "Can't find winprint.drv" error when trying to print.
To resolve this problem:
With Band-in-a-Box® closed, go to the Start menu | Printers and Faxes (Windows XP), or Start | Settings | Printer (Windows 98/ME/2000).
If you have more than one printer installed, check to see if the printer that you want to use with Band-in-a-Box® is set as your default printer. If not, set it as your default by right-clicking on it and selecting 'Set as default'.
Now set any other printer as your default printer.
Next, set the printer that you want to use with Band-in-a-Box® as your default printer (again).
Open Band-in-a-Box®. You should be able to print now.
130. When trying to open or save a song, PG Server appears in the task bar and the program locks up.
This can happen if you are running Band-in-a-Box® 11 or earlier on Windows 2000/XP, under a non-administrator account. There are three possible solutions:
Use the Short Filename File-Open/Save dialog. Go to Opt. | Preferences(2) and select 'Short Filenames' in the Display Filenames combo box.
Run Band-in-a-Box® under an administrator account.
Upgrade your version of Band-in-a-Box® to the latest version, which is fully compatible with Windows 2000 and XP.
131. How is pitch bend data transmitted and interpreted by a MIDI synth?
A Pitch bend message is encoded with two 7-bit data bytes (as per the MIDI spec). All MIDI data bytes have a range of 0 thru 127. The MIDI status bytes all have values between 128 and 255, so it is illegal to send data bytes bigger than 127, or they will be misinterpreted as status bytes (note on, note off, controller, etc). So if you want to encode values bigger than 127, the MIDI spec uses two or more data bytes. Pitch Bend uses two data bytes. The 7 bits of the MSB (most significant byte) and the 7 bits of the LSB (least significant byte) are combined to make a 14 bit possible range of values. Fourteen bytes can count from 0 thru 16383. A Pitch Bend of zero is considered to be halfway up in that range, so most software subtracts 8192 from the 'true 14 bit value' to display the pitch end value. That's why most programs, including Band-in-a-Box® and PowerTrack Pro Audio, display the pitch bend range -8192 thru +8191.
There is a pitch bend range controller message that tells a synth how far to stretch a note in response to pitch bend messages. Many synths have a front-panel setting for that if you push enough buttons. The most common setting is +/- 2 semitones, which is the GM standard, but some synths have a default of +/- 3 semitones, and some guitar controllers/synths use +/- 12 semitones. You should probably set the synth to a pitch bend range of +/-2 if you want to play third party files. The pitch bend data is the same number range in all cases (0 thru 16383), but the synth just stretches its pitch a different interval in response to the pitch bend data.
Some synthesizers may ignore the LSB in Pitch Bend messages, and only have 256 actual pitch bend locations. Even if a synth doesn't transmit or receive the LSB, that data value is just treated like it is zero. So if you had a controller that only sends 128 pitch values, the received numbers (if you slowly move the pitch bend wheel up) would be 0, 128, 256... on up to 8191. If you slowly move the pitch bend wheel down, the received numbers would be 0, -128, -256, on down to -8192. A synth which ignores the LSB would pretend that the LSB is always zero, regardless of what value the sequencer is actually transmitting.
Both Pitch Bend data bytes are encoded in each single Pitch Bend message. The MIDI spec also provides for higher-resolution of other controllers if you send two consecutive messages. It is questionable how many synths can respond to hi-res information. The first 32 controllers are MSB's, and the next 32 controllers are LSB equivalents. For instance, in theory you could transmit continuous values 0 thru 16383 for controller 1, if sending message pairs of controller 1 for the MSB, and controller 33 for the LSB. The trick would be finding a synth that does something other than ignore controller 33.
132. Can I print out multiple verses or lines of lyrics on the same lead sheet?
This feature is only supported by Band-in-a-Box® 2005 (or higher). Here is a summary of how the feature works:
Starting with version 2005, Band-in-a-Box® supports multiple lines of lyrics in the Lead sheet window and printout. If your song has repeats, 1st-2nd endings, or multiple verses of lyrics, multiple lines of lyrics can be displayed so you'll see all verses on the same lead sheet. Here are the basic steps:
Type your lyrics using Note-based Lyric entry mode in the Notation Window. The Notation Window shows your whole song in linear form, including all choruses and repeated bars. You must use Note-based lyrics, and not Line-based lyrics.
Open the Lead Sheet window and make sure that "Fake Sheet Mode" is enabled.
Click the [OPT] button to open the Lead Sheet Options dialog and make sure that "Fake Sheet displays multiple lines of lyrics" is checked. Press [OK].
Press [Print] from within the Lead Sheet Window.
You would now be seeing your multiple lines/verses of lyrics in the Lead Sheet window and on your printed lead sheet.
133. 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 PowerTracks Pro Audio and 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.
134. Error message: "Your current drum kit has no bass drum note assigned".
You get one of the following error messages when you try to play a song:
"Warning: Your current drum kit has no bass drum note assigned".
"Warning: Your current drum kit has no snare drum note assigned".
One possiblility is that you have modified your drum kit, but you did not assign a MIDI note number to one or more of the drum sounds. Go to Opt. | Utilities | Make a Drum Kit, and check to make sure that none of the drum sounds have been assigned to "0". For General MIDI drum kit definitions, the default note number for the Bass drums is 35, and the default note number for the Snare drums is 38. Assuming that you are not using a non-General MIDI synth, you can set the bass and snare drums to those values.
Another way to resolve the problem is to close Band-in-a-Box® and delete the file MySetup.dk from your Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb). Note that this will return some settings back to factory defaults. See FAQ 128 for information on which settings are affected by this file. If you have previously modified/customized any of these settings, you should make a backup of your .dk file before deleting it.
135. Are earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® compatible with Windows XP?
Band-in-a-Box® 12 and earlier are 16 bit applications, so in general, performance is not as good on Windows XP as with newer versions of Band-in-a-Box®. Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher have been rebuilt with a 32 bit engine. In addition, any file you use with Band-in-a-Box® must be saved less than about four folders away from the root level of the hard drive. For example, you may not be able to save songs in the My Documents folder, or in a folder on your Desktop.
