Posted tagged ‘Home Recording Studio’

TCM MASTERING: HOME MUSIC STUDIO TIPS & INFORMATION

July 23, 2012

TCM Mastering: Home Music Studio Tips and Information

Over the last two years the TCM Mastering Home Music Studio blog series has provided helpful tips and vital information for the home musician. Whether you were just setting up or have had a home studio for some time, the blog series has proved extremely popular and more importantly, of great value to musicians of all abilities and genres.

Double Tracking Guitars.

Not surprisingly, mixing guitars and drums have proved to be two favourites. However, the blogs have covered much more than just the popular topics. We have covered everything from the initial studio setup and gear choices; the different types of microphones and techniques you can employ for recording a harp, bagpipes and percussion; tuning drums; recording strings and horn sections; signal processing to editing and final mastering…..and a whole lot more.

If you have a question on the recording process – you can find it in the TCM Mastering Home Music Studio blog. Just use the links below to take you to a section of interest or use the Tags on the right side of the page.

Glass Master In Clean Room.

Part 56 – Mastering

Home Studio With MIDI Setup.

Part 52 – Intro To MIDI

Gate On Kick Drum.

Part 45 – Mixing Drums

Maroon 5 Backing Vocals Bussed To A Stereo Channel & EQ’d.

Part 39 – Mixing Vocals

Early Digital System – Synclavier Edit Page.

Part 35 – Editing Music

24 Track Multitrack Recorder.

Part 29 – Multitrack Recording

Pro Tools DPP-1 Pitch Change Processor.

Part 24 – Signal Processing

Recording Drums At Home.

Part 19 – Recording Drums

Multiple Mic Placements On Harp.

Part 13 – Recording Stringed Instruments

Mic Placement Underneath Piano.

Part 8 – Recording Piano

Left to Right: Neumann U87 Condenser, Shure SM58 Dynamic, Avantone CR14 Ribbon Microphones.

Part 5 – Microphone Types

Home Studio Built In Garden Shed.

Part 1 – Your Room

Owned and run by multi-platinum music producer Ted Carfrae, TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group have been providing

a professional, fast and affordable service

to all genres of the music industry for decades – from major record labels and international artists to brand new, up and coming music talent.

Take a look at some recent clients, by clicking here.

If you have questions about recording or would like to know more about what TCM can do for you and your music, our contact details are here.

West 1 Entertainment News

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act continues to tour the UK to packed and enthusiastic crowds.  For more information go to the website by clicking here.

Ben & The Band.

Ben, the band and dancers perform one hundred per cent live with the support of a full lighting and sound crew.

West 1 Entertainment Ltd has announced the latest dates for the up and coming Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Concert which is set to smash all previous box office sales with this vibrant, fresh, professional show.

JULY
WEDNESDAY 25th – OLD BUCKENHAM AIRFIELD, NORFOLK

AUGUST
SUNDAY 19th – TRIBFEST
FRIDAY 24th – WEYMOUTH PAVILION
SUNDAY 26th – ISLE OF WIGHT

SEPTEMBER
SATURDAY 1st – THE VENUE, NEW CROSS, LONDON
SATURDAY 15th – GREENROOMS, LIVERPOOL
WEDNESDAY 19th – THE WINTER GARDENS, BLACKPOOL

OCTOBER
FRIDAY 5th – ASTOR THEATRE, DEAL, KENT
FRIDAY 19th – REDITCH THEATRE
THURSDAY 25th – DUDLEY CONCERT HALL

NOVEMBER
SATURDAY 3rd – THE VENUE, NEW CROSS, LONDON
SATURDAY 10th – THE RANGE, WOLVERHAMPTON
FRIDAY 30th – THE MEDINA THEATRE, ISLE OF WIGHT

DECEMBER
SATURDAY 15th – FRANKIES, MANCHESTER

Ben as Michael Jackson has taken the theatre world by storm with his innovative, true to life presentation of the King of Pop’s moves and iconic music, backed by his incredible band and dancers – the ultimate tribute act in Europe. Lead by the show’s creator, James Baker who himself is an established musician and producer, this show is selling out all over the UK!

