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Lessons with CheeseLord


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Ah, I begin to like these compositions... Brass instruments seem to go along very well with this kind of percussion. Do you already manage to find some decent brass soundpacks? Maybe some good french horns?

To begin with, let's take a look at the samples: Within this work there are no snares and no cymbals, but timpani mixed with toms. A reproduction of something with a similar setting should not get that difficult, but some preparations concerning the samples are inevitable.

Different types of timpani and tom samples are used within this production, so let's take a closer look at some specific parts:

In the beginning the drums are more of a subtle accompaniment (especially from 0:40 and on) and the brass and string sections are playing the major parts. This part uses percussion samples that work good as an addition to the other instruments.

The main part where the drums come into play (1:28 and on) utilizes some stilystic device, which basically makes the drums play the major roll while having no other instruments played. Taking away all the instruments that played before creates a lot (!) of room to be used by whatever you decide to bring to the foreground then, but this is only half the battle. The other very important thing about this part is the samples used. If you only have 'some' timpani to play the major roll in 'some' way here (while still having lots of room to be used), you are likely to only create a feeling of reduction and decreasing of intensity. This part emphasizes a very dynamic way of playing percussion, as well as samples that almost perfectly make use of all that room we can utilize. Let's analyze that a little further:

The samples that are being used here contain some sort of impact that is a little uncommon for typical timpani. Here's an example:

Compare these two

freesound :: view sample :: timp_rolls.flac

freesound :: view sample :: prac - tom.wav *

The second one is a sample of a drum set, not actually called timpani, but tom. This is this sort of impact I was looking for.

This impact - capable of creating higher frequencies - is what is also being used within this production. I consider the use of such a sample pretty important within this part where we have a lot of room. The higher frequencies that come with such samples are a good way to make use of the room we have and the reverb will be recognized a lot more, when there are no other instruments. By the way, since the reverb is also quite important here - did you try to add a reverb to some of your works? If so, did it turn out well?

Furthermore, there is not only the different samples, but also how they are being played. We now have a sample with a lot of impact and a wider frequency spectrum, as well as one with a more subtle but earthy feeling, emphasizing lower frequencies. This relation somehow compares to the kick and snare of a real drum set, which allows for some vividness, if used properly. Such relations between two percussive instruments allow you to form a statement, a phrase, more easily than with only one instrument. A common drum set even brings along a Hi-Hat, which acts as another addition to kick and snare. You can definitely find more percussive instruments that allow you to create similar relations without relying on real drum sets. This way you could emphasize percussive statements even more, which would basically lead you to a wider range of possibilities, when creating expressions that make use of percussive elements.

* I know, I've said this before, but samples that provide different velocity layers will help you a lot with overall sound quality and a more realistic simulation: Free Floor Tom Samples - 16 Inch Sonor Floor Tom 1

Oh, and keep an eye on this page - quite a good source, if you'd ask me.

Okay, I know that I did not take care of the full track here, but I guess the most significant part of this production was included in the above, wasn't it?

I was talking to different people about this 'roll of percussion' within a production. I guess it's obvious that the differences between instruments capable of creating melodic / harmonic statements and percussive instruments are countless. A friend of mine used the following terms, in order to define the types of expressions created with drums and percussion: aggression, speed, anger and other "power" phrases

According to my own definition, there is more to percussion than just accompanying other instruments. Intensity is also a term that I find most appropriate, but that leads us to another question - 'intensity of what'? Well, since you're quite into the percussive section, I would like to know about how you see the 'roll of percussion and drums'?

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I'd consider the Douglas Concert Timpini I showed you at the start of the thread in the bundle of soundfonts as a good one.....will they sufficiently fufil the timpini's role??? I've also tried adding reverb to my compositions a few days age with Freeverb3 while looking at the snare roll. However, I think that it has caused a high pitched beeping noise. Do you know what that might be caused by?? The composition's here: Facing the Front.ogg - File Shared from Box.net - Free Online File Storage

Other than that, everything's great, I've got a french horn (no velocity though :( ) in the bundle of soundfonts I showed you, is the quality OK for that one?? I'll mess around with everything on Saturday when I will have some more time.;)

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Right.....still don't know about the beeping, but Facing the Front is fixed now, no real problems. Brass.....I'm always browsing for soundfonts every now and again, so I'm sure I'll find a good set sooner or later. I'll just have to stick with what I have for now, they seem OK, but hmmm......we'll see.

