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Bars & Pipes Professional: Scales, Chords, Rythms and Patches

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Overview

This chapter focuses on defining Scales, Chords, Rhythms, and Patch Lists in their respective Define windows. Many Tools and Sequencer functions use these items to produce customized results. For instance, the Quick Patch Tool and the Program Change area use Patch Lists, so that you can choose program changes by name. The CounterPoint Tool uses Scales to compose and the Accompany B Tool uses Chords and Rhythms to create auto-accompaniments.

Bars&Pipes Professional stores Scale, Chord, and Rhythm information in each Track's Song Parameters. To choose a particular Scale, Chord,or Rhythm, use the Pencil in either the Master Parameters or a specific Track's Song Parameters.

Bars&Pipes Professional saves your Scales, Chords, Rhythms, and Patch Lists with each Song. When Bars&Pipes Professional loads the Song, these additional items load with it.

Tip
To include new Scales, Chords, Rhythms and Patch Lists in your New environment, select New from the Song menu, add the new items, then select Save As Default in the Song menu.

The Define windows can be reached from either the Define... option in the Main menu set's Windows menu, or the Edit window's Define menu.

Define Scales Window

To create your own Key & Scale/Modes, use the Define Scales window.

The Define Scales window has a keyboard area, a name area, three buttons, and two menu options.

Adding And Subtracting Notes From Scales

On the right side of the Define Scales window is a one-octave keyboard. Active notes are highlighted in blue, while inactive notes are white. To include a note in the scales, click on a white note, thereby turning it blue. Click on a blue note to exclude it from the Scale, thereby turning it white.

Creating A New Scale

Click on the Add button to create a new Scale. Then, enter a name after the Name: prompt. Click and highlight the notes you want include in your Scale. Once you've defined your scale, you must save your Song. If you do not save your Song, you will lose your Scale upon exiting Bars&Pipes Professional. You can also use the Save Scale... menu option to save your Scale (please see below).

Selecting From Existing Scales

To bring up a pop-up list of existing Scales, click on the Select button. Once you've chosen from the list, you can rename it or add and subtract notes from it.

Removing An Existing Scale

To remove the selected Scale from your list, click on the Remove button . A requester asks you to confirm your decision. Once you Remove a Scale, you cannot retrieve it, unless you load a previously saved version of the Scale from disk.

Changing The Name Of A Scale

After the Name: prompt, you'll find the name of the selected Scale. Click in this area to modify the name or enter a new one. Use the backspace and delete keys if necessary.

Loading A Previously Saved Scale

To load a previously saved Scale from disk, choose Load Scale from the Define Scales window menu.

Saving A Scale

To save a Scale to disk, select the Save Scale option.

Define Chords Window

Use the Define Chords window to create your own Chords.

The Define Chords window has a two octave keyboard area, control buttons, a name area, and menu options.

Adding And Subtracting Notes From Chords

On the lower right side of the Define Chords window, you'll find a two- octave keyboard. Active notes are highlighted in blue, while inactive notes are white. When you click on a white note, it turns blue. This indicates that the note is included in the Chord. When you click on a blue note, it turns white again, thus indicating that the note is no longer a member of the Chord.

Creating A New Chord

Click on the Add button to create a new Chord. Then, enter a name after the Name: prompt. Click and highlight the notes you want include in your Chord.

Once you've defined your Chord, you must save your Song. If you do not save your Song, you will lose your Chord upon exiting Bars&Pipes Professional. You can also use the Save Chord... menu option to save your Chord (please see below).

Selecting From Existing Chords

To bring up a pop-up list of existing Chords, click on the Select button. Once you've chosen from the list, you can rename it or add and subtract notes from it.

Removing An Existing Chord

To remove the selected Chord from your list, click on the Remove button. A requester asks you to confirm your decision. Once you Remove a Chord, you cannot retrieve it, unless you load a previously saved version of the Chord from disk.

Changing The Name Of A Chord

After the Name: prompt, you'll find the name of the selected Chord. Click in this area to modify the name or enter a new one. Use the backspace and delete keys if necessary.

Loading A Previously Saved Chord

To load a previously saved Chord from disk, choose Load Chord from the Define Chords window menu.

Saving A Chord

To save a Chord to disk, select the Save Chord option.

Define Rhythms

Use the Define Rhythms window to create your own Rhythms.

By definition a Rhythm includes three elements:

  1. A sequence of notes which defines the timing, emphasis, and length of each rhythmic event;
  2. A loop length that determines the length of the pattern; and
  3. A name for the Rhythm.

Creating A New Rhythm

To create your own Rhythms, open the Define Rhythms Window from the Define... Rhythms option of the Windows menu. Or, from the Graphic Editor window, use the Define menu.

Note
If you want to import a Rhythm from the Main Screen, open the Define Rhythms window from the Main Screen. If you want to import a Rhythm from the ClipBoard, or if you are currently in a Track's Sequence Editor window, open the Define Rhythms window from the Sequence Editor window.