Contact details are info@w1entertainment.com or if you’d like more information on Ben The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act, go to the website by clicking here.

TCM MASTERING: HOME MUSIC STUDIO TIPS & INFORMATION

July 9, 2012

TCM Mastering: Home Music Studio Tips and Information

The TCM Mastering Home Music Studio blog series (56 parts) provides invaluable tips and essential information for the musician recording at home.

Some Of TCM’s Recent Projects.

The blogs cover everything from initial setup and gear choice through mic techniques, signal processing, recording, editing, overdubbing, mixing and final mastering with several parts devoted to MIDI.

If you’re thinking about putting together a home studio, then start at the beginning – Part 1 – and work your way through. If you already have a home studio but need help in certain areas of the recording process, you can find what you’re looking for by using the Tags on the right hand side of the page or click on some of the links below to take you to key areas.

Ted Carfrae In TCM Mastering Studio – Kent, UK.

Part 56 – Mastering

Pro Tools MIDI Editor.

Part 52 – Intro To MIDI

Compressor On Kick Drum.

Part 45 – Mixing Drums

Vocal Comping.

Part 39 – Mixing Vocals

Editing Audio File Digitally.

Part 35 – Editing Music

Two Inch 24 Track Multitrack.

Part 29 – Multitrack Recording

Boss GT-10B Bass Effects Processor.

Part 24 – Signal Processing

Ralph Salmins, Drummer Setup With Multiple Mics.

Part 19 – Recording Drums

Recording A String Ensemble.

Part 11 – Recording Acoustic Stringed Instruments

EQ On Bosendorfer Piano.

Part 8 – Recording Piano

Sound Reflections In Room From Speakers.

Part 1 – Your Room

TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group have been offering a…..

professional, fast and affordable

service to the music community for over three decades.

Founded and owned by multi-platinum music producer Ted Carfrae, TCM  have worked with most of the major record labels whilst their clients range from new, up and coming artists to established international musicians.

Take a look at some of the clients TCM has worked with recently.

If you’d like more information on what Ted and the TCM team can do for you and your music, give us a call or drop us a line. Our contact details can be found by clicking here.

West 1 Entertainment News

Ted Carfrae and James Baker formed W1 Entertainment to handle artist promotion and management.

Ben as pop icon Michael Jackson has taken the theatre world by storm. Backed by his incredible band and dancers – Ben The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act is selling out all over the UK. See below for tour dates.

For more information go to the website by clicking here.

Ben & The Band Performing Live On Stage.

Ben, the band and dancers perform one hundred per cent live with the support of a full lighting and sound crew.

JULY
FRIDAY 13th – THE FERRY, GLASGOW, SCOTLAND
FRIDAY 20th – WEYMOUTH PAVILION
SATURDAY 21st – FRANKIES, MANCHESTER
WEDNESDAY 25th – OLD BUCKENHAM AIRFIELD, NORFOLK

AUGUST
SUNDAY 19th – TRIBFEST
FRIDAY 24th – WEYMOUTH PAVILION
SUNDAY 26th – ISLE OF WIGHT

SEPTEMBER
SATURDAY 1st – THE VENUE, NEW CROSS, LONDON
SATURDAY 15th – GREENROOMS, LIVERPOOL
WEDNESDAY 19th – THE WINTER GARDENS, BLACKPOOL

OCTOBER
FRIDAY 5th – ASTOR THEATRE, DEAL, KENT
FRIDAY 19th – REDITCH THEATRE
THURSDAY 25th – DUDLEY CONCERT HALL

NOVEMBER
SATURDAY 3rd – THE VENUE, NEW CROSS, LONDON
SATURDAY 10th – THE RANGE, WOLVERHAMPTON
FRIDAY 30th – THE MEDINA THEATRE, ISLE OF WIGHT

DECEMBER
SATURDAY 15th – FRANKIES, MANCHESTER

Contact details are info@w1entertainment.com or if you’d like more information on Ben The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act, go to the website by clicking here.