Band-in-a-Box® 10 and earlier pre-dated the Windows XP operating system so there are a few compatibility issues, such as:
The help files cannot be opened from within Band-in-a-Box®. They must be opened from the Start menu (Start | Programs | Band-in-a-Box® | Band-in-a-Box® Help), or by double-clicking on the .hlp file in the Band-in-a-Box® folder.
Long file names cannot be used. You are restricted to using the short file name File | Open/Save dialog, and a maximum of 8 characters for a filename.
MIDI playback can stutter with mouse movement or if there are too many windows open.
The Windows sound card mixer (Record/Volume Control panel) cannot be directly opened from Band-in-a-Box®. For example, the [Set Recording Properties] button in the Render to Audio File dialog may not work.
Most of these issues also apply to Windows 2000.
136. When I render a song to wave, why do I not hear my audio track in the rendered wave file?
With Band-in-a-Box® 11, there are two methods you can use to render your song to wave:
You can record the MIDI performance in real time as a stereo .WAV file ("Re-Render to WAV file").
You can "Direct Render" the performance to .WAV using the RolandED VSC-3 ("Render [Save WAV] w/Roland VSC").
With Band-in-a-Box® 9 and 10, only the first method is available. The feature doesn't exist in Band-in-a-Box® 8 and earlier.
We have a tutorial explaining in detail how to render MIDI to wave using each of these methods. This also covers the most frequently encountered problems. See FAQ 20.
If you have recorded an audio track with your Band-in-a-Box® song (for example, you may have used a microphone to record a vocal track), Band-in-a-Box® can merge the audio track with your rendered wave file. If you do not hear the audio track when you play the rendered wave file, or if it plays back at the wrong speed, here is what you need to do:
First, make sure you have the latest update patch for your version of Band-in-a-Box®. You can check your exact version by going to Help | About Band-in-a-Box®. Update patches for Band-in-a-Box® can be downloaded from https://www.pgmusic.com/support_windowsupdates.htm. If you have an earlier version than the latest available, download and install the update patch. If you are updating Band-in-a-Box® version 10 or earlier, patch installation is a little more involved. There are instructions explaining how to install update patches for earlier versions of Band-in-a-Box® in FAQ 3.
In the Render to Audio File dialog, make sure that "Merge in Audio Track" is checked. Also, if the problem is that the audio track volume is too low relative to the MIDI, use the "Adjust Audio Track volume by" setting to correct this. For example, a setting of 6 dB would make the audio track twice as loud.
If you are using method 1 to render your song to wave, the audio track will be merged automatically at the end of the rendering process. Note that you *will not* hear your audio track while the song is being rendered. It will be merged at the end.
If you are using method 2 (Render [Save WAV] w/Roland VSC), the audio track *is not* merged automatically, since this feature uses the Audio Conversion utility in the Roland VSC-3, and that utility does not merge audio. You must merge the audio track manually after audio conversion is complete by pressing the [Merge Aud.] button and selecting the rendered wave file.
Please note: If the problem is that you can hear the audio track in the rendered wave file, but *not* the original MIDI tracks, see FAQ 137.
137. When I render a song to wave, why does the rendered wave file play back silently or with only the audio track?
With Band-in-a-Box® 11, there are two methods you can use to render your song to wave:
You can record the MIDI performance in real time as a stereo .WAV file ("Re-Render to WAV file").
You can "Direct Render" the performance to .WAV using the RolandED VSC-3 ("Render [Save WAV] w/Roland VSC").
With Band-in-a-Box® 9 and 10, only the first method is available. The feature doesn't exist in Band-in-a-Box® 8 and earlier.
In this particular case, you almost certainly used method 1, but you didn't select the correct input in the Record Control panel. Therefore, you have recorded a wave file that has nothing in it. See our tutorial in FAQ 20 and follow the instructions there for method 1 to resolve the problem. Alternatively, use the other method to render your song to wave.
Note that the goal (for method 1) is to get your sound card to record what's being played by the MIDI Output device you have selected in Band-in-a-Box®. Usually this is a simple matter. You may be getting your sound card to record its MIDI synthesizer (as is the case for sound cards that have a built-in MIDI synth) or you may be getting your sound card to record its audio output (if you are using a software synth that uses the audio portion of your sound card).
With some sound cards and audio interfaces (for example some M-Audio, Terretec, and Tascam cards) you may need to connect an audio cable from the audio ouputs to the inputs on that sound card. If you are not sure how to do this, consult the documentation for the card or contact the manufacturer to find out how you can get the sound card to record itself. It may be helpful for you to understand how the Windows sound card mixer works, and how to select your audio input and output drivers. See FAQ 18 for more information on this.
138. In the StyleMaker, what is the difference between a drum grid pattern and a live drum pattern?
There are two types of drum patterns - (1) patterns that you input into the drum grid editor, and (2) "live" drum patterns that are imported from MIDI files, usually after having been recorded using an external synth/drum machine.
Many of the newer Band-in-a-Box® styles use live drum patterns, which are identified in the main StyleMaker window with a red outline around the pattern. To edit an existing live drum pattern, select the pattern and click on the Notation button to open the StyleMaker Pattern Editor. You will notice that each different MIDI note is for a different drum sound. Live drum patterns cannot be edited using the drum grid editor.
To record a new live drum pattern, you must first record the drums outside the StyleMaker. You can use either Band-in-a-Box® or a MIDI sequencer such as PowerTracks Pro Audio. Save the recording as a MIDI file, then use the Pattern | Import Pattern from MIDI file command to import it into the StyleMaker.
Note that by default all drum patterns are 4 beat (1 bar) patterns but you can specify any live drum pattern to be an 8 beat (2 bar) pattern by checking the "2 bar pattern OK" box in the Pattern Options dialog.
139. My volume, reverb, chorus, and pan settings are not saving with my songs.
The Volume (Controller 7), Reverb (Controller 91), Chorus (Controller 93), and Pan (Controller 10) settings saved with your song are sent to your MIDI device when you load the song into Band-in-a-Box®, or when you change the settings while the song is loaded. You set the volume, reverb, chorus, and pan for any part (Bass, Piano, Drums, Guitar, Strings...) in the control panel at the top of the main Band-in-a-Box® screen. For example, to change the volume for the bass part, select the 'Bass' radio button and adjust the volume control.