When will we move on to recreation of those drum beats? Ready when you are :thumbsup:

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A beeping noise, you say? Hmm, I'm not sure that I know what you mean, but the reverbed signal might contain to much high frequencies that need to be damped. Usually, you have at least one (normally two) parameters that let you get rid of high frequencies - the "high cut" and the "damp" (names might differ with other plug-ins). There's also a slight chance, that it is your plug-in that is causing the sounds you do not like. You can try this freeware reverb: KVR: Smart Electronix Ambience - Virtual Effect

Let's cover reverbs a little more detailed soon.

Hmm, currently I can't find the Douglas Concert timpani you mentioned, but also, I'm a bit in a hurry right now - I will come back later and see, if I can find them. I also might have one or another soundfont for you...

How are you feeling about your production? What are the things you want to get rid of? I thought that this long sustained note at the beginning might be a good place to use a volume automation, in order to make it sound a little less static. You could create a nice climax with automations on this instrument, although you might need to add more channels of this instrument in order to independently make use of automations, but that's up to you, of course!

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Right......this piece was actually just the result of exercises I did with the snare roll, and I didn't actually plan to work on it much, but hey, I'm sure that if you taught me about climax building I could always apply it to other future pieces. :D

However, if it's OK with you, I would prefer to finish off the Siege of Laurelmor percussion topic first, and then move on to this piece, or stuff about reverb.

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You can learn quite a lot about the concept of a climax, when looking at the Siege of Laurelmor.

So far, we've covered about one half of the whole track while mostly focusing on the macroscopic arrangement techniques. Before we go on the same way we did before, I would like to take up again what you have said before. Concerning this track you used the term 'dramatic' in order to describe the feeling conveyed by this work. It's a tough topic to discuss whether such a feeling is created by the use of percussion or simply amplified, while the latter would lead us to the assumption, that it's not the percussion, but the other instruments which would convey such a feeling. Generally, this does not deter us from analyzing the percussive work done here, but I consider it important to take a closer look at the whole thing, when talking about the impressions and feelings conveyed by this work. My point here is, that what you like about this track (if it is the dramatic touch it has) might be created by not only the percussion itself, but that is for you to find out.

Before picking up the percussive parts again, I would like to take a look at the overall scope of arrangement of this piece (as you asked), being very macroscopic now. In order to do so, I would like to do a very plain and rough distinction between two different types of focuses here: I often refer to it as statement, so let's use the terms tonal / melodic or harmonic statement and rhythmic statement for now. This is, of course, also something that wants to be discussed further, but let's keep it simple for now. Let's break down the structure, so that you can see what I mean:

To begin with, let's look at the intro. We have both percussion and harmony here. A subtle fusion of these two parts is created, while statement is reduced, which is kind of suitable for an intro. Reducing the rhythmic content as well as the harmonic content let's a listener wait for more pithy expressions, although this state cannot be sustained for too long - it would simply start to become too empty then. Important is how this kind of expectation is being released, and this is where I need to make use of the distinction I mentioned before. For the first minute or so, this intro experiences a gradual progression of both harmonic and rhythmic content, mainly creating the feeling of a climax, but then this expression suddenly stops, while fully taking away all the percussion (1:05). For a short time, all the expressions are being reduced to a minimum with only a very thin string section plus the female vocal. You can see this part as a focus on harmonic statement, which let's you more clearly see what the next part is about. After this very subtle passage, the statement is shifted to rhythm only (1:28). This is where the expectation created within the intro finds its first release and the power of this percussion unfolds greatly. Soon, the percussion is being accompanied by progressing tonal content (sorry, I wouldn't know what else to call this). The percussion itself is rather static, but the other instruments are used in a progressive manner, mainly in order to create another short but steady increase - we have another climax here. Very soon, this climax is also brought to an end, while the statement is, once again, shifted to only melodic statement (2:05). This passage is very similar to the one, that focused on tonal content, too, and it also makes use of the very same two instruments, in order to create a similar feeling - a very thin soundscape, utilizing only little content, in order to create a contrast to the previous part. Slowly the percussion comes into play, along with the strings. Around 2:43 the percussion gets denser as it progresses further and the accompaniment does so, too. We have another climax here, a slow but steady increase of statement of both rhythmic and melodic nature. There's more about this part - I will refer to it soon. Around 3:25 this climax is, once again, brought to an end, but this time the statement is being shifted to the rhythmic part. However, the techniques utilzied remain the same - this part creates a thin and holding-back feeling with reduced content and this time with only rhythmic statement. This release is followed by another, rather short climax, which forms the end of this work.

