Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Super Fast Piano Intros..... by DianaDee Osborne

Here's a super-fast way to create a piano intro for a song where you've already created the piano track for the body of the song (such as verses or chorus): 

1.  Create a DUPLICATE track of the piano.  In GarageBand, you'll get an empty track that contains the exact sound (piano type, reverb, etc), of the original.  Other programs copy the piano notes as well;  for those, simply delete all music.

2.  Prepare this new INTRO track:   Record a couple of notes -- any notes. In the staff music window, extend the length of the recorded track out about 12 measures.  Then delete the recorded notes.   They were just placeholders.

3.  Go to the main piano track and DECIDE ON your favorite PASSAGE to begin your song.  It's easiest to select an odd number of measures, leaving a final even measure to hold a note before "the singing begins."
4.  COPY those notes-- including the pedal marks that look like fancy L's at the bottom.   Then put the playhead line exactly on Count 1 where the intro will begin, and PASTE the notes  into the INTRO track.  HINT:  Sometimes it's nice to leave a couple of measures at the beginning for the drums or flute to bring the song in before the piano starts.
5.  SELECT ALL NOTES BUT *NOT* the pedal marks.  Then put the cursor on a note that's on count 1, hold down the note firmly, and slide up that note exactly one octave;  all other notes will follow if they have stayed selected (green highlight in GarageBand).
Now comes the fast original composition part:  Listen to the ending measures, how they blend into the main piano track.  You probably want to adjust the length of the last notes, maybe the actual notes to give the singer both the pitch and time to hear it before singing.  Also check the volume:   Higher pitched piano may sound quieter.

ANSWER this QUESTION:  Do you want to merge the piano tracks?   Completely depends on your preference for a fast way to print the STAFF (versus creating a separate track called SCORE) or to have a "clean" looking piano track.
ADVANTAGE of separate tracks: 
a.   Fast flexibility in sound... for example, you may 
      want  a more "ethereal" sound with a slight echo.   
b.  ALSO -- during the initial recording, both the producer and vocalist have a visual clue of when to begin singing:)

Much joy to you creating new music!
©2013 DianaDee Osborne;  all rights reserved

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