To create your own rhythm from scratch, first record a sequence of notes that the rhythm uses to define its timing, emphasis, and length. To do so, tap out any notes on your instrument keyboard, as if you were playing the drums. The actual notes you play don't matter, since the rhythm just uses only the start time, velocity, and duration of the notes to define the rhythm pattern.

Adding A New Rhythm

To add a new Rhythm to the list, click on the Add button. This creates a blank Rhythm with no pattern and a loop length of zero.

Selecting An Existing Rhythm

To access a scrolling list of all available Rhythms, click and hold on the Select button. Then drag the mouse to the desired Rhythm. If you cannot see the Rhythm you want, use the arrows above and below the list to scroll the menu up or down. You can change the name, length, and patterns of any existing Rhythm.

Removing A Rhythm

To remove a Rhythm from the list, select it and press the Remove button.

Grabbing Clips As Rhythms

Because the Rhythm Pattern consists of a sequence of notes, you can record it the same way you would a Track Sequence. For example, you can record your Rhythm in real-time, step-enter it, or draw each note with the Pencil.

Tip
Often, sections of previously recorded Songs make great Rhythm templates.

Once you've created a pattern of notes and activated the Add button, you're ready to pull the pattern into the Define Rhythm window. Do so by clicking on one of two command buttons: Grab Clip from ClipBoard or Grab Clip from Track.

The Grab Clip from ClipBoard button copies the currently selected Clip from the ClipBoard window to the Define Rhythm window. Use this command if you have saved your rhythm template to the ClipBoard. By default, the loop length is the length of the Clip, however, you can edit the loop length as needed.

The Grab Clip from Track button copies the notes from the section bounded by the Edit Flags of the selected Track and copies these notes into the Rhythm. This button provides the mechanism for tapping a Rhythm into a Track and quickly transferring it into a Rhythm.

Replacing A Rhythm

If a Rhythm has an existing pattern of notes, you can change it by replacing the existing pattern with a new one. Do this by executing either of the Grab commands.

Setting The Loop Length

Once a pattern has been transferred to the Define Rhythms window, the length of the loop appears after the Loop Length: requester. To change this value, assign the Rhythm a loop length in measures, beats, and clocks.

For example, a two measure loop would be entered as "2.0.0", two measures, zero beats and zero clocks.

Changing The Rhythm Name

Give your Rhythm a name by entering it after the Name: prompt.

Loading A Previously Saved Rhythm

To load a Rhythm from disk, use the Load Rhythm... command in the Define Rhythms menu.

Saving A Rhythm

To save individual Rhythms to disk, use the Save.., command in the Define Rhythms menu. Selecting this command opens the file requester from which you can create or select a file name.

Define Patch List

The Define Patch List window allows you to create Patch Lists for your synths. A Patch List contains the name and its associated Program Change number (between 0 and 127) for each of your synth's instrument sounds.

In addition to using the Define Patch List window to create Patch Lists, you can use it to access Patch Lists from disk.

Tip
You can also load lists created with The PatchMeister and SuperJAM!

The Define Patch Lists Window

The Define Patch List window contains three buttons: the Add, Select, and Remove buttons. These button allow you to create a new Patch List, choose a Patch List from the ones which are loaded, and remove a Patch List, respectively. Above the Add button is the Synth: prompt and Patch List name area. To the right of the Add button is the number prompt and the program change name area. To the right of the Select and Remove buttons is the scrolling Patch List. Use the scroll bar and scroll arrows to scroll through the list.

Creating A New Patch List

To create a new Patch List, click on the Add button. Then, enter a Patch List name by clicking in the space to the right of the Synth: prompt, and entering the name. To enter the actual Patch List, click after the number prompt and enter the Program Change's name. When you press the return key on your Amiga keyboard, the number prompt automatically increments to the next Program Change.

Choosing A Patch List

To choose a Patch List, click and hold the Select button. A pop-up list appears where you can select the Patch List you want to use.

Note
If there are no Patch Lists loaded, the pop-up list does not appear.

Editing A Patch List

To edit an existing Patch List, choose it with the Select button. Change the name of the Patch List after the Synth: prompt; change the names of the individual program changes by clicking on the name in the scrolling list, then changing the name after the number prompt.

Removing A Patch List

To remove unused Patch Lists, click on the Remove button. This removes the selected Patch List from the loaded list of Patch Lists. A requester asks you to verify this operation.

Loading A Patch List

To load Patch Lists previously saved with Bars&Pipes Professional, SuperJAM! or The PatchMeister, use the Load Patch List... command found in the Define Patch Lists menu.

Tip
You'll find the SuperJAM! Patch Lists in the SuperJAM!/Bands directory.

Saving A Patch List

Choose the Save Patch List... option in the Define Patch Lists menu to save the selected Patch List.

Tip
You can use Patch Lists created in Bars&Pipes Professional for your Super JAM! Bands.

You can find out more about Patch Lists in Customizing Your Environment.