Check out Ben and The Band performing ‘The Love You Save’ live at Glastonbudget 2012 (below).

TCM MASTERING HOME MUSIC STUDIO BLOG: TIPS & INFORMATION

June 4, 2012

TCM Mastering Home Music Studio Blog: Tips and Information

If you’re the owner of a home music studio or are thinking of putting one together, then you’ll find the TCM Mastering Home Music Studio series of blogs essential viewing.

It covers everything from initial startup to final mastering, including the use of various mic techniques, recording, editing and mixing instruments as well as a section dedicated to MIDI.

To find what you’re looking for use the links below or the Tags on the right of the page.

Part 56 – Mastering

Various MIDI Controllers.

Part 52 – Intro To MIDI

Part 45 – Mixing Drums

Part 39 – Mixing Vocals

Logic Piano Roll Editor Window.

Part 35 – Editing Music

Part 29 – Multitrack Recording

Over Compression On The Lower Pair Of Tracks.

Part 24 – Signal Processing

Part 19 – Recording Drums

Two EQ Curves For Acoustic Guitar.

Part 11 – Recording Acoustic Stringed Instruments

Part 8 – Recording Piano

Part 1 – Your Room

TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group, founded and run by multi-platinum music producer Ted Carfrae, have been offering a professional, fast and affordable service to the music community for over thirty years. TCM have worked with most of the major record labels. And their clients range from new, up and coming artists to established international musicians.

It’s also worth mentioning, TCM are experts in audio restoration and have done work for the BBC and Sky Satellite Radio as well as smaller independent music houses.

Take a look at some of the clients TCM has worked with recently.

So if you have a music project that needs recording, production, mixing or mastering services, give us a call or drop us a line.

All of us at TCM are passionate about music in all its various forms and we’re here to help.

Click here for contact details.

West 1 Entertainment News

In 2011, Ted Carfrae formed West 1 Entertainment with business partner James Baker to handle artist management and promotion. One of their acts that continues to stun and excite audiences is…..

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act.

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act is currently touring the UK.

Upcoming tour dates are below.

FRIDAY JUNE 22nd – THE GREEN ROOM, LIVERPOOL
SATURDAY 30th JUNE  – THE CORN EXCHANGE, CAMBRIDGE
FRIDAY 6th JULY – WOODVILLE HALLS THEATRE – GRAVESEND, KENT
FRIDAY 13th JULY – THE FERRY, GLASGOW, SCOTLAND
FRIDAY 20th JULY – WEYMOUTH PAVILION
SATURDAY 21st JULY – FRANKIES, MANCHESTER
SUNDAY 19th AUGUST – TRIBFEST
FRIDAY 24th AUGUST – WEYMOUTH PAVILION
SUNDAY 26th AUGUST – ISLE OF WIGHT

Whereas some tribute acts mime and use backing tracks, Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act is One Hundred Per Cent a totally live experience, comprising a talented band of musicians, dancers and a professional sound and lighting crew.

If you’re a Michael Jackson fan, Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act, is the closest you will ever get to experience Michael Jackson live in concert.

It’s not just another tribute act, but a sincere and totally professional musical tribute to one of the greatest entertainers the world has ever seen – the incredible Michael Jackson.

Check out the website for more information, by clicking here.

TCM MASTERING HOME MUSIC STUDIO BLOG: TIPS & INFORMATION

May 21, 2012

TCM Mastering Home Music Studio Blog: Tips and Information

The TCM Mastering Home Music Studio series of blogs covers everything from setting up a room at home and choosing gear, to recording and mixing various instruments as well as MIDI and final mastering. It’s packed with useful tips and essential information for the home musician.

Pro Tools – A Great Choice For Home Studios.

