Digital Music Project
For this project I set out to compose & produce some tunes using some old midi instruments and production software. It had been quite a few years since the last time I fired up any of this equipment, and I haven’t had much time to tool around on a keyboard or drum set of any kind recently either, so I really had no idea how this would turn out.
Day 1 was pretty much entirely spent getting the software re-installed onto my laptop and testing out the instruments, midi adaptors, etc. Here’s what I’m working with:
- Ableton Live
- Native Instruments Kontakt
- Native Instruments Battery
- Roland PC-70 MIDI keyboard
- Yamaha DD-55 MIDI Drum Kit
- Edirol UM-1 USB MIDI Converter
By day 2, I was up and running, and spent my time re-familiarizing myself with the software. I spent day 3 digging through sample libraries, hunting for good sounds for my tunes. Once I had compiled a good set, I got to work.
The composition / production took far less time than I originally had anticipated. Granted, the tunes I produced are somewhat simple and unpolished, but once I got into a rhythm (hah) things came together pretty quickly. I love Ableton’s two different modes. Session mode is an awesome way to create beats & melodies on-the-fly, and was really critical to my composition process. Meanwhile, arrangement mode follows a more typical sequencer interface pattern, and is awesome for putting together the final product.
All in all, I think this project was a complete success. In about a week, I was able to dust off my old gear, get back up to speed, and produce not one, but two complete works. In the upcoming weeks, hopefully I’ll have time to follow up with some revisions and new songs. In the meantime, here are the (current) final products: