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Newbie recorder drum questions

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by rdo1708, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. rdo1708

    rdo1708 Tele-Holic

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    Hey all. I just picked up an interface and Amplitube and Reaper. Want to get into small recording sessions to get ideas out of my head. I'm having great luck with the amplitube stuff, but I would like to start writing some drum beats using my mouse only. Would piano roll in Reaper accomplish this? And if so, what vst should I use? Thanks!
     
  2. Skully

    Skully Doctor of Teleocity

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    Personally, I hate writing drum beats with a mouse. When I do it, I tap them in on a keyboard, then edit them. But I don't do a lot of MIDI drum programming. I only use MIDI drums for scratch tracks.
     
  3. rdo1708

    rdo1708 Tele-Holic

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    Unfortunately I don't have a midi keyboard yet. :/
     
  4. Skully

    Skully Doctor of Teleocity

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    Well, the good news that virtually any keyboard you buy these days -- including a Casio for the kids -- can act as a MIDI controller. This would work.
     
  5. mtjo62

    mtjo62 Tele-Holic

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    Only drawback to those type of keyboards are no pitch wheel or velocity sensitive keys. Korg, Alesis, M-Audio, etc. have midi controllers for less than $100 that are made for home studios. As to a good sequencer with an intuitive piano roll, let me know if you find one. I still use an old Win98 sequencer from Midisoft just for the piano roll function.

    Midi Controllers
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2013
  6. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Poster Extraordinaire

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    You can get pretty good with a mouse:

    That is in Logic with Superior Drummer, but the basic principle of using a piano roll and mouse should apply.

    I think that dude has done this before a few times though. I'm about a bazillion times slower, but I still tend to use a mouse. Others prefer a keyboard. Others might use grooves and edit from there. All depends how you like to work and what suits your workflow.

    Cheers,
    Geoff
     
  7. rdo1708

    rdo1708 Tele-Holic

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    That's what I'm talking about. That's what I want to be able to do. I was wondering if there is a way to do that in reaper or to do it in another free software and import it to reaper?
     
  8. ScatMan

    ScatMan Friend of Leo's

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    Reaper has piano roll too. I believe it's called midi editor. It does the same function; allows midi events to be edited.
     
  9. rsi106

    rsi106 TDPRI Member

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    I use ezdrummer with reaper. I find something close to what i am looking for in the ezdrummer groove library then change whatever i need in the MIDI track window. Not the fastest way, but it generally works.
     
  10. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Gold Supporter

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    I do that a lot too ... a lot of times I end up changing everything, though! But a starting point helps.
     
  11. SacDAve

    SacDAve Poster Extraordinaire

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    IMO if your just starting out I would buy a drum program I have EZ drummer and Addictive drums both are good and expandable ( I think AD sounds a little better) as for a midi controller/keyboard you can find them cheap on GL.
     
  12. rdo1708

    rdo1708 Tele-Holic

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    What is the advantage of using EZDrummer vs using piano roll if I'm 99% of the time composing all my own stuff? I'm not arguing, I'm just a total noob and would like to know both sides of the coin. Pros and cons to both?
     
  13. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Gold Supporter

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    No, you're not arguing, you're just trying to find out what's what! :D

    If you write your own stuff from scratch, you're free from any conventional strictures. Your drumming world is a blank slate, limited only by your drum vision and ability to translate that vision to the MIDI piano roll. It helps to know how drummers think too.

    With EZDrummer and the like, you can find patterns played by real drummers that sound like something a drummer would play. (That was my weakness, not thinking like a drummer.) But it's so easy to morph a stock pattern into what your song needs via the piano roll. I was gobsmacked at how easy it is once you start thinking like a drummer.
     
  14. ScatMan

    ScatMan Friend of Leo's

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    It's not one vs. the other. As said, piano roll or MIDI editor edits MIDI events.

    Buy EZdrummer or Addictive Drums drums or BFD drums or Steven Slate drums, or whatever you like (sound samples of drums, toms, hi-hats and cymbals).

    Install it and then open Reaper and select: Track--> insert virtual instrument on new track. Select the thing you bought. Pick a drum kit.

    Select Insert-->new MIDI item. Should look something like this:

    [​IMG]

    Double-click that grey area and you'll get the blank MIDI editor:

    [​IMG]

    Right-click and select: insert note at mouse cursor.

    Voilà! you've got a midi event in the midi editor!:

    [​IMG]

    Now, check out Geoffs posted video to make a beat out of that with your mouse.
     
  15. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Each of the piano keys over on the left of the piano roll/ midi editor will correspond to a specific drum. C1 will be a snare (or a kick or a whatever). They may differ depending on which drum sample package you pick up. And then you just go along horizontally and insert a drum hit (er, midi event) where you want that drum to hit in each bar or bars. In the vid I posted, the guy does a lot of copying, so he'll do snare hits for one bar and then copy them onto the next bar or bars, for example.

    I will say that to get good, convincing drum tracks with this method is pretty time consuming.

    Cheers,
    Geoff
     
  16. SacDAve

    SacDAve Poster Extraordinaire

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    I also use my Drum plugs-ins to build loops. I also have some Synth software they also have percussion sounds that you can build loops with. But one of the common factors I'm seeing in replies is the importance and ease keyboard controller’s makes things. For drumbeats you can have a rhythm track playing and record the drum tracks in real time, it’s pretty simple.( I’m a big fan of simple) On a bit of a deferent subject, a keyboard midi controller will open a whole new world. I’m by no means a keyboard player but with some of the programs/plugins endless possibilities and sounds.
     
  17. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Gold Supporter

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    No question there! :D With EZD or the like, if you're looking for a rock groove or a shuffle or whatever, you can choose from a menu of dozens (usually one or two bars, sometimes more). Tweak that pattern to your liking, then copy/paste it however many times it takes to fill out your verses. Repeat the process for your chorus or bridge. Presto, you've got the architecture for your song! Then go back and adjust the accents, add fills and so forth to suit your needs.
     
  18. ac15

    ac15 Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    I wish everything was as easy as Garageband on iPad, where you can just tap in the drums like a real kit. That's what I love most about that iPad app. I can make music quickly instead of programming drums.
     
  19. rdo1708

    rdo1708 Tele-Holic

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    Time consuming I can work with. I am co-writing music with a fairly amateur drummer and what I've been wanting to do is basically write out drum beats and such for songs I am writing and then let him hear the full song with my beats and then he can memorize the feel of the song before we play it together. We play some songs with fairly technical timing changes and cuts, so it's tough to use pre-written loops without doing major editing.
     
  20. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Gold Supporter

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    However you decide to write your drum tracks, the acid test is this: Once you think you've got it finished in the context of the mix, solo it all the way through and see if it sings to you. Eradicate any choppiness, rushing, timing problems, bad (unmusical) hits. ... It should glide like a queen's throne down velvet skids. Hey, I'm not saying I can always do this, but that's the ideal when it comes to fake drums.
     
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