To find what you’re looking for, either use the Tags on the right hand side of the page, or click on some of the links below. You’ll also find links within the blogs that will take you to other Parts that will be of interest.

Part 56 – Mastering

MIDI Setup With Keyboards & Computer.

Part 52 – Intro To MIDI

Part 45 – Mixing Drums

Vocal ‘Comping’.

Part 39 – Mixing Vocals

Part 35 – Editing Music

Part 29 – Multitrack Recording

Drawmer Dynamic Plug-In For Pro Tools.

Part 24 – Signal Processing

Part 19 – Recording Drums

Part 11 – Recording Acoustic Stringed Instruments

Various Mics On Upright Piano.

Part 8 – Recording Piano

Home Music Studio Setup.

Part 1 – Your Room

TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group owned and run by Ted Carfrae, have been offering a professional, fast and affordable service to the music community for over thirty years, having worked with most of the major record labels. Their clients range from new, up and coming artists to established international musicians.

TCM are experts in audio restoration and have done extensive work for the BBC and Sky Satellite Radio as well as smaller independent music houses.

Take a look at some of the clients TCM has worked with recently.

If you’d like more information on what Ted and the TCM team can do for you and your music, give us a call or drop us a line. Our contact details can be found by clicking here.

West 1 Entertainment News

In 2011, Ted Carfrae formed West 1 Entertainment with business partner James Baker, to handle artist management and promotion. One of their acts that continues to stun and excite audiences is…..

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act.

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act is currently touring the UK. The act is 100% live, with a talented band of musicians, dancers and a professional sound and lighting crew.

If you’re a Michael Jackson fan, you will want to see Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act. It’s the closest you will ever get to experience Michael Jackson live in concert.

It’s not just another tribute act, but a sincere and totally professional musical tribute to the incredible Michael Jackson. Check out the website for more information, by clicking here.

TCM MASTERING HOME MUSIC STUDIO BLOG: TIPS & INFORMATION

May 14, 2012

TCM Mastering Home Music Studio Blog: Tips and Information

Do you have a home music studio, or are you thinking of putting one together?

The TCM Mastering Home Music Studio series of blogs is packed with useful tips and information essential to the musician recording at home.

The 56 parts cover everything from initial room setup, gear choice, microphone techniques and how to record various instruments, multitrack recording, signal processing, the mixing process, MIDI, and final mastering.

Find what you’re looking for by using the Tags on the right hand side of the page, or use the links below as a starting point.

Part 56 – Mastering

Part 52 – Intro To MIDI

Part 45 – Mixing Drums

Part 39 – Mixing Vocals

Part 35 – Editing Music

Part 29 – Multitrack Recording

Part 24 – Signal Processing

Part 19 – Recording Drums

Part 11 – Recording Acoustic Stringed Instruments

Part 8 – Recording Piano

Part 1 – Your Room

TCM have been offering a professional, fast and affordable service to the music community for over thirty years, having worked with most of the major record labels. Their clients range from new, up and coming artists to established international musicians.

It’s also worth mentioning, TCM are experts in audio restoration and have done work for the BBC and Sky Satellite Radio as well as smaller independent music houses.

Take a look at some of the clients TCM has worked with recently.

In the video below, Ted Carfrae of TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group explains what the music mastering process involves and why you should consider having your music professionally mastered.

If you’d like more information on what Ted and the TCM team can do for you and your music, give us a call or drop us a line. Our contact details can be found by clicking here.

West 1 Entertainment News

In addition, Ted Carfrae formed West 1 Entertainment with business partner James Baker last year (2011) to handle artist management and promotion. One of their acts that continues to stun and excite audiences is…..

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act.

Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act is currently touring the UK. The act is 100% live, with a talented band of musicians, dancers and a professional sound and lighting crew.

If you’re a Michael Jackson fan, you will want to see Ben – The Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Act. It’s the closest you will ever get to experience Michael Jackson live in concert.