The change you make will "stick" during the session, but is *not automatically saved with your song*. To save your settings, you need to use File | Save Song with Patches & Harmony, making sure that the appropriate boxes are checked.
In some cases, your volume settings may not "stick". This is a style specific problem. It can occur with a limited number of styles if Volume Changes are enabled in the Style. In this case, the style is sending a Volume (Controller 7) message when you press Play, which is causing your volume setting to revert to the default volume for the style.
There are two things you can do. The first is to edit the style (User | Edit Current Style), press the [MISC] button, and uncheck "Allow Volume Changes with Style". Note that this is a permanent change to the style. You may want to make a backup of the style before changing it. The second option is to go to Opt. | MIDI Channels, options, and uncheck "Style Volume Changes". This may not be desirable because it is a global setting and may have other unintended effects.
Another possible source of confusion may be if you are trying to set the "Master Volume", using Ctrl+Alt+D, or the "Combo" part. This function sets every part to the same volume, so you normally wouldn't use it if you are adjusting the relative volumes of the parts.
If you are experiencing unwanted volume changes, a good way to troubleshoot the problem is to open the MIDI Monitor, filtered to show only controller 7.
If you are having trouble saving patches with your song, see FAQ 42.
140. Error message: "Error in MainWav routine, noname file", when trying to save or open a song with an audio track over a network.
You can resolve this problem by mapping the network drive that you need to save the file to, and selecting the mapped drive when saving/opening your file. To map a drive, right-click on My Computer and select 'Map Network Drive'.
An alternative is to upgrade to the latest version of Band-in-a-Box®, which does not have this problem.
141. Can I get Band-in-a-Box® to display more realistic guitar tab and correct fingerings in the Fretboard Window?
For the most realistic representation of a guitar part in the Notation Window (tab) and Guitar Fretboard window, the MIDI note data needs to be on multiple channels. Usually, channel 11 is used for a note that should be played on the 1st string, channel 12 is used for the 2nd string, and so on up to channel 16. If multiple channels are not used, there is no way for Band-in-a-Box® to know for sure which string each note is supposed to be played on. Band-in-a-Box® will do its best to figure this out and this will be adequate in many cases, but you may find some places where a "live" musician would use a different string.
Most Band-in-a-Box® styles use multi-channel note data for the guitar part; when you use these styles, Band-in-a-Box® will display the guitar part intelligently (how a real musician would be most likely to play it). This is because the guitar patterns have either been recorded by a human using a MIDI guitar controller, or guitar macros have been used in the style. If you have entered a melody into Band-in-a-Box® and you are finding that it doesn't display as intelligently as you want it to, this is because it doesn't have multi-channel note data. You can change your Melody track into a guitar-type track by going to the Melody menu | Track Type, and selecting 'Guitar'. This will show you tab, but will not modify any of your note events. You would need to either use a MIDI guitar to record your melody, or go through each note one at a time by right-clicking on the note in editable notation mode and editing the channel used by the note.
Another thing you can do is to enter the melody by opening the Guitar Fretboard window and clicking on the strings. This will input the notes into the notation window as long as (1) you are in editable notation mode, and (2) you have 'Send Notes to Notation Window' checked in the Guitar Fretboard Settings window. You need to move to the position in the Notation Window where you want each note to be inserted.
142. 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.
143. Why do I hear a buzz or hum when my computer is connected to an external speaker system?
This could be caused by a "ground loop". This happens when the ground on your computer and the ground on your external amplifier have a difference in potential. If you are using a laptop with a 3 prong plug and are connected to AC power, try unplugging the power cord (use battery power) and see if you still hear the buzz. If not, chances are you have a ground loop. You may be able to use an isolation transformer or even just a 3 prong to 2 prong adaptor to resolve the problem. There may be safety issues to consider, so you should consult a technician or the computer manufacturer for more specific advice.
144. How do I get a simple metronome or click track in Band-in-a-Box®?
Go to Opt. | 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 your bb folder, and it can be accessed by pressing F9 (Load User Style).
145. Why are there multiple instances of a single driver showing in my MIDI Driver Setup window?
Other symptoms: You might also get a message saying that a driver is "...installed properly but currently in use by another program".
Band-in-a-Box® is having trouble making the proper connection to one or more MIDI devices that are installed on your computer.
If you have a MIDI interface installed and connected to an external synth, make sure the interface is connected to your computer and the synth turned on before you start Band-in-a-Box®.
One of the Band-in-a-Box® settings files may have become corrupt. Close Band-in-a-Box® and delete the file "intrface.bbw" from your bb folder. Note that this will return many program settings to their factory defaults and Band-in-a-Box® will create a new intrface.bbw file the next time you run it. If you make a backup of this file before deleting it you can restore your previous settings if this suggestion fails to resolve the problem.
If the previous suggestions did't help, there is most likely a problem with the way one of your MIDI devices is installed. Try reinstalling the drivers for your sound card and MIDI interface, and uninstall any old MIDI devices that you aren't using with the Add/Remove Programs utility.
One of the most frequent causes of this problem that we encounter is an improperly uninstalled Yamaha USB interface. Sometimes the uninstaller fails to remove a registry entry, which confuses Band-in-a-Box®. To correct this problem you need to use the registry editor. The procedure isn't difficult, but since incorrect registry modifications can cause serious problems with your computer, you have to do this at your own risk.
Go to Start | Run, type "regedit" (without the quotes), and press OK. In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ WindowsNT\ CurrentVersion\ Drivers32.
When you click on the Drivers32 folder you should see midi, midi1, midi2... entries on the right side of the registry editor window. Look for and delete entries that may refer to an interface that is no longer installed on your computer. If you had a Yamaha interface, you might see an entry similar to "xgusb.cpl". Deleting this should resolve the problem after a reboot.
146. Error message when trying to record audio: "Format unsupported. Your sound card is not allowing or set for 44K audio".
The sample rate/bit depth that Band-in-a-Box® uses for digital audio is 16 bit/44.1 KHz. If your sound card is somehow locked at a different bit/rate setting, you may get this error message.