As you can see, the composer was playing around with statements and climax structures quite a lot, which allowed him to make use of different settings with sudden changes. Every single one out of the four parts creates a somewhat different atmosphere, although the basic structure (as well as the tonal content) remains the same, which allows the four different parts to form one production in the end, and not four. The connection between these four parts requires to be strong in order to achieve such a result - changing the tonal content from one to another part while avoiding relations between these two might create a harsh cut bewteen two of these parts.

Some posts before, I was refering to some sort of 'room' to be used within a production. Previously, I was refering to room of a merely frequency-based type - this time, the term 'room' seems very appropriate to me, too, but it's room on another axis - time based room, if you like to call it that way. This track emphasizes a very thoughtful use of such room, although this still does not explain the dramatic momentum of this production.

Time for more percussion-based stuff: When looking at the rhythmic structure of these four different parts, you can notice changes here and there, quite a lot the more you look, but the rhythmic statement of the third part (2:05 - 3:25) is most different from the other ones, since the rhythmic structure is a lot different from the other ones. This part makes use of a technique sometimes refered to as 'shuffle', but a more accurate analysis brings us to a ternary structure. If ternary beat structures find their way into a production based on a binary measure, then the ternary structure is mostly written down in triplets, sometimes sextuplets. I guess this is no new stuff for you (is it?), so let's skip the theoretical aspects of it. The so called shuffle can be applied to a rhythm of binary structure. If done so, every off-beat is slightly moved towards the next on-beat, which creates a whole different feeling of your percussion. So does the ternary rhythm within a binary setting and this is what has been used here.

Well, not much details until here, but some of the things I have mentioned above are very significant for this track. As a composer of soundtracks, you might want to think about this arrangement once again. The general arrangement can very accurately define what setting is required in order to have a full representation, or vice versa, what kind of arrangement a soundtrack composer might use in order to accompany a specific background, be it movie or game. However, if you decide to do further analysis of whatever you decide to focus on, then such general analysis might want to be included in your considerations. For more about the percussive sections of this production, a reference to the overall structure can be very helpful. However, I'd be glad to take a look at a production of yours this time - we can then go back to this track again or we might refer to parts of it, as we talk about more detailed stuff about percussion then, microscopic rather than macroscopic. I'd love to focus on details of percussion even more, but as soon as we include things such as "feelings conveyed by a track" or the "set mood, atmosphere or setting", a more distant point of view about the 'role of percussion' might bring some more clearence upon the whole deal.

So far...

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Yep, got it. No problem over here, ready for more. So overall, the sections before are just as important as the actual part itself in a piece which is designed to build tension like Siege of Laurelmor, and the piece can be split in smaller sections:

The first dramatic, although deviod of rhythm, full scale that heads for a climax, but leads to the second section.

The second section is just mainly 2 thinly orchestrated instruments that builds tension.

The third starts with focusing on rhythm, and then releases the tension felt before. However, the climax here fades quickly, and progresses to something similar to the second section for contrast.

Percussion and strings slowly come in, and progresses faster, with the rest joining in to lead to another climax. This soon ends, and the rhythm is focused on. The techniques used earlier in the piece are still employed, up until the end of the composition.

I think that's about it for this piece. Anything I missed??

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No, you did not miss anything, but you can conclude this even more: Basically every single part follows the concept of a climax with a release that always acts as the beginning of a new climax. The beginning itself also creates a harsh contrast to the intensity of the maximum of every climax which is very important here, since this aspect affects somebody's expectation. Maybe just the first part is a little different, but you can think of it as an intro. This is what I wanted to point out with my analysis. One concept, altered four times while maintaining a solid base.