It’s not just another tribute act, but a sincere and totally professional musical tribute to the incredible Michael Jackson. Check out the website for more information, by clicking here.

TCM MASTERING: HOME MUSIC STUDIO TIPS & INFORMATION

April 16, 2012

TCM Mastering: Home Music Studio Tips and Information

Over 56 parts, the TCM Mastering Home Music Studio Series has covered everything from…..studio room setup, gear choice, mic types and techniques for recording various instruments, signal processing, overdubbing, editing, mixing, MIDI, mastering…..and much more.

Start with part 1 and work your way through, click on the links above or find what you’re looking for by choosing from the tags on the right of the page.

TCM Music Group and TCM Mastering provide full recording, mixing, mastering and production services from their facilities in the UK and Nashville, USA. And don’t forget TCM are experts in Audio Restoration too.

Producing music takes time and effort. Give your music that final shine by using our online mastering service. TCM take pride in providing a professional, fast and affordable service to the music community.

For more information, click here and Make Your Music Shine.

As mentioned in an earlier blog, Ted Carfrae of TCM Mastering and TCM Music Group has formed a new business partnership with James Baker – West 1 Entertainment – which will handle artist management and promotion.

One of the acts that West 1 is very excited about is…..

‘Ben – A Tribute To Michael Jackson’

Ben On Stage & Recording In The Studio.

‘Ben – A Tribute To Michael Jackson’ is now regarded by many, to be the World’s No.1 Michael Jackson Tribute show.

The music is 100% live. There are no backing tracks and Ben’s Live in Concert Michael Jackson experience features his incredible band of musicians and talented dancers. Ben and the band are currently hard at work, touring the UK along with his team of professional sound designers and lighting technicians. The shows have received incredible reviews, as the tribute show that has got to be seen to be believed.

Click here to view a few testimonials from some very satisfied clients.

If you love the music of Michael Jackson, check out Ben – A Tribute To Michael Jackson.

This weekend’s dates for Ben – A Tribute To Michael Jackson are…..

19th April—–Congress Theatre / Eastbourne
21st April—–Carnegie Theatre / Cumbria
22nd April—-The Pavilion Theatre / Glasgow

TCM MASTERING: HOME MUSIC STUDIO PART 55 – MIDI CONTINUED

March 19, 2012

TCM Mastering: Home Music Studio Tips and Information

Part 55 MIDI Continued

In last week’s TCM Mastering Home Music Studio series, we looked at the various pieces of gear (Sound Generator, Interface, Controller and Sequencer) that are needed for a MIDI setup, as well as looking at the various MIDI messages and modes.

This week, we continue our look at MIDI by considering General MIDI. We’ll also delve into sequencing, recording and editing MIDI data.

Gotta Love Gear!

General MIDI

General MIDI (level 1) is a protocol that was developed in 1991 which defined specific features of a MIDI instrument. It means that the sounds on one MIDI instrument are largely consistent with the sounds on another MIDI instrument. In conjunction with the use of Standard MIDI Files (SMF), this means that a sequence created in one programme can be replicated or played back in another – the result should be that both sequences sound the same.

Writing Music With Pencil & Paper And With Finale Software.

The process of composing music these days is quite different to how it was done 100 years ago. There are many musicians of course who still compose the ‘traditional’ way, using pencil and paper. But for those musicians who never had much of a formal musical training, modern technology and particularly MIDI, allows them to create music by playing their efforts directly into a sequencer or computer and then adjusting or fixing any errors, without touching a pencil or piece of paper.

The Popular Sibelius Scoring Software.

What’s more, music can be created and recorded by a musician in one part of the world, then worked on or completed by a musician in another, without either of them leaving their studios.

Musicians On Opposite Sides Of The World Can Contribute To The Same Project.

For example, let’s say there are two musicians – Courtney in New York and Kurt who lives in London. They both have home studio setups with General MIDI compatible synths and sound modules. Using GM, Courtney can take the SMF of a song created in her programme, send it over the internet to Kurt who then plays it back on his system. The result is that the playback heard in the UK will (or should) sound the same as the version created in the USA.