We have most frequently seen this error in conjunction with the Line 6 GuitarPort. The order that you open Band-in-a-Box® and the GuitarPort software is important. You should most likely open Band-in-a-Box® first, and then the GuitarPort software; this should configure your drivers for 16/44.1 automatically. If this is the order that you are already using to open the programs, try opening the GuitarPort software first instead.
A similar solution may apply to other audio devices. If you are still having difficulty, open your sound card software and manually set it to 16/44.1.
147. How do I monitor myself while recording audio with an M-Audio sound card?
This is set up in the M-Audio control panel. Open the M-Audio control panel, usually by clicking on an icon in your task bar. The specific steps may vary between cards, but the basic steps are to choose the Patchbay/Router tab, and select 'Monitor Mixer' underneath the ports that you want to monitor on. Then, click on the Monitor Mixer tab and ensure that the appropriate mixer controls are not muted and set to a good level.
Also, check that you have the correct audio drivers selected in the Windows control panel - Sounds and Audio Devices or Multimedia. Note that if you change drivers you need to restart Band-in-a-Box® before the change will take affect there.
148. Error message: "There is a problem with your sound hardware. To install mixer devices, go to Control Panel, click Printers and Other Hardware, and then click Add Hardware."
Symptoms: When you click on the [Set Recording Properties] button in the Render to Audio File dialog, click on the [Set Recording Properties] button in the Record Audio dialog, or go to the Audio menu and select Recording Mixer, either you get this error message or nothing happens at all.
This message is given by the operating system. There may in fact be a problem with your sound card installation, but this is not necessarily the case. When you do one of the things listed above, Band-in-a-Box® is trying to open the Record Control panel of the Windows sound card mixer so that you can select your recording input and set the volume level. If there is a problem accessing the mixer, either nothing will happen or you will get the error message above. This means that there isn't a Windows recording mixer installed for the currently selected Sound Recording device (you select this in the Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices | Audio tab). Some sound cards install their own proprietary control panel/mixer utility that you need to use. Usually there will be an icon in your task bar to access this, or you may be able to get to it via the Windows control panel. Otherwise, select a different driver for sound recording if you have the wrong one selected.
If you continue to get the error message after your recording settings are correct, and you are in fact able to record, you can just ignore it.
149. Why is my recorded audio track out of sync with the MIDI accompaniment?
Symptoms: You recorded an audio track. For example you may have used a microphone to record vocals. Everything sounded fine as you were recording it, but when you play it back the audio track is out of time with the Band-in-a-Box® MIDI tracks.
This problem is caused by the use of a software synthesizer on your computer. Software synths have a certain amount of latency - this means that it takes them some time to produce sound after receiving MIDI data from Band-in-a-Box®. There is more information about this in FAQ 33. It is common for the Microsoft GS Wavetable or Roland VSC soft synths to be used as the MIDI Output Driver in Band-in-a-Box®. Here are some tips for understanding and resolving this problem.
If you are not using a DXi synth
Make sure that the Roland VSC is not selected for audio recording/playback in the Control Panel | Sounds and Audio Devices (or Multimedia) Properties window, or (in Band-in-a-Box® 2005 and higher) in the Opt. | Preferences | Audio | Drivers dialog. Having audio routed through the VSC causes latency problems. If you change your audio drivers in the control panel, close and re-open Band-in-a-Box® for the change to take effect.
Find out the latency of the synth you are using, and set the Driver Latency in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog appropriately. For the Roland VSC, check the latency ('response time') in the VSC settings window | Performance tab. For the Microsoft GS Wavetable, the latency is usually between 50 and 100 ms. Narrow this down by trying different values and watching the main screen during playback. When you see the chords being highlighting in exact time to what you hear, you have the right number. Make note of this number for future reference. If you are using a hardware synth, make sure the latency is set to about 0.
The two things above should resolve the problem, but if you are still having trouble use a hardware synth (your sound card's built-in synth or and external synth/module if you have one).
If you are using a DXi synth (Band-in-a-Box® 2004 and higher)
When you have a DXi synth selected for playback, and while you are recording audio, the MIDI tracks are not played through the DXi synth. For technical reasons, MIDI is routed to whatever "regular" MIDI Output Driver you have selected in the MIDI Driver Setup dialog.
By default, Band-in-a-Box® assumes that your MIDI Output Driver is a (close to) zero latency MIDI Output driver. The recorded audio is then automatically shifted ahead by the amount of the (DXi synth) Driver Latency. Note that the 'Audio Latency' setting in the Opt. | Preferences | Audio dialog is tied to the Driver Latency setting; when you change one, you change the other. So, to make sure that your recorded audio is in sync, just ensure that you do not have a soft synth selected as your MIDI Output driver. If you do not have any choice other than to select a soft synth, you can do one of the following:
Adjust the Opt. | Preferences | Audio - 'Offset in ms' setting before you record your audio track. You need to find out what the exact latency of your MIDI Output driver is as explained previously. For example, if you record a vocal track and find that it plays behind the MIDI tracks, this means that you were hearing the MIDI music play late - so you were singing late. Set the 'Offset in ms' to a negative value corresponding to the latency of your MIDI Output driver.
Use the Audio | Edit Audio Track | Timeshift Audio command to slide the audio track forward or back after you have recorded your audio track. You would use the same value here as you would use for the offset in ms.
150. How can I insert a patch change in a specific chorus or change to a non-General MIDI patch at any bar?
The Edit Settings for Current Bar dialog allows you to change to a GM patch (Band-in-a-Box® 12 and higher allow GM2 patch changes as well) at any bar in your song, however the change will apply to all of your choruses. If you want the patch change to only happen on one of your choruses, there are a couple of options. The first option is to "unfold" your song into one long chorus. The Edit | Unfold command can do this for you. The other option is to use the Event List window to specify the patch change at a particular bar. You can also use the event list to specify a patch change to a patch on a higher bank. Here are the basic steps for using the event list to insert a patch change for any track:
If the track that you want to insert the patch change on is the Melody or Soloist track:
Open the Notation Window, viewing the track of interest (Soloist or Melody) and position yourself where you want to make the patch change.
Open the Event List Editor by clicking the [#] button and fine-tune your position in the event list if necessary.