Well, I don't know this game where you did take the track from, but how do you feel about the setting that is conveyed by this track alone? I guess you already experienced any background happening along with this track, but what setting would suit such an arrangement according to your opinion? Not that this would be theoretical stuff, but still you might want to imagine a specific scene to take place in your head while listening. The arrangement of such a production is kind of a parallel to the story, or let's say to the happening. Since the arrangement isn't too common, I would like to know what background you find appropriate.

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Hmm... not sure what you're asking. Are you asking for where the music is used?? If so, this should help: YouTube - The Battle for Wesnoth: Moonletters (Northerners) vs. c4rLOs (Knalgans)

Unfortunately, he used different music to the ones in the game, but this gives an idea of what it's all about. However, one difference is that you wait a long time for the opponent(s) in multiplayer where it's most used, so you'd need something to listen to in between.

Hope what this is what you're asking about!

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:happy: No no... Sorry, if I my question wasn't clear.

The question was about you, not the game. If you seperate this track from where you took it from, then what else would suit this track as a background happening? What kind of environment comes with this track according to your opinion? You have already used a term to describe a little something about what I was looking for - dramatic - but how about some more details? Especially some things about that uncommon flow that is created by the structure of this track?

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Sorry about the delay......real life took over the last few days :(

Right...I would imagine the track to either be in a game as background, or in a cinematic clip. However, due to the uncommon flow, a game would be more appropriate as the listener would find it interesting and enjoyable to listen to while playing. This creates, in my opinion a epic and heroic atmosphere, as it is dark, while with heavy brass+percussion

Is that the sort of answer you were looking for??

P.S. I've found another GM bank - Merlin Vienna, pretty big but it seems pretty good - find it here: http://www.composition-contest.com/db_sf2.php Any chance for some comments on how good this is?

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No problem, I'm not in a hurry.

Unfotrunately, I cannot download this sound bank. Even after a registration I am told that I do not have sufficient credits to download anything.

The direction of your answer was indeed what I was looking for, but it was still not very tangible. The structure of this track illustrates 'something' very specific. By 'something' I am referring to what I was asking you about. I admit that this example is sort of extreme in a way of precisely depicting an uncommon happening (due to its uncommon structure), so I'd like to give you an example. Please do not think of the following as one static "solution" for the question I gave you - rather try to see what I was wanting to achieve by confronting you with a question of that kind. It's about where you draw inspiration from. I will now strongly refer to the analysis of this track in one of my previous posts:

The general feeling of this track depicts an atmosphere of very dense action, constantly experiencing drastic changes. I'd like to think of the percussion as a way to depict a war scene. Contrary to this dense passages I think of the spherical and smooth passages as a divine energy interacting with our 'happening'. Here's a more specific imagination about the story told:

This rather short story is about two nations fighting. The track places us in the middle of a battle scene. While follwing the track, we also follow the story of one important soldier who was given a special task which causes him to immediately escape due to the importance of the message. The first few measures with increasing tension illustrates his feelings, when he realizes his role. He tries to get away from the chaotic battle and runs towards a nearby cliff. This is where the first climax releases - he suddenly stops right in front of the cliff as he is overwhelmed by the sight that meets his eyes. From the cliff he sees a land of peace - a magnificent view that makes him feel so comfortable and calm. This is where our divine being, floating in front of him, starts to interact with our 'hero'. The soft female vocal depicts this very calm presence of an angelic being which let's him clearly know that he is not alone on his mission. All of a sudden, the divine presence quickly fades away. He realizes that there was something to do an when he turns around, he realizes that a small group of people who know about the consequences of his mission's success have tracked him down. The percussion sets in - the second climax starts.