It’s important to mention different programmes and sequencers often use proprietary file formats which may not be compatible with each other. For the example above to work, the file needs to be saved in Standard MIDI File format, which is usually an available option in most good sequencing programmes today.

In addition, not all MIDI instruments follow the GM standards. So if  this feature is likely to be important to you, then make sure the synth or other MIDI instrument you’re considering is GM compatible, before you buy it.

4 Families Of GM Instruments Each Containing 8 Patches.

General MIDI Level 1 protocols consist of…..

A minimum of 24 polyphonic voices which respond to velocity and 128 instrument patches. The 128 patches are divided into 16 family types, with 8 instrument patches in each family. For example, family #1 consists of piano type sounds whilst family #4 is guitars.

All 16 MIDI channels are supported for receiving and sending. Each individual channel is capable of playing a variable number of voices (polyphony) and can play a different instrument (patch or timbre).

Sound Patches Can Contain Several Different Instruments Spread Over A Keyboard’s Width. Here We See The Standard GM Key Assignments For Drums & Percussion.

Key-based percussion defaults to MIDI Channel 10. With each Note number (key #) corresponding to a different drum sound. For example, Note 35 is Acoustic Bass Drum, whilst Note 60 (middle C) is High Bongo.

In addition, General MIDI 1 is capable of handling a multitude of performance and controller messages.

General MIDI Level 2 was introduced in 1999. It is compatible with GM 1 and consists of…..

Over 380 sounds, 32 note polyphony, added features and greater control for sound editing and musical performance. A GM 2 device can handle 16 channels, up to 16 simultaneous instruments (patches) and 2 simultaneous percussion kits (on channels 10 and 11). Several more control messages were implemented, including MIDI tuning. Also added to the GM 2 standard were various effects, for example reverb and chorus.

Pro Tools MIDI Editor.

Sequencing

A MIDI sequencer works on the same principle as a multitrack recorder in some ways (except you never record to tape). There are the same transport functions – Record, Start, Stop etc. Each instrument is assigned and recorded to a separate track.

To differentiate between the various tracks, a separate performance can be assigned to one of 16 MIDI channels. Meaning that 16 different MIDI sounds or instruments (if you have that many) can be played back simultaneously – providing you have the right equipment (MIDI interface etc.) with enough Ins and Outs and a computer or sequencer with the processing power that is capable of handling it all.

In this way, the audio outputs from each instrument (synth or sound module) can be connected directly into a mixing deck (often part of the software programme or DAW that contains the sequencer) without ever going to tape and therefore are first generation sounds, giving you the cleanest of signals.

The sequencer can record the incoming MIDI signal in Real Time (as you play it) or Step Time (one note at a time), this signal contains the performance information for that recording – the note pitches, durations and volumes. No audio is recorded. To play back the MIDI recording, a MIDI OUT signal is sent to the synth or sound module where a sound is then triggered.

BeatDesigner – MIDI Plug-In Step Sequencer For Drum Patterns.

The advantages of recording performance information are…..

  • It allows you to record a track using a piano then play back that track information using any instrument you desire.
  • If you’re not the greatest player in the world, it allows you to record each note of a sequence one note at a time.
  • On play back you can alter the musical key of the performance from the original.
  • You can also alter the placement, pitch, volume or length of a note in the sequencer.

Recording

Prior to recording you need to make sure that all of your instruments, sound modules and sequencer/computer are talking to each other or synchronised.

You will need to…..

  • Decide which device is going to send MIDI commands – be the ‘Master’ and which devices are to receive commands – ‘Slaves’.
  • Check the polyphony setup for your instruments.
  • Assign MIDI channels for each device. For example, drum machines are usually set to channel 10, because this is the default channel for General MIDI.