If your patch is a General MIDI patch, skip to step 5. If you want to choose a patch on a higher bank, click on [Insert] and select Control Change. Choose Controller 0 (MSB Bank Select) type the MSB Bank number for your patch, and press OK.
If your synth uses Controller 32 (Bank select LSB) click on [Insert] and select Control Change. Choose Controller 32, type the LSB Bank number, and press OK.
Click on [Insert] and select Patch Change. Choose the patch or Program # you want and press OK.
If the track that you want to insert the patch change on is not the Melody or Soloist track:
You also use the Melody or Soloist track event list to insert the patch changes as described above, but note the following:
You need to change that track to a multi-channel type track to prevent all events from being re-channeled to the Melody or Soloist channel. To do this, go to Melody or Soloist | Track type, and select multi-channel.
When you insert the Control and Program (patch) Changes, you need to specify the correct channel for each event you insert. You can find out what channel each of the Band-in-a-Box® tracks use by going to Opt. | Preferences | Channels, or Opt. | MIDI Channels, options in Band-in-a-Box® 11 and earlier.
151. Is there a way to display my chords in root position in the notation window?
You can use the 'Output Chords to External Device' feature to accomplish this. Normally, this feature is used to output chords to a vocal harmonizer, however you can use it to save the chords in your song in their root positions to a MIDI file, then import the MIDI file into the Melody or Soloist track.
Go to Opt | Preferences | OutputCh. Put a checkmark beside "Output Chords". The channel number should be set to 9 by default. You will probably find it best to change some of the settings in the Output Chords dialog (You may need to experiment with this a bit):
Note Range: 60 to 84.
# ticks before chord change: 0
Output chords during lead-in: NO
Write Track to MIDI file: YES
Click the .MID button to save your song as a MIDI file. It is easiest if you save it to the [Clipboard].
Go to Melody | Edit Melody Track | Import Melody from Clipboard. Import only channel 9. Make sure that the '# blank bars to insert a beginning' is set to 0. Press OK.
You should now see the chords in the Melody track.
152. I get an Access Violation or General Protection Fault when I try to open Band-in-a-Box®.
This could indicate a problem with your Band-in-a-Box® installation, a problem with windows, or a problem with a driver installed on your computer. If you get the error every time you try to open Band-in-a-Box®, you can normally resolve the problem by deleting a file called intrface.bbw from your Band-in-a-Box® folder (usually C:\bb). This will return many global Band-in-a-Box® settings to their factory defaults. If that doesn't help, perform the following steps until the problem is resolved:
Return all Band-in-a-Box® settings to their factory defaults by following the instructions in FAQ 128.
If you are running Band-in-a-Box® on Windows 98 or ME, ensure that the name of your Band-in-a-Box® folder doesn't have a '+' or '=' sign in it, as this can cause an access violation on some systems.
Reinstall Band-in-a-Box® to a new folder that doesn't contain your existing Band-in-a-Box® files. One way of doing this is to rename your existing Band-in-a-Box® folder (bb) to "bb_old" - then simply reinstall Band-in-a-Box® using the original CD(s) or installer that you downloaded and choose bb as the destination directory. This way you end up with a "fresh" install, and you also keep all of your old files for backup purposes. Don't delete the bb_old folder until you are sure that you have saved all of your personal work etc. elsewhere. It is ok to have Band-in-a-Box® installed in more than one location on your computer, but keep track of where your Band-in-a-Box® shortcut is pointing by right-clicking on the shortcut and selecting properties.
If you are still getting the error when opening Band-in-a-Box®, this may indicate that there is a problem with a sound card driver installed on your computer, and Band-in-a-Box® is having trouble making a connection to it. Reinstall the drivers for your sound card (and MIDI/Audio interface if you have one), using the latest updates available from the manufacturer.
153. 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.
154. I hear handclaps and other strange sounds when I play styles that use the drum brush kit. How do I get brushes to play properly?
Many Band-in-a-Box® styles use the Brush Kit. There are a few ways you can tell if a particular style uses the brush kit, aside from just listening to it.
- The Memo field in the StylePicker window will indicate if drum brushes are used in the style.
- Many styles that use the brush kit have a ~ symbol in front of the style name, although this only applies to older styles - most newer styles don't use this naming convention.
- If you have the style open, press Play, then click on the Drum radio button in the instrument panel. If the style uses brushes, it will say "41 Brushes Kit" in the instrument pull-down menu.
MIDI channel 10 is the drum channel on most MIDI synthesizers. On the drum channel, different notes are interpreted as different drum sounds, instead of being different pitches of a particular instrument. Instead of using Program Change messages to switch between different instruments, on the drum channel they are used to choose a drum kit. Patch #1 is the Standard Drum Kit. Click here a list of the drum sounds that correspond to each MIDI note in the Standard Drum Kit. The Brush Kit is usually the same as the Standard Drum Kit with the following three exceptions:
- Note #38 is a Brush Tap instead of a Snare Drum.
- Note #39 is a Brush Slap instead of a Hand Clap.
- Note #40 is a Brush Swirl instead of a Snare Drum.
Some Yamaha synths use a somewhat different map for the brush sounds. On these synths:
- Note #25 is a Brush tap.
- Note #27 is a Brush Slap.
- Note #26 is a Brush swirl.
If you are not hearing brushes when playing a style with a brush kit, this most likely means that the MIDI device you have selected doesn't have a brush kit. You have two options:
- Choose a different MIDI output driver in Opt. | MIDI Driver Setup so that you are playing through a MIDI synth that has a brush kit. Synths that support brushes include the Roland VSC3, VSC-DXi, ForteDXi, and Microsoft GS Wavetable. If you have a Sound Blaster sound card, you may have the soundfont synth selected as your output driver - this may appear as "SB...Synth A", "SB...Synth B", "Creative Soundfont synth", or something similar. Often the default soundfont bank included with Creative cards does not have a brush kit.
- The second option is to get Band-in-a-Box® to re-map the brushes so that the drums sound ok using the Standard Drum Kit. This is done by going to Opt. | Preferences(2) and selecting "My sound card doesn't support brushes..."
Another possibility is that you are playing through a synth (usually an external synth/sound module) that does support brushes but uses a different MIDI note map for brushes. This is common with Yamaha synths. Newer versions of Band-in-a-Box® have an option to remap the drum sounds for Yamaha synths (XG format note numbers).