He tries to avoid a close-range fight and runs away as fast as he can. He enters a nearby forest, in order to look for some possibility to shake off his pursuers. The tension of the track increases while he realizes that a lot more people came to chase him. He runs deeper into the forest - more trees appear and he starts to feel lost without any guidance. The climax reaches its maximum as he suddenly notices that the forest ends some steps ahead of him, but he keeps running, jumps down a from big stone and lands in a small lake after falling down a few feet. Our second climax is being released here and the angelic presence appears again. He is still diving, afraid of showing his head coming out of the water, but the divine being makes him forget all of his fear. He experiences a significant boost of motivation to continue and swims faster. He's slowly approaching the shore constantly moving forward, while he still feels this angelic presence nearby. He knows that he is now very close to where he has to deliver his important message and he almost forgot about his pursuers, but they did not seem near. Water drips from his clothes and they have become heavy, but his feelings gave him a power to continue further. Pride and glory is what he thinks awaits him when he enters the castle he already can see. No sign of anybody chasing him - the strong warrior reaches the gate of the castle and for the third time our angelic being suddenly disappears. The third climax is at its end and the release changes along with the mood. He has now passed the gate and continues to walk forward hoping to find some high-ranking person to speak to. He realizes that nobody is wondering about his presence here - this makes him stop immediately. The guards around know that he realized that there was something going on here and as he turns around he notices that the gate has closed. How could he know that he was not surrounded by the ones he had expected to be here...

I think the happening of this story suits this track pretty well. So far...

We can focus on something like that at a later point, if you would like so, but I guess there are some other things you wanted to cover before, aren't there?

Hope you enjoy this story :happy:

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Nice story - enjoyed reading it :)

Right.....first things first, do you how to get a VST effect to work?? Ambience.dll refuses to show up on the effects list at the moment, is there something I have to do before, or it an LMMS shortcoming.

And also, I'd like to learn how to recreate those drums in Siege of Laurelmor. So I'd prefer to finish off that before moving on to other stuff.

Sry so seeming a bit short, I'm in a bit of a hurry at the moment....

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Okay, then let's focus a little more on the microscopic issues of that track. Assuming that you want to recreate something similar:

The base of all of this is the set of samples you intend to use. It's not necessary to have a sound library of thousands of bucks, but make sure you have a collection of instruments that meets a somewhat decent standard of quality. Also remember, that it's a good thing to be acquainted with the instruments you intend to use - things like which instruments you choose in order to form some contrast (e.g kick - snare) will greatly help you when you're trying to create some sort of 'statement' with your percussion, but I have already mentioned this in one of my previous posts.

The next step is about arranging. This step involves experience and also feeling for whatever you want to express, but there's also a technical aspect of this which we can analyze. However, it's a little hard to explain about this without any reference and I'm not very excited about doing a precise analysis of the arrangement techniques and other details of the Siege of Laurelmor, since this would end up being a summary of facts which I certainly do not want you to copy. It would be clever (if not wise) to choose one of your approaches to do such analysis - the advantages are numerous. This does not necessarily have to be a complete track and we might achieve best results, if I know about your goals as precisely as possible - knowing that you want to recreate something similar to the Siege of Laurelmor would be an accurate example.

So, I would like to ask you to upload one of your works, in order to continue with this, if you agree to my point of view, that is.

If you made sure you have some base to start with, then you're actually ready to start. A few measures will already do the job, but it's always a good choice to have other instruments accompanying your percussion, so that it's more like a real composition. Focus on dynamics and accents - I'd be glad to listen to your work.

The ambiance plug-in should actually work like any other plug-in, but usually there is some option located somewhere within your DAW that let's you scan for new plug-ins in a specific directory. Do other external VSTs work? It's unlikely that LMMS does not feature VST support, since many of your internal plug-ins usually are VSTs, but I don't know that for sure...

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Right.... I've notched up a short, rough basic start of what I'm looking for. Find it here: Action.ogg - File Shared from Box.net - Free Online File Storage

At the moment, it sounds pretty pathetic..... I need to add some brass and stuff in the lower register in. I'd like to replace the percussive (except for the timpani :D) elements in there for something more like in Siege of Laurelmor. I'm stsrting to have doubts of the suitability of this composition for the percussive effect though, what would you think??

And everything else, great.......I'm glad we'll look at reverb soon, I've got it to work in LMMS, but ambiance is really a pain to use.

Boom Boom :) .......

