Friday, March 21, 2014

Managing VOLUME for MIDI Instruments, by DianaDee Osborne

Here's an easy hint for composing counter-melody music with MIDI instruments, with an important VOLUME hint

An earlier post noted that it's easy to
1. Duplicate the piano (keyboard) track.
              Click here for link:     DUPLICATE TRACK trick
2. Delete all PEDAL marks below the score (* in GarageBand)
3. Delete all BASS level notes --- but if you have runs 
    only a bit lower than Middle C, you might leave them to:
4. Select and drag any special notes that are too low for 
    your MIDI instrument up to an octave higher.

5. Now adjust counter-melody notes the way you want - 
       see my earlier blog
   I like to shift notes to ALTO harmony or higher soprano
       for  flutes and the top trumpet in a horn section.
            WARNING:  High violins are  painful !   Keep quieter!

6.  Now for VOLUME adjustments:
 If you want to sound professional...  You really need to
check MIDI note volumes one at a time to be sure they
approximately     match the volume of notes near them.  
Another of my earlier blogs discusses ACCENTS
   (having a higher volume for Count 1, slightly higher for Count 3 in 4/4 time, e.g.).

It's FUN  to have the MIDI instrument run ABOVE and
BELOW the melody and sometimes be the same note --
much like BACH  and other classical musicians  did.
A simple VOLUME  HINT  that uses simple Math:
TWO  notes in a chord -- such as a C and a G note for two trumpets, may 
MERGE into one note -- such as the E (in between, for a C chord.)

If you have about the same volume for the single note as you had for the two
the single note will be too quiet. Like two Volume 50 notes = ~75; one = 50.  THUS:
    Raise the volume of the single note  ~15 points   
where the two instruments meet,  so that it can be heard 
in the "sandwich" when the higher and lower MIDI instruments separate again.

EXAMPLE:  From my website 
on the 2014 tab:           CLICK HERE  for   LINK 
The TRUMPET section of "Infant Holy Savior Lowly".  (currently still in draft stage)

Much joy to you creating new music that's not too loud or too soft!
©2014 DianaDee Osborne;  all rights reserved

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