One last possibility is that you are playing through a synth (usually an external synth/sound module) that has a brush kit, but it is not located at program # 41 on Bank 0. In this case, you will need find an instrument list in the documentation for your synth and find out how to access the Brush Kit. You need to know the PC#, Bank0(MSB) and Bank32(LSB). once you know these numbers, you can use the instrument pull-down menu, Bank0 box, and LSB box to select the patch for the drum track. You will need to use File | Save Song with Patches and Harmony after you do this (and before you play your song again) so that your drum track doesn't revert back to the default drum patch. One other thing you will want to check is that 'Drum Bank changes' is enabled in Opt. | Preferences | MIDI Options (this option is only present in newer versions of Band-in-a-Box®).
155. After importing a MIDI file with drums into Band-in-a-Box®, I can see the drum notes in the Notation Window but they do not play.
You might also encounter this problem when recording drums directly into Band-in-a-Box® from some external synths. Right-click on one of the drum notes, select 'Edit Note', and check to see if the note has 'zero' duration. If it does, the problem is that Band-in-a-Box® doesn't play zero duration drum notes. One solution would be to go through each of the notes and edit them so that they have a non zero duration. An easier solution is to use a MIDI sequencer such as PowerTracks Pro Audio to quantize the drum track notes. For example, in PowerTracks you could:
- Go to Edit | Quantize.
- Put a checkmark beside 'durations'.
- uncheck 'start times'.
- set the Resolution to 'sixteenth', and press OK.
156. Can I record and edit multi-channel MIDI files in Band-in-a-Box®?
Band-in-a-Box® isn't a dedicated multi-track sequencer, so it isn't as easy to edit multi-channel MIDI files as it is with our program PowerTracks Pro Audio. In Band-in-a-Box®, you only have two tracks to work with - Melody and Soloist. The other tracks - Bass, Drums, Piano, Guitar, and Strings - are used by Band-in-a-Box® to generate its arrangements. However, the Melody and Soloist tracks don't have to be used for ONLY a melody and solo - you can have whatever you want on those tracks, including multi-channel MIDI data. Here are some tips:
The Melody and Soloist track type need to be set to 'multi-channel' when you are working with MIDI data on more than one channel (more than one instrument). The default track type is 'single-channel'. When the track is single-channel, all MIDI data is re-channeled to the default channel for that track (channel 4 for Melody and channel 8 for Soloist). The track type can be set by selecting the appropriate option under the Melody or Soloist menu.
Note 1: When you import a MIDI file using File | Open MIDI File, Band-in-a-Box® will automatically set the track type to multi-channel.
Note 2: When you save a Band-in-a-Box® song with a multi-channel Melody or Solo track, the song is saved as an .MGX file so that you can identify it easily.
You can record directly to the Soloist track in the same way that you record to the Melody track. To do this, go to the Soloist menu | Edit Soloist Track | Record to Soloist Part. Band-in-a-Box® will record to the Soloist part by default for the remainder of your Band-in-a-Box® session. To switch back to recording to the Melody part, go to the Melody menu | Edit Melody Track | Record Melody.
With Band-in-a-Box® 2006 and higher, you can record more than one part/channel to the Soloist or Melody tracks. To do this, first make sure your Melody or Soloist track type is set to multi-channel, then record your part. When you have finished recording, you will get a dialog with a pull-down menu that will allow you to select which channel you want to place the recorded MIDI data on. Note that since Band-in-a-Box®'s accompaniment tracks use channels 2-10, it is best to use channels 11-16 to avoid conflict, although if you will not be using the Band-in-Box arrangement this isn't an issue.
If you don't want to hear the Band-in-a-Box® generated style parts - ie, if you are only interested in hearing what you have on the Melody and Soloist tracks - you can do any one of the following:
Choose one of the blank styles from the StylePicker dialog (BLANK.STY (even 4/4), BLANK34.STY (even 3/4), BLANKSW.STY (swing 4/4), or BLANK3SW.STY (swing 3/4).
Disable the style by going to the Style menu and clicking on Style is enabled (this will de-selects it).
Rest the first chord in the chordsheet by entering the chord symbol followed by a period. For example, you could type "C." at bar 1. If there is more than one chord (if Band-in-a-Box® interpreted the chords in your MIDI file), then you will need to copy the rest to the entire song using the Edit | Copy Rests menu command.
When you import a MIDI file into Band-in-a-Box® using File | Open MIDI file, the entire MIDI file is imported to the Melody track. If you would like, you can separate one or more channels to the Soloist track by using the Edit | Copy/Move Tracks menu item (this is also possible to do from the Sequencer Window in Band-in-a-Box® 2006). Copying an individual channel to the Soloist track allows you to use the Notation Window to easily edit the notes on an individual channel.
The Sequencer Window in Band-in-a-Box® 2006 (and higher) is an easy way to change the patch and volume for any channel in an imported MIDI file. To open the Sequencer window, click the green [SEQ] button in the bottom Band-in-a-Box® toolbar and select 'Sequencer on Melody track'. You can choose a new patch using each of the patch pull-down menus, and you can use the Edit [...] buttons to change the volume, re-channel, or move a channel to the Soloist track so that you can edit it separately.
The Event List editor can be used to insert other controllers such as pan, reverb, and chorus. To open the event list window, click the [#] button in the Notation Window toolbar. Use 'Insert ... Control Change' to insert a reverb (# 91), chorus (#93), or pan (#10) controller. Make sure that you insert it on the correct channel. You can find out what channel each instrument is on in the Sequencer Window.
The Piano Roll window in Band-in-a-Box® 2005 and higher allows graphical editing of note timing, duration, and velocity, as well as precise and easy editing of controllers, Program Changes, Channel Aftertouch, Pitch Bends etc. It is similar to the type of MIDI editors found in many sequencer programs. You can edit/view each channel individually. Click on the Piano Roll button in the bottom toolbar or go to the Window menu | Piano Roll window. You can also graphically edit Note Velocity, Controllers, Program Changes, Channel Aftertouch, or Pitch Bends, and you can select specific channels to work on.