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Right.......not sure if you downloaded the one I posted yesterday, but I've been updating and improving it for part of today. It sounds a lot better at the moment, although not perfect in any way.

At the moment, I'm a bit confused - why does a piece like this: http://media.soundsonline.com/ip/mp3/Action_Adventure.mp3 sound like it's orchestrated far better than my track when I am trying to make something similar to that. A example is when you look at Action Adventure at around 0:41 and 1:25, which compared to my piece at the latter half sound so much more realistic, expressive and so much more epic basically. I would think that better orchestration is probably the main factor, but I'm not really too sure how this piece uses these sort of techniques. Is it only feasible to get this with libraries like EWQL Platinum (this was actually a demo track showcasing it), or do you think I'm just missing out some instruments/effects etc.

Meh, the phrasing in this post was pretty poor, hope you get what I'm going on about :D

BTW, I'd still want to finish the Siege of Laurelmor topic, and then the reverbs, at the moment, I'm just asking about this as a side note........

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I did download your latest track and I was planning to talk a little about it, but let's look at this new thing you dug out now.

I agree that this sounds quite enjoyable concerning sound quality. Your assumption that orchestration technique has quite a lot to do with it is right, but that's certainly not more than half the battle, at least not, when it comes to sound quality. This track combines whatever we can use in order to maximize sound quality: an excellent set of libraries, careful use of effects and a very dynamic (concerning both choice of instruments and progression) composition;

As soon as you spend a day or two in a studio where you could work with the same workspace the composers of this library did, you would feel the differences between a set of high-end sound libraries and our freebie ones. Working with a set of instruments of stunning quality makes you want to use all they can offer, while our freeware soundfonts rather don't want to be 'used too much', since we would then run the risk of being unmasked as users of cheap sounds. Compared to what you found here, the freeware compositions 'usually' tend to sound much more static and rigid. This does not only concern the tonal range of an instrument, but also the range of velocities of an instrument. If you spend a lot of time with one specific instrument and get to know it better and better, then your demands on dynamics and whatnot will raise further and at some point you would notice any difference between a real instrument and a sound library. Just imagine the fact, that any velocity setting would usually require a different sample. However, we often do not have more than 5 velocity layers and once we hit the same note within one layer more than once we would have an exact match of the previous one, when looking at the waveform - something like this would never(!) occur with real instruments. At times our ear tends to recognize such subtle things pretty well.

I have also mentioned the use of slide notes in order to get rid of the problem with changing volume of a sustained note, but this is, of course, a technique not capable of precisely simulating what happens, when a flutist blows harder and harder while holding the same note. It was merely a small step towards the real deal.

Furthermore, what would you do to instruments like strings that make use of different playing techniques? Playing strings with a bow can create a whole lot of different timbres, but how would you simulate that with only a soundfont that comes with static samples? Maximizing especially this kind of instrument might make you want to record a whole solo straight, not just distinct notes. Luckily, we usually deal with a whole string section which is usually a little easier to control with libraries.

Well, I actually don't want to go a lot further complicating the use of freeware sounds, but don't forget that such libraries are recorded within a room that was provided to serve such a purpose. The means of recording include a decent set of microphones, as well, and they can cost enormous amounts of money for a reason. Doesn't this make you wonder about what quality the freebies "still" are?

We, however, have to deal with a set of sounds that are more or less good, sometimes recorded with 'some' equipment within 'some' room - all more or less random, but we use 'em. No wonder we admire compositions of such quality.

Let me tell you, that getting the best out of freeware soundfonts can be considered much more difficile and maybe also more difficult, than composing with EWQL and Vienna and such.

I hope your motivation to continue the way you did before is not totally down now...

Let me switch to a more distant point of view. The quality of a sound library is linked directly to what you can do with it. The numbers of samples that change at different velocities and notes allow for dynamics and this means quite a lot to the progression of a track, since you can switch between intense and subtle passages without losing the genuineness of your simulation. Having a whole set of instruments for only one section (brass for example) also brings a lot of vividness to your composition. Just imagine a real orchester with all those different brass types - well-proven quality, you know? If you only use like four channels in total for a whole composition including brass, wind, strings and percussion, then you will get close to a simulation of a quartet, but not an orchester. There are ways of avoiding such outcomes, but we might do that at some later point.

