Templates and Strategies for Composition using sequences/DAWs

So, our first lecture was opened with the exploration of various composing website (which we can create sequences with) which could be easily accessed and used for the teacher and students in a classroom condition.

The first program we looked was the Acid Machine 2. Important thing to remember here! If you happen to have a Mac and usually use the safari, sorry but you have to use google chrome to make this happen. It is so much worth it though!

Screen Shot 2017-08-05 at 11.36.12 pm.png

So how do we use this in the class?

First you have to click the ‘editor’ on the top left corner. Then the page will load and lead you to the page as you can see on the top. Then it is ready to go! Students can explore how to use this program and be able to make their own unique sequences through this website by just clicking whichever box they want.

How can we cooperate this into music education? Well, if you see the screen carefully, you will be able to notice the thick white line after four columns. This can be articulated to teach the time signature of 4/4 and later on other features can be used to teach the pitch patterns, timbre, texture and structure. Why is this suitable for starting lesson for the younger years (year 7-8)? Well, it is very simple and visual to start with. Hence, it does not require any prior knowledge to compose something. And the most cool feature which all the students will appreciate is that it is private. So students can explore their ideas of their own freely.

The other program we had a look was called a sound trap . So, this is a great program for composing a song just with the loop!

Screen Shot 2017-08-06 at 2.35.29 pm.png

The button with the 2 quavers on the right hand corner is something called a loop library (As you can see in the attachment). Screen Shot 2017-08-06 at 2.36.58 pm.png

From this website, students could explore the various effects. There are 3 main effects to control a sound.

  1. Equalizer: which students can turn up/down the frequency
  2. Room (Reverb): the sound pretends that it is in a space
  3. Compressor/ Compressor one: Makes music into a narrow range and louder.

With the sound trap, be aware of the differences between the Audio and MIDI sound. Audio is a recording of a real sound. It is basically a measurement of the vibration travelling through the air. On the other hand, MIDI is not a real sound. MIDI is an information about music/musical sound. Hence, it does not contain loads of musical notations but it contains loads of informations. MIDI can be only played to the beat (hence, when you are recording with the MIDI, you always hear counting beats before it starts recording). But, MIDI is much easier to manipulate tempo, instrument, dynamics etc.

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