To save your song as a MIDI (MID) file rather than a Band-in-a-Box® song (MGU/SGU/MGX) file, click the [.MID] button on the main Band-in-a-Box® toolbar.
You may wish to investigate other ways to use MIDI files in Band-in-a-Box®. Since Band-in-a-Box®'s primary purpose is to be an intelligent accompaniment program, try using the Interpret Chords from MIDI File feature (File | Import Chords from MIDI File) to have Band-in-a-Box® figure out the chords and melody in your MIDI file - then you can generate the accompaniment tracks using a Band-in-a-Box® style. You can also use the Style Wizard (Style | Style Wizard) in Band-in-a-Box® 12 and higher to have Band-in-a-Box® generate a style based on your MIDI file. The Melody | Edit Melody Track | Import Melody from MIDI file option allows you to import part of a MIDI file (usually the melody) into your current Band-in-a-Box® song.
157. Is there a way to get my songs to play in the order I want using the Jukebox?
There are a couple of ways you can do this. One way is to use the Favourite Songs dialog. To open this dialog, click the F button beside the Song button on the left-hand side of the main screen. Using this dialog, you can save and load sets of songs. When you press the JUKE button within the dialog, the jukebox will play all of the songs in the currently loaded set in the order that you added them.
Another way of doing this is to number your song filenames. If you play the Jukebox by pressing the Juke button on the main screen, it will play all of the songs in the folder you have selected in alphabetical order, provided you have the 'random order playback' setting unchecked. So, if your file names are mysong.mgu, anothersong.mgu, and firstsong.mgu, Band-in-a-Box® would normally play anothersong.mgu first, followed by firstsong.mgu, and then mysong.mgu. You could change your filenames to 1-mysong.mgu, 2-firstsong.mgu, and 3-anothersong.mgu and Band-in-a-Box® will then play them in that order. Note that you need to be careful once you get to 10, because 10 would actually come after 1 (not 9). There are many ways around this, for example you may wish to use letters instead of numbers.
158. What is the difference between line-based and note-based lyrics?
Band-in-a-Box® allows you to use two different methods for lyric entry: Line-based and Note-based. Note-based lyric entry is a newer addition to the Band-in-a-Box® feature set, and in most cases it is the best method to use. With note-based lyrics you can associate specific words or syllables with specific notes in the music, so your lyrics print out at the right spot. You can also adjust the font and size of the lyrics. These options aren't available with Line-based lyrics. You might want to use line-based lyrics if you do not have a Melody line (so there are no notes to associate the lyrics with) or if you aren't worried about how the lyrics look, and just want to use the fastest lyric entry method.
In the Notation Window, find the space directly above where the chord symbols appear. To enter line-based lyrics, you simply click in this space, then type in the lyrics. Use the cursor down/up keys (or Enter key ) to advance to the next/previous line of lyrics. To print out the lyrics with your song, press the Print button to open the Print Options dialog and make sure that 'Lyrics above', 'Lyrics below', or 'Lyrics Separate' is selected in the pull-down box on the left side. This will print out the lyrics above or below the staff or on a separate page. The vertical position of the lyrics can be specified with the 'Lyrics Below by' setting.
In the Notation Window, press Ctrl-L on your keyboard, or press the [L] (Lyrics) button in the toolbar. When you press the Lyrics Button, the Lyric Edit window opens up and the current note (or group of notes at the same time) are highlighted. Whatever you type into the Lyric Edit window will be placed under the currently highlighted note. To move to the next note, you can press enter or tab on your keyboard. To move to the previous note, you can use shift-tab. Note that a hyphen can be added at the end of syllables, and a backslash can be placed at the end of a phrase to indicate a line break. Note-based lyrics will print out as long as you have the 'Print Note-based Lyrics' setting in the Print Options dialog selected. You can customize the font and size of the lyrics by using the Font settings in the Notation Window Options dialog (OPT button). You can also control the vertical position of the lyrics by using the 'Lyric Position' setting in the Notation Window Options dialog.
159. I am unable to transpose my Melody track, even if I use the Transpose Melody Only menu option.
If your Melody is not transposing, whether you change the key of your song, or go to Melody | Edit Melody Track | Transpose Melody Only.., it could be because your melody notes are on channel 10 for some reason. Channel 10 is set to not transpose because this is the drum channel, and when drums are transposed they become entirely different drum sounds. Even if your melody doesn't sound like drums, the notes may still be on channel 10. This is because unless your Melody track type is set to 'multi-channel', Band-in-a-Box® re-channels all Melody track data to the default Melody channel (usually channel 4) during playback. To check what channels your Melody notes are on, you can right-click on one of the notes in editable notation mode and select Edit Note, or look at the Event List.
One way of correcting the problem for your current song is to use a feature in the Piano Roll window (Band-in-a-Box® 2005 and higher). Open the Piano Roll window, right-click anywhere, and select 're-channel all events to the track channel'. To avoid the problem in the future, open the Notation Window Options dialog, press the More button, and make sure that the 'inserted note default' is not set to channel 10. If you are recording from an external controller, check that it isn't set to send all MIDI data on channel 10 for some reason.
160. Is there a way to have the tempo of a song increase automatically each time it repeats, or to have the tempo increase every few bars?
If you right-click on bar 1 of your song (or any bar that will be repeated) and select 'Bar Settings', you can enter a value in the '% change in tempo' field. Then, every time Band-in-a-Box® plays that bar, the tempo will increase by that percentage. So, for example, if you have a 4 bar song that repeats 40 times, and you've got a 5% tempo increase at bar 1, then there will be a 5% tempo increase every 4 bars for 40 repeats. You can insert tempo changes at any bar you want by right-clicking on the bar and selecting Bar Settings, or by using the keyboard shortcut F5 at that bar.
Our program Metronome Pro has a feature that you might also find useful. In this program, you can have the tempo increase by a certain amount after a specified number of bars. The program can use MIDI files in place of the metronome click. To set this up:
Save your song as a MIDI file to disk by pressing the .MID button. Save the file in the C:\Program Files\Metronome Pro\MIDI folder.
In Metronome Pro, place a checkmark in the "Tempo Increases by..." setting, and the 'Use MIDI file' setting.
