Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Carry PEDAL TONES Through Arpeggios

  Do you want a music line that MOVES but has a sort of       COHESION... a  LOGIC  to it?    Pedal Tones provide one enjoyable method to accomplish this -- and they are easy with ANY  MIDI track for an instrument that can play chords, in any studio program.  Obviously this blog is about GarageBand. But the hint works for ProTools, LOGIC, Audacity, and other programs.

Here's an easy DEFINITION of Pedal Tone:    A music note that stays playing the same while other notes continue to move with changes.   The word "Pedal" obviously indicates that this is the LOW note... the word comes from "foot" in Latin.    But if you don't care about pleasing the THEORY  TEACHERs,  it's easy to CREATE YOUR OWN RULES for your own music....
            If you like,  let the highest or the middle note in your chord be the one that stays the same. EXAMPLEs:   Listen to BACH's music sometime.  Or, if you suffered through it as I did, HANON provides great examples of the same -- that one note that is repeatedly played while other notes move on.

METHOD in your studio program -- very easy.
For this example, we'll assume you are using    FLUTE   as the MIDI track, with the HIGHEST  note being your "pedal tone."  In fact,  I like to use   SYNTH PAD - FUTURE FLUTE  in GarageBand.
        Music theorists will cringe.... "pedal tone" is defined as lowest.  But hey, it's our music to create and enjoy our own way. 
1.    Create your FLUTE track as usual with broken chords ("ARPEGGIOs").  But have the SAME NOTE start at COUNT 1  for each measure,  OR  on Count 1 of every other measure.
2.    Quantize the notes (unless jazz or swing, of course) in the SCORE bar;  see previous blogs for hints.  In the following example,   the A note is the Pedal Tone repeated through the music.  These are not typical Root-3-5 chords, but sus and 6 and etc chords (which is NOT important unless you think only R-3-5 chords can be played in arpeggio style, one note at a time!)

3.    Change from the SCORE bar to the Piano Roll (MIDI) bar.  Highlight each note and SHORTEN NOTES that overlap each other EXCEPT  for the high PEDAL TONE  note  you selected.

4.  NOW  highlight each PEDAL TONE note and ensure that it continues through 3 of the 4 counts in a measure  (for 4/4 time;  or 2 counts of 3/4 time).

5.  CHECK THE LOUDNESS ("Velocity" in GarageBand) of each Pedal Tone note and ADJUST as needed so that they are all about the same.  In the example, the 3rd note is lighter green (when all notes are selected), meaning that it needs to be a bit louder to match the other HIGH Pedal Tones.

HERE IS THE PEDAL TONES  FLUTE  for this example:    Click For AUDIO 

THAT'S  ALL  THERE IS  to having fun creating a 
COHESIVE  SOUND    with a pedal tone in your song!

Much joy to you in creating your own music --- and ignoring standard music theory when desired!
©2013 DianaDee Osborne; all rights reserved