If you play the ‘Master’ device and hear nothing from the other devices in your system, check through your setup. In particular, check the MIDI channel assigns (and of course you will need to monitor the audio outputs from each instrument in your system). Your specific instrument manuals should be able to help you with these setups.

Prior To Recording, You May Find It Useful To Sketch Out Your Setup If You’re New To MIDI, Noting Channels & MIDI Ins/Outs/Thrus.

Before recording, make sure you have the correct sound patch going to the right track and adjust the levels of the various instruments assigned to the various MIDI channels.

Your sequencer will have a metronome. If you choose to use it, you need to set the tempo and time signature…..3/4, 4/4 etc. Tempo can always be altered after you’ve recorded. You may find it useful to record at 60 bpm (beats/minute) if your playing skills are basic, but want the track to play back at 120 bpm.

Just make sure you decide on the final tempo before you start recording any audio. MIDI can be sped up and slowed down without altering the pitch. Audio cannot, without using pitch change plug-ins or software like Elastic Time and Pitch (see links below).

Editing

As with digital audio you can cut, copy and paste MIDI recordings. You can also easily quantise and transpose MIDI too. In recent years, big steps in audio manipulation software enable you to treat audio files in similar ways to your MIDI files. Check out Quantising audio with Elastic Time and Transposing with Elastic Pitch.

Left: Unquantised MIDI. Right: Quantised MIDI.

Quantising a performance can fix poor timing or rhythm. Let’s say you recorded a MIDI kick and snare from a synth keyboard, but on hearing back your performance, you feel it’s not quite tight enough – some of the beats stray a little.

You could manually move each drum hit to the correct position, but that might take a long time, especially if your performance is really bad! Alternatively, by setting the right quantisation value in your sequencer, you could hit a button and all the hits would snap to the correct beat.

If you choose a quantisation value of 8, then all your notes or drum hits would snap to the nearest 8th note. Choose a value of 16 and all the notes would move to the nearest 16th note. Most good programmes often have the added ability to somewhat or partially quantise – allowing a human feel to remain in your recording and preventing a robotic quality to the music.

If you’re rhythm is really out, there’s the risk that quantising the track will move some beats further out than in. It tends to work best for tracks that are slightly out. So listen carefully to the result. If it makes some beats worse, you may have to move those specific beats manually.

Transposed Music Sequence From A Major To E Major.

Transposing allows you to simply change your MIDI tracks from the key of A major to the key of E major, for example.

You may want to try out several vocalists for a song. Each one may have a different vocal range and consequently require the song to be played in a different musical key. Using the sequencer’s transposing facility enables you to change key at the touch of a button, without having to re-record your tracks.

Logic’s Piano Roll Editor Window.

In most good software programmes, MIDI can be represented graphically in a few different ways. The Piano-Roll Window tends to be the most common window used when editing. The picture above shows the piano keys represented on the left. The horizontal bars represent the different MIDI notes recorded on a track. The length of the bars shows how long each note was played. By selecting a note you can alter its position, length, pitch etc. Additional features allow you to adjust volume, change MIDI channels and more.

Logic’s Score Page.

When using Step Time to record one note at a time, some sequencers provide a Score Page where your musical performance shows up in musical notation. If you can read music this may be a useful page to work on and edit your MIDI tracks. It allows you to make all the alterations we’ve discussed earlier e.g. move notes, alter pitch, volume etc.

Events List Showing MIDI Data.

Some programmes include an Events List Window. Those of you who are techies will probably appreciate this page. It presents all the MIDI data of your music. Everything from velocity, pitch bend, pan and more.

So by using a combination of window displays, you can alter every nuance of a MIDI performance, even if the original lacked expression and dynamics.

Next week we look at Mastering, the final stage in the technical process of music making.

TCM Music Group and TCM Mastering provide full recording, mixing, mastering and production services from their facilities in the UK and Nashville, USA

Producing music takes time and effort. Give your music that final shine by using our online mastering service. TCM take pride in providing a professional, fast and affordable service to the music community.

Make Your Music Shine.

For more information, click here.