In the 'Use MIDI File' pull-down menu, choose the 'Browse and Add' option and open the MIDI file that you saved from Band-in-a-Box®.
161. When recording from an external keyboard, some notes are not being recorded, are dropping out, or are being sustained when they shouldn't be.
This might occur if the connection between Band-in-a-Box® and your external keyboard is being lost, such that note-on or note-off messages are occasionally not being received.
Here are some things to try:
Close Band-in-a-Box® and delete the configuration settings file "intrface.bbw" from the C:\bb folder. You may want to make a backup of this file first, as this will return many global Band-in-a-Box® setting to their factory defaults. Deleting the file will cause Band-in-a-Box® to re-connect to your MIDI drivers, and eliminate the possibility that this file was corrupt.
Make sure that your MIDI cables and USB cable (if applicable) are firmly connected. If you are using a USB hub, try connecting the USB cable directly to a USB port on your computer.
Reinstall the drivers for your MIDI interface, using the latest drivers available from the interface manufacturer's website.
Close other programs while using Band-in-a-Box®. There may be a conflict with another program running on your computer.
If the problem persists, try a different MIDI interface if possible.
162. The tempo changes in my MIDI file disappear when I import it into Band-in-a-Box®.
This is intentional, because Band-in-a-Box® songs and styles all play at a constant tempo. There are a few ways that MIDI files can be used with Band-in-a-Box®, and most require that there not be any tempo changes, such as when you import the melody from a MIDI file to the Melody track, or interpret the chords from a MIDI file using File | Import chords from MIDI file. While Band-in-a-Box® can be used as a MIDI sequencer to some extent, if you are working with files that require tempo changes, we recommend using our dedicated MIDI sequencer PowerTracks Pro Audio. Note that in Band-in-a-Box® you can insert tempo changes at any bar by using the 'Edit Settings for Current Bar' dialog, however you can't have a gradual tempo change over a range of bars unless you reduce/increase the tempo bar-by-bar.
163. Why do some of my rests disappear from the notation window when I exit editable notation mode?
Band-in-a-Box® is configured by default to avoid displaying unusual or complex notation in regular (non-editable) notation mode. The main setting for this can be toggled off by unchecking the 'clean' checkbox in the Notation Window toolbar. Two other settings in the Notation Window Options dialog also affect whether a rest will be displayed at a particular location. Miminize Rests: If eighth notes are displayed as sixteenth notes separated by sixteenth rests in editable mode (because you recorded them staccato), this feature will remove the rests and display the notes as eighth notes (without rests) in regular notation mode. Tick offset: This setting allows you to display the notes ahead or behind of the actual location of the notes. For example, the notation of Jazz swing music will often be improved by a tick offset setting of about -5 ticks (120 ticks = 1 quarter note), because jazz music is typically played a little after the beat. If you are inserting notes manually rather than recording them, you might want to set this to 0.
The settings mentioned above do not affect how the music sounds, only how it is displayed.
164. When I open the program, I get a message that the Microsoft GS Wavetable is "...installed properly but currently in use by another program".
This is most likely another symptom of the problem discussed here.
165. When I use the 'Import Melody from MIDI File' feature, it doesn't work. It says that there were 0 Events imported.
Unless the channel you are trying to import really doesn't have any events on it, this is most likely another symptom of the problem discussed here.
166. The help file doesn't work on Windows Vista.
Symptoms: When you try to open the help file, you might get a message similar to this: "The Help for this program was created in Windows Help format, which was used in previous versions of Windows and it is not supported in Windows Vista."
Cause: In Windows Vista, Microsoft has dropped support for .HLP help files, which use the program WINHLP32.EXE. This problem is not specific to PG Music software.
Solution: Band-in-a-Box® 2007 (and higher), PowerTracks Pro Audio 12 (and higher), and the latest builds of other PG Music products have help files that are supported under Windows Vista. Also, if you have Band-in-a-Box® 2006, you can download a free update patch to resolve the problem. If you have an earlier version of Band-in-a-Box® or PowerTracks, you could purchase an upgrade. If you have another PG Music product, install the most recent update patch available for that product.
There is also a Microsoft update that will allow you to view most .hlp files on Windows Vista. Click here for more information about this.
167. How do I install update patches for Band-in-a-Box®?
Update patches for Band-in-a-Box® can be downloaded from https://www.pgmusic.com/support_windowsupdates.htm.
Band-in-a-Box® 11 or higher
Download the file and 'Save to disk'. You can save the file to your desktop or to your preferred folder for saving downloads.
Make sure Band-in-a-Box® is closed, otherwise the update will not work.
Double-click on the downloaded file and follow the prompts. When you get to the screen asking you to select the destination directory, make sure that your Band-in-a-Box® folder is selected. This is usually C:\BB, although it's possible that you have Band-in-a-Box® installed somewhere else. Continue to follow the prompts.
After installing the update patch, launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to Help | About Band-in-a-Box® to make sure that it installed properly.
Band-in-a-Box® 10 or earlier
Download the file and 'Save to disk'. You can save the file to your desktop or to your preferred folder for saving downloads.
Double-click on the file and follow the prompts. The patch will self-extract into a temporary patch folder named 'bbtemp'.
Make sure Band-in-a-Box® is closed, otherwise the update will not work.
Locate the bbtemp folder on your hard drive and open this folder. Double-click on the file called Patchgui.exe.
In the RTPatch Apply program, go to the File menu and select Apply Patch.
In the new window you will see two boxes. The Patch Filename box already has the word "patch" in it - leave that one alone. In the Update Directory box type in the path of the program to be updated. This will usually be c:\bb, but it's possible that you have Band-in-a-Box® installed somewhere else.
Click on the [Apply Patch] button.
If you get an error that says "Update Directory does not exist", this means you have made a mistake when specifying the update directory, or the program you are trying to update is not where you think it is. You can confirm where Band-in-a-Box® is located by going to Start |Find | Files or folders -or- Start | Search | All Files and Folders, and performing a search for 'bbw.exe'. Also, make sure you use a forward slash "\" and not "/".
After installing the update patch, launch Band-in-a-Box® and go to Help | About Band-in-a-Box® to make sure that it installed properly.
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