Okay, that's quite a lot of facts here - let's spend some time with only one thing before we lose our focus.

Let me stress that it is inevitable to 'know' the things you work with, in order to get the best out of it! This goes for freeware as well as for high-end sounds. The best thing one could expect of somebody who is working with freeware soundfonts is that he knows about the possibilities of such. Apply this to your latest work and ask - beforehand - what overall quality would be possible. You can only ascertain something the like by spending time with the environment you decide to use. This will prevent you from trying something impossible and if you start to get a hunch of what you can do with your virtual surroundings, then you might want to do adjustments before dashing into the real stuff.

We will still look at the Siege of Laurelmor, if you want to do so, but I would also like to take a look at one of your latest productions, too. The reason I asked you to try something with percussion is, that I wanted to know what you already can do with percussion and I might pinpoint different things depending on what you already can do.

That was surely a lot of stuff. If there is anything up on your mind now, feel free to share your thoughts.

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Okay, so basically, one thing I should spend some time is knowing the limits and capabilities of my soundfonts.

Right, at the moment, one of my methods of testing whether a soundfont for quality, velocity, and suitability a certain style is to get a MIDI of some composition, import the MIDI into LMMS, load the soundfont, alter it to suit the style, speed, volume and then compare and contrast with the actual thing. I tend to find this a more efficient method of seeing the quality of the soundfont because you can probably find of a real example of the piece somewhere on the internet. An example of this test is here, with the Haydn Trumpet Concerto. The version with my Trumpet soundfont in action is here: Haydn Trumpet comparison.ogg - File Shared from Box.net - Free Online File Storage, and can compare it to the version by Tine Thing Helseth here:

I noted the huge difference in instrument quality, expression and everything else

I also fully concur with the fact that no matter how good a freeware soundfont is, it's not going to rival EWQL/VSL etc. However, I'd think that with a skilled user (which I'm aspiring to be :thumbsup:) can make a piece sound good and most people won't be able to recognize that the composer is a cheapo, so hell no..... I still believe in freeware

The short track I posted last time is probably a good demo of my ability using a timpani. However, I'll have to spend a while some time notching up a production with more toms/cymbals. I figure that you've seen enough of the snare drum from me :P!!

Slide notes are unfortunately unavailable to me, so I'll have to make do with what I've got at the moment... Hmmmm... that's just about all for now :toothygrin:

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That's a neat idea. This should certainly do the job.

And good to hear that you're still down with freeware production, but remember that this might become difficult from time to time.

Hook me up with your latest version of your track and we will see where to continue...

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Hi Tuskle,

I'm really sorry for not being particularly active in the lesson recently, but truth be told, I've been very busy. First and foremost, I've been preparing for my Grade 5 Music Theory exam. It takes place next Wednesday, so most of my time this week will be spent either doing test papers, or trying to drum those Italian terms into my head :) .

I haven't really much progress to report to be honest, I have done very little composing and the plan do more in the half term pretty much went out of the window. Hopefully I'll be able to get back to composing after the exam, but until now, my hands are tied :(

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haven't really much progress to report to be honest, I have done very little composing and the plan do more in the half term pretty much went out of the window. Hopefully I'll be able to get back to composing after the exam, but until now, my hands are tied

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Tuskle.....I'm not dead :lol:

Hehe, so as you've seen, I haven't posted in a while now, but now, getting back to it. I've started on 'action' a few days ago, but then, I couldn't carry on (I just wasn't feeling into it). Sry that I seem to be jumpiong all over the place, but I'd prefer it if we postponed this topic for after Christmas. I want to make a piece in time for Christmas, so I've started the basic stuff and posted it here: http://www.box.net/shared/k19h5dqmym The last 10 sxeconds are a bit messy, and there is some polishing up to be done, but anyway, you can probably get the general idea of it.

*Trys some new Emoticons* B) :evil:

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ouh, hey!

Ok, let's postpone it, if you prefer it this way.

About your new track - it has a nice chinese kind of atmosphere and the flute sounds enticing, but what is it that I could help you with? Anything that you want to focus on in particular?

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